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Carolina STEM Challenge®: Solar Car Design Kit

Item # 180960 Exclusive
Carolina STEM Challenge®: Solar Car Design Kit is rated 3.9 out of 5 by 8.
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Turn your students into automotive design engineers! The challenge: design a model car powered by solar cells and an electric motor. Weight, gear ratios, sun angle, aerodynamics, traction, friction, front- or rear-wheel drive, and wheelbase are all design factors that are considered. Finally, students race their cars to determine the most successful design. Designed for 32 students working in 8 groups of 4.

Price

$149.95

In stock and available to ship.

Turn your students into automotive design engineers! The challenge: design a model car powered by solar cells and an electric motor. Weight, gear ratios, sun angle, aerodynamics, traction, friction, front- or rear-wheel drive, and wheelbase are all design factors that are considered. Finally, students race their cars to determine the most successful design. This activity is designed for a class of 32 students working cooperatively in 8 groups of 4.

  • This item is only available from Carolina Biological Supply Company.

Product Families Featuring This Item:

 
Components Qty Included?
DC Motor, 1.5 to 3 V 8 Included
Solar Cell, 1 V with Leads 8 Included
Wheel, Gear, and Axle Pack 8 Included
Cardboard Pad 8 Included
Straw 16 Included
Teacher’s Manual with Reproducible Student Guide 1 Included
Multimeter 1 Needed, Not Included
Wire with Alligator Clip 2 Needed, Not Included
Ruler 8 Needed, Not Included
Scissors 8 Needed, Not Included
Tape Dispenser with Transparent Tape 8 Needed, Not Included
Protractor 8 Needed, Not Included
Flashlight 1 Needed, Not Included
Wire Stripper (or sharp knife) 1 Needed, Not Included
Hammer 2 Needed, Not Included
Pliers 2 Needed, Not Included
Timing Device (accurate to 0.1 sec) 8 Needed, Not Included
Construction Paper (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Thin Cardboard, Poster Board, or File Folder (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Glue (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Velcro (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Paper Clip (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Hobby Knife (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Incandescent Desk Lamp (optional for design activity) Needed, Not Included
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Somewhat hard to use It would be easier if the solar panel had clip leads that attached to the motors. I have had to strip a lot of wire to get the solar cell connected to the motor and they often become disconnected. The gears are very hard to get on the axle and I have broken quite a few gears trying to take them off. They are also very thin and break easily. I don't see gears in the replacement parts. the solar cells will melt if they are under a 120 V bulb, which is recommended in the directions.
Date published: 2016-04-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Product! As a teacher for Odyssey Charter School , I'm very pleased and my students too. I would really would have prefer on having an extra package of spare parts. But everything else, was perfect.
Date published: 2015-04-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great learning tool. The solar car project gave our students another reason to be excited about learning. The friendly competition that was generated pushed the students to go a step farther with their research. We followed both competition and kit guidelines which had the students going farther than required for the competition but the challenge of keeping the car straight for the longer distance generated many learning opportunities. Hope to do it again next year!
Date published: 2015-03-31
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Great in theory! Horrible otherwise. The solar cells require a great amount of light. These cars are not suitable for racing as mentioned in the product information. 60W bulbs do not even do the cars justice when using a clamp lamp. You would have to use an extension cord (even doing the incline and such as mentioned in the Carolina response to a review) which adds an element of danger to the science lab. The friction lab is a great idea but you must use two solar cells to get vehicle to even climb a slight incline. That is if you can even find a way to secure the gears so they do not slip when adding the extra mass to the vehicle. I highly recommend that you look for a higher quality kit. Even with the adaptive suggestions in the other review, the kits is mediocre at best. Money wasted.
Date published: 2015-03-30
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not good for winter months The cars run well is bright sunlight. Due to weather challenges it was stressful to complete these cars during winter months. If your pacing guide allows, these would be a much more efficient lesson during the beginning or ending months of the year. Students neede more guidance than I thought they would to construct the prototypes. Taking the prototypes apart to build the individual designs also had its challenges. I would use these again if I had a small after school group. In a regular sized class, several volunteers would be needed.
Date published: 2015-03-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from This kit generates a lot of student interest. My students were excited the moment they heard about the project using the Solar Car Design Kit. Besides being fun, the kit fosters collaboration, communication, and problem-solving skills. I would definitely use this product again.
Date published: 2015-03-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved the solar car kit--great for STEM My students loved it and learned so much about scientific method, keeping a log book and having fun doing it!
Date published: 2014-03-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very engaging My students really enjoyed this activity. It gives them a chance to develop their engineering and design skills. The competitive element kept them enthusiastic about the project from start to finish.
Date published: 2014-03-03
  • y_2017, m_7, d_19, h_16
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  • clientName_carolina
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Carolina STEM Challenge® Emerging Energies Series

Engineer excitement!Carolina STEM Challenge

These NEW kits for middle and high school environmental science offer:

  • Exciting STEM components
  • Fun, challenging activities for students
  • Easy implementation, even if you are new to STEM
  • Unique topics in emerging energies

Carolina STEM Challenge® Emerging Energies Series kits engage and inspire students with fun, real-world design challenges in an exciting tournament-style format. Integrating STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) into your environmental science curriculum has never been more exciting or easier.

Carolina STEM Challenge® kits incorporate STEM components and focus on engineering concepts and practices in line with the Next Generation Science Standards. Student teams design, build, test, and compete in a cooperative-learning environment. This gives them the opportunity to strengthen their critical-thinking and creative problem-solving skills and reflect on their entry’s performance and what they could do to improve it.

Carolina STEM Challenge® kits are easy to use, even if you are new to STEM. We designed each kit to include everything you need for classroom success:

  • Warm-up activity with background information
  • STEM design template and challenge
  • Notebooking and literacy extensions
  • Materials and instructions to support small design teams
  • Grading rubrics

Correlations to State Standards

Select the appropriate set of options below to view standards met by this product. After making selections, please do not use your browser's "Back" button to return to previous steps. Instead, use the blue links such as Content Unit Search to go back to a previous step in the search.