Science classes all over the country study the effects of velocity and design experiments to keep an egg from breaking after being dropped from a great height. Cushioned housings are one way to protect an egg during its fall, but paper parachutes are another effective idea. A simple parachute, fashioned from paper and string, can be enough to slow the descent of an egg to keep it from breaking when it hits the ground.
Cut a 36-by-36-inch square from a sheet of tissue paper. To increase the durability of your paper parachute, use a double thickness of tissue.
Wrap tape around each of the four corners to stabilise them and to keep them from tearing. Punch a hole in each corner using a hole punch.
Cut four pieces of string about 16 inches long. Tie one piece to each of the corners. For the best results, use lightweight but durable kite string.
Punch four holes in the rim of a small paper drinking up. The cup should be just large enough to hold the egg, and the holes should be equally spaced around the rim.
Tie the loose end of each of the four strings to the paper cup, looping each through one of the four holes. Test your paper parachute with the cup empty to be sure it floats well. If it flounders or wobbles, check the strings to be sure they are all of equal length.
While you are testing your parachute, the egg may fall out of the cup or break upon impact, so cover your landing site with plastic garbage bags for easy cleanup.
Tips and warnings
- While you are testing your parachute, the egg may fall out of the cup or break upon impact, so cover your landing site with plastic garbage bags for easy cleanup.