We have learned a lot since my last post. We have been studying simple machines in preparation for our designing of the Airstream. We have looked at Levers, the wheel and axle, inclined planes, pulleys, wedge, and screws. We have mainly focused on the IMA and AMA of levers and pulleys. We have also worked on a lever lab to focus on learning the types of levers and how to even them out. Through our lab we learned about 1st, 2nd, and 3rd levels and how you can balance different levers out. We have been practicing out skills on how to solve IMA, AMA and individual factors like the distance to the effort, the distance to the resistance, the force of the effort and the force to the resistance. Another activity we did in class was related to the wheel and axle simple machine. In our design teams we walked around the school and found different things that were examples of the wheel and axle. After we found examples of the wheel and axle we were able to calculate the IMA and AMA. These activities will be able to help us in the future for when we are going through the design process of our Airstream. I’m excited to continue to look at the rest of the simple machines, but so far simple machines aren’t as simple as I thought.
Another thing that we have done this past week was getting to meet with different real world experts that know what it’s like to build things using natural resources, and being energy efficient. Some of the companies we met with were, Light House Solar, Habitat for Humanity, Women Design Build, Tree House, and the Water department. We got to talk to them at our Green Building Expo, which was really helpful for us in concerns to every aspect of the process that we have to take to build our Airstream.
One of the most helpful discussions we had was with Light House Solar. They were able to help us with all the questions we had in regards to the Airstream and any other questions about electricity requirements. We got good information on where and in what position it would be most efficient for us to place our solar array. They also gave us good ideas on how to determine the amount and size of the solar panels we were going to need. We also talked to Tree House Company about what materials would be most eco-friendly and at a lower cost for us. We got a list of energy efficient light builds and an idea on how many we would need. He also talked about the type of paint we could use, so that we were being eco-friendly and artsy at the same time.
We were also able to get advice and tips from Women Design Build. She gave us advice on being able to stay focus and meet all of our Mile Stones at the designated time. She gave us a few tips on building skills and also advice on how not to get stressed out and continue improving our planning process. Overall it was very helpful and we were able to gather information that will be helpful to our design process in the future. I can’t wait until we get to actually build our Airstream, but we are still a long way from that. If we stay focus we can do it!