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Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Big, puffy, cotton-like clouds, and the bubbles in a pot of boiling water may not seem like they have much in common, but they do—both are formed by a heat-transfer process called convection. Warmed gases and liquids rise, while cooler ones fall, creating currents and mixing things up. Whether making processed foods in a factory or making plastic or metal parts, knowing how to mix up a big tank of hot and cold liquids or gases quickly is important. Engineers must rely on experimentation… Read more
ApMech_p044
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Adult supervision is recommended while pouring the boiling water.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Jumping discs can be a fun toy to play with, and with their sudden POP!, they can even be a good way to startle people who have never heard them before. Jumping discs use a neat trick to jump. They are made of two different types of metal, and these metals expand when they heat up (or shrink when they cool down), but not by exactly the same amount. In this science project you will explore how temperature affects the reactions of your jumping discs— and how to get the timing right if you… Read more
Phys_p094
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability This project requires buying bimetallic jumping discs. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Adult supervision is required during use of a hair dryer as a heat source. Hair dryers can cause burns or fires if used improperly and should not be operated by small children alone.

Do not use the jumping discs on surfaces that are fragile or can be easily scratched.

Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Earth, the Sun, wind, and water are all sources of renewable and sustainable energy—and sources you probably already know about. But did you know that you can get energy from such things as banana peels, coffee grounds, and newspaper? In a process called composting, you can transform kitchen and other solid wastes into a product that is beneficial for your garden: homemade fertilizer. As the waste decomposes, it also creates heat. Can this naturally created heat be put to use? In this… Read more
Energy_p035
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Time Required Very Long (1+ months)
Prerequisites Making a compost pile can take anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks, depending on the method and bin you use. In this energy and power science fair project, you will spend a few days creating a compost pile. You will have to account for the time as you are planning your science fair project. You will also need to be home for several hours at a time on many specific days throughout this project. Read through the Experimental Procedure for more details.
Material Availability You (and friends, if possible) will have to start collecting potato peelings or grass clippings a few weeks in advance to accumulate enough, so keep this in mind when budgeting time for your science fair project. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost Very High (over $150)
Safety Wear safety goggles and use caution when working with all tools. Be sure to wear disposable gloves when handling animal waste and to clean all of the work surfaces thoroughly with a bleach solution. Read the Science Buddies Microorganism Safety Guide to learn how to experiment safely.
Science Fair Project Idea
Everyone has experienced the warmth provided by a shaft of sunlight through a window. In this physics science fair project, you will determine how the color of an object affects the amount of radiant energy that is absorbed. You will then use the Stefan-Boltzmann equation to determine the amount of energy that is absorbed and re-emitted by the different colors. Read more
Phys_p073
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites You must be familiar with scientific notation.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you considered where the gasoline that your parents put in your car comes from and how long that source will last? The fuel that most vehicles use, gasoline, is a petroleum product. Petroleum is a fossil fuel and is a nonrenewable form of energy, meaning we use it faster than it is able to be reproduced. Burning fossil fuels also produces pollutants that might hurt our environment. Using a kind of fuel from a renewable source would help save Earth's natural resources and cut down on… Read more
Energy_p030
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety You will be working with flammable materials. Wear safety goggles and other safety gear to prevent injury. Adult supervision is required. Perform this science fair project in a well-ventilated area, away from combustible and flammable objects.
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
thumbnail Can you imagine designing and building a space telescope the size of a tennis court? Believe it or not, that is someone's job! Engineers are hard at work on the James Webb Space Telescope, or JWST. This telescope has the potential to enable astronomers to see light from when the Universe was first formed. No one knows what amazing discoveries this might lead to. However, to make the telescope work properly, engineers have to overcome a lot of challenges. In this science project, you can… Read more
Phys_p082
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Time Required Long (2-4 weeks)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Most of the materials are available in hardware or craft stores.
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Adult supervision is required. Use caution when using the box cutter, heat lamp, and laser pointer.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Whether you are sitting around a campfire, or drinking hot chocolate after a day in the snow, nothing says fun quite like a marshmallow! Even its name is soft and spongy! In this cooking and food science fair project, you will make your own marshmallows several different ways, and discover the three special ingredients that give marshmallows their unique texture. You will also find out why they melt so quickly. Explore the science of these sticky, spongy sweets! Read more
FoodSci_p065
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Be careful when heating syrup in the saucepan. Adult supervision is required.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever watched how trees sway and bend in a strong wind? Have you ever thought about all the homes that could be powered with forces from the wind? In this project you'll discover, through trees, good places in your community for generating wind power. Read more
EnvEng_p023
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety Use caution and have an adult with you at unfamiliar locations or locations with traffic nearby.
Science Fair Project Idea
thumbnail Have you ever left your bike outside in the rain? If so, you might have discovered unpleasant surprises afterwards—reddish-brown patches, known as rust, and your wheels, brakes, and gears might have stopped working so smoothly. In this chemistry science fair project, you'll learn why rust, a type of corrosion, is a serious problem. You'll also discover that not all rains are the same! Find out which ones can speed up the rusting process. Read more
Chem_p079
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Time Required Short (2-5 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Low ($20 - $50)
Safety Wear gloves to avoid steel wool splinters.
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