Newton’s Racers – Balloon Powered Car Project

Ladies and Gentlemen, start your engines! Or is it fill that balloon?

In the next week, students will be designing, testing, modifying and racing a balloon powered car. The goal of this project is to get them to see how Newton’s Laws are at work in the car. How a car with lower mass is easier to accelerate (Easier to overcome its inertia) and that that acceleration will be greater because of the relationship between force, mass, and acceleration (Newton’s second law). They will hopefully also be able to make the connection of Newton’s third law and figure out exactly what force is propelling the car forward. The project guide along with the deadlines is below. Please take some time to review the materials and CONTACT ME if you have any questions. Thanks!

Project Guide (With All Four Parts)


  • Part 1: Monday 11/16 (20 pts)
  • Part 2: End of Class Tuesday 11/17 (40 pts)
  • Part 3: Beginning of Class Thursday 11/19 (50 pts)
  • Race Day: Friday 11/20 (50 pts)
  • Part 4: Monday 11/23 (The whole packet will be collected this day) (10 pts)

Total Project Points: 170 points (This will be weighted in fast direct to reflect a normal test grade)

Note: If a part is not completed by its given deadline a 25% reduction PER DAY will be applied until it is completed. Students need a teacher signature to advance through each part so it is important that each part be completed on time.