with Ed Insel
Rocket Assembly I
I postponed current events until next week and instead showed the students some videos of past events: NASA/ESA video of the Huygens probe’s descent to the surface of Saturn’s moon Titan; the making and meaning of the Hubble ultra-deep field image; and George Smoot’s presentation of the 3D structure of matter and dark matter in our universe. The class had not seen this information before. I warned them they would be overwhelmed by the sheer size of our universe and by the end they agreed!
Then I showed them Steve Jurvetson’s short film on model rocket photography and they started building their model rockets. Each student has an Estes Alpha rocket and a bag to keep their parts together. All of them finished shaping and sanding their fins, and most finished assembling the engine mounts. Students are free to work on their rockets during the week, and we will use next week’s class to finish them. If they do finish their models during the week I have another design I’ll give them in class. I’m hoping they launch their rockets two weeks from today in the field across from the church (spectators welcome), but we’ll have to watch the weather and stay flexible.
Homework for Next Session
We will discuss the current events already prepared by our next team.
Decide on the Engineering Project they want to do, prepare a list of milestones with dates, and email it to me as soon as they can. A duplicate set of ideas is at the end of this post.
Each student will do an individual project and show their work during the last class of the semester. Their Engineering Journal will show the work they’ve done on the topics we’ve covered. The project must be related to engineering, and some ideas are: