Land Yacht

Can a land yacht drive into the wind?

  • Which forces did you see in action when you watched the sailboat and kite in the video?
  • Which force made the sailboat move?
  • In what situations does a sailboat not work?

Build the Land Yacht model, and let us find out...

  • Building instructions, pages 86 - 102

Experiment 1: Downwind

  • Place your land yacht on the start line, facing away from the fan (0 degrees).
  • Change the angle of the sail and test to see which angle makes it go the farthest.
  • Record the best sail angle on your worksheet.

Experiment 2: Crosswind

  • Use the angle measurement tool to set your land yacht at a right angle (90 degrees) to the fan.
  • Adjust the sail. Record which sail angle worked best to move your land yacht sideways (crosswind).

Experiment 3: Into the Wind

  • Use the angle measurement tool to measure the maximum angle at which your land yacht can drive into the wind.
  • Record the sail angle that worked best.

What did you find out?

  • Which forces did you observe?
  • Was there a pattern?
  • Could you predict what would happen next?
  • Do not forget to record your observations in your science notebook.