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Newton Car Project
Transcript of Newton Car Project
Newton Car Project
Cecilia Prefontaine & Toni Ciffollilo
MOD 4 4.11.16
Friction & Gravity
Speaking of friction, we knew that the only way the car would not slide on the ground was by putting rubber bands on the back wheels. This was so the back wheels being moved by the elastic could push the front wheels. It overcomes gravity enough, but not too much. The car is lightweight so it can move quicker, there is less gravity acting on the car.
We chose this design because we knew the bottle would be very light to ensure maximum speed possible and the wheels are CDs because they are stable and won't break, but are also generally light, too. There are elastics on the back wheels to give the car friction and hot glue on one wheel so it would be even to the other.
How We Built it
We used a plastic water bottle as the body of our car and made 4 holes in it, so we could put 2 dowels in to hold 4 CDs that acted as wheels. Then, we cut the top and bottom of the bottle off so we could put an elastic chain on the back dowel. This elastic chain then went through the inside of the bottle to the front where it had a paperclip. Additionally, we used pieces of foam and paper on the dowels so the body of the car wouldn't slide around.
In the beginning, we knew we wanted to use elastics to make our car move, using CDs for wheels.
What we didn't know at this time was that the body of our car was very important. It had to be lightweight so it could move quicker, but strong to hold the dowels securely. After going through 3 different bodies, we decided on a plastic water bottle without indents in it so it wouldn't crumple. Originally, we planned on using a paper towel roll for the body, but it was not strong enough.
All of Newton's motion laws apply to our car because:
There is an equal amount of forces acting on the car before it begins moving. When an external force (us) adds a new force (the rubber bands), the car moves.
Mass and force directly affect acceleration. Our car has a relatively light mass, which allows it to move quicker, and the force, the rubber bands spinning the dowels, is what makes the car move and accelerate.
For every action, like the rubber bands spinning the wheels, there is an a equal and opposite reaction. The rubber band winds up by being twisted onto the back dowel, and with the equal amount of force, it unwraps in the opposite direction, moving the wheels and propelling the car.
At first, our car went in circles , but after we made a few changes to the body and made the wheels more aligned, the car was able to go at quicker speed in more of a straight line, it could easily go 1 meter, and more when it was wound up tighter.