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which airplane flies the farthest- science report

Oct 9, 2008   #1
This is my science report I just need to make sure the grammar and writing make sense. Thank you.
Our science project is about which type of paper airplane could fly the farthest before hitting the ground. We heard that idea in class, and we both thought that it would be interesting. Our hypothesis was the rapier plane in print paper would fly the farthest distance, because it had a bigger wing span and light weight paper. Also, we think that the dart plane in construction paper would fly the shortest distance because it has a small wing span and weighs more.

We learned that aerodynamics is the study of forces and the resulting motion of objects through air. During this experiment we learned something new, four forces affect a paper airplane. They are, thrust, the forward motion or speed of the paper airplane, for our paper airplanes this is provided by your throwing the plane forward. Second is drag, which is the resistance of the aircraft against the wind. Third is gravity, the force that pulls down all things on the Earth. To alleviate this force an object needs to become light in weight. Last is lift, where the push of the wind under the wing is greater than the push on top of the wings. This upward pushing makes the airplane lighter.

Before we could begin our experiment we needed to determine which paper airplanes models to use. We were amazed by how many different types there were. We made several attempts making various models. We narrowed it down to three; rapier, dart and Nick's (actual model name) plane. For each model we made three planes using three different types of paper. The papers were regular print paper, medium weight paper, and construction paper. They were all the same size and this gave us a total of nine paper airplanes. We also marked the location we would stand at each time we threw a plane.

There are several steps in our experiment. First we gathered our planes, science journal, pencil and tape measure. Next we turned off the air conditioning we did this so that there are no extra forces on the airplanes. We began with the rapier models. We recorded the type of paper that we used. For each plane we threw two trials. Each trial was measured and recorded. Then we recorded the average. We continued this procedure for the three dart and the three nick's plane models. In order to do this experiment correctly we had to start at the same location each time we threw the plane. We had to aim properly and aim the same way each time. We also recorded the data promptly so we don't get mixed up.

After we threw all the paper airplanes we were able to tell how the forces that we researched affected each paper airplane. The thrust on each paper airplane was the same because we threw them the same force. Some planes like the Dart are meant to be thrown with a lot of force. Because Darts don't have a lot of drag or lift, they depend on extra thrust to overcome gravity. The Rapier plane used all four forces of a plane, but the force that affects it the most is lift because it has a big wingspan and its wings are curved by a little. Also the Nick's plane uses all the forces but the forces that affect it the most are lift, and drag.

There were some ups and downs in this experiment. The up side was all the paper airplanes flew close to the distance we expected. However we would sometimes have to repeat a trial if we felt like we didn't use the same amount of force (thrust).

During the experiment there was one thing that was unexpected that using construction paper made a huge difference in flight range. Our favorite aspect of the experiment was when we got to throw each of the paper airplanes and watch how far each of them flew. The one that we enjoyed watching fly the most was the Nick's plane in print paper because it flew a long distance.

In the end our hypothesis was wrong on the model of the plane but the type of paper was correct. The Nick's plane in print paper flew the farthest an average distance of 29 feet. Our data showed that the bigger wing span and the more curved the wings are, the farther the paper airplane will fly. Overall this was the most enjoyable project I have done so far, but if we were to do this experiment again the two things I would change are the models of the plane and the types of paper that we used.

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