Monday, July 4, 2011

Think Like a Scientist ! (How Can You Be Bored? Go Build Something !)

Hovercrafts are vehicles that ride on a cushion of air.  No, these are not boats, not aircraft or helicopters, they ride just above the ground or water going where other vehicles cannot and in many cases they are able to travel at high speeds. 

So how does a hovercraft work?  Fans force air under the vehicle creating a high pressure pocket of air that "floats" the vehicle.  A specially designed "skirt" retains most of the air - allowing it to seep out a bit at a time.  Meanwhile, the fan continues to force air under the vehicle maintaining the air cushion.

The propellers you see on top of these boats are additional fans which propel the hovercraft forward.

Want to make your own hovercraft?  It's easier than you think - in fact, with a few items from home, you'll be able to fabricate your own device that rides on a cushion of air.  Checkout this YouTube video for instructions!! How to Make Hovercraft at Home

GW Long students - want to receive a prize on the first day of class?  Bring your assembled toy hovercraft and a one page report about scientists who pioneered and improved hovercraft.  Include at least one photo of a modern day hovercraft that you like.

Enjoy the 4th of July with your families - Happy Independence Day !