Bronze Awards are typically completed by students aged 11+. They complete a ten-hour project which is a perfect introduction to STEM project work. Over the course of the project, teams of students design their own investigation, record their findings, and reflect on their learnings. This process gives students a taste of what it is like to be a scientist or engineer in the real-world.
Silver Awards are typically completed by students aged 14+ over thirty hours. Project work at Silver level is designed to stretch your students and enrich their STEM studies. Students direct the project, determining the project’s aim and how they will achieve it. They carry out the project, record and analyse their results and reflect on the project and their learnings. All Silver projects are assessed by CREST assessors via our online platform.
Gold Awards are typically completed by students aged 16+ over seventy hours. Students’ projects are self-directed, longer term and immerse them in real research. At this level, we recommend students work with a mentor from their chosen STEM field of study. All Gold projects are assessed by CREST assessors via our online platform. There are more CREST approved resources that have been developed by our partners and providers specific to your region.
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Page 1 of 2 Which fabrics are the best insulators? Heat is transferred from hot places to cold places. Hot things cool down and the heat is transferred to something else, which warms up. Outside on a cold winter’s day we usually try to reduce our heat loss by wearing extra layers of clothing. In this activity, you will compare the insulating (thermal) properties of different materials. Getting started Do a little research into clothing and other items such as sleeping bags and duvets to find out how their heat insulating properties are achieved. You might also want to find out what terms such as ‘thermal insulation’ and ‘thermal conductance’ mean. Next, you should obtain some suitable samples. Devise an experiment to compare the insulating properties of your samples. For example, you could devise a test procedure that involves wrapping a layer of fabric around a 250 ml beaker of hot water and measuring with a thermometer and stop-clock how long the hot water takes to cool down. Do this for each fabric, but make sure your tests are fair and that they enable you to make a comparison of the thermal properties of your sample fabrics. You will need to do trial experiments before you can make your final plans. Things to think about Consider: whether you should have the same volume of water in each beaker; if you need a lid on the beaker; what start and finish temperatures you are going to use for measuring the cooling time. Alternatively, you could measure the temperature drop in a certain time interval. Useful resources Contact a manufacturer of fabrics designed to be thermal insulators or manufacturers of sleeping bags, duvets, fleece jackets or other clothing designed to keep the wearer warm. Hopefully you will be able to get some free samples of fabric! You’ll need to present your results as suitable graphs or charts and discuss any patterns you find in the results. Try to relate what you find in your tests to what the manufacturers claim about the thermal properties of their fabrics. Click to edit project description