MHS Physics 3D printer bridges
MHS Physics 3D Printer Bridges
Posted on 07/10/2017
3D bridge building competition at MHS

Manteo High School AP Physics students in teacher Emily DiNoto's class took on a STEM application following their AP exam. Teaming with Tech facilitator Mike Phelan, they came up with a challenging STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) project. Actually, this project took the E and the T from STEM! Using the school's 3-D printer, teams of four students designed bridges (they were held to a certain range of size and weight). DiNoto wanted to give her students the opportunity to try aspects of engineering, for example, they used CAD design software for their bridges. They researched different designs and had to write a report about the experience afterward. The technology piece came from the use of the 3-D printer. This project had lots of student enthusiasm. "It was lots of fun, and really interesting," said senior Max Allison. To test the bridges once their designs were printed, they used two tables and a bucket that held weight. When the weight was too much for the bridge, the bridge would snap. It was a learning experience for the students to observe which designs performed the best, taking on the most weight. In the end, it was the design of seniors Aaron Crum, Daniel Mitchum, and rising junior Sophia Farrow that won the competition - they "won" but had nothing to show for it except bragging rights since their bridge eventually snapped - but was the whole point in the first place. 
ldwin Video Productions shot an interview with DiNoto that features this project for the Outer Banks Voice.

MHS Physics 3D bridges photo