Designing a Puff Mobile (Document)
VOICE: (gasps) Ooh!
MIKE: Anna Y. of Houston, Texas, wrote to tell us about a puffmobile competition her class had. A puffmobile is a vehicle made out of straws... Lifesavers... paper... paper clips... and tape.
KORTNEY: To make your puffmobile move, you can only blow on it. That's why it's called a puffmobile. Anna told us that a boy in her class got his puffmobile to go nine feet.
GARRETT: We're going to design our own puffmobiles. Caroline and I will be one design team, and Mike and Kortney will be the other.
CAROLINE: After we're finished building, we're going to have a contest to see whose puffmobile can go nine feet in the fewest amount of puffs. So, let's get set up.
GARRETT: We don't have to use all of this material.
CAROLINE: Yeah, let's see, if we only use, like, paper and tape...
GARRETT: What if we fold it in kind of like a tube and then blow on...
CAROLINE: I think there's, like, a way to do that.
MIKE: We could make the frame out of these and then just put paper on top and then just blow it.
KORTNEY: So it might weigh... it might weigh it down.
MIKE: Yeah, you're right. But if we don't weight it enough, it might fly off course. So I'll make a frame.
KORTNEY: I'll see what shape will probably be easiest.
CAROLINE: You want to test it out? Yeah, I'll just try, just to see if it works.
GARRETT: Okay. Ooh, it goes.
MIKE: We need to have the most amount of area we can to blow, but we also need the least amount of friction and we need it to be the most aerodynamic that we can.
GARRETT: Wait a minute, what if we add... wait. What if we add weight to the sides? Because it seems like... It's, like, flimsy. If we add weight to the sides, it might hold it down and stay on the ground a little bit more.
CAROLINE: How do you think we could add weight?
GARRETT: By, uh, putting on paper clips.
KORTNEY: I think it's a little too heavy.
MIKE: I think if we just did two.
KORTNEY: With two, you can make it like skis and just have the paper...
MIKE: Oh... like this? Yes, yes. Actually, that might work really well.
CAROLINE: Okay, let's try something totally different.
GARRETT: I think if we fold a piece of paper and then make kind of like a car structure with... with straws and lifesavers. And then, you'd take your piece of paper, you'd take your two straws, and then you'd tape it to the front. And then you'd have a support... you'd have a support straw going in the middle.
MIKE: If we made more of a tube... it'd be a lot more aerodynamic.
KORTNEY: Let's just try that and then blow it.
MIKE: Here, I got tape.
KORTNEY: I mean, tape it.
GARRETT: So then a straw that goes...
CAROLINE: Oh, that is so cool.
GARRETT: Right there.
CAROLINE: I think it's going to work really well. Go! That's good-- one. Two... Three... Four, good job.
MIKE: Oh, no!
KORTNEY: We got to get it in three, Mike. Whoo, three, good job. When we blew on our puffmobile, we created wind, which is moving air. It then pushed on our puffmobile and made it move.
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