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Aerodynamics & Hydrodynamics Project Ideas (44 results)

You've seen for yourself, or in videos, planes flying, rockets hurdling towards space, boats racing through the water and submarines exploring the depths of the ocean. Have you ever stopped and thought about the aerodynamics and hydrodynamics involved in their operation? There is a lot of interesting science that goes into how they work! Check out these science and engineering projects to explore movement through air and water.

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Science Fair Project Idea
Looking for an exciting new mode of transportation? In this science fair project, you will build a working hovercraft that will glide over surfaces on a cushion of air. And it's simpler to build than you might think! Read more
Aero_p036
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites You will need to work with some power tools, such as an electric saw and an electric drill.
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Requires adult supervision. Use safety goggles when using power tools. Please review the Hovercraft Safety Guidelines below the Experimental Procedure.
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
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
Safety Adult supervision is recommended. See the safety note at the beginning of the Procedure.
Science Fair Project Idea
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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- Less Details
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
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 flown in an airplane, or looked up at one flying in the sky, and wondered how such a massive machine can stay in the air? Airplanes can stay in the air because their wings, also referred to as airfoils, generate lift. Engineers use devices called wind tunnels to experiment and test different wing shapes when they design new airplanes. Wind tunnels let engineers make careful measurements of the air flow around the wing, and measure the amount of lift it generates. If you can get… Read more
Aero_p004
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites Access to a homemade wind tunnel
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Average ($50 - $100)
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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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No hazards
Science Fair Project Idea
Did you know that you can actually make objects come together by blowing air between them? Find out how wind changes air pressure to bring to objects together in this easy and fun science fair project! Read more
Aero_p039
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- Less Details
Time Required Very Short (≤ 1 day)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues
Science Fair Project Idea
Does the force of drag have an effect on the distance the puck will travel? Think of a way to launch the puck with a reproducible force, and examine the effect of launching the puck in different orientations on the distance it travels. For more information on the physics, see Haché, 2002. Read more
Aero_p025
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Time Required Average (6-10 days)
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
Helicopters are fascinating to watch. The spinning rotor blades on top of the helicopter generate lift, allowing it to take off vertically. They can land vertically, too, allowing them to set down in small spaces, such as hospital helipads or on a ship at sea. In this aerodynamics science fair project, you will fly a remote-controlled helicopter and measure how the rate of the rotor's rotation changes as the helicopter hovers and flies up or down. Read more
Aero_p043
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- Less Details
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Prerequisites None
Material Availability You will need a remote-controlled helicopter and a digital tachometer. See the Materials and Equipment list for details.
Cost High ($100 - $150)
Safety Minor injury is possible. Be sure to wear safety goggles. Adult supervision is recommended.
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