Mini-Grant Application for School Year 2016-2017

Submitted by: Elizabeth Simpson Email: Grade Level: 9-12 Subject: Math, Science,Engineering, Bui
Co-Applicant:Robin Rutzke Email: Robin.rutzke@sdhc.k12.fl.usGrade level: 9-12 Subject: ROTC

School: Middleton High School Type: Public Grade Levels:9-12 County:Hillsborough

Approx. Enrollment: 1680 Number of teachers:100 % of Free and Reduced Lunch:65%

School Address:

4801 N 22nd St Tampa, FL 33610

Phone: 813-233-3360 Principal:Kim Moore Email:

Project Title: Energize Electrathon
Project Dates: 11/1/16-5/20/17 Grade Levels:

Focus Area(s) :Energy Education- STEM Education- Cross Curricular Integration - Hands On Learning

Middleton High School is the only STEM high school in Hillsborough County. We hold a number of accolades such as being a certified STEM school one of nine in the nation, Advanced Ed, designated PRIME school and a magnet school of excellence. All of these wonderful designations are possible because of the hard work of our faculty and students. One of the hardest working groups on the campus is the Electrathon Electric Car Club. An Electrathon is a custom built wheeled electric vehicle, powered by an electric motor and batteries. Electrathon class vehicles are principally defined and constrained by length and width and by battery weight and chemistry. Driver’s weight is ballasted to 180 lbs for fairness. Safety regulations require features such as braking systems, roll bars, and electrical disconnects. The basic format is to determine which car can travel the furthest distance in one hour’s time within the limitations of battery weight and other factors mentioned above. The main design problem is posed by the fact that fast speeds drain the batteries rapidly resulting in the car not being able to continue in motion for the entire hour, so design teams must compromise speed in order to gain distance. The vision is to contribute to the laying of a foundation for a green, vibrant, low carbon future full of possibilities and opportunities for tomorrow’s children in the Tampa Bay area. The mission is to promote Electrathon Racing and Solar Sprinting, endeavors full of technological entrepreneurial challenges and adventure. Our mission for this grant is to fund the growth of the electrathon team at Middleton High School so that 3 cars can be sustained during this race season which will allow for more team members to join and learn from the experience of electrathon at Middleton High School.

