CO2 Dragster Design
Benjamin Syms Middle School
• Apply processes and resources to solve
• Design and build a transportation to solve a
• Students will relate automotive engineering
principles (such as aerodynamics) to CO2
• The main objective of your production should
be producing the fastest, best performing
design keeping in mind the looks of the
• It should simply be as good looking, neat,
clean, and fast as possible.
Factors that • Total Weight of the Dragster
the speed of
the dragster • Friction
What is Aerodynamics?
• The word comes from two Greek words:
• aerios, concerning the air, and
• dynamis, meaning powerful.
• Aerodynamics is the effect of airflow and the
forces involved when an object moves.
• It is an important consideration in designing a
vehicle is aerodynamics.
Drag equals Resistance
• Drag is the uneven or turbulent air movement
that slows the vehicle down.
• A poorly designed vehicle uses more fuel.
• A body with an overall rounded or square
shape will cause air to break away from the
streamline into swirls of air.
• Vehicles have less resistance if they are
rounded in the front and tapered off to a
point in the rear (teardrop shape).
• The main considerations in aerodynamics are:
• Reducing drag, to increase top speed and fuel
• Increasing down force, so that the car has
• A car with a more aerodynamic shape goes
faster and is more fuel efficient.
• The main factor to work on is the shape of the
• The shape must minimize flow detachment
and reduce frontal pressure.
Minimize the build up of frontal pressure. This is
done by reducing the frontal area of the car. This
means minimizing the grill and making the sure that
the windscreen is as flat as possible so that it causes
the least possible resistance to motion.
Poor Effect Somewhat Improved Most Efficient
As air flows over the car it experiences areas of
relative high and low pressure.
Downforce is an aerodynamic force that tends to
press the cars tightly against the ground, allowing the
tires to grip the track with more force.
• The effect the dragster weight
on its speed is a simple concept.
• Simply put: The heavier your design, the
slower the dragster will be on the track.
Friction and the Dragster
Friction reduces the speed of your designed dragster.
The following steps will help you reduce friction in
your design. Check and make sure that:
• There is no paint or dirt inside the axle holes.
• The bearings installed correctly.
• The wheels spin freely.
• The washers are on the axel.
• The wheels are straight on the axel.
• The tires tight against the wheel hub.
1. Use Aerodynamics to assist car operation.
2. Use Graphite on axles to reduce friction.