Transportation: Quest for Speed
In this TechXcite: Discover Engineering module participants will use K'NEX® to construct and evaluate several different kinds of cars that have different sources of power. They will learn how to scientifically measure the performance of the vehicles to study the effects of their design improvements on speed. A wide range of vocabulary terms and engineering concepts are defined in simple language and experimentally explored through exciting hands-on activities.
If you're using this curriculum and not a part of the TechXcite grant, please click here and fill out a brief survey to let us know where you're using it and with how many students. Click the links below to access PDF files of the module:
If you are a 4-H agent or other staff using this TechXcite curriculum module and materials kit as part of the research grant, please complete the following brief survey which asks questions about how you were trained. Please complete the survey even if your only form of training on the module is to watch the pre-recorded videos below. It is not necessary to complete the paper based training survey included with your materials kit if you complete this online survey. » Click Here to Take the Survey
Additional Resources click items below to expand
Car Design / Speed
The Shnkkansen series N700 bullet train went into service in Japan in 2007 offering a top speed of 186mph! It even has the ability to lean into turns so that it can go around them at a higher speed! Learn more about the train at this site.
Green Cars - Hybrid Cars & Fuel Cells
These Wikipedia pages provide information about vehicles that use hydrogen as their fuel source. These sites also include examples of vehicles that incorporate this technology including cars, bicycles, and buses.
This site provides definitions and history about hybrid vehicles. Different types of hybrid cars are identified and explained. Also environment factors concerning hybrid cars are also explained.
This site includes a list of alternative fuels with definitions. Also there are links to pages that explain all about the vehicles that use each of these alternative fuels.
This site provides information about how fuel cells work, the advantages of fuel cell vehicles and video links. A great schematic is included that shows the main components of a fuel cell car. In addition to identifying these main components, their location in a car and a definition of their role is provided.
This is a great interactive site that allows you to click on a drawing of a car to learn more about the components of a fuel cell car.
This site includes the basics on how hybrid cars work. It provides easy to understand but thorough descriptions and videos. A nice comparison between electric cars and gas powered cars is provided and included are interactive 3-dimensional sketches of both types of cars.
This site includes the very basics including definitions and functions.
This article includes information, photographs, and a video about a car that runs on compressed air. According to the article this car will be available in the near future commercially and can travel up to 43mph.
This curriculum is currently being piloted and has not been approved by National 4-H Council. If you have suggestions or would like more information, please contact us at email@example.com.