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Science Fair Project Idea
Radiometers are fun-to-watch novelty items, but they also have a distinguished scientific history, having been studied by James Clerk Maxwell and Albert Einstein. A radiometer has a set of four vanes (like small sails) connected to a spindle that is free to rotate. When the radiometer is placed in bright light, the vanes and spindle start to spin. It looks like a magic trick, but there is a scientific explanation for this weird behavior. In this science fair project, you will experiment with… Read more
Phys_p078
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites This science fair project will require some creative problem solving on your part.
Material Availability You will need to order a digital tachometer and radiometer online. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost High ($100 - $150)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
How does a helicopter generate enough lift to fly? How does a speedboat get moving fast enough to pull someone on water skis? Here's a project on designing propellers to do the job. Read more
Aero_p018
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Previous experience with aerodynamic design (e.g., model airplanes, gliders) is suggested.
Material Availability Specialty items
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever ridden on a carousel, or a merry-go-round, at an amusement park? On a carousel, you usually get to take a seat on a wooden horse or other animal that spins around and around as the carousel is turned on and powered by electricity. Another smaller type of carousel that people can have in their homes is a candle carousel, which is powered by heat from candles. In this science project, you will get to make your own candle carousel and investigate how the spinning speed of the… Read more
Aero_p051
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- Less Details
Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None.
Material Availability Chemicals need to be specially ordered. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult supervision is needed for using matches, lighting candles, and using epoxy. Follow all safety precautions when using epoxy. Adult supervision is recommended when handling lit candles.
Science Fair Project Idea
How do you feel when you ride your bike into a strong wind? Do your legs feel like lead? How about when the wind is at your back? Does that make you feel ready for the Tour de France? In this science fair project, you will investigate how wind-powered devices, like pinwheels, also react in different ways to the direction of the wind. Read more
Energy_p025
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever seen a helicopter flying through the sky? It can be difficult to do a science project with a real helicopter, so in this project we will show you how to make a miniature paper helicopter called a whirly bird. Will your whirly bird be able to stay in the air as you add paper clips as weights? Try this project to find out! Read more
Aero_p015
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- Less Details
Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Adult supervision is required when dropping your whirly bird from a high place (like a second story window).
Science Fair Project Idea
A strobe light can illuminate an entire room in just tens of microseconds. Inexpensive strobe lights can flash up to 10 or 20 times per second. This project shows you how to use stroboscopic photography to analyze motion. Read more
Photo_p003
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites This project requires camera with adjustable shutter speeds and lens apertures, a tripod and cable release.
Material Availability Specialty items
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No hazards
Science Fair Project Idea
Flying kites is an excellent way to learn about aerodynamic forces. In this science fair project, you will build and test a variety of kite designs to see which flies best in low wind speeds. You will use an inexpensive anemometer to accurately measure the wind speed. Since you will be choosing which kites to build and test, the experimental procedure provides a general outline for the experiments, but there is a lot of opportunity for you to be creative with your kite designs. This is a DIY… Read more
Aero_p042
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites This is a "do-it-yourself" science fair project, because it's up to you to choose and build the different kinds of kites you wish to test. You will also design the experimental setup using a fan, which will require some creative problem-solving on your part.
Material Availability A couple of specialty items are needed. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Are you good at tossing a Frisbee®? It is great when you throw a perfect, arcing curve, right on target! If you can do that, you have already trained your arm on the aerodynamics of Frisbee flight. Why not treat your brain to some Frisbee science with this project? Read more
Aero_p010
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- Less Details
Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites You should know the basics of throwing a Frisbee (i.e., be able to play catch with a friend).
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No hazards
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever seen butterflies fluttering around outside, gliding through the air and landing on flowers? While they are delicate and fragile, butterflies are actually excellent flyers. They are so good, in fact, that scientists at Harvard University studied butterfly wing shapes as an inspiration for building a miniature flying robot. In this science project, you will do your own version of the Harvard scientists' experiment to measure the flight performance of butterfly wings. Read more
Aero_p049
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- Less Details
Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($40 - $80)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Rockets are definitively an engineering challenge. These amazing gravity-defying machines have lifted test material, people, and even animals into space. Feel like building one yourself? In this science project, you will transform a water bottle into an aerodynamic bottle rocket with two compartments, one for the fuel and one for a payload. You will then test how well it performs when lifting mass vertically up into the air. Ready, set, soar! Read more
Phys_p098
+ More Details
- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability A kit for this project is available from the [# Link Name="Phys_p096.8" Value="HtmlAnchor" #].
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Adult supervision is recommended. See the safety note at the beginning of the Procedure.
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