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RC Planes Finished
Twenty six planes all built, and all in the air! Twenty five came down (pretty much) intact. This is Greg just before the maiden flight. Sadly this one went straight in a tree but we were able to retrieve it today with the help of some very long ladders, poles, and the helpful people at Ufton Court.
This was by far our most ambitious camp ever, with the aim to get all campers to build and fly their own scratch-built RC plane. I've got to admit to being a little nervous, as although I was confident in Alex's ability to get them working, it would have been a nightmare if we had some systemic problems to fix. It was great having an expert with us; for those who want to explore aeronautic design and/or UAVs in more detail, you might like to check out his great web store. The planes were built out of foam board and depron flooring, held together with copious amounts of glue and rubber bands.
With a high wing design and plenty of dihedral they proved to be pretty stable and good for learning RC pilots. We also set up a couple of computers with simulators on that the kids could use to practice whilst they were at the camp. The biggest task was just making sure the centre of gravity was correct and most of them only required a little bit of weight-shifting to get some pretty good flights.
With the last of our major camps now over for 2012, it's time for a couple of days sleep, before planning for 2013!
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We're at the Abu Dhabi Science Festival running a workshop called "Light Fantastic" and we're having a fantastic time running it! The children are making some amazing light painting images - have a look below to see the images from the gallery. Please note that the gallery has multiple pages - use the 'last' button to go to the most recent ones. We'll be updating these daily.
We recently received an email from one of our campers way back in our second year (2009) when we ran a biotech course. One of the projects was to make your own biosphere, a sealed self-sustaining ecosystem. We would have been impressed with one year, but this one is still going strong after four! If anyone else still has a biosphere, please do send us a picture!
Myself and Tom have spent the week down at Forres Sandle Manor school in the New Forest, running a 'Rockets and Robotics' programme for 14 children. At the end of each year, the school have a 'project week' where all the children choose from a wide range of activities to do for the week, such as cycling, needlecraft, sports and even trips abroad.
As part of our visit to IBM for the Raspberry Pi day we had a tour of IBM's museum. During the tour we were shown some of IBM's typewriters and after a long (but concise) explanation of the development of the typewriter, one of the kids asked what did these 'typewriter' things do? It never struck the rest of us adults that most of the children would never have seen one of these before.
As a parent, it can be difficult knowing where to start when it comes to getting your children started with programming. With more and more schools offering computer science for GCSE, and teaching programming instead of just Microsoft Office during ICT lessons, it has never been more important to get started early!
We've just finished running a rocketry activity at a corporate workshop for a BP team. This is a great activity as it can be done at multiple levels with all ages and abilities. With the more able (and adult) group that we had today we can cover a lot of ground in a few hours, exploring some theory as well as building and flying a couple of rockets.
Drones have come a long way since they were used purely for military use and are now one of the most popular ways to capture unique and often breath-taking pictures. Bizarrely, they’ve also been used to deliver pizzas and by farmers, for aerial views of their crops.