On Tuesday 5th November 2019 teachers from the St Aidan’s Design and Technology department took 30 Year 9 girls to an Engineering Extravaganza at the National STEM learning centre in York. The aim of the event was to give the students hands-on experience of different types of engineering.
Four professional engineering institutions, covering a broad range of engineering disciplines, joined forces to organise the Engineering Extravaganza. Throughout the day, the students took part in a variety of engineering based activities run by each of these four institutions.
The Institution of Civil Engineers: Skyscraper Challenge
The young engineer’s skills were put to the test when they were challenged to build the tallest tower using limited materials. With materials to buy, land to purchase and labour to employ, could the teams also make a profit? The students had to design their tower and estimate the profit before the timed construction phase commenced. The tower had to stand up by itself and be able to withstand an earth quake (a shaking of the table).
The Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining: Materials in action challenge
Materials play a central role in our lives, but we take them very much for granted. The students explored how materials have helped change and improve the technology we rely on and their uses. They used this knowledge to design a house of the future.
The Institution of Engineering & Technology: Mars Lander project
A huge amount of engineering goes into the design of a craft to land on another planet 225 million miles from earth. The teams had to design and build a parachute to land a rover on the surface of Mars. Would their designs survive the impact of landing?
The Institution of Mechanical Engineers: Bloodhound Balloon Car
The students learnt about the Bloodhound Car – the supersonic car that is going to attempt to reach 1,000mph later this year. They also learnt how engineering is at the heart of the land speed record attempt. They then went on to design and built their own balloon powered car and competed against each other to determine whose car would travel the farthest / fastest.