– For tips on performing your experiment and presenting your project, see our free science fair guide.

– Browse our Science Fair Supplies category for more project ideas.

Electricity & Magnetism:

  • Experiment with static electricity. How can you create it? How you can reduce it? What substances or objects are the best conductors of static electricity? Do conditions like humidity and temperature increase or decrease static electricity?
  • Make electromagnets with different strengths; compare their magnetic fields using iron filings to find what effect they have on a compass needle and how strong their attraction is (e.g., which one can pick up the most paperclips?).
  • Make a voltaic cell and research which household electrolytes are most effective for producing electricity. How well does a carbon rod instead of a metal rod work as a positive electrode?
  • Can you use a magnet to find traces of iron in food, dollar bills, and other household materials?
  • Make a crystal radio. What indoor and outdoor materials (such as metal poles, a window, etc.) make the best antennas for your radio? Under what conditions, such as temperature, cloud cover, and humidity, does your radio pick up the clearest signals?
  • What types of liquid can conduct electricity? Can electricity be used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen?
  • Experiment with how magnetic and electric fields can make a magnet fall in slow motion. How could this principle be applied to real-world technology, like braking systems on roller coasters?
  • Explore maglev technology (magnetic levitation).

Force & Motion:

Experimenting with force & motion

  • What are the best shapes for paper airplanes? The best material for propellers?
  • Experiment with thrust and aerodynamic design while launching a rocket.
  • Design an experiment using a rocket car powered by a balloon.
  • Create an experiment showing how well (or poorly) different structures or materials withstand pressure.
  • How do different brands of plastic wrap compare when stretched with equal force? How do different brands of duct or clear tape compare in strength and stickiness? Can you identify what factors cause one to perform better than another?
  • What type of flooring (carpet, wood, tile, linoleum, etc.) creates the most or the least friction? (Younger kids might test this by rolling a ball or toy truck over different surfaces. Older kids can use a spring scale to measure the force of friction. )
  • Use toy cars or a dynamic cart to test what impact increased mass has on velocity. What are the resulting velocities after a moving and unmoving object collide? What about two moving objects in same or different directions?
  • What type of pulley provides the highest mechanical advantage for a particular job?
  • What types of metal conduct heat the fastest? Do some conduct heat more evenly than others? What types of materials are good insulators?
  • Experiment with how much more energy is needed to catapult a heavier object the same distance as a lighter object. Create a similar experiment with a bow and arrow.
  • Explore centripetal force by designing and building a mini roller coaster and demonstrating the physics behind it.

Energy:

  • How does the efficiency of an incandescent bulb compare to a fluorescent? What about LED? How much heat energy do they produce?
  • Compare the effectiveness of different types of insulation. Which keeps out the most heat or cold?

Alternative Energy:

  • How could you use a solar cell to recharge a battery? (You’ll need to use a diode and set up a circuit.) How does a solar cell compare to a battery with the same voltage?
  •  How would you use solar energy most effectively in your home or school?
  • What time of day tends to be best for charging a solar cell?
  • How does the angle of incidence of light affect the energy output of a solar cell? Use a digital multimeter to measure how much voltage is being produced by the solar cell.
  • What types of blades work best to produce electricity using a wind turbine?
  • Can you create an effective water turbine design? How would you connect it to a generator to produce electricity?
  • Can you test/simulate the environmental effects of producing electricity from steam in geothermal areas?
  • Can different substances (such as vinegar or salt) be used in electrolysis to make hydrogen production more cost-effective?
  • Does increasing the number of electrodes make the process of electrolysis less time consuming or more cost effective?
  • Can different alternative energy sources be used in combination to produce the energy to power a home?

Visit our science fair project ideas page for ideas in other categories.