Soaring Satellites

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Using a vertical wind tube and using simple materials, individuals and groups attempt to design a "satellite" that floats for at least 5 seconds. There are many variables the learners can alter to improve their design or educators can change the parameters of the challenge.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Learning Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 4 - adult

Resource Type:


Materials List (per student)

  • Pipe cleaners
  • Straws
  • K’NEX axles
  • Disposable pipettes
  • Small craft Sticks
  • Domed lids
  • Paper cone cups
  • Mailing tubes lids
  • Water cooler jug caps
  • Fun foam shapes
  • Cut mini pool noodles
  • Film canisters
  • Vertical wind tubes


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Aerospace Engineering
  • Physical Sciences
    • Motion and Forces
  • The Nature of Technology
    • The Design Process
      • Invention and Innovation
      • Problem Solving


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


Funding Source:

  • Noyce Foundation

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