7.17.23 – Gold Medal STEM | Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy

7.17.23 – Gold Medal STEM

The summer Olympics include several types of cycling races – BMX, mountain bike, road, and track. Each race involves different surfaces and different obstacles that cyclers must figure out how to navigate: 1) Bicycle Motocross (BMX) tracks are generally created on packed dirt and are filled with jumps, tight bends and obstacles. 2) Mountain bike courses and trails consist of a mix of rough forest paths, smooth dirt/grassy roads, and paved paths connecting the trails together. (More difficult tracks can include rocky sections and other extreme elements like drops and steep descents.) 3) Road races are done on paved roads that can be bumpy or uneven and often feature uphill and downhill sections. And finally, 4) Track races are done on indoor, wooden arenas with steeply banked oval tracks.

Today, our Gold Medal Engineers started designing the “cycling tracks of their dreams” (or possibly an athlete’s nightmares) and were asked to include at least 3 different surface types as well as 5 obstacles for their prospective “cyclists” to work around.