Brownie Mechanical Engineering - Rancho Oaks Girl Scouts

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Brownie MechanicalEngineeringExplore mechanical engineering byearning these three badges!Badge 1:Leap Bot Design ChallengeBadge 2:Fling Flyer Design ChallengeBadge 3:Race Car Design ChallengeThis Mechanical Engineering badge booklet for girls provides the badge requirements,information, and fun facts about engineering for all three (LEVEL) mechanicalengineering badges. It does not include all the information needed to completethe badges. Volunteers may access full meeting plans—including detailed activityinstructions—on the Volunteer Toolkit (VTK) or by contacting their local council.BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING1

Welcome to the world of mechanical engineering!When you’ve earned these three badges, you’ll know about forceand gravity and how they affect speed. You’ll also know howengineers design, build, and test a new product.Every day, mechanical engineers invent another machinethat can do something new or solve a problem. What kind ofmachines will we have when you are grown up?Well, you tell us! Once you know how engineers imagine, design,build, and test their inventions, you’ll be able to come up with allkinds of cool ideas for new, problem-solving machines!2

Badge 1: Leap BotDesign ChallengeSprings are fun inventions. They cushion your ride on a rough road,make you comfortable in bed, and can even bounce you way up high. Byexploring springs and the way they use energy, you’ll understand howthey work. Then, you’ll learn what engineers do by designing and buildingyour own Leap Bot.Steps1. about springsBuild your Leap BotCreate a way to test how well your Leap Bot performsRecord the results of your testShare your resultsPurposeWhen I’ve earned this badge, I will know how to build and test a Leap Botand understand gravity, force, and energy.BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING3

1STEPLearnabout springsSprings store, or absorb, energy when they arepushed down, or compressed. When the spring pushesback out, it releases the stored, or potential, energy and turnsit into kinetic energy, making the spring move. Your musclesor a rubber band can do the same thing: store and releasepotential energy.BOING!Springs are useful machines that also make fun toys.Pogo Stick—Using a pogo stick requires good balance.Invented in the 1920s, pogoing quickly became a favoritepastime for kids. In the 1990s, a new sport, extreme pogo orXpogo, was created, where players do tricks and jump morethan 9 feet in the air.Slinky—In 1943, a mechanical engineer wanted to invent away to keep equipment from moving around on ships. Whenhe was testing springs he knocked some off a shelf and noticed how one of the springs “walkeddown” instead of simply falling. This accidental discovery became the Slinky!Trampoline—The trampoline was invented in 1936 to help tumblers, gymnasts, and divers.Soon, doing tricks on a trampoline became popular as its own sport. Today, the military andspace program even use trampolines to let pilots and astronauts experience different bodypositions they may encounter in flight.4

WORDSTO KNOW Balanced forces exist when forces are equal on an object. When forces arebalanced, the object doesn’t move. Data is information that engineers receive, collect, or observe during testing oftheir devices. Drag is the force (air molecules) that acts against something in flight. Engineers are people who like to know how things work. They design andbuild things that people use every day, like computers, phones, roads, bridges,and cars. Features are parts of a product that are designed to make it more useful. Force is the strength or energy that creates movement. Push and pull areexamples of force. Friction is a force that slows moving objects. Gravity is a force that pulls objects toward each other and toward the earth. When potential energy is released, it becomes kinetic energy, causingbodies and objects to move. Lift is a force that pushes back up on the wings during flight. Potential energy is the energy stored in your body and everything else inour world. Thrust is the force that moves an object forward. Unbalanced forces exist when forces are unequal on an object. When theforces are unbalanced, the object moves in the direction of the greater force.BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING5

2STEPWhat’s aMechanicalEngineer?A mechanical engineeris a person whodesigns and createsmachines to meet aspecial need or solvea problem.For example, amechanical engineerfigured out how to heata building by using afurnace and fans toblow warm air throughtunnels, called airducts. A mechanicalengineer also had todesign and build themachines needed tomake the furnace,fans, and air ducts.What special needor problem couldyou solve by buildinga machine?Build yourLeap BotWhen an engineer has an idea for a new machine,she has to figure out how to build it. Testing outdifferent parts of the machine helps her to understand how theparts will work together and might even inspire her design. Shecould make more than one version, if she has more than one idea.How can you use the materials you have to build a Leap Bot?3STEPCreate a way to testhow well yourLeap Bot performsOnce an engineer builds a product, she needs totest it to see if it performs the way she wants it to.First, she decides what to test. She might want to test how highher invention jumps. Or she might want to test how far it canjump. Or she might want to test whether her invention breakswhen it’s used.What you want to know will determine how you test andhow you measure the results. What do you want to knowabout your Leap Bot? Once you decide that, decide how you’lltest and measure.Notes6

