Gear Propulsion Solar Car
Introduction:MiniScience's Solar Racer activity introduces students to alternative energy concepts while incorporating problem solving, design and modeling. In addition, students will experience using hand tools as they construct their solar vehicle.
| Students can explore: * Propulsion types and drive concepts * Basic soldering techniques and electronic concepts * Alternative energies like solar power Teacher Preparation:During construction of the solar racer vehicle, students can experiment and comprehend methods of power transfer, soldering (optional), gear alignment and calculating gear ratios. It is up to the teacher to make sure this background information is provided to students in some manner.
| BackgroundThe federal government has encouraged alternative forms of transportation due to a limited supply of oil and increasing environmental pollution. Solar cars are just one of many transportation concepts emerging. Solar cars use solar cell panels instead of gasoline as the fuel. As a result, exhaust fumes and oil consumption are eliminated.The solar cell panel generates an electrical charge that is stored in a battery and used to provide energy as the vehicle is driven. The lighter the vehicle, the less energy used and the farther the vehicle will travel. In cloudy days, or at night, energy can be drawn from reserve batteries. In the future, charge stations will be located on the road sides for quick battery charging.Materials Checklist:Before using the kit please make sure you have all the items listed below. This kit has the supplies to build at least one type of solar car model. Solar cars may be propelled using a pulley/ rubber band method or some types of interlocking gears. 1. Solar Cell 2. DC motor 3. Rear Slicks 1 9/16" diameter x 5/8" wide (1/2" wide for geared slicks) 4. Front Wheels 1 3/8" diameter 5. 1/8" dowel for axles 6. Traction Bands (for non-geared slicks) 7. Eyelets or washers...
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