Student Area - Safety Guidelines for Experimentation, p. 5

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[Student Area|Teacher Area|Judge Area]

Safety Guidelines for Experimentation, continued

Safety is the watchword when exhibiting at all STEM Exhibitions. Without exception, the highest standards of safety are required. The following are safety measures of particular concern.

Electrical Hazards
All electrical equipment must be constructed according to standard electric safety codes. If there is doubt, consult with the electric shop teacher or an electrician. The city of Chicago’s electrical code for public exhibits requires all electrical devices connected to the circuits within the building to be grounded, using type SO three-wire conductors.

All wiring, switches, and metal parts carrying current must be completely enclosed by barriers on all sides to positively prevent observers from reaching into the exhibit where they might receive an electrical shock. Exhibits requiring electricity must have the three-pronged or polarized electrical plug attached to the end of the eight foot or longer electrical cord on all exhibits except those using lamps only. All electrical apparatus must have the UL label. All electrical extension cords needed for STEM Exhibition projects will be provided for exhibitors at the Museum. You will not be allowed to provide your own cord.

Doorbell push buttons must not be used to control 110 volt apparatus. Use toggle or push-button switches designed for proper load. Non-insulated switches, such as knife switches, will not be permitted. All electrical joints must be properly secured and insulated. All electrical joints must be permanent and soldered.

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulations are specific with regard to spark-discharge equipment. If equipment containing such devices is used, the machine must be operated so that it does not cause harmful interference to normal channels of communication. The judges are sufficiently aware of the operations to understand what is intended with the spark-discharge device, provided that the student can explain the operations in his/her own words. Do not operate equipment until authorized by the judges to do so.

Mechanical Hazards
All moving parts of machines and/or electrical circuitry must have adequate protective coverings or guards.

Push-buttons and levers must be securely mounted on exhibits. They must not be attached to tables or walls.


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