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Aerodynamics Science Fair Project

Investigating the Influence of a Ship's Bow on Water Resistance

Investigating the Influence of a Ship's Bow on Water Resistance | Science Fair Projects | STEM Projects
We're going to investigate how the shape of a boat's bow affects the amount of water resistance it experiences. We'll use a water tank, pumps, and three different wooden boats to measure the amount of drag.


The hypothesis is that the boat with a V-shaped bow and a curved bottom will experience the least amount of fluid resistance.

Method & Materials

You will arrange two water tanks, place three water pumps outside the tank, and fix the three wooden boats into the inner tank. You will also place a 300-gram weight inside the wooden boat to stabilize it.
You will need a water tank measuring 1.0m x 0.8m x 0.8m (inner tank), a water tank measuring 1.5m x 1.0m x 0.3m (outer tank), three water pumps, a wooden boat - cuboid shape, a wooden boat - half cylindrical in shape, a wooden boat – curved bottom with a V-shape bow, a Newton spring balance, a 300-gram weight, a ruler, and two tanks of tap water.


The results showed that the boat with the V-shaped bow and the curved bottom had the least amount of fluid resistance in water. The cuboid shaped boat had the most fluid resistance.

Why do this project?

This science project is interesting because it explores the mechanics of a ship and how the shape of its bow affects the amount of water resistance it experiences.

Also Consider

Experiment variations include varying the number of water pumps to simulate varying flow rates, and repeating the experiment using different weights placed in the boat.

Full project details

You can find additional information and details for this science fair project here. Have fun exploring!

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