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The Paper Airplane Lab

Purpose: How can a paper airplane be modified so that it can fly farther?

Hypothesis: To make our paper airplane fly farther, Naveen and I decided to bend the sharp tip of our plane down. We made this modification because the wings of the airplane enable it to fly farther since it makes the airplane stay longer in the air. We believed that because the wings enlarge the volume of the airplane, the air resistance on it would become more, making it able to stay in the air longer. The wings also act as vertical stabilizers of the plane. Therefore, by bending down the tip of the plane, we believed that it would essentially act as a ‘third wing’, which would help our plane glide for an extended period of time. Bending down the tip of the plane will also add weight to the tip, which would help stabilize the airplane.

These diagrams show the plane before and after it was modified:
Original: Modified:

Materials: 1. Sheet of paper 2. Meter stick

Procedure: 1. Make a paper airplane 2. Throw the airplane and wait until it lands 3. Measure the distance thrown 4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 with the same person using the same amount of force 5. Modify the airplane 6. Repeat steps 2 and 3 with the modified airplane 7. Note down all observations

Results: This chart shows the distances the airplanes were thrown before and after the modification. I also observed that the modification made the airplane preform lots of nose-dives.

Conclusion: The result of this experiment shows that Naveen and I were wrong and bending the tip of a paper airplane does not allow it to fly farther, but actually makes it fly a lesser distance. It also shows that

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