The purpose of this lettuce lab was to test if photosynthesis performed faster when the plant is receiving its energy from a, ultra violet light. Our hypothesis was that the lettuce would perform photosynthesis faster under an ultra violet light because the wave lengths are closer together than other lights. We are testing if shorter wave lengths produce more energy. The procedure was to use a hole puncher to cut out little circles of spinach leaves and put ten of them in each syringe. The syringes were then filled with a solution of H20 and CO2: two of the three things a plant needs to do photosynthesis. We then suctioned all of the gasses out of the leave circles by creating a vacuum inside of the syringe. This made it so that the leaves were more dense than the solution and the leaves sank to the bottom of the syringe. Then the controlled group was placed under a white light, and the experimental group was places under an ultra violet light. This is the data:
In conclusion, our data rejects our hypothesis.
In order to grow, a seed needs energy but a plant needs to sprout leaves before it can do photosynthesis. Until then it gets energy the same way that humans do, from taking in oxygen and produce carbon dioxide. The only way we could prove this was to put some seeds into a container and attach tube with measuring marks on it. The seeds take in oxygen so the the water should be going further inside the tube because it has to fill the space where the oxygen was. The thing is carbon dioxide is released at the same rate so the it takes up the space instead of the water so we used KOH and put it in the container because it turns the carbon dioxide into a solid so that it couldn't take up the space of the oxygen so that the water would have to. To make it easier to see, we added food coloring so that we could see the water going into the tube. Our conclusion was that peas take in oxygen to take in energy. The evidence is above, it is hard to tell but in the picture on the right, the water is further inside the tube, it was taken about five minutes after the picture on the left.
It was the final challenge and everything was on the line. I decided to start strong by re-using the mechanisms that we had already used, that we knew worked. First of all I had to adjust the string length for the new travel distance. Once that was out of the way I had to figure out how to, and where to attach the catapult. I decided that I wanted to build a top floor held up by cardboard pillars. I took off the base block from the catapult because it was really heavy. After glueing the catapult to the top I needed to figure out how to make it launch by itself. I made these wings on the back with slots in them for a popsicle stick to hold the spoon down. The stick was taped to a string that attached to the axel down below and was measured so that it would wrap around the axel as the car moved until it became tight and pulled the stick out and the catapult would launch. That didn't work super well because the string wasn't tight and would wrap around diagonally using up more of the string than I wanted, making it launch too early. Then I tried this thing with a bunch of levers and stuff and that was a disaster. I then was out of ideas. I had no clue how I was going to pull this off. I slept on it, maybe something would come to me. The next day was test day and I was ready to cut my losses, but then my good ole buddy ole pal Branigan came into the maker space. He said, "Hey, is this your car, it looks awesome." I said, "No that's Tate's and Ricky's.This is mine." "Oh" He said, "Well theirs looks way cooler." That made things better. "What's the problem?" He asked. "I don't know how to make this launch mechanism work." I told him what I had already tried, and he told me to try out my first idea but to make something for the string to run through so that it would be straight. I used a paper clip and bent it so that there was a small hole in it for the string to go through and I attached it to the car. Sure enough, it worked! After slight adjustments to the string length it stopped in the red zone and launched. I put the ball in it to see where it would go and it had good power but bad accuracy. I played around with different starting angles until it lined up perfectly and made it in.
It was the second challenge and everything was going our way so far. All I had was a mousetrap, a spoon, and an idea. I started by hot glueing the mouse trap to a block of wood for a better base. I used duct tape to fasten the spoon to my mousetrap. I also glued a stopper to the mouse trap which was just a piece of wood to stop the spoon so that it didn't have too much power. After testing it, it still had too much power. I made another stopper that was a triangle to stop it even sooner but even that had too much power. I realized that it was starting from too far back so I didn't pull back as far and it got closer to the cup. I put a small block in to make it constant but now it wasn't going far enough. I sanded it down and tested until it had just the right amount of power. Then I ran into a different problem where it wouldn't go straight, so I had to play around with its angle until it was just right and I made it in. Now we were two for two and on our way to victory.
