Simple Machines Physics
Science Fair Projects
Ideas and Sample Projects by Grade Level

Hooke's Law and Springs

Primary School - Grades K-3
P=Project   E=Experiment
What are the Best Materials for Parachutes? [P] [P]
Search for simple machines used in your daily life and categorize them to see which types of simple machines you use most often. [E]
Trebuchet Catapult Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Pendulum Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Force, Motion & Energy Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Elementary School - Grades 4-6
P=Project   E=Experiment

With how many pulleys, 1,2 or more, it will be easier to lift a weight? [P]
Which nails can resist the most force? [P]
How much force is needed to pound nails into different kinds of wood? [E]
Build a water clock [E] [E]
Investigate how the distance of stretch in a rubber band at rest relates to the distance the rubber band travels after being released. [E]
Figure out how to calculate gear ratios by putting the gears together. [E]
Build an efficient Archimedes screw pump, using commonly found materials. [E]
How changing the length of the effort arm of a lever effects the amount of effort it takes to lift an object. [E]
Find launch conditions to reliably propel the payload into the target area. [E]
Investigate the Motion of a Pendulum [E]
Use a playground see-saw to investigate how a simple machine works. [E]
How different surfaces would affect the velocity of a rolling object. [E]
What are catapults? [P]
The Effect of Bolt Mass vs. Depth of Penetration [P]
Make a model of an elevator, and an animation of how it works. [P]
Demonstrate how an elevator works through a series of pulleys [P]
Explores the hypothesis that stopping distance of a toy car in its ‘natural motion’ varies when it travels on different surfaces and incline plane [P]
How much energy is needed to bring a wheeled object up a ramp? [P]
Build a simple rocket engine you can build in your kitchen [E]
Trebuchet Catapult Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Pendulum Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Force, Motion & Energy Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Middle School - Grades 7-9
P=Project   E=Experiment
The Tarzan Problem: What Is the Best Angle to Jump Off a Swinging Object to Maximize Distance? [E]
Investigate Hooke's law and see how a spring can be used to weigh objects. [E] [E]
Measure the force and the work required to lift the same load with different arrangements of pulleys. [E]
Determine which launch angle results in the greatest distance for a projectile. [E]
Build an accelerometer and use it to measure acceleration and gravity-induced reaction forces on a roller-coaster ride. [E]
How Do Varying Amplitudes, Weights, and Lengths Affect the Period of Motion of a Pendulum? [E]
The Distance a Trebuchet Catapult Can Throw Projectiles of Different Masses [E]
What Is the Optimal Release Angle for Shooting a Free Throw? [E]
See if it is possible to compute the velocity of a projectile by measuring its fall over a measured distance. [E]
Test how different size pilot holes affect torque required to advance screws into wood. [E]
How Does Center of Gravity Affect a Crane Design? [E]
Measuring Human Horsepower [E]
Build your own wind tunnel and demonstrate Bernoulli’s Principle [E]
The More Pulleys, The More Pull [E]
Discover the relationship between the amount of pressure put in the tank of an air cannon and the distance that the projectile flies. [E]
Measure how much torque in newton-centimeters was required to turn a lag screw in a block of wood as the diameter of the screw, the depth of the screw, or the size of a pilot hole was changed. [E]
Demonstrate Newton's Third Law of Motion by a rocket car with escaping air as the action force. [E]
Compare modern parachute performance to that of Leonardo da Vinci’s design [E]
Trebuchet Catapult Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Pendulum Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Force, Motion & Energy Science Fair Projects and Experiments
High School - Grades 10-12
P=Project   E=Experiment
Can you build a perpetual motion machine (over-unity device)? [E] [E]
Converting Potential Energy to Kinetic Energy [E]
Investigation of Mathematical Models of Harmonic Spring Motion [E]
The Effects of Different String Sizes on the Probability that Complex Knots Will Form [E]
Which Web Withstands Weights? The Application of Force Decomposition to Spider Webs [E]
Demonstrate Newton's third law of motion by using Bottle Rockets [E]
Repeat Henry Cavendish’s experiment - Build your own torsion balance [E]
Investigate the stopping distance required by moving vehicles when a retarding force acts on them [E]
Build and demonstrate your own Foucault pendulum [E]
Trebuchet Catapult Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Pendulum Science Fair Projects and Experiments
Force, Motion & Energy Science Fair Projects and Experiments
R=Resource
Science Fair Projects Resources [R]
Citation Guides, Style Manuals, Reference [R]
Safety Resources [R] [R]
Physics Project Books

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