1) How is your project innovative? (25 points) At Middleton High School 50% of the school is comprised of magnet students who applied through the Hillsborough County school choice program and travel to come to Middleton from all parts of the county. The magnet programs are Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Engineering, Bio Medical and Computer Game Design and Computer Science Engineering. Of the four magnet programs that make up the magnet portion of MHS, the PLTW engineering magnet has spun off the electrathon electric car club. In the five years the club has been in existence it has transitioned from an engineering only magnet club to one that has members from all of the magnets and traditional students who attend Middleton as their home school. The skills that the students are able to exercise as part of the club are well above the normal expectations of a high school student. They are exposed to industries that are constantly looking for skilled employees while at the same time working on a sustainable engineering task of creating the most efficient vehicle possible. Making energy efficient vehicles is one of the largest tasks of sustainable engineering in the world today. The electrathon electric car incorporates the engineering design process, environmental science, sustainability, building, construction and electro mechanical engineering. The MHS team is 1 of 6 high school teams in the Tampa Bay region which includes surrounding counties and central FL area. The team is comprised of 3 cars and about 20 club members between 9 -12 grade, parent volunteers, traditional and magnet students both participate. At its inception the group began with no funding. The small group learned all about electrathon cars, racing, and all the work needed to design and build the car. In the first year they were able to cobble together one vehicle using donated supplies and generous donations from teachers and the school faculty. As the team has grown we earned sponsorships from business but we are looking to grow again and sustain the vehicles we already have. Sponsors vary from year to year so alternate funding sources are always leaned upon to continue this great program for the students. Team members learn industry skills while designing and building by using Auto Desk Inventor during design phase, some get an industry certification for Auto Desk Inventor. We have been visited by Mazda Motor sports and a guest speaker met with the team to encourage us to continue going and growing. 2) How will it fit into your curriculum (include standards)? (10 points) The areas of knowledge and skills that encompassed by the design, construction and operation of an Electrathon car are wide-ranging. Consider some of the things that you will learn about: Electronics, Electricity and Electro mechanics The vehicle runs on electricity. It needs to be instrumented which may mean separate gauges or a PLC. Power needs to be controlled with a microprocessor or PLC to keep the motor at the desired speed. Current has to channel where it is desired, with proper sizing of wiring, fuses and other components. Laws and equations regarding electricity and electric motors need to be learned, understood and applied. Physics Let’s start with Power=Volts x Amps= Force x Velocity. Need Torque? Got efficiency? The laws of physics apply here. How fast do you want to go? How much power will you need? Physics will help you figure it out. Chemistry Isn’t there some way to squeeze more electricity out of those batteries? Sure there is. But you need to understand how a battery stores chemical energy and releases it as electrical energy. How can the chemistry of the lead-acid battery be used to store more energy? AutoCad and Machine Design How will you get the power from the battery to the motor to the wheel(s)? Ingenuity, perseverance, and undoubtedly the use of some simple machines. AutoCad drawings and simple machine design are the building blocks of getting the work done. Planning , Organization and Project Management Think a working, powered vehicle will just assemble itself out of thin air? Not a chance. You need a plan. You need to organize your team and your time so things happen, and happen when you need them to happen. You need the components, the parts, the AutoCad drawings, a place to work, a place to test, and time – lots of time. To make all that come together logistically, you need Project Management Software with timelines and Gantt Charts to pull it all together. Construction and Assembly Techniques Can you build something from AutoCad drawings? Can you use a Drill press, welder and hand tools? You might even see a CNC machine in action. Did you ever wonder why are things built the way they are? Usually to reduce cost and increase reliability. What works, and what doesn’t? The opportunity to physically put something together. Learn to use your hands for something other than driving a keyboard or pushing a pen. Budgeting You may need to raise funds to support this project. You certainly have to know how much you have to spend. No point in building the best Electrathon car in the world if you can’t afford batteries or a motor for it. It’s a pretty cheap form of motor sport, but it isn’t free But you may get some donations if you think about what you want, where to get it, and show them the AutoCad drawings and the budgets for what you want to build. Teamwork You need people to design the vehicle, build the vehicle, transport the vehicle, drive the vehicle, possibly raise funds, do school and community liaison, and a host of other tasks. It takes a team. If you can’t make the team work, you can’t make the vehicle work. Negotiation, compromise, learning to listen are all valuable skills. There is no question that Engineering is a team endeavor and that dealing with human behavioral factors are a part of the equation. Writing & Communication The team may use a website to manage, communicate and document the project or do an article for a school newspaper. Proposals and letters may have to be written to obtain sponsorship and carry out fundraising. Strength of Materials What materials are strong enough, light enough, workable enough and affordable? Welcome to the world of engineering. What is the effect of efficiency on the performance of the vehicle? Where additional effort should be made to get the most gain? Aerodynamics, Aesthetics, Ergonomics When you put this much effort into something, you want it to look good. Form may follow function, but it doesn’t have to look that way. Streamlining is for more than just appearance. Strive for the elegant solution, not just an answer that works. Research Skills You need ideas, solutions, and parts. What’s available? How have others gone about solving similar problems? Which is more critical, rolling losses or aerodynamic drag? Energy Infrastructure The world economy depends on the secure and stable supply of energy. Are conventional fossil fuels a viable energy source for the future? What are the political implications of dependence on foreign oil, and how does the balance of payments associated with purchasing off-shore oil affect us? Environmental Sciences Last on this list, but by no means the least interesting aspect of a pollution-free means of transportation. Where does the electricity come from? What is the overall impact of computer controlled electric propulsion systems on the environment? How does it compare to the conventional internal-combustion engine fueled by gasoline or diesel fuel? Does it make a difference if we switch to electric drive? Does it matter? 