How do you make a small windmill for a science fair project?
Windmills have been used for centuries to harness the power of the wind to do work. In the past they have been used to power grain and wood mills, as well as to draw water up from wells. Today the application of windmills is being applied to the generation of electricity. This is why they are also a very popular subject for science fair projects.
To create a small windmill for a science fair project a number of steps need to be taken. The first step is to conduct background research on electricity, turbines and windmills. Students need to understand how electricity is created, what impacts its voltage and amps and how it is manipulated. Students also need to understand what a turbine is, how it is built and how it operated. Finally students need to research what parts make up a windmill and how they operate. All of this information will help the student to design, build and experiment with a windmill.
The next step is to determine what you are going to experiment with in regards to your windmill project. This will help you to identify what items you will need to build your windmill. For example, you may want to focus on the blade design, the turbine design or the support structure of the windmill.
Step three is to identify the “ingredients” that you will need for your windmill project. Usually students will purchase a vertical wind turbine or horizontal turbine and then use their creativity to engineer their own blades and supportive structure. Windmill turbine kits and windmill project kits can also be purchased to provide you with everything that you need to design and build a windmill for your science fair project.
Once you have all of the parts that you need your next step will be to figure out the design modifications that are necessary to test your hypothesis. For example, you may need to create a number of different blade designs to test with your turbine to see which one produces the most electricity. You can draft out these design modifications on graph paper or tracing paper using drafting tools like a protractor and stencils.
The final step is to construct your small windmill. The construction process will usually involve the connection of your wooden pieces, i.e. blades and support structure, to the prefabricated turbine. As you test your windmill’s design you will then make adjustments to make it work better.