Engineering design challenge: Ferris wheel fun

Engineers and geoscientists play an important part in protecting the public, including building safe amusement park rides! Now that sounds like fun. They have to think about which construction materials to use and the forces that will be acting on the seats, the spokes, and the ground. Engineers also have to figure out how to make it spin in a circle without using too much energy. In this challenge, you’re going to act as the engineer and design your own ferris wheel!

Your mission

Build a spinnable ferris wheel out of objects you find around the house, including the wheel, spokes, and seats.

Guidelines

You should use objects you can find around the house to create your miniature amusement park ride (some examples are below).

We recommend that you make sure that your wheel can spin freely before adding weight to it in the form of seats. You may need a couple of tries to get that part of the construction right.

Example materials

You can use these or any other materials you find around your house to work with:

  • Uncooked pasta
  • Craft sticks
  • Toothpicks
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Cardboard
  • Plastic recycling
  • Metal cans
  • String

Share some pictures of your creation online using the #NEM2021 or #NEGM2021 hashtag!