This is the Blog for my 40-week Engineering Class for the 2015-16 school year at George Washington High School.

6-10-16: Students took their final exam. We will continue rocket launches until all have launched. There after, as the course work is complete, I will not be entering daily blog entries from this point on. However, I will continue lessons related to the curriculum or other fun science stuff.

6-9-16: We continued launching the ESTES rockets. Today we also launched a two stage rocket.

6-8-16: Due to the rain and wet fields, we watched "Cosmos, a Spacetime Odyssey, The Clean Room". Students submitted the worksheet for "The Right Stuff".

6-7-16: We launched ESTES rockets. Students are required to submit a launch ticket at time of launch for credit toward grade.

6-6-16: We were not permitted to launch due to a conflict with the the PIAA baseball tournament this afternoon. Rather we nearly completed "The Right Stuff" video. Students are to submit the video worksheet for grade.

6-3-16: We completed rocket assembly and learned how to set up the engine and rocket for launch. Students who have not completed their rocket must do so after school or during 3rd period before Wednesday's class next week.

6-2-16: A substitute covered my class today because I was a the LEAD 2016 conference at district headquarters. Students received a copy of the blog since the midterm and were asked to write 5 multiple choice question for possible use on the final based on the blog/materials covered in class.

6-1-16: We test fired two Estes A8-5 engines on the test stand. We then moved to room 339 to continue building the ESTES rockets. Here is a slow motion video of the engine test firing. Here is an impulse data plot (Force vs Time) of a test firing.

5-31-16: Students were given Impulse Diagrams and specifications of the ESTES rocket engines. I set up a force sensor to actually measure the impulse of the engine will will use. I also demonstrated the ignition system and use/flame testing of wadding to prevent the parachute from melting.

5-27-16: We began building the ESTES rockets in room 339 (Air Conditioned!!).

5-26-16: We completed the launches of the soda bottle rockets. Students saw repairs made to the launch system. We began a discussion about the construction of the gunpowder ESTES rockets.

5-24, 25-16: We launched several of the soda bottle rockets. Students who launched submitted a launch ticket to get credit for their work.

5-23-16: We continued the "Right Stuff" up to Gus Grissom's conversation with his wife following the sinking of his space capsule.

5-20-16: We did not meet due to building evacuation for a bomb threat.

5-19-16: We watched "The Right Stuff" up to the space monkey launch and recovery. We listened to Billy Joel's song "We didn't start the fire".

5-18-16: Same as yesterday. Up to the end of medical testing and selection of astronauts. We also watched actual footage of G-force testing of "Col John Stapp" (Youtube search).

5-17-16: Again with the short periods. We continued the video to 1:13

5-16-16: Shorter periods over the next 6 days prevent us from launching the soda bottle rockets. We continued watching the Right Stuff to about 61:00.

5-13-16: Students received an article about the development of the aluminum industry. Students are to submit written responses to the prompts that are withthe article.

5-12-16: We continued watching "The Right Stuff" to about 51:00.

5-11-16: Students completed the soda/water bottle rockets and received a launch ticket. We will launch Monday if weather permits.

5-10-16: No class due to the half day schedule.

5-9-16: We started building the soda bottle rockets. I demonstrated the launch system. We will launch them Monday if the weather cooperates.

5-6-16: I demonstrated a toy version of the water bottle rocket. We watched the video listed in the 5-3 blog. We discussed and began watching the film, "The Right Stuff" to 9:20.

5-5-15: We completed our match rockets. Hopefully students learned that there are many factors that influence success in rocketry.

5-4-16: We built and, after setting up a safety zone, launched match rockets in the classroom. We will continue tomorrow. Several students earned an "A" by hitting the opposite wall. Here is a video of a high pressure water rocket that reached over 1700 feet in altitude. Students who report on this video (a one paragraph description) BEFORE i show it in class will receive extra credit toward thier grade).

5-3-16: We discussed the findings from the stomp rocket activity regarding fins and weight distribution. We briefly discussed each type of rocket to be built. Considering the colder wet weather we are likely to build the match rockets next; so we watched the video on their construction by Grant Thompson, "The King of Random" at
5-2-16: We launched stomp rockets outside door # 7. Students received an "A" if they provided a launch ticket at time launch. Students who built rockets or who witnessed the launches received a "C". Students who wish to raise their grade on this project to an "A" need to build their rocket then launch it after school.

4-28-16: We began building the stomp rockets. We will have one more build day before launching Monday depending on the weather.

4-27-16 - Half day for report card conferences. No class today.

4-26-16: No Class due to Election Day. Teachers had professional development on restorative practices.

4-25-16: We worked in the lab and completed the resistor and LED labs.

4-22-16: We completed "October sky. Students are to hand in the video worksheet from grade after completing the video questions on the front side and #1, 2, 4, and 5 from the back side.

