Dragster Packet provides for the design of the car. The packet is a demonstration of a systematic process of design. Students brainstorm for ideas and then develop an idea into a final design for their dragster. Click here for the Dragster Packet.
Thumbnails - Simple small drawings created while brainstorming ideas.
Rough Draft - Intermediate step in visualizing an idea.
Working Drawing - Final stage of illustrating and idea or solution, usually drawn to scale.
MASS - Mass is the primary design factor that impacts how fast the dragster will travel. In this project, how fast your dragster is compared to other students is not important. While many students will pride themselves on making a very fast car and try to be the fastest in the class, this isn't the main goal. The goal is to create a design, produce a prototype of that design and calculate how fast your dragster will go before you build it out of wood and race. It is important that your prototype and actual dragster be as similar as possible to so your speed calculations will match.
DRAG - Drag is resistance to fluid motion. The dragster will experience drag as it races down the track. Like above, the goal is to have similar drag on the prototype as the actual dragster. While the study of aerodynamics is important, the drag doesn't have as large an effect on overall speed of the dragster as mass does. Mass being equal between two dragster, the one with the less drag will win.
Prototype Calculations - Students will make a prototype dragster out of polystyrene and take measurements of volume and drag in order to calculate the anticipated performance of their actual dragster. Please see the Prototype section for more information about this activity.
Automobile Comparison Chart - This is a cart that get filled out during two movies and a class discussion about automobiles and automotive technology.
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