Mathalicious: Pony Up

How can you increase the horsepower of a car engine?

A car is a complicated piece of machinery with a simple purpose: motion. At its heart, all that motion is driven by a series of explosions inside the engine’s cylinders. But how do the cylinder dimensions help determine a car’s power?

In this lesson students calculate the total volume of the cylinders in different engines and relate volume to horsepower. They also examine how modifying an engine can affect its performance.


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Engineering Topics
Math Topics
Middle School
8th Grade

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