4-21-16: We discussed the landing of the Mars Rovers and saw the youtube video about it titled the "7 minutes of Terror". We continued October Sky through the beginning of the National Science Fair.

4-20-16: We discussed the filling and reuse of rocket engines. We continued October sky to the start of Homer waking for his first day of work in the coal mine.

4-19-16: We had a discussion about bulk solid flow. We learned about the refining of titanium ore and the Blackbird Supersonic jet. We also learned about Schlieren photography and the work of Ernst Mach. We continued October Sky through the development of new fuel binders.

4-18-16: We discussed Werner Von Braun. Students were required to write Newtons three laws of motion on the back of the October Sky worksheet. We continued watching October Sky to the scene when they received the 1020 bar stock. For extra credit, students can research and submit the metallurgical composition of 1020 bar stock.

4-15-16: Students received a worksheet for the video "October Sky". We spoke about how the movie came to be as I introduced Homer Hickem and his book "The Rocket Boys". We began watching the movie.

4-14-16: Students got to see a video about "Prince Rupert's Drop" demonstration (See Reference Item #93) and then a demonstration. This science is used to create tempered glass. Students are required to write one paragraph about Prince Rupert's drops (e.g. History, technology...). I reported that we were not returning to the soldering lab today due to an act of vandalism with a soldering gun during the last lab session.

4-13-16: We continued with the resistor and started/completed the LED lab. Students also received a grade for creating a circuit diagram for a flashlight using standard symbols provided in class.

4-12-16: We examined the wiring diagram for a sodium vapor street light and discussed its benefits. We also looked at another disassembled scooter engine (a two-stroke engine vs. the four-stroke from the other scooter). Students also received instruction on the LED light soldering lab.

4-11-16: Students completed the resistor lab and learned how to use the volt and current scales on a multimeter to load test a battery.

4-8-16: Student calculated the resistance of resistors in parallel and series then measured the resulting resitance for comparison with their calculations. They completed the resistor lab.

4-7-16: We continued the lab using multimeters to measure resistance and calculate tolerance completing up to item 7 of the lab. We also learned how to safely solder (teacher demonstration only).

4-6-16: We began a lab on electrical resistance. Students received resistors and read their value from a standard resistor color code chart. We also began to see how multimeters are cared for and operated.

4-5-16: Students were provided with a copy of a "Current Event" article about the FBI's hacking of the
San-Bernardino shooter's i-phone We discussed the article and students were given a final prompt for the Imitation Game Journal: 5 - Write both a proposition and opposition argument that Alan Turing might have made concerning the FBI's decrypting the IPhone software. I addition, write you own answer to the following two questions: 1 - Describe the role that the FBI and Apple have in our society and explain your thoughts on whether the FBI should disclose to Apple how they broke into the Iphone's encrypted data. We finished the video and students were provided with a list of the log entries.

4-4-16: Students are to complete Log item 4 (two parts): A - How can a human distinguish a machine from a human through communication with it? B - How can a machine distinguish between a machine and a human though communication with it? We continued "The Imitation Game" to 1:27. We discussed the "Turing Test" and the development of artificial intelligence (e.g. chess computers...).

4-1-16: "Do-Now" is log item #3 - List the parts and functions of a modern computer. We continued "the Imitation Game" to 57:04.

3-31-16: To continue our lessons on encryption, we began watching "The Imitation Game (2014). Students are required to keep a log, titled "The Imitation Game", which is to be submitted, in one bulk package, at the end of the video. The first entry in the log is:1 - Briefly describe the roles of Alice, Bob, and Eve discussed in many tutorials (See Item #91 on the reference links). For Homework, as log entry number 2, students are to write two brief, one paragraph biographical summaries on Alan Turing and Charles Babbage, pioneers in the computer industry.

3-30-16: We explored encoding and encryption. Students were provided with a reference sheet on morse code, ascii, and hexadecimal methods of encoding. We watched this video on encryption. Students saw how to count to 32 in binary with just 5 fingers and, for grade, wrote out a phonetic alphabet. One of the final exam questions will be to decipher a morse code message.

3-29-16: We explored encryption by examining key boards and telephone lines. We examined the number of wires needed to transmit electrical data. We discussed the one wire system using a balloon (capacitor) and morse code. We looked at internal computer connections.

3-28-16: We completed "America's Lost Submarine" and discussed issues related to its unique design and abandonment.

3-21-16: To continue our study of submarines and began watching the film "U-571" about the recovery of an enigma machine. Besides looking at WWII submarine design, we also discussed briefly the science of encryption. We watched to 42:11.

3-18-16: Students were asked to consider developments from the diving bell to the pre-WWII submarines. We watched a considerable portion of "America's Lost Submarine".

3-17-16: We discussed how submariners avoid the bends. We discussed escapes from submarines and watched a 6 minute video on modern submarine air. We began the introduction to the video "America's Lost Submarine".

