technology & innovation human ingenuity teacher guided visit pre or post-visit slideshow
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Technology & Innovation: Human ingenuityTeacher-guided visit years 5 & 6
Pre- or Post-visit slideshow
A teacher-guided visit of:-Boulton and Watt engine The steam revolutionEcoLogic: creating a sustainable future
Investigating the historical, social and environmental impact of technology and innovation at the Powerhouse Museum.This slideshow can be used for either pre- or post-visit purpose. It features: physical layout key objects Audiovisuals and interactives
in the relevant sections of the three exhibitions.Curriculum links:-Stage 3 Science and Technology units: Environment matters, The best place to live, Switched on.
Stage 3 COGs unit: Living Land
What is technology?Technology is all around usmore than tools and gadgets applying knowledge to meet needs and wants
TechnologyProblemWhat is innovation?Innovation is improving on something that already existscoming up with something new that makes our lives easier
What is ingenuity?Ingenuity is being creativeabout applying ideas to solve problems
Boulton & Watt engine, level 3
Boulton and Watt engine
This is the oldest surviving rotative steam engine in the world
The engine was made by engineer James Watt and entrepreneur Matthew Boulton of Birmingham, England for Whitbreads London brewery in 1785.It was donated to the Museum and arrived Sydney aboard the sailing ship Patriarch in 1888. This massive engine played a key role in he development of the modern world.
connecting rodbeam/rocking arm planet gearfly wheelcylindercondenser(in tank)piston rodBoulton and Watt engine drive wheel sun gear
the separate condenser -reducing fuel use by 85%
the parallel motion mechanism -allowing the piston to push the beam up as well as pulling it down
the governor -automatically controlling the speed of the engine
the sun and planet gears - turning the up-and-down motion of the beam into rotative motion
1. Innovations that Watt and Boulton introduceddcba
James Watt was also the first to surround the cylinder with wood to keep it hotJames Watt improved the steam engine dramatically to become an efficient and reliable source of power for industry around the world.
Boulton and Watt engines were prime movers in the Industrial Revolution, the engine represents not just innovation and entrepreneurship, but also great changes to peoples life and the environment. DO YOU KNOW?
Despite the engines size (9.14 m tall and 33 tonnes in weight), it produces less power than an average family car (11 kW or 15 horsepower).
3. Whats behind the Boulton and Watt engine? Visit the galleries behind the engine.
Gallery 1: The engine makers
a) Find out more about the lives of Boulton and Watt here.
James Watt: the Scottish instrument maker who was the creative genius behind the engineMatthew Boulton: the entrepreneur who saw the potential of the engine and supplied the finance and manufacturing know-how.
Gallery 2: Watts inventions
b) Here find out how the governor works.DO YOU KNOW?Boulton saw a governor in a grain mill and asked Watt to apply the idea to the steam engine to control the speed.
Gallery 3: The Lunar Society
Boulton and Watt were members of a group of scientists and manufacturers known as the Lunar Society. c) Find out why the group was called the Lunar Society. d) What did they do at their regular meetings?
Jasperware jewellery made by Matthew Boulton and Josiah Wedgwood (right)Coffee potThis belonged to Joseph Banks, the botanist who sailed to Australia with Captain Cook. Banks met Boulton and Watt at meetings of the Lunar Society. (left)
The Soho ManufactorySoho FoundrySoho Insurance Co
Union certificateBirmingham riot 1792Birmingham
Gallery 4: More of Watts inventions and life in the 1700s
e) Find out how the parallel motion and sun-and-planet gear work.The parallel motion mechanism interactiveThe sun-and-planet gear interactive
From single acting to double acting interactiveSee how the parallel motion mechanism (right) allows the top of the cylinder to be sealed while letting the piston push the end of the beam up as well as pulling it down (double acting).
From up and down to round and round interactive
See how the planet gear drive the sun gear and the flywheel as you move the beam up and down.
To move the beam, you will need to give the flywheel a little push if one of the gears is directly above the other.
Count the number of turns the sun gear and flywheel make for every stroke of the beam.
The steam revolutionThe steam revolution, level 2
The steam revolutionThis exhibition traces the development of steam technology and its impact on society. Explore how the power of steam inspired amazing inventions and technologies that made work easier and faster.
Original engine room
This gallery was the original engine room of the Ultimo Power House, which generated power for Sydneys electric trams. The engine room was completed in 1899 and remained in use till 1963.
Section 8: Roll up! Roll up!Section 9: Designed for speedSection 10: The city electricSection 11: The Earl Spencers cargoSection 1: IntroductionSection 7: All work no playTo the left of the exhibition entrance
4. See how human and animal power was replaced by machine power with the arrival of steam power.
Section 1: IntroductionSection 2: Steps towards steamSection 4: Steam goes bushSection 3: Turn on the tapSection 5: Designed for powerSection 6: Steam on the moveSection 7: All work no playTo the left of the exhibition entrance
4. See how human and animal power was replaced by machine power with the arrival of steam power.
Steps towards steamThis section covers the scientific discoveries about air pressure and the nature of steam that led to the invention of the Boulton and Watt rotative steam engine1Interactive: Feel the weight of airScientific discoveriesabout air pressure and the nature of steam
Video: Boulton and Watt how their engines work (2 min)Interactive: Boulton and Watt engine model
Interactive: Feel the weight of air 5. Find out what makes the piston lift the weight.Scientific discoveries from air pressure to invention of steam engines 6. Newcomen steam engine modela) What motivated Newcomen to take on the challenge of building his steam engine?b) What was his engine designed to do?c) Compare Newcomens and Watts steam engine.
