Presbyterian College students tested trebuchets they have spent the semester building. The students competed in five categories: Best Looking, Most Accurate, Longest Range, Most Mobile and Omnium (best overall).
During the actual class, called Mechanics of a Trebuchet, students, ranging from freshmen to seniors, learned how exactly a trebuchet works, including the mathematics behind the machine.
In addition, they learned how to maximize the distance and accuracy of their machines.
“It is a very difficult problem and requires many complex methods. This provided a nice opportunity to teach those methods to the students in the class,” Dr. Chad Rodekohr said.
“The students learned a lot about physics and had a lot of fun in the process,” he added.
This was reflected in names of trebuchets, which ranged from “Pipe Dreams” to “Trevor Shay.”
The students then tested their trebuchets, competing against each other in the five categories.
“It was pretty interesting. There were almost some causalities,” Freshman Kevin Nguyen said.
All of the teams won in one of the categories, and all of the trebuchets performed exceptionally.