SuperjumpersYou know that rabbits, kangaroos, and frogs are big jumpers,but what other animals can jump?The impala, an African antelope, can jump nearly10 feet high over obstacles or other impala. Thespringbok and the klipspringer are two other fantasticAfrican antelope jumpers.Kangaroo rats live in the deserts of North America.They are tiny animals whose big hind feet and long tailsallow them to jump nearly 9 feet in one hop to get away from predators.When spinner dolphins swim in a spiral directionunderwater, they build up speed and energy. When theycome up and out of the water, they shoot through theair in a high, spinning arc. Researchers don’t know whythese dolphins like to jump. Some think it is a form ofcommunication. Others think they jump to knock parasitesoff their bodies.Jumping spiders can jump more than 50 times theirbody length. Unlike other spiders who use webs to catch theirprey, jumping spiders pounce on top of their dinner. There aremore than 5,000 species of jumping spiders, and they live allover the world.Fleas may be tiny, but for their size, they are some of the world’s best jumpers.Researchers found that fleas have developed a special stretchy pad on their backlegs. This pad allows them to store up lots of muscle energy. When a flea pushes offfrom its toes and shins, it releases that energy into a really big jump.BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING7

4STEPSprings atWorkRecord the resultsof your testOne of the most important parts of testing aninvention is keeping track of the results. Engineerstest their products and record their results to learn how theirdesigns work. Sometimes they write down measurements ofSprings absorb forcesand release them inuseful ways.time or distance to compare later. Sometimes they make videoa spring to move thetip of the pen in andout of the case.Testing different spring combinations will help you understand A ballpoint pen uses Mattresses and sofasuse springs to absorbthe pressure bodiesput on them whena person sits or liesdown. The springspush back againstthe bodies to providesupport.recordings of a product in use, then watch the video in slowmotion to see how it your Leap Bot works. Test different combinations ofsprings more than once and write down your testing results.results Cars, motorcycles,and some bicyclesuse springs toabsorb big bumps inthe road, making asmoother ride. Springs make wafflesand toast pop out ofa toaster.5STEPShare yourresultsAn important part of the Design Thinking Processis learning from what didn’t work. If a product doesn’twork, it’s not a failure. The test results give you importantinformation to make your design better.After engineers test a new design, they like to share the resultsof their tests with others. It helps them get ideas to make theirproducts better—and might even help someone else who isworking on the same kind of problem.8

Now that I’ve earned this badge,I can give service by: Showing Daisies that engineering can be fun bydemonstrating my Leap Bot. Sharing what I learned about gravity, force, and energywith my friends and family. Doing a show-and-tell with my Leap Bot at school to tellothers what engineers do.I’m inspired to:BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING9

Badge 2: Fling FlyerDesign ChallengeFor thousands of years, people have been wondering how birds andinsects fly. It wasn’t until 1903 that the Wright Brothers figured out how itworked, and we’ve been flying ever since.While building your Fling Flyer, you’ll learn all about what keeps birds,planes, and people in the air.Steps1. about forces that affect flyingDesign and build a Fling FlyerTest your Fling FlyerAnalyze and share your resultsBrainstorm ways to improve your designPurposeWhen I’ve earned this badge, I will know how to build and test a FlingFlyer and understand lift, drag, thrust, and gravity.10

