Building a bridge from spaghetti
Bridges are structures that are designed to support a load, such as the cars and lorries that need to cross above a river. The structure of a bridge has a significant affect upon its strength and its stiffness. A bridge made from square shapes can be made significantly more rigid and less likely to collapse by adding reinforcement to form triangles. This principle is widely used in civil engineering.
Build bridge of spaghetti! However, you can only use 15 pieces of spaghetti – you can break some of it into smaller lengths if needed or to reinforce the structure.
Use the handout for further guidance and support.
Testing your bridge
This involves hanging an increasing load from each bridge until it fails.
The gap for the bridges could be made by moving two desks/chairs close to each other. To test the bridges, place a strip of material over the centre of the bridge and tie this underneath the bridge. Suspend the weights from this material. Start with a low weight and increase in increments until failure.
How much weight will your bridge hold? How could you improve it?