Essential Questions:

  • How can geometry affect the distribution of force?
  • Why are safe, stable and strong not sufficient for designing structures?
  • How can the motion of an object change how forces are applied on a structure?


Students will be able to answer the following questions:

  1. When does a support structure actually add support or additional weight?
  2. Would I drive my family over this bridge in 25 years?


Students should be able to:

  • Distinguish between civil engineering and architecture.
  • Use calculations to determine tensile and compressive forces in order to construct stable structures
  • Optimize size and strength factors in designing the test ROV


Students will know: 

  • How to represent forces with vectors
  • How to calculate forces acting on sections of the bridge
  • That trade-offs between distribution of weight on the ROV and size limitations of ROV will affect their bridge design.
  • How to build a bridge
  • How to relay their knowledge to architecture students in different contexts.
  • How to coordinate between bridge designers/builders and architects

Published on January 28th, 2018

Last updated on March 7th, 2024