3-16-16: We discussed the physiological effects of air and water pressure on the human body. Students saw diagrams of a Caisson and we learned how they are used and how Caisson's disease was discovered and treated. Students were given a copy of the PADI dive tables for recreational diving with air and we discussed decompression.

3-15-16: Students received the parts and written instruction on how to make a cartesian diver. Students who built one in class received full credit grade for building the diver. Others can build one at home and produce it at a later date (before spring break) for full credit.

3-14-16: Students received credit toward grade for creating a diagram (as posted and discussed in class) of a "Cartesian Diver". We began a discussion of the design and operation of submarines. The 2-Liter bottles with lids are due!! I also showed the rocket we will make with those bottles.

3-11-16: We completed the Dubai video and students were required to submit their Journal's on the video upon completion of the video for full credit (-5% at days end, -20% on Monday or later, -50% last week of term). Two more Journal entries were made in class: #2 as a "Do-Now" - Explain how plate tectonics relates to the wealth of Dubai, and End of video #3 (complete the sentence) - "The most interesting thing I discovered about Dubai is........". Students are to bring in 2-Liter bottle with lids for in class projects.

3-10-16: We continued the Dubai video and discussed some aspects of water pressure as it relates to pumps and SCUBA diving. We also discussed oil drilling and tectonic plate movements.

3-9-16: I reviewed a journal for the flight of the Phoenix and offered constructive criticism for resubmittal (due Friday). We began a video on Dubai ("Strip the City"). Students created a new Journal in which they were to list ten attributes of a city. We got to a discussion of water delivery into high buildings and spoke of the demand for oil and how Dubai funded their creation.

3-8-16: Students earned credit toward grade by constructing a airfoil from cardboard stock, tape, and a drinking straw then testing it for lift using a classroom scale wind tunnel.

3-7-16: We completed the video. As the last Journal entry, students are to draw another top view of the C-119 and draw lines on it to indicate cut marks crossing out the parts of the airplane used to make the Phoenix. Then draw a set of three orthographic drawings (Top view, side view and front view) of the Phoenix. The Journal, all stapled together is due by Thursday and is to be placed in the box. A summary sheet of each entry requirement (same as 3/4 blog) was distributed.

3-4-16: Students are required to write at least two facts concerning Howard Hughes in the Journals. We continued "The Flight of the Phoenix" to 1:26. We will finish the video on Monday: The completed Journal shall contain the following sections: Title: "Flight of the Phoenix Journal" [Your Name], 1 - A set of orthographic drawings (top view, side view, and front view), of the Fairchild C-119. 2 - After seeing the images of C-82 and the C-119 and you are to hypothesis the improvements made to the newer model. 3 - After finding technical specifications for both planes on-line, you are to list at least 10 points of comparison on their technical specifications. 4 - You are to define Pitch, Roll, Yaw, Lift, and Thrust as it relates to the motions of an airplane and identify the control mechanisms for each of those motions. 5- You are to draw the cross-sectional shape of the aircraft wing developed by the Wright Brothers as discussed in class. 6- You are to write two facts about Howard Hughes. 7 - You are to make another top view of the C-119 and draw lines on it to indicate cut marks crossing out the parts of the airplane used to make the Phoenix. The draw a set of three orthographic drawings (Top view, side view and front view) of the Phoenix.

3-3-16: We discussed the shape of airplane wings (how the rounded leading edge causes laminar air flow and how the longer air path on the top surface causes lower pressure resulting in lift). We discussed how the Wright brothers contributions to wing development and the work performed in Kitty Hawk NC. We discussed Howard Hughes's contributions to aircraft design and saw photos of the defunct airplane diner in Pendell PA (featuring a Hughes plane). We saw footage of Paul Mantz plane crash and a few others. We did not continue the Flight of the Phoenix video today. Students added a drawing of the cross-sectional shape of an aircraft wing to their journals with appropriate notes.

3-2-16: Students were asked to add to their log, the homework from last night and definitions for Pitch, Roll, Yaw, Lift, and Thrust as it relates to the motions of an airplane. Students are to also identify the control mechanisms for each of those motions. We continued Flight of the Phoenix to 56.49.

3-1-16: Students are asked to add to their log their thoughts on why Fairchild updated the C-82 to the C-119. For HW they are to create a table comparing the specifications of each airplane. At least 10 points of comparison are required in their log. We reviewed typical specifications and looked at the planes on wikipedia. We continued watching Flight of the Phoenix but, by popular demand, switched to the 2004 movie. We got to 32:00 in the film.

2-29-16: Students were required to write in their "Flight of the Phoenix Journal" an orthogonal drawing (front side and top view of the Fairchild C-119 plane featured in the newer (2004) movie. We continued the 2004 version up to the storm. We then switched to the 1965 version and watched it 17:37, following the desert crash. We discussed turbulence and limits to the altitude that can be reached by winged aircraft.

