Whether you are working, studying, or being entertained, much of our daily routines rely on being plugged-in. You probably don't spend a lot of time thinking about where all that power comes from, but someone has to! Figuring out the best ways to produce energy is a big job that is growing along with the world's population. Energy can also be a hot topic with argements about whether to invest in fossil fuels or clean renewable energies like solar, wind, water and geothermal. Take a first-hand look at some of the problems and challenges scientists and engineers are tackling as they look at making and storing energy.

Science Fair Project Idea
Coal, gas, and oil are energy resources that are not renewable, meaning that once we use up the world's supply of these natural resources there will not be any left. There is a lot of debate about how long these resources will last. One way to ensure that we will not find ourselves in an energy crisis is to develop energy resources that are renewable. Renewable energy is a resource that cannot be used up. Investigate the many uses of renewable energy: solar energy, wind energy,… Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
The Falkirk Wheel is a rotating boat lift connecting the Forth and Clyde Canal with the Union Canal near Falkirk in central Scotland. It consists of two diametrically opposed caissons which rotate to lift boats between the two canals through a height of 35 meters. The wheel is always perfectly balanced and, despite its enormous mass, rotates through 180° in less than four minutes, using just 1.5 kilowatt-hours (Wikipedia contributors, 2006). Do… Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
Solar cells are an alternative method for generating electricity directly from sunlight. With this project, you can get down to the atomic level and learn about the world of solid-state electronics as you investigate how solar cells work. Your experiment will measure the effect of changing light intensity on power output from the solar cell. A possible variation would be to investigate the effect of changing the color of the light. Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
Here is a project that uses direct solar power, gathering the sun's rays for heating/sterilizing water or cooking. It is a low-cost technology that seems to have everything going for it. Does it work? Can you find ways to improve it? Find out with this project. Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
Imagine telling your friends about your latest science project: using a battery to make a light turn on. You might get some blank stares...sounds a little boring and basic, right? Now tell them you will do it with a potato! Yes, you can actually use fruits and vegetables as part of an electric power source! Batteries power many things around you, including cell phones, wireless video game controllers, and smoke detectors. In this science project, you will learn about the basics of battery… Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
You have probably read all about forms of alternative energy like solar and wind power. But what about human power? With the aid of a coil of wire and some magnets, you can generate electricity with nothing more than a flick of your wrist. In this project, you will build a small hand-powered electrical generator that can power a series of tiny lights. Get ready to save the planet and get some exercise at the same time! Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
Ever been at the beach, taking in the sun and surf, listening to the Beach Boys play on your radio when suddenly it runs out of batteries right in the middle of California Girls? Okay, maybe this only happens to grey haired parents. You being younger and smarter use a hand-powered crank radio to listen to the latest pop tunes on Radio Disney. If batteries and Beach Boys are too old-school for you, then this may be the perfect experiment. Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
If you are interested in exploring how renewable energy can improve the environment, this project could be for you. You'll take on a real-life engineering challenge: deciding whether the benefits of a renewable energy technology are worth the cost to implement it. Some sample questions are suggested, but you can also come up with your own question that matches your specific renewable energy interest. Is there such thing as a free lunch? Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
Solar cells provide a clean way of making electricity directly from sunlight. In this project you will build a simple circuit and experimental setup to investigate whether the power output of a solar cell changes with ambient temperature. Read more
Science Fair Project Idea
You probably use batteries to power different devices every day, ranging from toys to TV remotes, without giving it much thought. Figure 1, below, shows some common types of batteries. Eventually the batteries will die and you have to replace them with new ones (or recharge them if they are rechargeable batteries). How much do you actually know about how batteries work? This abbreviated project idea will give you some suggestions to investigate how batteries perform in common household… Read more
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Free science fair projects.