Toyota Community Trust and the Mirai! Follow FizzicsEd Articles: Comments 0 Back in March, Holly and Team Victoria visited the headquarters of Toyota in Altona, Victoria. The Toyota Community Trust has some big plans in store for the schools and students of the western suburbs, and we are very proud to be part of it! This initiative is all about making STEM education more readily available in these areas. Along with the likes of Rhyll from Western Chances and Ally from Code like a Girl, many educators and change makers came together to discuss how we can make this happen. Source: Official Toyota Community Trust website The trust is funding 6 professional development session over Terms 3 and 4, run by Fizzics Education, absolutely free of charge for primary teachers in the western suburbs. If that is you, or you know someone who would like to attend, register your interest by filling out this online form so we can keep you updated. The short survey will also help us design the sessions, so that we can provide content that you actually want! We will also be running free lunch time/after school science clubs at 4 primary schools in the area. Once a week one of our scientists will lead a fun, hands-on activity for an hour with a group of students who are keen on science! Check out our science club page to find out what these clubs are all about! Vehicle of the future: The Toyota Mirai Peter and Holly posing next to the Mirai Holly barely containing her excitement about getting to take the Mirai for a spin! Once all the hard work was done we got to see the new hydrogen fuel cell car, which isn’t even on the market yet! As you can probably tell, Holly was really looking forward to test driving it. At first glance the Mirai looks just like any other modern car, with all the trimmings and that new car smell. As Holly begins to operate the vehicle, Peter and I were amazed at how quiet it is. Unlike a hybrid car, where the dashboard tells you how efficiently you are using the fuel, the Mirai shows a little diagram of the hydrogen being converted to water. Fancy dashboard showing a diagram of the fuel conversion process! Matt from Toyota tells us that the Mirai is a powerful electric car with the torque of a V6 engine, that uses hydrogen fuel cells to produce that electrical energy. Although, the hydrogen fuel cell car has a longer range so it can go further before needing a top up compared to an ordinary electric car. Hydrogen fuel cell cars get a bad rep with the public because people often associate hydrogen with flammable gas and the Hindenburg disaster. A lot of work has gone into making sure that everything is safe for the driver from refuelling to the operation of the vehicle. Because at the end of the day, this method of taking hydrogen and combining it with oxygen to make energy, with water as its only emission, is a great way for us to get around without producing more pollution! Why haven’t we seen these cars zooming around the streets of Australia already then? Like the electric car, the infrastructure required for widespread use of these vehicles are still being developed. So before that is completed, we will only see these cars on special occasions! Happy teaching, Jaqueline Kao. NEW Primary science teaching book! “Be Amazing! How to teach science, the way primary kids love” Want more ideas for teaching science? Subscribe to the FizzicsEd Podcast!