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Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever had several different design ideas for a project and not known which one to try first? Engineers use computer models of real-world objects called simulations to help them make decisions before they start building prototypes. This helps them save time and money, so they do not have to physically build and test each design they come up with. In this project, you will use a free physics simulation program called VoxCAD. VoxCAD has been used for research at NASA, MIT, and other… Read more
Robotics_p016
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail In physics class, you have probably rolled your eyes at some point after being assigned a "projectile motion" homework problem where you use equations to predict how a ball will move through the air. This experiment will show you just how fun that problem can be by using a real catapult to launch a ball and videotaping it as it flies along its path. Then, you will analyze the video and compare it to what the equations predicted. If you have ever wondered if those equations in your physics… Read more
Phys_p089
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites This project requires a basic understanding of algebra, trigonometry (sine and cosine functions), and physics (kinematics—two-dimensional projectile motion), or the willingness to learn about these subjects on your own.
Material Availability This project requires access to a video camera (not included in the cost estimate) and the purchase of a catapult kit. (See the Materials and Equipment list for details.)
Cost Average ($40 - $80)
Safety Minor injury possible. Never aim the catapult at anyone, and keep your hands and fingers clear of the moving catapult arm when launching the catapult.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail If you've ever played or watched basketball, you might already know that your chances of successfully banking a shot on the backboard are higher in certain positions on the basketball court, even when keeping the distance from the hoop the same. Ever wondered what would account for this? Do you think you could actually explain this using geometry? This science project will put your knowledge of geometry and algebra to good use. You will calculate and quantify how much more difficult it is to… Read more
Sports_p064
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites You should have a familiarity with basic algebra.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever seen a "Hail Mary" football pass, where the quarterback tries to throw the ball as far as possible to reach the end zone and score a touchdown? Or a last second game tying soccer goal from midfield? How far the ball will go does not just depend on how hard a player throws or kicks it; it also depends on the angle at which the player launches the ball. In this sports science project, you will investigate how launch angle affects the distance that a ball travels by filming… Read more
Sports_p036
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability This science project requires a computer with internet access and a digital video camera with a tripod. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Be sure to do this science project in an open area like an empty football field, where you will not hit people or buildings with the ball.
Science Fair Project Idea
Here's a project where you can try your hand at being a detective with your computer. In this project you'll write a program to do some basic analysis of features of written text (for example, counting the length of each word in the text, or the number of words in each sentence). Then you'll see if you can use the information from your text analysis program to find measurements that can distinguish one author from another. After analyzing known samples of several authors' writings, can your… Read more
CompSci_p022
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites An understanding of the material covered in "Paragraph Stats: Writing a JavaScript Program to 'Measure' Text"
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Here is a riddle for you: name an instrument that you play with your hands but never actually touch. Have you guessed the answer? It is a theremin! This unusual instrument makes sound without anyone touching it. How does a theremin work? It has an antenna that can detect the player's hand nearby, and as they move their hand around the theremin, the sound it makes changes based on the hand's position. In this music science project, you will get to use your own mini theremin to investigate… Read more
Music_p035
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability The Theremin Mini Kit for this science project needs to be specially ordered. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Average ($40 - $80)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Have you ever watched an inexperienced video game player pick up a controller and start playing a game? Often the player bumbles around trying to figure out which button makes the onscreen character jump, run, turn left, or perform other actions. Some games are different though, they have control schemes that are more real-world based. Examples include Nintendo® WiiTM Tennis where you swing the Wii remote like a tennis racket and Activision's Guitar Hero® where you can play with a… Read more
Games_p022
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You should have access to a video game console or computer, and a video or computer game that requires both a regular control and a peripheral. See the Introduction for details.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail When someone yells, "Think fast!" and throws you a ball, are you able to catch it? When the bell rings at the end of class, are you the first one out of your seat? Can you make it through a sudden hairpin turn in a video game without crashing? If so, then you likely have quick reaction times. In this science fair project, you'll look at reaction times (how fast people react to sensory events), and see if people who play video games have faster reaction times than those who do not. Read more
HumBio_p025
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You will need a personal computer with Internet access for this science fair project.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Is your PC an energy hog? Check out this science fair project to determine how much power your PC really uses, and if it is an energy hog, how you can reduce its appetite for energy. You'll learn how to profile and streamline your computer's power usage, while still enjoying every feature of your machine. Read more
Energy_p024
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You must have a Kill-A-WattTM meter to do this science project. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult supervision is required when configuring the power cords on your computer system for testing.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail You might have heard the expression, "Take two aspirin, and call me in the morning." What if instead a doctor said, "Play two video games and call me in the morning"? Would you be shocked? Or think it was time for a new doctor? In this science fair project, you'll investigate whether video games, and other forms of mental distraction, have the power to relieve pain. Read more
Games_p016
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Volunteers with a history of heart problems, diabetes, or allergic reactions to cold should not participate in this experiment. All electrical cords should be cleared away from the ice water testing area. Adult supervision is required during testing.
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