On May 2, 2018, approximately 300 students from across the St. Louis region launched balsa wood gliders at the Washington University in St. Louis Field House in the 10th annual Boeing Engineering Challenge. Students, with guidance from their teachers and Boeing engineers, have been working all year to design and build the perfect glider.
These hand-launched gliders soared across WUSTL’s Field House in a competition to determine which has the farthest flight, the straightest path, the longest hang time, and highest quality of flight. Planes with the most creative appearance and most creative engineering were also recognized. The students created the planes out of balsa wood with consultation from Boeing engineers. In the process, they learned important concepts in physics and aerospace engineering.
- 21 schools participated
- 5 schools from Southern Illinois, others schools are Affton, Ferguson-Florissant, Francis Howell, Jennings, Mehlville, Rockwood, St. John Vianney, Wentzville
- Public, Private and Parochial Schools participated
- One middle school and one elementary school have joined this year, the rest are high school
- 87 teams, totaling 300 students
- Boeing sponsored the program and competition with support from Washington University’s Alumni & Development Office, the Institute for School Partnership and the School of Engineering & Applied Science.
This year, the Wentzville School District had six teams competing in Division 2, the flying wing; three teams from Holt and three teams from Timberland. In this division, teams had to create a cargo bay to carry balls weighing 55 grams each. Teams were challenged to achieve a stable flight without the use of a horizontal stabilizer.
For the first time in district history, one of our teams, Delta Force Six, from Holt, won the Division 2 Championship out of about 35 teams. The team also won four other awards: 2nd Overall in Creative Design, 2nd Overall in Quality of Flight, 2nd Overall Longest Flight, and Winner of Max Time Aloft in Division 2.
Team members are all in the Project Lead the Way Aerospace Engineering course at Holt High School taught by Ms. Ashley Gregory.