2-25-16: Students built thier best paper airplanes and received a grade (A to C) based on whether it flew across the room and did not spiral as it flew. We began watching "Flight of the Phoenix (2004)". Students will need to keep a journal of "Do-Now" items related to this film each day to earn their grade.

2-24-16: No class today due to half day schedule for report card conferences.

2-23-16: Students were given a more detailed the format of the "Thank you" letter and told how to write their regrets if they could not make the tour. We looked a photos of the equipment and a few other engineering projects (e.g. glass making and furnace repair).

2-22-16: We took a tour of the generator and boiler rooms of the building. For credit toward grade, students are required to write a thank you letter to Building Engineer, Mr. Gajdowski, who facilitated the tour and explained much of the history on operation of the equipment. Absent students are to write a letter expressing their regrets after interviewing someone who was on the tour and looking at some of the photographs. The Thanks you letter is to be handwritten and contain a Salutation, Purpose, Impression, Personal Reflection, and Closing as discussed in class.

2-19-16: Students were given schematic diagrams of boilers, engines, and generators. We discussed them and the tour to happen on Monday. We explored the phet simulations of Faraday's Law (See reference item #89) to better understand a generator. I demonstrated a "Metal Melter" like those produced by Grant Thompson, "The king of Random" (See reference link #26)..

2-18-16: Students repeated the lab demonstrated yesterday. Students are required to submit a qualitative comparison of the properties of the lab samples (e.g. strength, brittleness, malleability, flexibility, ability to work harden ....). This report is due tomorrow.

2-17-16: I demonstrated the heat treatment lab and made observations. Students will repeat the lab tomorrow. We watched a video covering modern tree harvesting machines (See Item #83 on the reference links)..

2-16-18: No class due to 1/2 day schedule

2-15-16: No classes due to holiday

2-12-16: Students obtained a worksheet and prepared a data sheet for the heat treating of steel lab we discussed over the past few days. I made a quick demonstration, then we went in to the lab to perform the experiments. We will continue upon return to class after the holiday.

2-11-16: We discussed the properties of the raw materials from yesterday's activity. We began a discussion of glass manufacturing and the popular misconception of glass windows "flowing" because of the oft misunderstood definition of a "Supercooled liquid".

2-10-16: We performed a "classification of materials" activity where students were given samples and had to group themselves as a metal, polymer, ceramic, composite, or assembly. We also discussed the explosion of Krakatoa when discussing the pumice sample, "The rock that floats".

2-9-16: I collected the HW. If both parts were done on time, it will score and A. If one part is missing or it is late it will be a B, if one one part is handed in late it will score as a C. We completed the video and further discussed the role of the engineer in society. I spoke of two court cases for which I provided testimony one concerning table leg failure and the other headlight covers on a Jeep. Students performed part 1 of a 2 part lab dealing with heat treating and work hardening metals (Copper wire work hardening). We discussed spring steel and the fatigue failure (See also )

2-8-16: We had a discussion about the construction of fireworks and watched a video of the largest firework ever launched in North America (launched this past weekend in Steamboat Springs, Colorado) . We discussed how fireworks are constructed. We then discussed how Dr. Kearns used Charles Dicken's "Tale of Two Cities" in his court argument. We continued the film, "Flash of Genius".

For Homework, due upon entry to class tomorrow, students are to research and summarize the financial winnings of Dr. Kearn from his court case against the various automotive companies. Also, report if he ever reconciled with his wife.

2-6-16: Discussed litigation. We continued watching "Flash of Genius"

2-4-16: Discussed confidentiality agreements. We continued watching "Flash of Genius"

2-3-16: Students took the midterm exam. For additional EC, see item #48 on the EC tab on the left (students can submit up to 5 Haiku poems for 1 point each as directed). The midterm will count for 20% of the term 2 grade.

2-2-16: We reviewed the structure and some of the question for the mid term. I handed out a patent for the toy air gun and we discussed the claims, We continued watching "Flash of Genius" to 56:00.

2-1-16: Students obtained a reference page for the video "Flash of Genius". We discussed the meaning of the title as it relates to a 1941 Supreme Court Doctrine. I went over items on the reference sheet then we continued the video.

1-29-16: We spoke about inventions with minimal creative destruction. We began "Flash of Genius" to 7:41.

1-28-16: We finished the video. We discussed key topics from the video related to intellectual property issues. The prompt written in yesterday's blog is due by tomorrow. I showed a video of an aluminum casting accident (See ) and we saw a video of somebody casting an anthill with liquid aluminum. Tomorrow we will begin another video, showing the very real story of the invention and commercialization of intermittent windshield wipers ("Flash of Genius").

1-27-16: We continued the video nearing the end (1:12). Students are to submit an answer to the following prompt: Describe two examples of creative destruction that would result from Sydney's invention from the video "The Man in the White Suit".

