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Power at Play

Energy fuels everything from the cars we drive, to the laptops and electronics we use, and even the homes we live in.

By Tim McCauley

Encouraging students to think critically about energy and its use cases could inform their understanding and help revolutionalize the way we generate and store energy. Innovators were challenged to sustainably generate and store energy by designing their own rubber band-powered cars. Working in pairs, their design would need to meet one of four criteria, namely distance, accuracy, control, or ability to recharge. 

To begin they received axels and two wheels. They designed and 3D printed the additional two wheels in Innovation Studio. The end result meant that no two cars were alike and student ingenuity was on display in more ways than one.

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“I thought I did a decent job framing up the parameters for this exercise,” said Tim. “The kids were so creative and had such a broad range of ideas that they quickly found loopholes in this project and used each one to their advantage.” 

Tim believes that offering projects like this one provide challenging and creative opportunities to apply learning to real world problems and expects to continue this practice. Transportation is up next!