This was easily our most research intensive project yet. those students that understand basic areodynamics and how they applied to low energy flight (ie gliding) and the basic principles of physics (ie newton's laws) were easily the most successful.
during practice launches many students were reaching 7 to 8 meters of flight consistently. though during the final testing only 1 student reached the seven meter make and a few teams reached 6 meters.
3 types of launch systems were developed and used. most used a basic mouse trap and adjusted how far back they pulled it to launch the plane at the desired angle. other groups propped the plane up at a level that changed at which point the bar connected to the plane (either by attaching a stand to the front of the plane or by having the plane hang over the edge of a ramp). And a few groups added an extra arm and a string to the mouse trap turning the initial upward motion of the bar into continuous sideways motion as it pulled the string forward. Each launch method that was employed worked for the planes designed for it but if the planes switched launch methods then they no longer functioned well. this shows that the iterative process does design the best planes for the paths they have chosen.
I am very proud by the work produced and the fashion it was produced in of most of the students during this challenge.