Burnside High School student Brayan Kamminga loves a bit of action-packed engineering, especially when it comes to cars and planes.
He and 29 other students from Burnside High visited Holmes Solutions’ Templeton impact testing centre as part of the ‘week of engineering’, organised by Engineering New Zealand.
Brayan said his favourite part of the visit was seeing the crashed cars from impact tests.
“I would have liked to see them crash on the day,” he said.
But the 17-year-old and his peers did see some action.
The visit involved dropping a trolley full of weights from the top of a 6m tower into a barrier filled with water.
The students’ objective was to work out how much water should be added to the crash barrier to make the car stop in exactly 1m.
“To solve this problem we took measurements of the friction force, then calculated how much mass was needed to stop the barrier in 1m. We then solved physics equations to find the right amount of water to add to the barrier,” Brayan said.
Their calculations were just a few centimetres off.
The aim was to inspire students to take up a career in engineering and showcase what the industry offers. “I really enjoyed the whole experience and the staff were great. This was one of the best trips I have been on,” said Brayan. “My main goal is to become a pilot with my second option an aviation mechanic.”
Engineering New Zealand chief executive Susan Freeman-Greene said the ‘week of engineering’ offered an opportunity to interact with the latest engineering technology.
“Tomorrow’s engineers will have jobs that don’t even exist today – and we want to open young minds to this world of possibility,” Ms Freeman-Greene said.