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Office of News and Information
Johns Hopkins University
3003 N. Charles Street, Suite 100
Baltimore, Maryland 21218-3843
Phone: (410) 516-7160 | Fax (410) 516-5251

September 25, 2002
CONTACT: Phil Sneiderman

Media Alert: 'Low-Tech' Engineering Competition

The Tools Rubber bands, wooden dowels, foamcore board, construction paper, glue
The Goal Move a pingpong ball around a square twice without touching it
The Players Johns Hopkins biomedical engineering students
When 2:30 to 4:30 pm. Friday, Sept. 27
Where Outside of Levering Hall, The Johns Hopkins University Homewood campus, 3400 N. Charles St., Baltimore, Md. (If conditions outside are unsuitable, backup location is inside the nearby Glass Pavilion.)
What Thirteen undergraduate teams will each have two minutes to move a pingpong ball twice around a square (at least 12 feet long on each side), without touching it with their hands and without allowing the ball to touch the ground. Each team will use low-tech materials such as foamcore (posterboard), rubber bands, construction paper, wooden dowels and glue, to engineer and build ramps, launchers, pipelines and carriages to move the ball around the square. One students can stand at each corner to guide the ball to its next transport device.
Why The goals of the competition are to encourage teamwork and peer-learning (freshmen learn from more experienced student team members) and to help students understand the process of designing, building and testing a project, skills they will need for more the complicated assignments they must complete in the future.

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