In this video segment adapted from NOVA, a team of historians, engineers, and trade experts recreate a medieval throwing machine called a trebuchet. To launch a projectile, a trebuchet utilizes the transfer of gravitational potential energy into kinetic energy. A massive counterweight at one end of a lever falls because of gravity, causing the other end of the lever to rise and release a projectile from a sling. As part of their design process, the engineers use models to help evaluate how well their designs will work.
This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions.
Visit the program page here.
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