2017 Science and Engineering Challenge
On Friday 2 June, our last day before the start of semester one exams, Year 10 Physics and Chemistry students of QAHS enjoyed an active and challenging day of participation in the annual Griffith University Science and Engineering Challenge. With support and sponsorship from local Rotary and Canterbury College, Griffith University facilitated the event hosted on site at our QAHS campus.
Throughout the day, students from nine high schools worked in groups to solve and compete in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) challenges. These challenges included the construction of a catapult, bridge, Mars Rover, an artificial hand, earthquake resistant towers and economic flat pack furniture as well as the design of efficient electricity systems and effective secret codes.
Within each of the activities, science, engineering and maths skills were utilised as we explored scientific principles in practice with peers and under pressure. In previous years, the bridge building competition has been described as the main event of the day and the suspense of this final competition confirmed the weight of those expectations. With only 20 paddle pop sticks, cardboard, six lengths of balsa wood, plastic sticks and masking tape, paperclips and thumbtacks to join the bridge together, the task was to construct the strongest but lightest bridge possible. Our QAHS team combined our knowledge of forces and strong bridge design with an appreciation of material strength to design and construct a bridge that would comply with the design parameters being both strong with the ability to support the maximum amount of weight carted across, whilst being lightweight at the same time. As many bridges coped well with growing ingots in dynamic masses, it was the QAHS bridge that took out the challenge with its super light construction bearing more than five kilograms across its structure.
QAHS teams earned many successes throughout the day such that QAHS, for the first time in its history, won the Griffith University Science and Engineering Challenge with an outstanding score of more than 1300 out of a possible 1600. Our thanks to Griffith University and sponsors, teachers and to all students from participating schools for the learning and collaboration appreciated by all.