08 Aug 2018

Wednesday 08 August 2018

Head of Physics, Bryan Sapsworth, has had great success with his new classroom competition – the STEM Cup. Introduced to Physics students for the first time this year, the Cup looks set to become a regular feature in the Science block.

180808 Sphero


“It is a series of six challenges for a team of two from any year level,” says Bryan. The challenges are Science, Art, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and a final double the points challenge covering all disciplines.”

So far, the classes have completed a Sphero challenge and a zipline challenge. The first involved an autonomous race with the Sphero, driven by a student. “It was close in the end with Bill Wen (Year 12, Peart) and Marcus Ooi (Year 12, Peart) just beating two Year 9s, Daniel Sinclair (Averill) and Yixiong Hao (Averill).”

The second challenge was Photography, with the theme of ‘Time’ in a STEM context, which produced some excellent shots using a variety of techniques. Ryan O’Connell (Year 9, Marsden) and Thomas Stewart (Year 9, Marsden) won this with their two photos placing 1st and 2nd in the two parts of the challenge.

“The grand final and mathematics challenges will be happening this term, look out for the announcement of the STEM cup winners,” says Bryan.

Click here for to go to the STEM Cup website.  

Nature category

Photo 1 – Ryan and Thomas – “This photo was created from a collection of leaves from on and around a tree in my garden. The photo displays the concept of time through the life of the leaves, from new growth to decomposition providing new nutrients to the plant.”

Photo 2 – Tony Zhang and Aaron Chen (Year 12) – “Perpetual Waterfall - A waterfall is a continuous cycle of water movement. It is parallel to time, in the sense that it will continue to flow eternally as long as the system is not disturbed. The movement of the water is kinetic energy, but when it falls it becomes gravitational potential energy. This photo was taken at Coromandel from an opposing cliff.”

Contrived Category

Photo 3 – Harsh Talathi and Roy Luo (Year 13) – “Scarlet Sinuosity - This is an example of a Lissajous curve, created through taking a 10-second exposure shot of an LED attached to a pendulum. The period (T) of oscillation in the x-axis is different to the period in the y-axis and the resulting complex harmonic pattern formed is highly sensitive to the ratio of these 2 periods. This pattern shows a 6:5 ratio.”

Photo 4 – Ryan and Thomas – “In this photo I adjusted the shutter speed to 3"2. The photo was taken at the shelly beach on ramp on the northern motorway facing town at 10:30pm. This photo shows the effect of how the S.T.E.M concept engineering and technology that allows people to travel faster.”