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In 2021 we are launching the Bionic Challenge, a new assistive device robotics competition for elementary, middle, and high school students. Submissions must identify a client, imagine some of their difficulties, and design a solution to enhance the user’s abilities. Finalists will present their prototype designs to a panel of industry experts, academic leaders, and race participants.


The Bionic Challenge will be featured as part of the Bionic5K, an inclusive race in Harvard Square that brings together able-bodied and physically challenged athletes. This unique annual road race, to be held on April 25, 2021, features advanced technologies, including running and walking prosthetics, and experimental wearable exoskeletons.

Key Bionic5K race statistics 2018-2020:

over 1,000 total participants (race held virtually in 2020)

91 youth participants under age 15
55 adaptive runners

39 amputees

biology + electronics = bionics

Areas of Focus:

Assistive devices, prosthetics, and human augmentation

*Mobility is a major theme, but we also encourage entries that address other conditions, including visual and hearing impairments; as well as projects that seek to enhance attention and focus, memory and learning, and connection and creativity.

Technology Platforms:

LEGO Robotics (WeDo 2.0, Spike Prime, Mindstorms), Arduino, Teachable Machines


Requirements - all projects must have:

1. A client

2. A demonstrated problem to solve