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image shows electronic vehicle with red and green lights. there is an open laptop behind it.

Model car invention to fuel future passion for science

Future generations of scientists and engineers are set to be inspired by a new tool created by HMGCC experts – a flashing model car to help teach the fun side of physics and electronics.

The compact vehicle is part of HMGCC’s ongoing work to promote interest from schoolchildren in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.

HMGCC engineer Chris led a small team to design the car, with the aim of bringing together multiple engineering and technology disciplines in one model kit.

The kit will provide a hands-on learning platform for use in classrooms directly by students, to help showcase core learning in science and technology – but in an entertaining and practical way.

Chris, who has a background in mechanical engineering and circuit design, explained: “We want to showcase many different strands of technology in one place and show how accessible coding can be.

“The car features lights, sensors and a BBC micro:bit. It relays information over Bluetooth to a computer to plot information on a graph. This is the sort of racing display telemetry that may be already familiar to fans of Formula 1. We are taking the cars to events and letting kids work with them.

“We really wanted something which would get engineering across to students, showing them how fun and rewarding it can be. You don’t have to be a genius at maths either!

“We need to attract more people from diverse backgrounds to thrive. It is still the case that, on a course of 60 engineers, usually as few as three will be female. We hope to change that.” 

STEM representatives from HMGCC regularly visit schools to carry out engineering activities with classes, encouraging an interest in these key subjects, particularly in under-represented groups.

To find out more about the STEM activities offered by HMGCC, please contact the team via the “general enquiry” option on our contact form.