DoD STEM initiatives are aimed at better preparing our children for the future. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math. But STEM is more than just an acronym, it's a way to ensure America stays competitive.
LabTV videos feature compelling real-life stories by enthusiastic professionals to show students exactly why their STEM classroom studies matter. Each video is accompanied by a teacher guide designed to help educators develop a STEM lesson plan around each video.
The drop down boxes allows sorting by military service or by STEM subject area. All videos are also accessible on the LabTV YouTube Channel.
Robot Birds pt. 1: Designing Micro Air Vehicles
From his upturned palm, Ryan Carr launches then expertly flies what appears to be a remote-controlled bird. Later, the aeronautical engineer uses special equipment to examine the machine's flight characteristics. scientist Joseph McDermott works at the Air Force Research Lab in Dayton, Ohio, with materials so tiny the width of a human hair is huge by comparison.
Welcome to the world of micro air vehicles (MAVs) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Here hobby-store aircraft are helping scientists design a futuristic line of miniature flying spy vehicles.
Robot Birds pt. 2: Flying in the Micro Aviary
Mixing Hollywood wizardry and video game technology, engineers at Wright Patterson Air Force Research Lab are teaching computers to fly tiny aircraft.
After being strategically outfitted with white markers, the aircraft are flown in an infra-red “micro aviary.” There, dozens of special cameras use motion capture to track each flight, just like the movements of an athlete are tracked when creating a sports video game.
Save the Bay Robotics Challenge: Students Learn to Reverse Environmental Harm
The room buzzes with excitement as 400 students gather for the finale of the Save The Bay: Robotics Challenge. For the last 16 weeks, under the guidance of Navy scientists and engineers, they have been trooping out to river banks to study the environment and working in the classroom to build and program robots.
The students worked in teams to research problems in the Chesapeake Bay and devise ways to reverse environmental harm. Their focus is diverse, from invasive species and over-harvesting of marine life to the effects of soil erosion and runoff.
Scientists Keep Radiation in Its Place
There are two types of radiation: non-ionizing radiation, from sources such as visible light and radio waves, and ionizing radiation, from radioactive materials or x-ray equipment. Ionizing radiation can be harmful to humans -- but it can also be useful. Nuclear reactors use a process called fission to release the energy stored in radioactive materials like uranium. That energy powers all Navy aircraft carriers and submarines.
SeaPerch Teaches Students the Laws of Buoyancy
Underwater ROVs, or remotely operated vehicles, are used in research missions such as the Titanic recovery. At a Maryland high school, students are constructing their own ROVs -- called SeaPerches -- with help from Navy engineers from NAVSEA Carderock, who teach kids about ship design, the basics of electronics, and buoyancy.
Sgt. Star: A Virtual Human with a Sense of Humor
Standing behind a "TranScreen," Sergeant Star looks you in the eye, shifting slightly on his feet. You are speaking to, he jokes "an incredibly handsome soldier."
Well. Sort of. Sgt. Star actually is a hologram-like projection, created by a team of graphics researchers, computer scientists and artificial intelligence experts at the Institute for Creative Technologies in Los Angeles, California. He travels the country in Army Adventure vans, answering more than 145,000 questions a month.
Ship Shape: Designing New Ships
Nautical engineers design safe, smart, and sound vessels.
Wind and water are two essential elements ship designers think about when creating the blueprint for a new vessel.
Mechanical engineer Susan Brewton considers these factors -- and others -- every day at NAVSEA Carderock in Bethesda, Md., as she helps design ships for the U.S. Navy. Using sophisticated computer programs, Brewton analyzes the physics of how fluids interact with the surfaces of a potential new cruiser, aircraft carrier, or submarine, always seeking the best performance and highest efficiency.
Ship Shape: Making Models
Building mini-ships is no game.
Imagine building models for a living! These engineers at NAVSEA Carderock in Bethesda, Md., spend their days creating and testing models that often become prototypes for ships in the Navy's fleet.
Space Hitchhikers: The ESPA Ring
This rocket science makes total sense.
Satellites are devices launched into orbit to collect information or aid in communication. Although they're invaluable tools, they also are enormously expensive to send into space. But using an amazing adaptor called an ESPA ring, engineers at an Air Force research lab in Albuquerque are helping to send up more satellites by adding them to existing, larger missions.
Spin Cycle: Training for High G Flying
The professionals at the Brooks City Air Force Research Lab in San Antonio, Texas, are experts on the forces caused by acceleration, also called 'G forces.' That's what people feel in their stomachs when riding a wild roller coaster. But at Brooks City, they specialize in the more powerful forces experienced by fighter pilots.