Science Concept

The Earth exerts a gravitional force on all objects. A rocket must have a force greater than gravity to lift off. This force, acceleration, can be measured with a micro:bit in 3 different directions or as a combined force of all three. A two liter soda bottle rocket can be made and then changes in acceleration can be measured as it lifts off and falls back to the earth.

Rocket Experiment

Watch a video of building and launching the rocket.

Project Goal

Give students real world experience with coding, collecting data, analyzing data, and reporting results using MakeCode’s block programming and a micro:bit with its sensors.(MakeCode.org and micro:bit.org)

Prior Knowledge

Students need to have a basic knowledge of how to code using block style programming and download a program to a micro:bit.

Student Outcomes

Students will:

  • Create experiments to collect data using micro:bits and measure acceleration of a 2 liter pop bottle water rocket.
  • Code the micro:bits to collect data remotely over the micro:bit radios.
  • Analyze the data collected.
  • Report on the findings of the experiments.

Materials Needed

  • 2 micro:bits with batteries connected
  • A 2 liter pop bottle rocket with nosecone
  • A 2 liter pop bottle rocket launcher
  • A longer USB micro:bit cable
  • Spreadsheet for data analysis

Adapted from “Rocket Acceleration z Radios“ by C Lyman CC BY-NC-SA