3) How will it encourage long-lasting change in your classroom, school or community? (20 points) The electrathon team has changed the school already through the opportunity and advancement the program provides students from year to year. The school environment is made more meaningful for students to have a place that they can explore, exercise, entertain and enhance their passion for engineering, mechanics and race cars! Students work harder in their classes because they want to be part of this amazing program. They are required to keep up their grades, have good attendance and be involved in community service work. One of the community events that are brought into the electrathon races are the JR solar sprint races which are held the same day as Electrathon races. JR solar sprint is typically for Elementary and Middle school students and holding these races at the electrathon events show students their future pathways as they move forward in their education. Local colleges have electrathon teams that many of our students matriculate to. Students are invested, excited and willing to work long hours, learn new methods all in order to make a great vehicle for their racing season. Students meet 2 Days per week after school to work on one of the cars they are assigned for the race season. Many students stay until 7pm on these days along with parents and of course their very supportive and dedicated teacher sponsor. MHS team hosts one race per season which corresponds with the magnet open house. This brings hundreds of people out to view both the race and the school. Electrathon is one of the main highlights of the day and shows of the amazing impacts that the students of the electrathon team are achieving. Potential students see these events and are encouraged to attend Middleton for the opportunities that are offered. The surrounding community is very proud of the team and good reputation that the team brings to the area for the skills that the students are able to develop as part of the electrathon program. 4) How will technology be utilized? (20 points) As a STEM High School students are constantly integrating real world skills into their classroom experience. Integrated curriculum can be seen in any course taken at Middleton High School. On the electrathon team especially a tremendous amount skills are utilized in the process of designing, building and maintaining the car and the team. Our cars get over 1,000 miles per gallon by the times they are completed with the goals to continue to increase the number with additional innovation design and increased access to materials. The overall objective of electrathon racing is to provide a forum where skill and ingenuity may be displayed, compared and tested improve public awareness and understanding of efficient alternative electric vehicles and related technology. Also to create an affordable sport defined by established rules in which groups and individuals can participate competitively and safely. The specific technologies used are far reaching. From simple construction tools to industry standard engineering design software. Students do all of the technical work and troubleshooting on the vehicle. This includes tensioning chains, attaching wheels, brakes, and safety equipment. They learn welding, soldering, dimensioning of metal components and metal side flashing that makes up the body of the car. All of the technologies used are directly connected to real world industry skills that both employers and colleges alike desire that their future employees or students know. Electrathon provides these opportunities for all students on the team from a beginning freshmen to the senior students who have spent all four years as part of the team. 5) What evidence will you collect to show student gain? (10 points) The main predictor of student success are two fold, first race results and second team size. Our race results for the 2015-2016 season was 3rd overall out of over ten teams in our area. This year, starting out, in the first race of the season the team placed 1st, 3rd and 4th place. The second is getting more students joining the club each year. To do this we have to have the funding to sustain additional vehicles and the current ones. We also have goals to increase our females and minority students joining the team. Currently our team is 20% female, 50% minority. Many students on the team qualify for free and reduced lunch. 100% of club members for the last 4 years graduated from MHS as went on to post-secondary education institutions. Members all keep a GPA above 3.0 and have good attendance. Current members are all looking to attend either a 4 year university with a STEM career focus, the local community college, or have earned industry certifications and have internships to move directly into the workforce in a STEM field. This club exposes non magnet and magnet students alike to sustainable technologies, industry skills, and opportunities for career pathways. In order to track our teams progress to show gain we will continue to track racing result, graduation rates, college and post-secondary placement and student success in the classroom. 6) How will participants share your project results with the community? (15 points) Middleton high school has a fantastic website where the electrathon team is highlighted and has a page of its own. We also are frequently tweeted about from the MiddletonSTEM twitter account. We will attend over 5 races this year all around the state of Florida even into Georgia. Part of our community outreach plan is to go to local middle schools to show what opportunities electrathon electric cars hold for potential high school students. We attend the USF engineering Expo at the University of South Florida where we advertise and educate people and students from all over the state about the sustainability of electric cards and solar vehicles. We also attend the University of Central Florida’s solar energy fair to further promote clean energy in the car industry to help improve the future of our environment and continue to promote the reduction of the human impact on our world.


Service/ Item Description Cost
Vehicle Propulsion parts $2365
Vehicle Frame parts $1805
Vehicle Design parts $550
Driver Safety $650
Electrical components $475
Total Cost of Project $5845.00
If matching funds identified list source: Sparkling Ice and Student Fundraising $3,000
Donated Goods/Services:Used Helmets, team racing suits and batteries
Total Requested From TERRA $2845.00

I, Elizabeth Simpson, certify that the application is complete and final, AND I verify that I have received permission to apply for these funds from Kim Moore,the Principal of Middleton High School and any other individuals required by my school district.