Floating Nests Raft: Ever Heard Of A Floating Bird Nest? Creative Commons, Attribution + Noncommercial + ShareAlike (BY-NC-SA)
Authors: Eugenides Foundation
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In this challenge, students explore marine engineering as they design a floating platform for lakes or rivers in order to entice water birds to build their nests there, protecting them from seasonal floods or other risks. They learn to use the scientific principles of balancing forces, more specifically of buoyancy, density and weight and will get acquainted with the science investigation process.
Knowledge acquisition gain
  Skills: Introduction of the world of design process and on how engineers work / encourage problem-solving skills / practical application of science and math in engineering / developing critical thinking / support teamwork, motivation, troubleshooting and learning from failure / understanding of the materials and their role in the engineering process. Science concepts: floating / mass / volume / density / weight / stability / balanced forces / buoyancy

STEM careers and labor market

There are numerous scientific, engineering technological elements which are involved in the development of actual floating rafts, platforms and in general marine environment structures.

Ocean Engineering extends from building dams and reservoirs in a micro level to planning, designing and executing structures, equipments and constructions that benefit not just humans but also the existence of marine life-forms at its zenith. Ocean engineers apply various engineering sciences, including mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, electronic engineering, and computer science, to the development, design, operation and maintenance of watercraft propulsion and on-board systems and oceanographic technology. It includes but is not limited to power and propulsion plants, machinery, piping, automation and control systems for marine vehicles of any kind, such as surface ships and submarines.

An Ocean Engineer has to be well-versed not just with his required educational background but also along with the extra-curricular skills that will help him to do his job well and achieve goodwill for his ideas. Practicality combined with the knowledge imparted from books, in today’s times, is a very important factor that an Ocean Engineer has to keep in mind while helping to put the world ahead in terms of its marine constructional development.

Ocean engineering is a field that has a lot of scope for development and progress. And with the right skill-set like good communication skills, ability to work well as a team member and adeptness in the usage of a computer and its various applications and programs, an Ocean Engineer can be expected to reach the top of the reclusive yet unique profession. It is, however, also important to understand that an Ocean Engineer along with the above mentioned attributes is required to be aware and responsible about the core and staple object of his construction and designing – the water forms and the creatures and the flora and fauna that inhabit it.


  240 min
Number of staff
Science Discipline
Education Level
12-15 years
Installation effort
No installation required on typical computer
Knowledge prerequisites
Classroom use
Supervision required
Self study / No supervision
Teacher supervision required
Technical requirements
You'll need to buy some materials

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