‘Jumping’ balloon racer winds up science Week
An unusual design leapt ahead of the pack to win the lucrative prize purse in this year’s Science Week competition, after seven teams followed through to enter a working balloon-powered vehicle in Monday’s race.
Lunchtimes during Science Week were spent enthusiastically building and testing a number of prototype vehicles, where they soon discovered that the weight of the racer was an important consideration. After trialling various wheel types and propulsion systems, most teams opted to propel their racer using the air inside the balloon.
But it was the Year 11 racing team of Boaz Cudmore and Pablo Naydenov who decided on using the balloon’s elastic property by winding it tight around the axel of their vehicle. It proved a success, with the aptly named ‘Killer Bean’ jumping its way across the line well ahead of the others to take the $50 prize.
Year 7 students Jasper Brennan and Jasper Mills came in second, successfully using the more traditional inflated-balloon method to propel their vehicle - and managing to keep their trajectory relatively straight on the day.
“I want to thank all the students who participated in the activity,” said Head of Science, Mr De Francesco, who also said the students had a lot of fun learning about how to optimise their vehicles.