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Construct a car out of the given material that will be the first to
reach 300cm. Using the motion detector, LoggerPRO®, and the TI-83®
to gather and analyze data.
- The car will be launched from an incline plane. The optimum height of
the incline and mass of the car will be determined by the design team.
- The car can only be made from the materials provided, no additional
materials can be used.
- The appearance of the car will not be judged, but the design
team should give consideration to the design elements that will affect
the cars ability to travel in a straight line.
- Each car should be put through performance tests at various angles
and using different masses to determine the optimum angle and mass.
These tests should use LoggerPRO® or the TI-83® and the motion
detector. to collect the data. An analysis of the car's design and
velocity will be required to be turned in at the time of the race. The
items that are needed in the analyis are discussed in the assessment
- Each car should include a flat surface toward the rear of the vehicle
to be used as the reflection plane for the motion detector.
3x 5 index cards
plastic bottle tops
10 g masses
Students will keep a record of the design process during the creation
and refinement of the car. The design record should include the following:
- Design drawing of the car, including dimensions and materials list.
- Design choices made and reason for those choices. (ex. number of
wheels, wheel position, construction equipment, weight distribution,
- Problems encountered during the design process, and their
- Performance problems and modifications, including resolution or
- Performance analysis of each run including the variables changed and
the resultant velocity.Note: The analysis of the performance should
only be done along the horizontal portion of the cars path.
- Distance vs. time graphs with best fit line, including the slope, for
at least 10 different angles/masses. (Only 3 have to be done manually,
others may be done on the TI-83® or Graphical Analysis®)
- Decisions made based on the analysis of the graphs and rationale for
- Clearly state the final mass and angle to be used and the expected
View a sample design
Written by Todd Mickley. Download the Word®
document for your use.
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