At Breaking Point

An individual student’s assessment yielded impressive results in the disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics today. Scott was challenged with the task of building two bridges in order to predict and examine the maximum force applied to his models prior to collapse.

Choosing a beam and truss design, Scott’s pop stick construction instilled a quiet confidence with his audience that the 1kg minimum would easily be met. While the initial prediction of 3-4 kilograms for the beam bridge proved to be a little ambitious, it still carried a 1.006 kg load before giving way to gravity (with each pop stick weighing 1.49g and 48 sticks used in the project, that’s fourteen times its own weight). The truss bridge on the other hand exceeded expectations with a maximum 5.3kg weight applied after a 4kg prediction; the data speaks volumes for Scott’s engineering and design and the selection of shapes in his model with it carrying almost sixty times its own weight.

A shout out to Mr Hook on his contribution of a rather striking spaghetti bridge and Ms Causby for her pop stick truss bridge.

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