1-25/26-16: No classes due to snow days.

1-22-16: We watched "The Man in the White Suit" to 42:00. This which can be found on-line through a link listed as item 40 on the reference tab on the left. I showed students a fabric which resists water based fluids.

1-21-16: Students received an excerpt from "Super Freakonomics" concerning the horse vs. the car. We read the excerpt and students are required to write responses to the two prompts that follow the essay and submit them for grade by Monday. We watched the Izzit video titled "The paradox of Progress" and discussed creative destruction and negative externalities. The Iron Wire lab report is also due today and I am collecting the worksheet that accompanied the video "Inventing the Future" from yesterday..

1-20-16: Today we explored a little more about the Ben Franklin Partnership companies. For Extra Credit, students are to select a company featured in their annual report and create a presentation page (small poster) on 8.5"x11 printer paper, featuring one of the products of your selected company (Not 4Moms as we did that one in class). You should title the page "A New Innovation from a Ben Franklin Partnership Company", then draw or print an image of the product with arrows and labels describing its special features. Be sure to name the product and the company along with the date the company was founded. We completed watching the video "Inventing the Future". Students are to submit the worksheet from the video for grade with the first page complete and the survey on teh back page complete as well. We discussed a local "Shark Tank"/Business Incubator, The Ben Franklin Partnership, and one of their successes: Bio Med Sciences (See alsoOleeva® Scar Fading Products). Here is an article about Bio Med Sciences.

1-19-16: We began a unit on Intellectual Property and had opening discussions. Students were asked to define Intellectual Property, Patent, and Royalty in their notes. I handed out a worksheet for the Izzit video titled "Inventing the Future". We watched to video to 12:00 answering questions as it played.

1-15-16: We reviewed the lab report format from the iron wire demo. I handed out the phase diagram for Aluminum and Zinc and we observed a solid state phase transformation for the 78/22 Al/Zn alloy. A general phase diagram was discussed. "Iron Wire Solid State Phase Transformation" reports are due by Thursday 1/22. See blog from 12/17 for videos. The LAB REPORT FORMAT FOR THE IRON WIRE DEMO is as follows: 1: Title Page, 2: Objective (e.g. To demonstrate .....), 3: Equipment and materials list (this is where your drawing should be presented or referred to by figure number). 4 - Safety precautions. (i.e. Preventing electrical shock and fire) 5: Procedures (i.e. Step by step procedures), 6: Observations/Findings 7 - Summary and discussion (e.g. Explanations of what occurred during the demonstration). This should include explanations of the crystal structure and property changes that occurred in the demonstration.

1-14-16: We completed "War Games" and discussed the current status of Artificial Intelligence and Moore's Law. For credit toward grade students are to submit responses to the following two prompts: 1 - Compare the designs of missile Silos to that of NORAD. and 2 - Describe three methods used to protect data from cyber attack.

1-13-16: We continued "War Games" to within 52 minutes to the end. We discussed "Black Boxes" from the 1970's used to hack the telephone system and the need for cyber security in today's society.

1-12-16: Before continuing "War Games", we examined the progress on the scooter engine upgrade and watched a short animation of a four stroke internal combustion engine. We then continued "War Games" to 38:00

1-11-16: We completed the Atomic Cafe and began "War Games".

1-8-16: With the shorter schedule from Keystone Testing and reduced attendance, we did not continue with the urriculum but rather continued with "The Atomic Cafe" to 1:11.

1-7-16: With the shorter schedule from Keystone Testing and reduced attendance, we continued to watch "The Atomic Cafe". We got to about 37:44. In the light of the news of recent atomic bomb testing from North Korea, We also watched a you tube video showing a map of atomic explosions from 1945 to 1998.

1-6-16: We looked at a water still in operation. We discussed the flow of water and energy through the process. With the shorter schedule from Keystone Testing, the rest of the period was used to watch footage of the Trinity test as shown in the video "The Atomic Cafe" (See on-line video;

1-5-16: We watched the videos of the Iron wire demo from the 12-17 blog links and reviewed two illustrations from the teachers guide in preparation for the lab report students are to prepare. We discussed some solid state technology.

1-4-15: We completed Apollo 13 after discussing how technology has changed over time. As an example, I showed a slide rule and an RPN calculator (The HP 15C). I read a few excerpts from the introduction to McCutcheon's "General Chemistry", copyright 1944, regarding the dissemination of technical knowledge thought he ages. Students were told to submit a minimum of one assignment from all the options from 12/3-12/9, the Apollo 13 worksheet (or reflective prompts on that worksheet) or today's "do-now" (How does a slide rule work and why is it not used any more?) as make-up credit for the works assigned 12/3 to 12/9.

12-23-15: We continued the video till 1:57.

