Did you ever wonder who thinks up the designs for roller coasters like this one, or how a roller coaster is built? There are more than 100 large amusement parks in the U.S., and they compete to have the fastest or tallest coasters that give the most thrilling ride. Each year, many of the parks install new roller coasters. Each new coaster is designed for its specific location and the park’s needs. Then it is custom built.
Companies that design and build roller coasters employ a range of technology professionals. Technology is the application of science to real-world problems. Professionals in technology are generally called engineers. Engineers are creative problem solvers. They use math and science to design and develop just about everything—from roller coasters to video games.
Q: Whether engineers are designing and developing roller coasters or video games, they need many of the same skills and the same basic knowledge. What skills and knowledge do you think all engineers might need?
A: All engineers need basic knowledge of math and science, particularly physical science. For example, to design and build a roller coaster, they would need to know about geometry, as well as forces and motion, which are important topics in physical science. In addition, all engineers must have skills such as logical thinking and creativity. The ability to envision three-dimensional structures from two-dimensional drawings is also helpful for most engineers.
Careers in Engineering
Different types of engineers, such as electrical and mechanical engineers, must work together to build roller coasters and most other engineering projects. You can learn about these and other technology careers at the URLs listed here and in the Figure below.
These are just a few of many possible careers in technology. Do any of these careers interest you?
- Professionals in technology are generally called engineers. Engineers are creative problem solvers who use math and science to design and build things.
- Different types of engineers, such as electrical and mechanical engineers, work together on most engineering projects.
engineer: Professional in technology.
It’s a lot harder to design a roller coaster than you might think. Try your hand at designing a virtual coaster at this URL. Go back and correct any design problems until your roller coaster is rated both safe and fun.
- What are engineers? What do they do?
- Describe two careers in technology.