- Understand how material properties can be improved by combining two or more materials.
- Identify a range of composite materials and technical textiles.
- Understand how fibres can be manipulated to create technical textiles.
Through the exciting context of the British challenge for the America’s Cup supported by the Lloyd’s Register Foundation archives, this teaching resource explores composite and nano materials for GCSE and KS3 Design Technology and Engineering as well as supporting the nanoparticles element of the science curriculum. In addition to the teaching presentation, video and worksheets there is a practical demonstration idea for you to amaze your students by creating glass fibre in front of their eyes.
Learn about the modern materials used in the building of an America’s Cup boat and how composites are vital for building faster boats.
Test your knowledge on Modern Materials with our interactive quiz!
KS3 Design Technology
Students should work in a range of domestic and local contexts (for example; the home, health, leisure and culture), and industrial contexts (for example; engineering and manufacturing).
- Understand and use the properties of materials and the performance of structural elements to achieve functioning solutions.
- Select from and use a wider, more complex range of materials, components and ingredients, taking into account their properties.
- Investigate new and emerging technologies.
- Understand developments in Design and Technology, its impact on individuals, society and the environment, and the responsibilities of designers, engineers and technologists.
Scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding
Teachers will wish to use different contexts to maximise their pupils’ engagement with and motivation to study Science.
- Properties of ceramics, polymers and composites (qualitative).
- Understand and use SI units and IUPAC (International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) chemical nomenclature.
Resistant materials and textiles
Pupils should be given opportunities to develop their Design and Technology capability through:
- Activities in which they investigate, analyse and evaluate products in order to acquire technological and health and safety knowledge and understanding that can be applied in their designing and making.
- Activities in which they learn about the responsible use of materials considering issues of sustainability.
- Learn about the properties and characteristics of materials and apply this knowledge and understanding when designing and making products.
- Undertake materials testing, to determine suitability for intended use.
- Combine and process materials in order to create enhanced properties and desired aesthetic characteristics.
- Be aware of current developments in materials technology, e.g. ‘smart’ materials.
- Consider issues of sustainability when choosing and using materials.
Chemical and material behaviour
The properties of a material determine its uses
Pupils should have particular regard to:
- Scientific enquiry.
- Scientific and technological developments, their benefits, drawbacks and risks.
- Ethical, social, economic and environmental issues and their interaction with science.
Materials: exploring the properties of different substances and how they can be changed to develop their understanding of the connection between structure and properties, exploring the development of new substances which have useful properties