How do we design and construct a bridge that is light weight and yet structurally strong able to support a heavy load?
1. The entire bridge has to be made from standard size ice cream sticks only the estimated specifications of which are as follows:
2. The sticks can be cut, but must be joined with commonly available glue only.
3. The bridge must have a minimum length of 550mm and have a maximum length of 650mm
4. The bridge cannot exceed 200mm in hight, 120mm in width and 500g in weight.
5. The load will be applied downwards via a loading bar, placed in the centre of the deck.
6. The bridge must have a deck for vehicles to travel on so as to simulate real life.
7. The bridge must be constructed to allow the loading bar to be placed across the centre of the deck.
8. The loading will stop when any part of the bridge breaking or total collapse, whichever happens first.
9. Structural efficiency is calculated by dividing the load supported in kg to the mass of the bridge in kg.
Some questions to ponder:
1. How can we design and evaluate the designs in a time efficient manner given the short amount of time?
2. How can we test these concepts without physically building them?
3. Since efficiency is calculated by dividing the load the bridge is able to support decided by its own weight, is it better to have a lighter or stronger bridge?
4. How can we construct the bridge in the most time efficient manner?
5. How can we ensure the joints and members are strong enough to hold the load?
6. Since there are dimensions specified, how do these dimensions affect the efficiency of the bridge?
7. Does the placement of the load affect the design of the bridge?
8. How do we ensure that the bridge has a high efficiency score?