Turning on the tapFollow the development of Sydneys water supply and look at the huge cylinder from Botany Pumping Station. Compare it with the cylinder of the engine behind you and imagine how big the Botany engine was.Cylinder withtimber insulation
Interactive: Pump some water 7. Get an idea of the effort involved in using a hand pump.a) Which part of the pump works as a simple machine?b) What type of simple machine is it?Audio: Not a drop fit to drink Hear what people thought about Sydneys water supply in the 1800s (3 min)Until the 1850s, few people in Sydney had taps in their houses. Most had to pump water by hand from public pumps and wells and then carry it home, walking up to half a kilometre each way.
Horse-drawn fire enginePortable steam engineAV: making steam move (3 min)AV:Fire! Fire! (4 min)[behind the engine]Steam on the move8. On display are two portable engines that could be moved from place to place to do their work. These were compact and light enough for horses to pull.a) Choose one of the two engines. Collect as much information on it as possible. Write a short story on it after your visit to the Museum.
Hard work before steamHand tools like these were used on farms in Australia and Britain before mechanisation. Great skill and strength were needed to get results.Shearers with hand shears
Steam on the farmFarm workers saw mechanisation as a mixed blessing. It made some jobs easier, but people struggled to keep up with the relentless pace of machines. Many people had to move to cities because there were fewer jobs on farms.
The first fire brigadesIn the days before governments employed fire-fighters, fire brigades were owned by insurance companies. These brigades would only put out fire in buildings insured by their own company.
The Fire KingMerryweather, the maker of our horse-drawn steam fire pump, was so successful that he was nicknamed the Fire King. The engine was made at Greenwich in England.
All work no playOn display are large steam engines that drove factory machinery all around the world before World War II. The relentless pace of the machines made work monotonous as well as noisy, dangerous and dirty.Marshall steam enginePrinting pressWeaving loomPulleys to transmit energy from engine to machinery 9. The Marshall enginea) Find the technology or innovation that allows the steam engine to drive hundreds of small machines in a factory.b) Imagine you are a factory worker, working in such a factory. Describe your typical working day.
The city electricThis section looks at the spread of electricity and the turbines that generated it.AV:Metropolis (2 min)Interactive:Light up SydneyParsons turbines
Interactive: Light up Sydney
10.Turn the handle of the interactive as fast as you can. See whether you can light up the whole Imperial Arcade. a) Find the machine that change the turning motion into electricity. What is it called?b) What is the most commonly used fuel in Australias power stations?c) What are the impacts of these power stations on our environment?
Fantasies and failures11.Steam power inspired many inventors in the 1800s. See some of the interesting ideas people had. Put down any immediate ideas then make a sketch of your own fantasy steam powered engine after the visit.Steam turbine reaction modelAircraft model engine
EcoLogic, level 1
Discover the science behind global warming and learn how our precious natural resources such as fresh water are managed. Be inspired by how people and companies are changing the way they do things to secure a more sustainable future.
CARBON GALLERYInto the unknownThe calm climatic conditions of the last 10,000 years have allowed agriculture and civilisation to flourish. But life will be less predictable if we let global warming continue. DO YOU KNOW?The average Australians lifestyle emits about 20 tonnes of greenhouse gases per year.
Clean energyBuilding new citiesNSW town of BundanoonREDESIGNING OUR WORLDCreativity, innovation, awareness of systems and personal behaviour change will all be essential in helping us adapt to new conditions and prevent the extremes of global warming.Social and economic structures that make our communities more resilient will help us all to deal with change.
REDESIGNING OUR WORLDBuilding new citiesClean energy1. Find out more about technologies that capture energy from renewable sources such as wind and sunlight. 2. On display are some building models. Point out the sustainable features and environmental benefits of each.
REDESIGN YOUR WORLD3. NSW town of Bundanoona) Find out who were involved in making the initiative of not selling giveaway bottled water such a success in Bundanoon.b) Find out the alternatives the town provide.DO YOU KNOW?Bottling water gives off 1,000 times more greenhouse gases than pumping water to your tap.
CITY LIVING4. Towards a sustainable housea) See how our choices of fittings and furnishings in various family areas can make a difference. b) List three eco-friendly appliances, technologies or products you have at your home.
CITY LIVING5. Eco-design: reduce, recycle, reusea) Here choose one product from each group, find out what makes each sustainable.
Online resourcesBoulton and Watt engine exhibition page, including a 11 min illustrated talk on the engine by curator, Debbie Rudder.Boulton and Watt engine animation (1:11 min)Inside the collection blog: search the blog to find out more about Boulton and WattThe steam revolution exhibition page, including exhibition teachers notes.Marshall steam engine working (1:44 min)EcoLogic: creating a sustainable future exhibition page, including exhibition teachers notes.PotBiz: the innovation gameAustralia Innovates, an online guide to innovation in Australias industries
Image credit: All images used are from the Powerhouse Museum-: Powerhouse Museum Learning :-Relevant education programsTechnology & Innovation: Design and Make workshop for years 5 & 6 Sustainable solutions workshop for yrs 5-10