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Event Requirements

Below are the general requirements for a Tournament.  Please contact ftc.events@pennfirst.org for details.

Competition Area and Pits
The space used for the Competition Area and the Pits may be one large area or two separate areas (one for the competition area and one for the Pits.  If two spaces are used, the spaces must be relatively close to each other.
  • space for the competition fields (each field requires approximately a 30' x 30' space), inspection tables, scoring tables, and audience seating
  • space for the Pit tables/chairs (see below) and a practice field
Judging Rooms
One large room is needed for all of the judges to deliberate on the awards – generally a conference room with a large conference table works best.  It should have a whiteboard and/or flipchart.  See the volunteer section for an estimate on the number of judges this room needs to hold.

Space as also required for the judging team interviews (1 room for every 5 teams that attend the event).  If there are classrooms close by, one classroom per judge group (2-3 judges) works good.

Volunteer Room
It is nice, but not necessary to have a room for volunteers to take a break from the tournament for lunch.  Many tournament hosts provide volunteers morning beverages and breakfast snacks as well.

Below is a list of 6' tables (30” wide) and chairs that we need. If you have 8’ tables, let us know and we will make some slight changes. 
  • Check-in (in the area outside the gym):
    • (2) 6’ Team Check-in tables, 3 chairs
    • (2) 6’ Volunteer Check-in tables, 3 chairs
  • Pit area:
    • 6’ of table space and (2) chairs per team
  • Competition area:
    • (2) 6’ scoring tables, (4) chairs
    • (1) 6’ DJ table, (2) chairs
    • (3) 6’ hardware inspection tables, no chairs
    • (3) 6’ software inspection tables, no chairs
    • (1) 6’ awards table, no chairs
  • Per competition field:
    • (1) 6’ Field Control System (FCS) equipment table and (2) chairs
    • (2) 6’ queuing tables (reuse the inspection tables), no chairs.  (1) 8’ table is preferred.
  • Per practice field
    • (1) 6’ Field Control System (FCS) equipment table and (2) chairs
  • Judging
    • (1) 6’ judging table with 3 chairs per every 5 teams.
  • Extras
    • having a few extra tables and chairs is nice
 Miscellaneous equipment
  • (2) projectors, (2) projector carts, and (2) projector screens
  • (1) wireless microphone for the emcee
  • (1) wireless or wired microphone per field
  • Stanchions (to separate the competition area from the seating area)
The FTC robots communicate with the Field Control System using Wi-Fi (802.11b / 2.4 GHz).  For best wireless performance at the event, all 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi should be turned off and the spectrum available for tournament use.  5 GHz Wi-Fi may remain on.  Please ensure a local IT / Networking person is available during set up.

The power requirements per team in general are fairly low.  Teams use power to occasionally charge batteries (http://www.pitsco.com/store/detail.aspx?ID=5477 and http://shop.lego.com/en-US/LEGO-Power-Functions-Transformer-Charger-10VDC-8887) and a laptop.  One outlet for 5+- teams works fine. Usually competition field electronics (up to 2 fields) on one outlet, scoring table electronics on an outlet, and the 2 projectors (and laptops that drive them) on an outlet. Pennsylvania FIRST Robotics provides extension cords for the pits and the fields.
Below is a list of volunteers needed. Role descriptions can be found at http://www.ftcpenn.org/volunteerFTC volunteers are asked to register in the FIRST Volunteer Information and Matching System (VIMS) https://my.usfirst.org/vims/ for a background check this coming season. See http://www.ftcpenn.org/volunteer for details.  VIMS registration is not optional for any volunteer in a key or lead role.
  • (1) Event coordinator
  • (1+) Event coordinator assistant
  • (1) Emcee
  • (1+) Welcome / opening remarks person (generally a key figure from the host school)
  • (2 or 3) Team Check-in
  • (2 or 3) Volunteer Check-in
  • (1) Judge Advisor - certified by FIRST
  • (1) Judge Assistant
  • (2 or 3) Judges per every 5 teams (for experienced judges, 2 judges per judge group is fine, otherwise 3 is required)
  • (3) Hardware Inspectors - certified by FIRST
  • (2) Software Inspectors - certified by FIRST
  • (2) Scorekeepers - certified by FIRST (at least one)
  • (1) DJ
  • (1) Photographer
  • (5-10) Setup (afternoon/evening before the event)
  • Per field:
    • (1) Field Technical Advisor - certified by FIRST
    • (1 or 2) FTA Assistant
    • (1) Field Control System Operator
    • (1) Head Referee - certified by FIRST
    • (2) Referees
    • (1) Game Announcer
    • (1) Queuing Lead
    • (2) Queuers
    • (2+) Field Reset (game dependent)
Volunteer Training
This season's volunteer training material can be found on the FIRST website at http://www.usfirst.org/roboticsprograms/ftc/volunteer-resources.

We have a 30 minute break for lunch. This can be a real bottleneck if not staffed appropriately. Teams pay for their meals. Volunteer meals are generally paid for by the host. Some events have a separate volunteer lounge. If the volunteers will eat with the teams instead, you need a priority scheme / line for volunteers as they really only have 30 minutes. Either format is acceptable. Teams generally end up with more time for lunch based on their match schedule.