The Newton Vehicle Reflection
In my science class, I and my classmates were required to build a vehicle operating based on three Newton’s laws of motion, or in short, the Newton Vehicle. This project is suppose to be our utilitarian implementation of the three Newton’s laws. The instructor tested our vehicle’s functions and knowledge by organizing a mandatory race and obliging us to establish a commercial. I and my partner Cherry named ours CK Rider. We take turns in the process of the commercial and received pretty good results.
The materials that is required to build CK Rider consisted of four bottle caps, a sheet of paper, lots of bander tapes, a balloon, a rubber band, and four kebab sticks. The purpose of using paper for the vehicle’s body is to reduce weight and therefore, enable the vehicle to travel faster. The kebab sticks hold the wheels together and stabilize the structure of the vehicle. The bander tapes are used to glue the straws onto the body of the vehicle and keep the kebab sticks stationary. To glue the bottle caps into the tips of the kebab sticks, a glue gun will be used. The balloon and the straw is kept in place by a rubber band. Although our vehicle doesn’t look at all desirable, it has an unexpected disadvantage in speed.
CK Rider and so do all other Newton vehicle was constructed based on three Newton’s law of motion. The first Newton’s law of motion states that an object is in a constant state of motion unless it is acted upon by an external force. In this case, the object is the vehicle and the external force is the air outside the balloon that’s pushing the vehicle. When the balloon deflates and the air comes out, it pushes against the outside air, which make an opposite and equal reaction (Newton’s third law of motion). The action is the air in the balloon pushing the air outside of the balloon and the reaction is the outside air pushes back. Since the vehicle is made of paper, its mass is small. Therefore, there’s no need to blow the balloon up too big because as Newton’s second law of motion states that mass is directly proportional to the force, the smaller the mass, the smaller the amount of force needed to make the mass accelerate.
During the race day, unfortunately, Treasure was the vehicle that won. This vehicle was first place in distant, intermediate at speed, and had no disqualifications. Treasure won because its design was simple, the wheels and body were light, and the structure was very stable. Treasure’s wheels has a very small interaction surface and therefore, friction is reduced and allows the vehicle to travel faster and longer. The vehicle’s body is made of a plastic bottle, a smooth surface, which has an advantage against air resistance. Treasure’s balloon is raised high up to avoid adding unnecessary weight to the vehicle. In brief, Treasure was the most neat, stable, and best-designed vehicle, and consequently, earned the title of the winner of the race.
This project definitely helped me to review and to understand the Newton’s three laws of motion. Observing my friends’ vehicles also helps me extracting valuable information related to my vehicle. In conclusion, I feel like I and my partner have done a great job and learnt so much from this project.