Robotics at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center


LEGO season is here again!  It is a program for students ages 9 through 14.  The company FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) provides the program and NASA is a close partner of FIRST since it helps to provide our future Engineers and students who are needed for robotics technology.

The LEGO robot competition consists of three parts: the Robot Game, the Project, and the FLL (FIRST LEGO League) Core Values. Teams of up to ten children, with one adult coach, participate in the Challenge by programming an autonomous robot to score points on a themed playing field (Robot Game), developing a solution to a problem they have identified (Project), all guided by the FLL Core Values. Teams may then choose to attend an official tournament, hosted by a FIRST Operational Partner.

Past Challenges have been based on topics such as nanotechnology, climate, quality of life for the handicapped population, and transportation. Challenges around such topics, expose students to potential career paths in addition to solidifying the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) principles that naturally come from participating in a robotics program.

There are several opportunities for LEGO teams to join:  Community-based scrimmages, Regional Qualifying Tournaments, Championships, World Festival, and Education/Training events.

Official qualifying tournaments are orchestrated by FIRST Operational Partners, who are sanctioned by FIRST to run an FLL region. Some regions are large enough to have a Championship tournament

World Festival is the only official tournament operated by the FIRST organization. In 2011, World Festival moved to St. Louis, MO USA. World Festival is a culminating celebration of the FLL season, NOT a level of competition. Regions are selected by lottery to send their 1st Place Champion's Award winning team to World Festival. World Festival hosts about 85 teams each year.

Community-based scrimmage events (unofficial) are organized by local communities and hosted by the community. Since they are unofficial FLL events, they can follow ANY format.

Community education events are conducted to provide registered teams insight to the new game for the upcoming season.


Information about FIRST LEGO and planned events can be found at:

For more information on cost, please check out the FLL Brochure



FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Team #399 Eagle Robotics, Lancaster High School, may be able to conduct a LEGO workshop at your location.  They can be reached for scheduling at [email protected].

FIRST – For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) Robotics is a program developed by private entrepreneur Dean Kamen.  NASA is a strong partner of FIRST.  At the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center three FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) High School Teams have been established; the teams exist at these high schools:  Lancaster, Antelope Valley, and Tehachapi. For more information please visit these websites:

NASA Robotics:


Lancaster High School, Team #399 Eagle Robotics:

Antelope Valley High School, Team #2339 Robolopes:

Tehachapi High School, Team #585 Cyber Penguins:



NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center Office of Education can provide information and resources for robotics

· Education Director — Karla Shy

· P.O. Box 273 Edwards, CA 93523

· 1-661-276-7785

· [email protected]



Los Angeles Region FLL provides information about upcoming events in your area and registration

· Regional Operator—Tony Ayad / [email protected]

· FLL team resources, events, etc. /