12-22-15: We continued watching Apollo 13 and had a few discussions on the technology of the mission.

12-21-15: We discussed the Apollo Program, the fire on Apollo 1, and began watching the film "Apollo 13". Students are permitted to make up missing work during the next three days or watch the film and submit the video worksheet for extra credit.

12-18-15: No class today due to the half day schedule.

12-17-15: Students received a sheet illustrating 14 Bravais cells and weer asked to identify "Body Centered Cubic" and Face Centered Cubic" structures. I performed the "Iron Wire Demo" illustrating a solid state phase transformation of iron. Students will be required to write a formal lab report on the demonstration and we will work on each section over the next several lessons. After students observed the demonstration, they were required to make an equipment diagram of the set up to be used in the lab report. The demo can be seen in these videos IRON WIRE VIDEO #1 , IRON WIRE VIDEO #2 and IRON WIRE VIDEO #3 the later featuring a graphical plot of the exothermic and endothermic phase changes. Here is the link for the Teacher's Guide for that demonstration useful for describing the science behind the lesson.

12-16-15: We completed the video and students submitted the worksheet for grade. We discussed stress vs. strain curves and the function of trace elements in steel alloys. Students saw how plastics can be stretched to align their molecules and change physical properties.

12-15-15: We discussed high speed photography and a video claiming to be a recording of light pulses in slow motion. Although I expressed skepticism in class, these videos appear to be valid (See: ). We continued the Making Stuff Stronger video to 34:55 and students continued more questions on their worksheet.

12-14-15: We continued "Making Stuff Stronger to 21:15. I passed around samples of bullet proof glass and kevlar fiber. We also watched the you tube video "Bullets in slow motion". We discussed the Do-Now Question: How is fatigue failure beneficial?

12-11-15: We watched NOVA "Making it Stronger" to 10:35. I handed out a WS for grade and we got up to question 5. The Do-Now was to describe how the Tacoma Narrows Bridge failed. Here is a link for the video:

12-10-15: We discussed the Tacoma Narrows Bridge and watched a 10 minute video from Washington State Historical Society who documented much of the 1940's failure analysis and its impact. We discussed a little of the work of Von-Karman. Here is a link for the video we watched:

12-3 to 12-9/15: Students followed plans left with a substitute as I was bereaving the death of my mother. I will return 12/10 and review the progress made in my absence.

12-2-15: No class today due to half day report card conference schedule. Term 2 grades are posted in the classroom

12-1-15: We watched the 25 minute tour of the ISS (See Reference tab on left, item #49). Students completed a video fact sheet for grade upon completion.

11-30-15: We began an examination of the space station before completing the video on the Columbia disaster. As a graded assignment, due as and exit ticket or homework, students are to hand in written responses to the following two prompts that were posted as a "Do-Now" and discussed in class: 1 - How did the Columbia Fail? and 2 - Would could be done to save future shuttle astronauts from a similar fate?

11-25-15: We watched a video on the investigation of the space shuttle Columbia disaster up to 21: minutes before the end.

11-24-15: Students were given the log entries in order so that they can review and complete their log for the video finished yesterday. Portfolio folders were set up.

11-23-15: Students to record in their log, the significance of November 18, 1883, “the day with two noons”. As one final entry, describe how and why humans have decoupling our time keeping system from the movements of the sun. What technology necessitated such a bold step? To finish the log, write a personal reflection on the video (e.g. What did you learn, what did you already know, what do you want to explore further....?).

11-20-15: We reviewed the log requirements for "Time". Today's entry was to list the unique features of a Breitling Watch. We continued watching the video to 36:09 and learned about the "Day with Two Noon's, 11/18/1883" in describing the creation of time zones.

11-19-15: We continued discussing Time. Students were asked to record in their log why clocks run clockwise and why watch advertisements always show the time around 10:10 or 5:00. Students also learned about the Aurora Borealis. For EC students can perform assignment #26 on the Assignments/EC tab on the left with one image related to time and the other to the Aurora.

11-18-15: Students received and completed a chemistry word puzzle covering key terms from that course.

11-17-15: Class did occur today other than to sign in as coverage was provided by a substitute.

11-16-15: Students continued writing in their "Time" log. Today they were asked to describe the longitudinal clock, its purpose and use. We continued to watch the video to 18:14. Students also so a video about the Breitling Emergency Watch.

11-13-15: Students are asked to add to their "Time" log a differentiation between the Julian and Gregorian Calendars. We watched the video mentioned yesterday to 12:33. Students submitted their bridge testing method. Report card grades for term 1 should on-line this weekend.

11-12-15: Students worked on their test method, due tomorrow. I introduced "Time" and we discussed its definition and how the year is measured. Students were introduced to the Julian, Gregorian, and Hebrew calendars. I asked students to begin a log, titled "Time" and to begin with two entries; Their definition of time and how a year is measured. This log will be collected after completion of the video "How We Got to Now - Time".