This was my second shot in this BOLT, same challenges, different distances, and higher stakes. Sure, you could say that I had an unfair advantage but I was prepared to put my heart and soul into this new car. One of the biggest problems I had in the first go-round was space, and the lack of it. I made a wide body so that we were prepared for the future. This time the challenge was to travel 5 meters with a vehicle powered only by a single mouse trap. After I thought I was done with the body I realized how flimsy and weak it was. I had to re-enforce it with more card board. The axels are made of pencils that were sanded down to make it smooth, reducing friction. I then attached a pencil to the mouse trap so that the string had a further distance to travel. Then, after attaching my wheels it was time to pull out my crazy math skills and incorporated my equation for string length that I invented the first time I did this challenge (Length=total distance / wheel circumference x axel circumference + distance between mousetrap and axel) I put this equation into practice and made it on my first try. It was amazing. The brute force of a mouse trap pulling a string, rotating an axel, rotating a wheel, carrying a car to the finish line.
I learned a lot in this bolt, I have never really been good at origami but now I feel very compfortable making different shapes and animals using a single piece of paper. I started by making a box out of six pieces of paper and connecting them by inter-twining them. I started trying to fold different shapes like a turtle, beetle, and a swan. I didn't use any instructions when I made the swan, I just used a folding pattern and foleded on the lines and tried to predict the order of the folds based on what I thought the end product would look like. I tried to fold the butterfly without the tutorials and I ended up making something that looked cool but it didn't work out very well. I learned a folding pattern that can be used in many cases to creat eight flaps that can become limbs, necks, tails, and other things.
For the third and final mouse trap challenge we had to make a mouse trap powered vehicle that could travel 2 meters and stop in the red zone. It then had to shoot a pingpong ball three meters into a bucket. This was the hardest challenge that my group and I have faced, though we already had a vehicle and a catapult we had to somehow combine them, but it wasn't that simple. we started by cutting the base of the catapult that was constructed of a mouse trap with a spoon tuct taped to it. There was a piece of wood hot glued to the front of it to stop it from rotating 180 degrees. We attatched the catapult to the car using hot glue. The car's body was made of reinforced cardboard for the maximum ammount of strength. The axels were forged by only the finest of pencils. The wheels were constructed of cd's and for traction we wrapped the wheels in clay. The mouse trap sat on top, secured by hot glue. For the maximum ammount of distance we duct taped a pencil to the mouse trap.
First we had to come up with a way to get the mouse trap car to stop in the red zone. I let My brilliance take over and decided to use math as a way to make the car stop where I wanted it to. I figured that I only needed to find out how long the string had to be. I started by Measuring the circumferance of the wheels, 38 cm. I then measured the circumferance of the axels, 2.5 cm. The distance that it had to travel was 200 cm. I divided 200 by 38 (Because 38 cm is the distance the car travels with every revolution.) and got 5.26 cm. I then multiplied 5.26 by 2.5 (Because 2.5 cm is the length of string that unravels with every revolution) and I got 13.16 cm. I added 4.5 cm to 13.16 cm because 4.5 cm was the length of space between the axel and the end of the pencil. The length of the string had to be 17.66 cm in order for it to stop in the red zone. I cut the string and fastened it to both the axel and the pencil and tested it, and sure enough... It worked!
The next step was to figure out a trip mechanism so that after the car got into the red zone, the catapult would fire the ping pong ball into the bucket. We started by drilling a hole through the mouse trap and sticking a pencil through it. The pencil had a thin rod of metal hot glued to it that stuck out equally on both sides. It was made so that it could pivot. The metal rod would hold down the catapult and the pencil would rotate back as the car was moving. eventually the pencil would hit one side of the metal rod, making it pivot off of the spoon, thus releasing the catapult. At first this didn't work because the spoon had too much upward force and it pulled the pencil out of the hole. We then had to secure it at the bottom by hot glueing a "cardboard-like thing" to the bottom of it that would not allow the pencil to slip through. Then another problem we ran into was that the metal rod would fall off because it was only secured by hot glue. It was an easy fix because all we had to do is tape it a lot. After we put a slight bend in the rod, it worked perfectly.