1STEPLearn about forcesthat affect flyingForce is the energy that makes things move, andthrust is the special force that moves an objectforward.If you push a ball—applying thrust—it will roll along the flooraway from you, but it won’t fly. What is missing?For something to fly, it needs a flat surface like a wing for air topush up against. That upward push is called lift, and lift is thesecret to flight.Now that you know what makes things move and fly, can youguess what makes things slow down or fall back to the earth?2STEPDesign and builda Fling FlyerFor hundreds of years, people have been usingall different types of materials to try and makesomething that can fly. Engineers today are still trying toimprove the flying machines we have and invent new ones likeflying motorcycles or personal jet packs. Use the materials youhave on hand and what you just learned about force, thrust, lift,drag, and gravity to create your own Fling ideasFirsts in Flight In Greek mythology,an inventor namedDaedalus createdwax wings for himselfand his son, Icarus,to escape from theisland of Crete. Icarusignored his father’sadvice to not fly tooclose to the sun.His wings melted,causing him to fallinto the sea. Records show thatkites were used inChina and Japansince about 500 BCEfor many differentpurposes. One storyfrom the 1500s tellsof a thief using a kiteto lift himself to thetop of a castle tosteal golden scalesoff a decorative fish. Artist Leonardo daVinci was fascinatedby flight, drawingmore than 500sketches of birdsand ideas for flyingmachines. Most ofhis designs were“ornithopters,”machines that useflapping wings (likebirds), powered by aperson’s arms or legs.BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING11

Lift is the force pushing up on thebottom of the wing, keeping it in the air.LIFTDRAGTHRUSTDrag is the force thatThrust is the force thatact against a plane inflight, slowing it down.moves a plane forward.For a plane to fly, lift must be greater than drag.12

Test yourFling FlyerEngineers test their designs to see if they workas expected and to find ways to improve them.Even when they’ve worked long and hard on their designs,engineers don’t expect their inventions to work perfectly. In fact,sometimes they learn more from a test when their designs fail.Now that you’ve built your Fling Flyer, there are lots of differentaspects of your Fling Flyer you can test: how far it can fly, how longit can stay in the air, how many tricks it can do.4STEPAnalyze and shareyour resultsnotes from testing3STEPTwo heads are better than one! Once an engineer hastested her product, she analyzes the results and shares themwith others. Talking with other engineers about your designand analyzing the test results can help you better understandwhy a design performed the way it did. Use the brain power ofothers to understand your Fling Flyer!5STEPBrainstorm ways toimprove your designAfter testing their designs, engineers think ofnew ways to improve them. This might mean using newscientific concepts, like lift and drag, analyzing test results, orgetting feedback from other engineers.All kinds of information can be used to make a design better,faster, or more efficient. What would you change or improveabout your Fling Flyer?BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING13

FlyingmachinesWhen we think of people flying, we usually think of airplanes, but peopleuse other kinds of machines to fly as well.Hot Air BalloonsHot air rises and if it’s captured by something like a balloon, itwill create lift. People have been riding in hot air balloons sincethe 1780s, and you can still take a hot air balloon ride today.One of the most famous hot air balloon rides is the one thecharacter Dorothy takes in the story The Wizard of Oz.Airships, Zeppelins, and DirigiblesOver time, people have discovered gases thatare lighter than air. Engineers made big balloonsthat carried engines to steer them and spacefor passengers. They filled the balloons withhydrogen gas and used these inventions to movepeople through the air. Today, the most famousof these big balloons is the Goodyear Blimp. Youcan see it flying over the Superbowl every year.GlidersGliders are simple airplanes without engines.They rely on special weather conditions andare designed to stay in the air. Some glidersget up in the air by being towed by anotherairplane. Others, like hang gliders, arelaunched by the pilot running downhill untilwind catches the wings of the glider and lifts it up.14

Now that I’ve earned this badge,I can give service by: Showing Daisies that engineering can be funby demonstrating my Fling Flyer. Sharing what I have learned about the forces thataffect flight with my friends and family. Showing friends how to make a Fling Flyer and thenhaving a contest to see how far they can fly.I’m inspired to:BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING15

Badge 3: Race CarDesign ChallengePeople use cars for all kinds of reasons. The kind of car you’d use totake kids to a soccer game would be different from the car you’d need for aracetrack. Engineers figure out what features each would need to be successful.While building your race car, you’ll learn about how design affects speed andhow engineers design, test, and improve their inventions.Steps1. how design can affect speedDesign and build your race carDesign your racetrackConduct a fair test and record resultsShare what you learnedPurposeWhen I’ve earned this badge, I will know how to build and test a race carand understand how force and friction affect speed.16

