Use your LEGO NXT kit to measure G-forces on Disney’s attractions!

Via Make: Magazine’s Blog we find this post outlining how to use your LEGO Mindstorm NXT to build an accelerometer to measure the G-forces on various Disney rides at Walt Disney World.

As a physicist, I’ve always been curious (read: obsessed) with things
like the acceleration on roller coasters. So, on a recent trip to Walt
Disney World in Florida I took an NXT with a field-ready datalogging
program & a Hitechnic 3-axis accelerometer attached.


I was actually able to datalog several rides during our stay: at Animal Kingdom, I logged Expedition Everest, Kali River Rapids (missed the big drop however), Primeval Whirl (a "crazy mouse" style ride, with some fun spinning and a few notable drops with low-G sections bracketing them), Triceratops Spin (with my daughters in control). Within the Magic Kingdom, Big Thunder Mountain showed some impressive "negative G’s" (really just low-G points: as the data shows, you are never actually thrown up from the seat), while Splash Mountain actually recorded the peak acceleration of anything I measured at Disney, hitting 2.5 G’s at the bottom of the drop, and Space Mountain also revealing it’s secrets.

I think this enters a new level of fandom. Heck, Disney could sell everyone their personal G-force monitor that would twitter your friends with just how thrilling your day has been at the parks. I think every Pal Mickey needs one of these stuffed inside him.