Summer Schools: KNEX rocket car challenge (age 10–12)

2.00pm to 4.15pm, Tuesday 6 August

The Royal Institution of Great Britain GB United Kingdom W1S 4BS 21 Albemarle Street London

This event has already taken place

  • Credit: Tim Mitchell
  • Type

    Summer Schools
  • Audience

    Age 10–12

  • Speakers

    • Mike Ford


Standard £30

Ri Young Members £25.50

Event description

In this engineering workshop with Mike Ford, students are tasked with designing and building an air powered rocket car using KNEX components.

Students will have a limited amount of time to test, build and iterate to improve their design.

Students will use this testing data – mass, time distance – to analyse the aerodynamic performance of their car, using Newton’s Laws of Motion to refine their car.

About the speaker

Mike Ford is a chartered engineer who has worked across many different engineering sectors. These include marine engineering, nuclear power and food manufacturing. For the last six years he has been working with the likes of Bloodhound SSC, the world land speed record team, who are designing and building the first 1000mph car. Mike has worked for major blue chip companies, culminating in positions up to director level, and has also run his own successful engineering consultancy business.

Mike's passion today is to inspire future generations in subjects aligned to science, technology, engineering and mathematics and for them to realise the opportunities that careers in these subjects could present. With Bloodhound and other STEM organisations, Mike has had the unique opportunity to inspire in STEM over 60,000 students across 300 venues in the UK and US.

Please note

Please note, this workshop is strictly for 10–12 year-olds and is aimed at those with little or no experience of computer coding. There will be a short break during the workshop and a drink and a small snack will be provided. Students should bring their own snack if they have any allergies.

Discounted tickets are available to Ri Members. Find out more about how to join.

Refunds can only be issued for tickets cancelled at least two weeks (14 calendar days) in advance of the event date. Please note that this supersedes our normal event terms and conditions.


Workshops are on the first floor of our building, for which there is step-free access from the street via lift.

The closest underground station is Green Park, which is step-free.

Seating is usually unreserved for our events. If you and your group require seating reservations, or if you have any other questions, please do let us know by email and we’ll be more than happy to help. Email:

Financial assistance

The Potential Trust may be able to offer financial assistance to enable children to participate in Ri events and activities if this would otherwise be difficult. Please contact Anna Comino-James preferably via telephone on +44 (0)1844 351666, or at their email address

Ri Young Members receive 15% off workshops

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