11-11-15: No school due to the Veteran's Day holiday

11-10-15: We relocated to rm 332. We tested one more bridge, using it as we reviewed the report requirements as a class activity (The group report not required). Each students must still prepare the test method per format and submit it by Friday. Today students completed an evaluation of the project and their group members as part of their grade. We used a digital microscope to examine weave patterns on textile samples.

11-9-15: We tested several bridges and continued with the final day of construction in rm 339. I announced that we would prepare an example final report as classwork.

11-6-15: We tested several bridges and continued with bridge construction (just one more build day is permitted). We reviewed the test procedure required by Friday for each student.

11-5-15: We continued with bridge construction and report writing.

11-4-15: We continued with bridge construction and report writing.

11-3-15: No class due to election day

11-2-15: We continued with bridge construction and report writing.

10-30-15: Students received the format for the bridge test method that they must submit for grade after the bridge project concludes. We reviewed it and went over the assignment from yesterday that many missed. It can be submitted Monday for reduced credit.

10-29-15: Students received an essay on the life of Alfred Nobel, chemical engineer, and creator of the prize that bears his name. Students were required to complete four questions of the essay sheet and one additional question on a half sheet. Students were required to complete these writing during class time and submit the two sheets (stapled together) it as they leave the room in order to receive full credit.

10-28-15: We did not meet today due to the half day professional development schedule.

10-27-15: We continued with bridge construction and report writing. I tested two bridges to 20 KG from previous classes to demonstrate the procedure,

10-26-15: Same as 10-22. We tested a bridge built by one of our groups. Each student is to write a procedure for bridge testing in accordance with the procedure distributed 10-15-15. Groups are to prepare final drawings and a report on the bridge project in accordance with the project paper handed out 10-6.

10-23-15: Same as 10-22. I tested an old bridge. I posted the grading scale for bridge testing. Each student is to write a procedure for bridge testing in accordance with the procedure distributed 10-15-15. One group finished the bridge and it will be tested Monday. Groups are to prepare final drawings and a report on the bridge project in accordance with the project paper handed out 10-6.

10-22-15: Same as 10-21, continued work on bridges. Class was interrupted by fire alarm.

10-21-15: We temporarily moved to 339 for the bridge construction activities. All group continued or began construction of their bridges.

10-20-15: We temporarily moved to 339 for the bridge construction activities. I continued to approve bridge drawings. All but one group began construction of their bridges.

10-19-15: I continued to review and approve drawing from groups in order to allow construction to begin. Groups with approved drawings will begin construction tomorrow.

10-16-15: Students formed groups and created the drawing of their bridge design. We counted out 200 sticks for the bridge.

10 15-15: We discussed tolerances in measurements using ASTM D968. Then I handed out and we reviewed the test method report format for the bridge.

10-14-15: We examined bridge designs and drew an orthogonal drawing of and "I" beam. Students also saw a design using an arch.

10-13-15: Students drew orthogonal views (top, side, and front) of a laboratory support stand and received credit toward their grade for the effort (A or B depending on the quality). We then discussed the bridge project and I drew an orthogonal view of a sample bridge. We went to room 339 to see sample bridges built by other students. For homework, students are to conceive of a bridge design and draw their concept in 3 orthogonal views to show their group partners (yet to be determined) in order to finalize a construction design.

10-9-15: Students received instruction on orthographic drawings. I presented a power point on the subject and we drew a sphere, and cone, and a two dip ice cream cone in orthogonal perspectives. Students also saw a demonstration of a zero-force member of a simple truss assembly. All this in preparation for the bridge project.

10-8-15: Students were asked to consider the testing of paint. We discussed several test involving adhesion and wear resistance. I handed out ASTM D968 (falling sand test method). Students should familiarize themselves with its content as each student will will be writing a test method for their groups bridge. We discussed the bridge specification. Students are to formulate questions on the project. We also attempted to start the 9 HP snow blower engine and, after testing for spark, determined that that there was a fuel problem.

10-7-15: Students were required to draw a bicycle on a 3x5 card from memory. We examined the drawings and discussed how drawing should show the functional relationship between features. We examined an engineering graphics book to illustrate features of a mechanical drawing. We shopped fro a "Bamboo" bicycle and discussed the development of ball point pens.

10-6-15: We completed the video. Students must submit their log tomorrow which should contain: 1 - A list of ten attributes of Aircraft Carriers, 2 - Five facts each for the following ships described in the video: USS North Carolina, HMS Ark Royal, USS Hornet, USS Midway, USS Forestall, USS Enterprise, and the USS George H. W. Bush (or any Nimitz class carrier). Here is a link to help guide you in your fact finding:,_Bigger,_Biggest. I handed out the bridge project paper for students to review.

