Transportation vehicles require energy to be transformed into movement (kinetic energy) by some mechanism. Careful design of the vehicle and the mechanism can make the vehicle energy efficient. Also, vehicle design can influence the distance that can be travelled and how well it is able to transport people and goods. To design such vehicles, engineers use their knowledge of energy, machines and laws that explain the movement of objects. They also
use mathematical ideas of measurement, ratios, and rates to design, build and test different vehicles.
Toy cars can be made to move using rubber band ‘motors’, that store energy by stretching the rubber band. Somehow the energy stored in the stretched rubberband is then transformed into kinetic energy and the movement of the car.
In this STEM project, students will explore a variety of different toy car designs and how the designs affect the cars’ performance. Students will then use these experiences as the basis to create their own toy car design, build and test it, and explain how it works.