Young inventors put their thinking caps on for the Tour de France

YOUNG INVENTOR: Lauren Austin, 13, checks out a 3D printer.

YOUNG INVENTOR: Joe Lawn, 13, has a bright idea.

First published in News

YOUNG inventors have been enjoying a lightbulb moment after being challenged to design a warning device for riders of the Tour de France.

Ingenuity was stretched to the limit as Year Eight students at the Allertonshire School, in Northallerton, took up the Faraday Challenge, a national initiative run by the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

The IET chose the Allertonshire to promote engineering among young people to coincide with the Tour de France visiting the county.

Students formed teams adopting a variety of roles, ranging from managing director to company accountant.

As part of the exercise they had to organise budgets, come up with a suitable design to alert cyclists to hazards including slippery surfaces, sort the electronics and use a 3D printer to produce the finished device.

Head of maths Julia Staves said: “The exercise was designed to test the brightest and most able students and it certainly succeeded in taxing them to the full.

“It showed the students some of the many uses for maths in the real world and helps them when they are choosing their subjects.”

IET co-ordinator Keira Sewell added: “The project really is demanding and is a great way to get them thinking.

“They have probably never used a 3D printer before and the electronics are particularly complex. They have all done incredibly well.”

Pupil Lauren Austin, 13, said: “I really enjoy maths and it was great working in a team to solve all the problems.”

And fellow pupil Joe Lawn, 13, added: “It was certainly different and good to work with other students who I didn’t know very well.”

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