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Developed by Baltimore teacher Fred Nastvogel, this motor kit facilitates a process of discovery that is seated in a simple distinction. Instead of asking “How do assemble this kit,” the student reasons why a motor would work at all. The answers to the why questions reside in principles of electricity, magnetism, and structure.
The Motor Model is genuine in that it produces electrical current when operated mechanically. Data collection becomes purposeful and exciting. Students can document RPM, thrust, electrical generation and then go about design change for optimization.
Each part has a purpose.
The making of each opens the door of consideration of a larger field. For instance, the consideration and choice of “bushings” leads into the consideration of bearings, and tolerance. The making of the framework relates directly to issues of structure. The motor’s need to respond to the rotational motion of the armature can be compared and contrasted with the dynamic demands placed upon bridges and buidings.
The motor, running on batteries, can develop enough speed and torque to drive applications. Or it can launch student made rotors. It can be geared to rotate a disc, which in turn can sound a series of chimes, or act as a timing plate for a set of electrical circuits.
As students become comfortable with the basic motor design platform, they can expand interest to larger, more complex interpretations. One assembly featuring many electromagnets and a disc can be used to make a demonstration of a particle accelerator.
Includes instructions and 30 bulk kits for 30 students.
Requires 9V battery.
Kit available below.