1STEPLearn about howdesign affects speedForce is the energy that makes something move.Friction is the resistance, or slowing down, that happens whentwo things move over each other.If you want something to move fast, you need to figure out howto reduce or get rid of friction. Look at where the two objectsare touching or rubbing against each other—that’s wherefriction happens.Which Way Does the Wind Blow?When something is moving very fast, air is pushing against it, creating friction.Engineers use wind tunnels to see how air moves around an invention. A wind tunnel isa long tube that has strong fans at one end.Engineers put theirinvention in the tunnel,turn on the fans, andthen watch to see whichparts of the objectdisrupt more air, causingmore friction.Then, they improvetheir design to reducefriction. Engineers usewind tunnels to test cars,planes, boats, bikes, andeven rockets.BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING17

2STEPWomen inRacing!Milka Duno had acareer as a navalengineer, but becamea race car driverwhen she was 24. Sheloves learning—she’searned four master’sdegrees and startedan organization toencourage kids toachieve academicexcellence.Milka is from Venezuelaand has raced thereand in the UnitedStates. She has racedin more kinds of carsand more differentkinds of racing seriesthan any other currentfemale race car driver.She holds the recordfor the top femalefinisher of the Daytona500.18Design and buildyour race carWhen engineers are creating a new product,they think about what they want it to do andthen imagine different features that will make itsuccessful. Once they have imagined their product in detail,they build a model.Now you understand how your design choices affect yourrace car’s speed—so it’s time to start designing and building.Think about things you can add or take away from a car tomake it go ideas

3STEPDesign yourracetrackThere are all kinds of race cars: stock cars, hotrods, or Formula 1 cars, for example. All of them raceon a different kind of track.Some racetracks have special tilted curves or turns to helpkeep the cars from sliding off the course. Some have extracurves and turns to make the race more exciting.Your race car needs a ramp for it to go fast, so your racetrackwill need a ramp or two. What kind of ramp will you build?track ideasBROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING19

The BestPlace to RaceWhat makes a great race course? Some races are run on speciallydesigned racetracks. Some are run through city streets. Some are run inflat, wide-open desert spaces.Daytona International Speedway inFlorida is a famous NASCAR racetrack. The curvyturns on the track are banked, or tilted inward, tohelp keep the cars from slipping at high speeds.Circuit de Monaco is a race course marked out alongthe narrow city streets of the tiny country of Monaco.Since 1929, Formula 1 race cars have been zoomingthrough the city at speeds up to 160 miles per hour.One famous driver said racing in Monaco is like flying ahelicopter in your living room.Bonneville Speedway isn’t really a racetrackat all. It’s a wide-open stretch of salt flats in the Utahdesert. Drivers have been racing there since 1912 andsetting land speed records there since the 1930s.Which one of these would you like to race on?20

4STEPConduct a fair testand record resultsBrownies, start your engines!Building a race car is fun, but so is racing one! Between races,real race car drivers make changes to their cars to try to makethem faster. They may test them a little as they work on them,but the real test is on the racetrack.It’s time to see how fast your car can go. Remember to keepthe test fair by only changing one thing at a time when testingyour car.resultsBROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING21

5STEPShare whatyou learnedOnce engineers have designed, built, and testedtheir product, they share the results with otherpeople. Sharing and discussing her test results with othershelps the engineer to figure out what worked and what didn’twith her design.Talk and listen to others about what your car did in the testand why you think it performed that way. How could youimprovementsimprove your car?22

Now that I’ve earned this badge,I can give service by: Showing Daisies that engineering can be fun bydemonstrating my race car. Sharing what I have learned about gravity, force,and energy with my friends or family. Letting others know what engineers do by doinga show-and-tell with my race car at school.I’m inspired to:BROWNIE MECHANICAL ENGINEERING23

2018 Girl Scouts of the United States of America.All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means,including photocopying, recording, or by any other electronic or mechanical methods now known or hereinafter invented,without the prior written permission of Girl Scouts of the United States of America, except in the case of brief quotationsembodied in

Explore mechanical engineering by earning these three badges! Badge 1: Leap Bot Design Challenge Badge 2: Fling Flyer Design Challenge Badge 3: Race Car Design Challenge This Mechanical Engineering badge booklet for girls provides the badge requirements, information, and fun facts about engineering for all three (LEVEL) mechanical engineering .

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