Batteries & Energy: Engineer Eco-Battery Vehicles
AGES 10+ recommended
It’s becoming increasingly inevitable that electric vehicles (EV’s for short) will be the cars of the future. More specifically, battery electric vehicles (or BEV’s) — which are powered entirely by rechargeable chemical cells — are starting to become practical. Many major auto manufacturers have BEV’s in development, and a few already have BEV’s on the road today.
The challenge in making BEV’s a viable transportation solution is the battery. Batteries must be easy to recharge, able to hold enough charge to drive long distances, and more efficient than gasoline engines. Scientists and engineers around the world are tackling this battery challenge, and major progress is being made.
In this kit, you can build and experiment with a new type of environmentally friendly “fuel cell” to learn about electrochemical cells and BEV’s. The battery is a metal-air electrochemical cell, a type of battery that is widely used in small scale devices. It is ideal for demonstrating battery technology because it does not use any harmful chemicals: it uses only magnesium plates, salt water, and the oxygen in the air to generate electricity. Moreover, magnesium is considered an eco-friendly renewable fuel because it could be harvested cleanly from ocean water.
Build 20 different models and power them with this special battery. Experiment with different concentrations of salt to see how long your battery can run. Learn about electrochemistry and battery technology.
One metal plate lasts as long as a regular AA battery (six plates included). Full-color, 64-page manual.
SubjectConstruction & Engineering