10-5-15: We continued the Aircraft Carrier video through 36.22, discussing the developments highlighted in the film. I mentioned the 1986 film "Top Gun" as a side item and discussed the requirements for the "Aircraft Carrier log" due the day after tomorrow as we will complete the video tomorrow.

10-2-15: We discussed thermal linear expansion. We measured the dimensional changes of materials from liquid nitrogen temperature to flame temperatures. We had several other demonstrations involving dry ice and liquid nitrogen.

10-1-15: Students watched a video from the 1930's about the development of the automotive differential transaxel. We had a safety briefing regarding the cryogenic demonstrations tomorrow.

9-30-15: We discussed the Ark Royal aircraft carrier. Students added 5 facts to their Journal from their research. We examined a few more repairs to the scooter (tap threads and metal bracket fabrication from drawings). Students also saw the "singing tin bar" demonstration and learned a little about crystal arrangement and atom shifting in solids. We discussed the composition of steel and also saw a demonstration of thermal conductivity (wood and aluminum blocks melting an ice cube).

9-29-15: We discussed the ACR-12 and continued watching the video through the Ark Royal. Students are to continue their journal with 5 facts concerning each ship featured in the video. We also looked at two videos from my reference page (tab on left, items #72 & 78); a railroad tie replacement machine and the creation of a custom RV using nautical technology.

9-22-15: We saw the scooter engine startup. We examined the wiring of the CDI unit and discussed the invention of electronic ignition along with the symbols of a few electronic components. We continued watching the video from yesterday. Students are required to research five facts, in addition to the ones presented in the video about each of the aircraft carriers featured in the video; today the video featured the USS North Carolina. Here is the link for the video:

9-21-15: Students submitted HW. We began talking about large engineering projects involving multiple systems. Students were asked to begin a log on aircraft carriers and begin listing attributes of an aircraft carrier. We started watching "Big Biger Biggest, Aircraft Carries". I also mentioned "Young Eagles" program where students can get a free airplane flight sitting copilot on a small plane from a local airport (see #29 on the reference tab on the left - Check with both New Jersey and PA pilots as there are several who fly out of Trenton).

9-18-15: We discussed the course work required to get a B.S. in Engineering. For HW students are to provide a sequential course title list from any or any 4-year undergraduate engineering program from any university they choose. The engineering program and university must be specified as part of the title.

9-17-15: Students were given further opportunity to submit proposals for repair of a broken part on the scooter. We visited several sites offering new parts and discussed the business strategy of stocking and making parts for older machines. Students were shown a technique of using epoxy clay to fabricate parts. Students also completed a lab activity for credit toward their grade by mixing and using epoxy resin to support a craft stick to a 3x5 card in a vertical position.

9-16-15: Students submitted their proposals for repair or replacement of one broken item on the scooter. We examined three types of repair to the cracked ABS plastic speedometer housing. I demonstrated: 1 - Plastic Welding, 2 - Stapling, and 3 - Polyester resin with fiberglass reinforcement. Students could have written any of those three methods as their proposal. Students were provided with a format for writing procedures.

9-11-15: We discussed the events of 9/11/2001. We reviewed the requirements and options of a proposal assignment due Wednesday. We examined the website for McMaster Carr and Harbor Freight. This video is the first of a 13 part video series of "How to.." on the TaoTao 50 scooter: It contains lots of tips on assembly, upgrades, and care of the scooter.

9-10-15: We talked briefly about a nutating printing press I helped develop for CRT touchscreens. Some students got to play with the nutating brass ring toy I had in class. We then discussed the repair of the scooter and examine it in parts as it had been diassembled. Students are to write a formatted proposal on the repair or replacement of any broken part of the scooter. The proposal needs to have an overview, purpose and details of the repair (time, materials, source, and cost). I modeled this assignment with the repair of the broken brake lever.

9-9-15: I brought a scooter wreck into the classroom with the intent of having a few students help rebuild it after school and have this class become exposed to its construction and design. Students were required to consider and take notes on the the multiple types of engineering disciplines required to build the scooter. We discussed many aspects of its construction. We also discussed a current engineering job opportunity and how to go about researching a company and decipher a job description.

9-8-15: First day of class. I hope you felt welcome and enthused about the subject. Students received a hard copy print of the syllabus to keep in their notebook and were assigned seats. Note: The syllabus is available in digital format as item #1 on the tab titled "Assignments /EC" on the left. Your homework tonight was threefold: 1- Complete the two-part prompt handed out in class; 2 - Assemble a 3-ring binder notebook with a dedicated section in it for Engineering to hold your notes, project papers, and data sheets; and, 3 - To visit this website after school in order to read and heed the following update I entered after 3:00 pm. HERE IS THE UPDATE: Mark your syllabus as follows: 1 - Write your seat code next to your name on the first page, and 2 - Circle my website address and e-mail and place a star ( * ) in the margin near them.