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Pulsar

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"I would hope that Pulsar will be remembered as a really feisty little underdog, it's really small, and it's going to hit really hard!"
— Ellis Ware

Pulsar is a heavyweight robot which competed in Series 8-9 of Robot Wars. In Series 8, Pulsar initially lost its Group Battle on a judges' decision after becoming immobilised on one side during the battle. However, it was reinstated after Chompalot was forced to withdraw, reaching the Grand Final before being defeated by Thor and TR2 in its Group Battle.

The name Pulsar is derived from a specific type of magnetised neutron star which radiates electromagnetic beams in space and is notable for its fast rotational speed. The latter connotations are further emphasised by the robot's 9000rpm drum weapon, the fastest featured in UK Robot Wars.

Ellis Ware appeared as a mentor in Robot Wars: Battle of the Stars, helping Paralympian Kadeena Cox to compete with eventual champion Kadeena Machina.

DesignEdit

Pulsar

Pulsar in Series 8

Pulsar is a compact, two-wheel drive robot with a wide front wedge and armed with a 14.5kg single-tooth spinning drum as its weapon. Its drum spins at 9000RPM and is hugely powerful, capable of causing severe damage as well as throwing other robots into the air and overturning them.

"I was way the other end of this building when I heard this god-awful hum start, like it was like a fire alarm or something!"
Dara Ó Briain on Pulsar's drum
Pulsar with team

Pulsar with its team in Series 8

The robot features a number of 3D printed parts, and its armour consists of 8mm HARDOX wear-resistant steel on the front wedge and chassis, and 4.5mm ARMOX steel on the top and base plates. However, its wheels are exposed overhead due to it being invertible, and the back panel protecting the wheels is made only of plastic. Pulsar is powered by 16Ah 12s LiPo batteries, but its radio reception proved to be intermittent, and the robot was generally unreliable, breaking down in three of its five battles.

Pulsar CAD internals

CAD of Pulsar's internals in Series 9

For Series 9, Pulsar was completely rebuilt. In the process, it gained a rear self-righting mechanism in the form of a front-hinged arm, which easily puts Pulsar back on its wheels. Its new drum is much bigger and weighs 23kg. Pulsar's armour was also highly upgraded, although the robot's wheels are still unprotected on top.

Robot HistoryEdit

Series 8Edit

Pulsar appeared in Episode 5 where it fought three veterans, Chompalot, Ironside3 and Thermidor 2 in its first round melee. Pulsar was originally intended to compete in Episode 2, but withdrew due to technical issues. Pulsar was granted a second chance to compete, in the fifth episode, after Pod withdrew.

"We're gonna wreck everything, including the arena, there's no doubt!"
— Peter Ware
Chompalot vs Pulsar

An immobile Pulsar is pushed by Chompalot

Despite the team's confidence, Pulsar was incredibly passive in its first-round melee, after sustaining a big blow from Ironside3 in the opening stages, bending Pulsar's wheels. It avoided the action afterwards in order to spin up its drum, blowing away dirt on the arena floor, unable to move properly, eventually losing drive to one half of the machine, and was left driving circles in the centre of the arena. It caused damage to Chompalot when the dragon drove onto Pulsar's wedge, but after being pushed, Pulsar became completely immobile. The pit was depressed, and Chompalot edged Pulsar ever closer to it, although Pulsar did not go down, and survived until a Judges' decision, where a unanimous vote eliminated Pulsar.

Despite this early exit, Pulsar was given another chance to rejoin the competition when Chompalot withdrew due to a devastating loss where the robot caught fire. Given the choice between Thermidor 2 and Pulsar, the Judges chose to reinstate Pulsar.

"The only thing we could really look at was the fight in the arena, Thermidor 2 didn't really do much, we had to choose Pulsar."
Dr Lucy Rogers
Beast vs pulsar 1

Capitalising on Beast's misfire

Pulsar went into its head-to-head match with Beast on 0 points, due to Chompalot's earlier loss. Pulsar remained stationary to spin up its drum, also struggling with its mobility again, while Beast missed with a flip. Pulsar used the chance to get underneath Beast, and attack its underbelly. Beast made little effort to move away, and Pulsar snuck around the side to throw it up with the drum, and hit it a second time upon landing. This double attack immobilised Beast, and Pulsar earned its three points very quickly.

Beast vs pulsar 2

Pulsar immobilises Beast

"Pulsar's beauty against the Beast, little machine, big heart!"
Jonathan Pearce

Pulsar went into its next head-to-head against the robot that immobilised it in the first round, Ironside3.

"I'm a vertical spinner, so I spin up very quickly, and they're a horizontal, so what happens when those two collide is very difficult to predict. If I hit their bar as it comes round, they'll go up absolutely flying, but if they hit my drum, it could cause serious damage, emphasised by the fact this is going round."
— Ellis Ware
Pulsar vs ironside 3

Pulsar throws Ironside 3 up

Pulsar and ironside 3 in the pit

Both robots are pitted

Both spinners got up to speed, and when the two collided, Pulsar won out, throwing Ironside3 into the air, and over. While Ironside3 tried to self-right, Pulsar caused more damage to its srimech using the drum, and pushed it into Sir Killalot. However, controversy struck, because Sir Killalot accidentally righted the struggling Ironside3, and Pulsar lost mobility on one side again. Pulsar could only turn in circles and spin its drum in self-defense, until it became completely immobile. Ironside3 pushed Pulsar into the pit, but fell in alongside it, so the battle was sent to the Judges. It was ruled by the Judges that because Ironside3 was immobile for over ten seconds during the fight, Pulsar would be awarded the full 3 points for a win via KO.

