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Think Outside the Box Contest

Future Engineers Think Outside the BoxTo celebrate the launch of BEAM, the first expandable habitat to the International Space Station, as well as the first commercial 3-D printer in space, NASA and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers are challenging K-12 students to think outside the box with 3-D printing – literally!

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Young Minds Design Contest

Young Mind Awards logoThe Young Mind Awards are a global competition for middle and high school students to inspire interest in becoming innovators and engineers. Teams or individuals design and build a product to solve a problem or improve a process, then demonstrate how it works in a three-minute video presentation. Entries are due May 31, 2015.

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What Are Gears?

education appIn this activity, students in grades 4 to 8 use LEGO spur gears to learn about different types of gears and how they are used in many engineering devices, including bicycles, to change the speed, torque, and direction of a power source.

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Wind Power for Your Home

wind turbineIn this activity, students in grades 9-11 learn how engineers harness the energy of the wind by following the engineering design process to create and test two prototype wind turbines to see which works best. They also learn about where to place a wind turbine for maximum effectiveness, and to weigh the advantages and disadvantages compared with other energy sources.

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Engineering Students Design Toys

Purdue students designing toys 2011Can toys inspire more kids – especially girls – to become engineers? Purdue University mechanical engineering students think so, and they are designing and building high-tech educational toys that make science and engineering fun.

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Build-a-Toy Workshop

toy car engineeringIn this hands-on activity, student teams apply the engineering design process to create prototype toys with moving parts. They set up electric circuits using batteries, wire, and motors, and plan project materials to meet budget constraints.

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Seeing the World Through a Different Lens

dolls with disabilities Students in grades 6 to 8 gain an understanding of physical limitations and the biomedical engineering design process by performing a variety of tasks without using their thumbs, eyes, or legs, then working in teams to create or improve and adaptive device.

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Lesson: No Valve in Vain

heart beatIn this activity, teams of students in grades 6 to 8 will learn about the engineering design process and how a one-way valve works by creating heart valves from tape, plastic tubing, and other materials.

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Videos: Material Marvels

Ainissa RamirezAinissa Ramirez, associate professor of Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science at Yale, explains the wonders of her ever-expanding field in a series of YouTube videos. In the latest, she describes how a layer of carbon that is one atom thick, called graphene, will revolutionize our lives.

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