Details task Length 45 mins. (20 min. For drop) subject Forces and also Motion Activity kind Exploration Language English publish

In this exploration, student design, evaluate, test, and also suggest improvements for a container the will defend their precious payload: one egg.

The standard "Egg-Drop" experiment has actually been a traditional in scientific research instruction for numerous years. Essentially, students are asked to build some kind of container that will save a life egg from cracking once dropped indigenous ever-increasing elevations.

You are watching: How to drop a egg without it breaking

There are three straightforward ways to boost the likelihood of safely dropping an egg:

Slow down the descent speed.Parachutes space an obvious technique for slow the kind speed, as lengthy as the design includes a means to keep the parachute open. Cushion the egg so that something other than the egg chin absorbs the impact of landing. The largest end of the egg has actually an area of air trapped between the egg"s two membranes. This air room forms when the components of the egg cool and contract after ~ the egg is laid. It accounts for the crater you regularly see at the end of a hard-cooked egg. Upon affect the more heavier spherical yolk proceeds moving in the direction of the ground. The compression that the airspace acts choose an wait bag for the eggs" an useful contents. Structure an man-made cushioning an equipment will also aid absorb the affect of landing. The largest finish of the egg has an area of air trapped in between the egg"s two membranes. This air room forms when the contents of the egg cool and also contract after ~ the egg is laid. It accounts because that the crater you frequently see at the finish of a hard-cooked egg. Upon affect the heavier spherical yolk proceeds moving towards the ground. The compression that the airspace acts prefer an waiting bag because that the eggs" valuable contents. Structure an fabricated cushioning device will also aid absorb the impact of landing. Orient the egg so that it lands on the strongest part of the shell. The arch framework at either end of the egg is more powerful than the sides. Press is distributed down (or up) the arches so that less pressure acts upon any one point. Orienting the arch downwards will boost the egg"s survival.

The Challenge:On august 22, 1994, David Donoghue threw one egg out of a helicopter onto a golf food in the UK, indigenous a height of 213 meters (700 feet). That now has the record for the longest egg drop there is no breaking in the human being (all there is no an external structure for included protection!).

Teacher Tip:You have the right to relate the activity to the challenge NASA scientists had actually in building a lander for the Mars expedition Rover. Physically, it had to withstand both the heat of entry into the Martian atmosphere and the impact of landing. Strategically, they also had to figure out a way that the rover could right chin no matter exactly how it landed. Students love to see how the structure they"ve built often resembles the one conceived by NASA scientists.


show curiosity and show inventiveness.

Brainstorm in a team to generate ideas.

Use problem-solving strategies in building straightforward structures.


Per Class:large plastic sheet/tarp/vinyl tableclothladder (optional)

Per team of 2–3 students:1 extra-large egg1 bag of products (may include cardboard cup, string, tape, balloons, straws, etc.)2 sheets the scrap paper and 2 pencils

Key Questions

What to be successful/unsuccessful in your design? What renders an egg a good ‘subject’ because that the drop experiments?

What come Do


Scout out accessible locations about the school for the egg drop at various heights.Make sufficient bags of products for student groups.

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Challenge the student (in groups of 2–3) to construct a structure in 40 minute that will prevent an egg native breaking as soon as dropped native a high place. Brainstorm ways to boost the likelihood of safe landing your eggs.Each team gets a bag of materials, 2 pencils, and 2 sheets that scrap paper.The students can not assemble anything because that the first 10 minutes. This time is to be provided to brainstorm and also to draw a mockup the their framework on the scrap file provided.When the 10 minute is up, circulate about the class to ensure that the college student have thoughtfully mocked up your landers.Place the egg in separation, personal, instance egg holders and also hand the end to the teams. Repeat students that they cannot usage the egg holder as part of their design.Drop the eggs from a launch point into the autumn zone, which is defended by a plastic sheet, ensuring that each lander is dropped indigenous the very same distance.Once dropped, the students inspect out the egg to check out if it has damaged or if over there are any cracks.The team whose egg survives the highest drop wins.

Teacher tips 

The teacher must be the one come launch the egg to ensure fairness and also to mitigate the hazard of injury (if dropping native a high distance).Many of the offers in this task can be gathered and reused!


how would you modify your design to do it better? present your modification mock-up to the class. Assign prices to every craft item and give students a budget. Students come to the “store” with their designs and also the teacher hands out the products they’ve requested.