Royal navy supports young engineers in the fast lane

The Royal Navy is supporting young would-be engineers from Newton Abbot taking part in a national competition racing model cars they have created.

The College’s Year 7 students (11-12) were the first in the South West region to use the BBC micro: bit mini-computer, to complete the ‘Race For The Line’ challenge.

The racing car project comes under the Government-backed  STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) initiative in conjunction with the Royal Navy.  STEM events aim to address the national shortage of scientists and engineers with the Navy especially interested in recruiting engineers.

Rocket cars were launched as part of the 'Race for the Line' event
Rocket cars were launched as part of the 'Race for the Line' event

Race overseer, Lieutenant Paul Youngman (Royal Navy), said:  “It is great to see all of the students getting involved; this is the right age to capture an interest in STEM subjects and projects like the ‘Race For The Line’ event positively promote these important curriculum subjects.   The Newton Abbot  students were excellent and we really did ignite their enthusiasm!”

Students used their lessons investigating aerodynamics, speed and acceleration to create foam cars that were raced in inter-class competitions with the help of the Royal Navy.  The rocket-powered vehicles were raced through a series of time gates, providing data for further science and mathematics lessons.  

Year 7 students with members of the Royal Navy
Year 7 students with members of the Royal Navy
The College is one of over 400 schools nationwide to have signed up to the initiative, which will see winners of the heats compete at over 40 regional finals held at armed forces bases nationwide in April with Devonport hosting the south west event.  The Royal Navy is overseeing, judging and managing the races in region to ensure all is conducted fairly.

Student Daizie-Mae Blyth said: “Creating the racing cars in lessons was really fun.  It took about four lessons to finish them and get them ready for racing.   The practical learning made the ideas of aerodynamics easier to understand and it was great to take our learning out of the classroom.  Having the Royal Navy here was very exciting and it has all been so much fun!” 

Sixth Form Reporter, Pheobe Davidson

Royal Nave Stem Race For The Line Newton Abbot College Ofsted Good Secondary School 1