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Professional Level: Take Back the Planets

Created by: Wallace Council

JPEG Image (227x383)Story:

The year is 2121 and humans have completely populated the entire solar system, including the sun.  As a result of this spread from earth, there are groups of people populating nearly every planet.  The governing body of the solar system, located on the sun, has decided that the other planets should no longer communicate with the sun.  Your mission is to take your Suncraft Space Vehicle and traverse the solar system.  Stop off on each planet and pick up the communications satellite (knocking the block over is picking up the communications satellite).  Bring all of these satellites back to the sun before your time is up!  Also, you must take Pluto out of its orbit and move it into its rightful place.

Description: The robot must start inside the yellow circular sun in the middle of the board.  The location of each of the 2x2x6 yellow planet blocks is predetermined.  The location of the 2x2x4 white Pluto block is predetermined as well.  The points are totaled at the end of the run based on board conditions after the run is complete.  The time limit is 3 minutes.


  • Knocking over a block is essentially “stopping off and picking up a communications satellite.” 
  • Having the block inside the sun is “returning the satellite to the sun.”
  • The white 6 inch wide band in the lower right of the board is Pluto’s rightful place.  It is the “Kuiper Belt.”

Bill of Materials:

  • (All purchased from Home Depot)
  • 3 or 4 small cans of Painters Touch all purpose paint (1 white, 1 yellow, 1 or 2 black)
  • 1 sheet of 5.5 x 4 sheeting (any thickness)
  • 52” of 2x2 lumber
  • Colors:
  • Base of course is black (shown in photos)
  • 2x2x6 Planet blocks are yellow
  • 2x2x4 Pluto block is white
  • 18” sun located in center of board is yellow
  • 6” wide stripe, at 45 degree orientation is white

Scoring Table: 

  • Any planet block knocked over gets 50 points ea. (knock downs)
  • Any planet block with all or part in the sun at the end of the run gets 50 points ea (left in sun)
  • If the Pluto block is all or partially inside the Pluto white stripe, it gets 150 points
  • If the Pluto block is inside the sun it loses 150 points (note this counts AGAINST the total - subtract)
  • If the Robot left the sun, it gets 50 points

Drawings: Top View (note bottom left corner of drawing is (0,0) and all dimensions are in reference to this).

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Photos: (Wallace_PIX (This file is in zip format. ))