Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Second Day (25 May, Wednesday)

Today, we started off the day by beginning to edit the slides. This was because we were slightly early and took the extra time to start preparing for our presentations for tomorrow. At 9 o'clock, we then proceeded to start our day's activities. Today, we had the chance to try out the last project on Battery charging from Bicycle Pedal Power. In this project, we learnt how the spinning of the wheel would spin the dynamo, changing it into electrical energy, allowing the light bulb to light up/battery to be charged. We used the voltmeter to measure the volts/energy generator, and the Tachometer was used to measure the rotations by the bike wheel. After trying it out through charging the light bulb and battery, the student mentor taught us how to plot a linear graph using the results. Half of us worked on sketching a simple graph while the other half worked on a doorbell that worked via an electromagnet. When we were done trying out the project, we went back to getting ready for the presentation. Some of the group members also tried re-doing the boat for the presentation. Later on, all of us were released for lunch. After lunch, we continued doing up our slides in a meeting room the Professor had brought us to. When we were done editing the slides and writing our scripts, we then presented and received comments and feedback from the professors and Mrs Ong.

Images of today's activities:

On the left is a picture of two group members, Grace and Ping Yi, turning the pedals of the bike to generate electricity.

Here is an image of the light bulb lighting up after receiving the electricity generated.

The following two images show all the groups working on their presentations.

Today, I learnt how power can be generated from pedalling a bicycle. Power is generated mainly from using the bike wheel that is being rotated due to the pedal that is connected to the dynamo. This dynamo then converts the energy into electrical energy, hence charging up the battery/lighting up the bulb. Such a technology does not require burning and releasing of harmful gases though it does not produce/generate as much electricity as that of fossil fuels. Also, after hearing the comments from the professors, I have learnt that when presenting, we should focus on one idea and expand on it while being careful not to be repetitive.

I feel that today's activities such as the electricity generation (bicycle project) has deepened my understanding of how such technology can be used to power up electrical devices. Hence, I am able to understand the physics of how this occurs, especially since there are quite a few movies on this concept of electricity being generated via bikes. The presentation rehearsal and the comments from the professors showed me how we must arrange our information. Such knowledge can also be implemented into future presentations. Today's activities gave me a more insightful view on how physics works and the generation of electricity. Furthermore, they also explained how an electromagnet works and practical applications of it. For our presentation, we researched on practical applications as well, giving me a wider view of technology today.

New questions regarding the discipline:

  1. How can a steam engine be constructed to be more efficient?
  2. What materials are more durable/strong to make a boiler for the Pop-pop boat?
  3. How can a steam engine be made to use lesser resources? (i.e. conservation of heat)

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