Students take part in Downham Market technology challenge
PUBLISHED: 12:21 09 December 2017 | UPDATED: 12:21 09 December 2017
Downham Market Rotary held its annual Technology Tournament in the Town Hall.
More than 50 students attended from Downham Academy, Iceni Academy, Terrington St Clement’s High and Witchford Village College.
The aim of the event is to challenge students’ creative skills in a ‘fun way’ to better their understanding of design, technology and simple engineering.
tudents work in teams of four and this year’s task was to design and build a launcher to fire a space capsule (represented by a golf air ball) into orbit.
The capsule had to be launched vertically, using a trigger release mechanism to be operated at least one metre from the launcher.
The capsule had to reach a minimum height of three metres. Finally, it had to return as near as possible to the launch site. Teams were supplied with dowels, tape, lots of elastic bands and access to drills and glue. Four hours were allotted for teams to plan, design, construct and test fire the model before it was subjected to “live firing”.
The Tournament was sponsored by InterGen, a global power company and supported by RAF Marham.
Five judges, with specialist knowledge, were on hand to evaluate the teams’ results - Doctor Rob James, Hull University Engineering, Wing Commander Colin Feeney from RAF Marham, Mark Zipfell, aircraft restoration, John Beer, project evaluation and Roger Sloper, construction engineering.
At the end of the allotted time every group had produced a working model that performed according to the prescribed standard.
Team prizes are awarded according to age range and before presenting them the judges congratulated everyone for the quality of their planning and design and the excellent performance of the space capsules.
After congratulating all the teams, Downham Rotary’s president, Martin Chilvers, presented the winners’ medals. It was a good day for Witchford Village College and Terrington St Clements whose teams scooped the awards.
The final prize, presented by Wing Cdr Colin Feeney, for the best team overall was also won by Witchford.