We were ready for our first test and everything was going great until the car started bumping so much that the pingpong ball fell off before it could even launch. We tested it over and over again with the same result. We decided that it was the wheels that made it bump because the clay was uneven in some parts. We took some time to smoothen that out with our fingers and after testing it again our problem was fixed. Everytime we tested, our car would veer a little bit to the right so we fixed this by setting it up to the left more. Then after we thought everything was fixed, the catapult was shooting too far, Maison thought that maybe it didn't have enough arch. He hot glued small pieces of wood to the wooden "stopper" on the catapult so that it would stop earlier. This fixed our problem and we started on our trials. We were running out of time so we didn't test a lot inbetween trials. Our first one was a failure, as well as our second. We decided to do a test before our third one and we made it in. We did another test and missed. We had less than a minute left so we had to do our final trial. Everything was going perfectly, the car passed the first line of the red zone and the catapult was released. I saw the ball sail through the air, the entire room was silent. This was the moment of truth, life or death, no going back, all cards on the table. I saw it about to land before I heard the glorious sound *Thunk* we made it! All of our hard work had payed off, Ricky jumped in the air with his hands above his head, we even got a cheer from Mr. Schneider. It was a moment I will never forget, the best moment of my life. Afterwards I went to tell all of my friends. "You guy's wont believe it!" I said. *Friends ignore Bryce's existence* "I did it! I got it in the bucket!" I said. "cool" Ethan said. "I know right!!!" I said. I owe my success to my great, supportive friends!
The Challenge was to make a catapult out of a mouse trap that would send a ping pong ball three feet into a can in three tries. first we duct taped a spoon to the mous trap and glued a pice of wood in front of it to stop it at the right time. We then took two blocks of wood and screwed screws into them to be able to change the angle that we could launch the ping pong ball. This made it uneven and slanted so it didn't go straight so we didn't use it. We then placed two peg boards on either side so that we could put a pencil through to stop the catapult until we wanted to launch it. This made it so that we couldn't pull the spoon back as far as we could so we just used our finger. This put too much stress on the spoon which made it break so after replacing it we put a metal suppor on the back of it. We were ready for testing today and we were getting in about the same spot consistantly. We did our first test and missed so we practiced a few times before missing our second test. We practiced a lot, we got it in once, then missed then we made it twice in a row before attempting our last test. Everything was riding on this moment, Maison pulled back the spoon and after lining it up he released. I watched it sail through the air in slow motion, it was on track, right in line to make it. I followed the small ping pong ball as it started its descent it was falling into place and it finally hit. I could finally exhail right before fainting in dissappointiment. We had missed. It was fun while it lasted but it was over, now we need to make a car with a catapult on top of it, because this one wasn't hard enough.
Yesterday I had the opportunity and privilege to go on a field trip to a tomato farm in Brighton, this was part of the aquaponics inquiry block. In aquaponics we are trying to create our own gardening system that is self sustainable. We wanted to learn about what professionals do when they are growing their plants. The people who own the farm plant the tomatoes in coconut husk, this is a form of hydroponics, growing plants in something other than soil. This is an affective way to garden because it allows you to add the nutrients to the plant in the most efficient way. They taught us how to use light to your advantage when your farming. We learned how a green house has an effect on the plants and how you can use one to your advantage in the most efficient way. They have a computer system that adds the water and nutrients and it is all about efficiency. I Had a lot of fun on this trip and learned many things that will help me and my group in the making of our own, mosaic aquaponics system.