Redesign Challenge Rocks the Student Summit


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For STEM students, the Smartforce Student Summit (North Building, Hall C) is like a large playground: many of their interests are in one place, several activities available are hands-on, and students can enjoy all that the summit has to offer while being surrounded by their peers.

The Air Rocket Challenge is one of many examples of the hands-on activities in which students can “play” creatively, while also using their STEM skills. Students are given the opportunity to redesign the tail fins of a 3-inch-tall plastic rocket. The redesigned tail fins are then 3D printed on site and launched by the student designer using air power.

“Students choose a trajectory angle and the amount of air pressure used, then launch the rockets inside of a silo and try to hit targets,” says Greg Jones, fice president of Smartforce development at AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology.

Located in the center isle with plenty of space around it for spectators to stand, the Air Rocket Challenge is open the duration of the Summit.

“This was a very popular activity at the last IMTS Student Summit,” Jones says. “About 2,000 students participated in the event that year, and we anticipate another successful run this year.”