Gabriel vs pulsar 1

Pulsar tips Gabriel over

Gabriel vs pulsar 2

Pulsar is punished for inactivity

Gabriel rubber goes flying

Late damage from Pulsar helps the Judges' decision

This placed Pulsar at the top of the leaderboard with six points, level with the other Heat Finalist, Gabriel, creating a Heat Final between two robots that had never fought each other before. Pulsar found it difficult to find parts of Gabriel to attack, but managed to throw it over by hitting the sword while it rode along the floor. Pulsar's small size also allowed it to dodge Gabriel's attacks, though it took a big blow to the wheels. Pulsar put a large bend in Gabriel's wheel, and threw it over with several slams. Despite being in the lead, Pulsar had a scare when it stopped moving near Sir Killalot. Gabriel prepared to attack, but Pulsar came back to life, and reversed away. Dodging further attacks, Pulsar flipped Gabriel onto its side, tearing rubber away, while the pit was opened. Pulsar drove underneath the axlebot, but once again stopped moving in the same position as before. Gabriel attacked the lifeless Pulsar, kickstarting its drive again, but Pulsar ceased for a third time shortly afterwards, where it sustained a barrage of blows from Gabriel. Pulsar revived once again, and ripped a piece of steel from Gabriel, throwing it towards a camera. Pulsar landed one final blow, and cease was called. The Judges unanimously declared Pulsar the winner, and it qualified for the Grand Final.

In the Grand Final, Pulsar faced TR2 and fellow reinstated qualifier, Thor. Team Ranglebots stated a particular fear of TR2 going into the battle, due to its low ground clearance. With Pulsar suffering from unreliable drive motors, Ellis Ware also hit his robot with a hammer repeatedly to see if the shock would have an effect on the robot's mobility.

"I don't like that hitting it with a hammer is the only way to move forwards, that doesn't feel very healthy."
— Ellis Ware
Tr2 vs thor vs pulsar 1

Pulsar is thrown by TR2

Shunt axes thor who axes pulsar

Pulsar is struck by Thor

Shunt axes pulsar

Pulsar is knocked out by Shunt

At the start of the battle, Pulsar drove into Thor, with a bigger slam ripping away one of Thor's wheel guards. Pulsar caused further damage to the wedges of Thor, but after being pushed into Shunt by TR2, Pulsar lost mobility. It regained life, but only on one side of the drive, reviving the recurring issue of Pulsar becoming immobile on one side. Pulsar was flipped over by TR2, and then axed by Thor and Shunt. Once again, Pulsar could not move, but was righted by Shunt, restoring partial mobility again, which was lost when lifted by TR2. Shunt attacked Pulsar with its axe, stopping the drum from spinning briefly, and confirming that Pulsar was immobilised by flipping it over.

"Pulsar, soon to head for a black hole!"
Jonathan Pearce

Pulsar had once again fallen prey to its own faulty motors, and was eliminated from the competition.

Series 9Edit

Pulsar will appear in a yet-to-be confirmed episode.

ResultsEdit

PULSAR - RESULTS
Series 8
Series 8 - UK Championship
Grand Final, Round 1
Episode 5, Group Battle vs. Chompalot, Ironside3, Thermidor 2 Eliminated
NOTE: After the first Head-to-Head battle, Chompalot was forced to withdraw and Pulsar was reinstated.
Episode 5, Head-to-Heads vs. Beast Won via KO (3 points)
Episode 5, Head-to-Heads vs. Ironside3 Won via KO (3 points)
Episode 5, Heat Final vs. Gabriel Won
Grand Final, Group Battle vs. Thor, TR2 Eliminated
Series 9
Series 9 - UK Championship
Unknown
Group Battle vs. Unknown Unknown

Wins/LossesEdit

  • Wins: 3
  • Losses: 2

Series RecordEdit

Series Pulsar Record
Series 1-7 Did not enter
Series 8 Grand Final, Round 1
Series 9 Entered
Entered Battle of the Stars with Kadeena Machina

Outside Robot WarsEdit

Ellis Ware competes with a variety of robots in lower weight classes. Newton is a very successful beetleweight, twice placing second in a major championship. A series of featherweights named Tormenta have competed worldwide, with Tormenta 3 most recently placing sixth in the 2015 World Featherweight Championship. Ware also collaborated with Team Legion to compete with Rango and Django, the latter placing second in the 2016 World Featherweight Championship, losing to Explosion in the final.

TriviaEdit

  • At 9000rpm, Pulsar has the fastest spinning weapon ever to appear on a competing robot in UK Robot Wars.
    • At the time of Series 7, Sabretooth matched this 9000rpm record, but withdrew from the series after being told to tone down the power of the disc to which the team were unable to comply in time. Series 6 non-qualifier Mutant Mousetrap could reportedly spin its drum at 10,000rpm, but this cannot be verified.
    • The only Robot Wars competitor to exceed 9000rpm was US Grand Finalist Conquering Clown 2, boasting a reported 10,000rpm.
  • Pulsar is the only robot to win an episode after getting eliminated in the first round of the same series.
  • Pulsar's team name, Ranglebots, is the name of Ellis Ware's company.

External LinksEdit

ReferencesEdit


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