Div C – High School
NC Essential Standards Alignment:
Science as Inquiry, PSc.1.1., Phy.1.1, Phy.1.2
See the National rules manual
Event Score Sheet:
National Event Page:
High impact safety glasses, device
None of our tournaments will use photogate timers. We will continue to use multiple human beings with stopwatches, and take the median or average time, depending on the number of timers available.
This is a construction event. Prior to the competition teams will build a vehicle that uses propulsive energy from 1 or 2 mousetraps as its sole means of propulsion. The Vehicle must quickly travel a specified distance and stop as close as possible to the Vehicle Target Point while pushing a 16 oz plastic cup.
Teams must bring safety glasses & their vehicle, spare parts, and a practice log (in a labeled box is the easiest way). They may also bring any tools necessary to calibrate the device, measuring devices, and a calculator. Only the vehicle and log need to be impounded.
Event Leaders will provide the testing track, cups, and measuring apparatus.
Low score wins. The Run Score = 2x Vehicle Distance + Cup Distance Score + Run Time (sec) + Penalties. The Final Score is the better of 2 runs.
– Do not modify the structural integrity of the mousetraps in any way. You are permitted to attach additional pieces to the mousetrap arm. You are permitted to drill up to 4 holes in each mousetrap to attach it to the vehicle.
– At any given tournament, approximately 1/3 of the vehicles are penalized for construction violations. This is something easy to avoid.
– Be sure to bring your practice log labeled correctly and measuring at least 3 parameters.
– This is an impound event! Anyone can impound the device for the competitors. Check your tournament schedule to see the times and places for impound.
Mousetraps lose a great deal of their power even after a single trip. Get a spring scale to measure how the mousetrap loses power over time, and calculate when to replace it. Also, try different brands.
2018 Mousetrap Vehicle track explanation
2011 Mousetrap vehicle starts in the middle of the track, pushes a plastic cup (Solo 16 oz shown here) 3 meters down the track, then reverses direction leaving the cup behind, and travels back 7 meters to the finish line. Score is based on how close the cup was to the reverse line, and how close the vehicle stopped to the finish line, plus speed (faster is better).
2011 Mousetrap Vehicle. This one overshoots the cup line slightly, then has a great finish.
A vehicle using 2 traps to operate, 2010 rules (no cup, starts and ends at same point on track)
A vehicle using one trap to operate, 2010 rules (no cup, starts and ends at same point on track)