Brick Support Tower

The team thought that to be able to have a strong structure, the tower must have support on its edges (or corners). Aside from providing support, the pillars would give the tower the necessary height to lift the bricks several inches from the ground. The team came up with only one design, and was not able to conceptualize any other design because of the time constraints. The team built a brick support tower using only five (5) pieces of note cards and some of the tape. Four of the five note cards had their short end sides cut to put slits into them.

The slits were made to have a way of interlocking the cards. The note cards were then rolled in their long side to form cylinders. The fifth card was placed in the middle covering the four standing cylinders, with one cylinder standing in each corner of the fifth note card. The team didn’t have any idea as to how many bricks will it be able to support. Because of the short time allotted, the team was not able to utilize the remaining note cards to build what could have been the next layer of the tower. Conceptual Development

The design that the team utilized provided sturdy columns, supporting the weight of the fifth note card, and also, the weight of the loading. However, the design proved to be weak in the middle part because no support was provided. Again, due to the time constraints, the group was not able to come up with other designs. The team only used the first thing that came to their mind, and immediately, set out to prepare the note cards for that design. Results and Discussion The team was only able to come up with a one-level structure of a tower.
After construction, the team immediately proceeded with testing the strength and stability of their structure. The tower was only able to hold the weight of one brick. The structure turned out to be weak in the middle portion because of no added support. Another cylinder could have supported the middle part, where the center of gravity is located and thus, putting more stress and leading to eventual sagging of the middle note card. Achieving the highest performance index for a tower supporting one or more bricks was the goal of this activity.
The performance index can be computed by multiplying the distance from the floor to the bottom of the lowest brick (height in inches) with the number of bricks that was supported. The team’s design’s performance index is __, which was calculated using the height measured multiplied by 1 (only one brick was supported). Given that the tower was only single-layered. The index is relatively high. Recommendations and Closure The structure could have supported more bricks if only more of the note cards were rolled into cylinders and used as base.
Though the structure is single-layered, the performance index could still be higher because more bricks will be supported. Another approach would have been building a higher structure from the note cards (about two layers) but the number of bricks it may be able to hold will remain one. The team should have come up with several designs and thought over carefully which among their designs should they use. Of course, the design must be something that is sturdy and yet, easy to do, given the limited time allotment.

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