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Others Like “How Far Will It Fly? Build & Test Paper Planes with Different Drag”

Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Watching a spacecraft launch is an amazing experience. It is thrilling to see it lift off and escape Earth's gravity. Did you know that it takes a chemical reaction to get a spacecraft into space? Every time you see a one blast off, you are watching chemistry at work. In this chemistry science fair project, you will also get to blast an object into the air. You will not be using the same fuel that NASA uses for the rockets that launch their spacecrafts; instead, you will use two simple… Read more
Chem_p086
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Wear safety goggles to prevent eye injury during launch.
Science Fair Project Idea
A great way to get started in exploring aerodynamics is by building high-performance paper gliders. We're not talking folded pieces of copier paper here. These gliders are built using laminated construction methods, so they look and fly much more like the real thing. The materials are inexpensive, and the building techniques are easy to learn. You can easily turn out several planes, which makes it possible to test the effects of design changes on flight performance. Read more
Aero_p009
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None; Project times longer depending on how many gliders you build, and how many times you iterate your design.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever wondered why golf balls have a pattern of dimples on their surface? The dimples are important for determining how air flows around the ball when it is in flight. The dimple pattern, combined with the spin imparted to the ball when hit by the club, greatly influence the ball's flight path. For example, backspin generates lift, prolonging flight. When the ball is not hit squarely with the club, varying degrees of sidespin are imparted to the ball. A clockwise sidespin (viewed from… Read more
Sports_p012
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites To do this experiment you must have sufficient golf experience to swing a golf club consistently and have access to golf clubs.
Material Availability Specialty items
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Race car drivers need every advantage they can get to give them the competitive edge in a race. In addition to human factors, like driving skill and reaction time, their cars must overcome physical forces, like air resistance, to maintain their high speeds. While this science project will not have you driving around a race track at 200 miles per hour, you will get to test how increased air resistance affects a real car's fuel economy. You will do this by measuring and comparing the gas mileage… Read more
Aero_p028
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability This science project requires an adult volunteer with a driver's license and who is allowed to drive a car. A car that already has a detachable roof rack is recommended, but a detachable roof rack may be purchased to do this science project. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Never try to record data or distract the driver while you are in a moving vehicle. Always collect your data when the car is parked at home.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever looked up into the sky and seen not a bird, not a plane, but a hot-air balloon? They are definitely amazing and fun to watch! Do you think they are all the same size? Does size affect how long the hot-air balloon can fly? In this science fair project, you will launch hot-air balloons, powered by a toaster, and see how the size of the balloon affects its flight. Read more
Aero_p041
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites You will need access to a room with a high ceiling, like a gym or an auditorium. Or you can perform the experiment outdoors, if there is no wind.
Material Availability Readily available.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult supervision is required. Use caution with the hot toaster. A hot toaster is a potential fire hazard.
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever seen a skateboarder jump over an obstacle or slide down a railing? It looks like they are defying the laws of physics when they perform these tricks. It looks like it, but that's not the case. Physics describes the motion of objects and it is a skateboarder's best friend! All of these tricks can be explained by physics. In this sports science fair project, you will learn how speed affects "popping an ollie." The ollie is a basic skateboarding trick, and it's the first step to more… Read more
Sports_p055
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites You, or someone you know, must already own a skateboard and safety gear, and know how to skate to perform the ollie trick. You must also have access to a video camera (it should include a timer if you decide to try one of the variations). You should perform the tests in a skateboard park or in a large area where it is legal and safe to skateboard.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Injury is possible. Adult supervision is required. The person performing the ollie must wear a safety helmet, elbow pads, and knee pads.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever dreamed about becoming invisible? Or about making something else invisible, like the mess all over your room? Invisibility may sound like the stuff of science fiction (remember Star Trek's "Cloaking Device"?), but in reality, military vehicles, like planes and ships, can be made less observable, or even invisible, to different detection methods—like radar, sonar, or infrared sensors—by using stealth technology. In this engineering science fair project, you'll find out… Read more
Phys_p075
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety You should never look directly into an LED flashlight, as it can cause eye damage.
Science Fair Project Idea
If you've played catch with both Aerobie flying rings and Frisbees, you know that the rings fly much further than the Frisbees with the same throwing effort. Why is that? Investigate the aerodynamics of flying rings and flying disks and find out! Read more
Aero_p011
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No hazards
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail A tsunami is a series of waves made in a body of water, like the ocean, that can cause serious destruction when they hit the coastline. In deep water, a wave can be just a few feet high and travel very fast. As it nears the coastline, and moves into shallower water, tsunamis usually slow down, but the wave height can grow to 100 feet! In this ocean science project, you will model a tsunami and investigate how wave velocity (speed) depends on water depth. Does it match the mathematical equation… Read more
OceanSci_p014
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You will need an extra-long plastic storage box to use as a water tank. Plastic storage boxes that can slide under a bed work very well. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Use caution when working with the lamp and the water tank. Make sure the two are far apart from each other at all times. Adult supervision required.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail 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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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
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