T³ Europe Resources

Pet Car Alarm for TI-Nspire CX OS 4.5

Pet Car Alarm for TI-Nspire CX OS 4.5

Author: Texas Instruments Inc

Topic:  Biology, Computer Science, Physics, STEM

Tags:  Coding, TI-Innovator

Pets suffer when left unattended in a car on a sunny day. Understand the science behind the greenhouse effect. Use math, computer programming and engineering to design a pet-smart alarm system.

Summary: Pets may suffer when left in a closed car on a hot sunny day. The temperature inside the car may quickly rise to 40 °C or more above the outside ambient temperature because of the greenhouse effect. A pet car alarm system could prevent harm to pets by taking action to cool the interior and to notify the owner.

Challenge: Understand the science behind the greenhouse effect and use math, computer programming and engineering to design and build a pet-smart alarm system using a model car.


The Pet Car Alarm project was originally done as a science fair project by the son of Erick Archer of Texas Instruments. The project was then adapted to be a capstone project for a coding club at Coyle Middle School in the Garland (TX) Independent School District.

The intent of the project is to provide a challenging but accessible coding experience addressing a known problem in society that is based on science concepts that are common in the curriculum. We had positive responses from the students and the educators involved with the club.

The resources that follow are based on the materials that we created for the club and some additional materials that would have been helpful.

Please feel free to contact Fred Fotsch (ffotsch@ti.com), Dave Santucci (dsantucci@ti.com), Erick Archer (earcher@ti.com) or Harshal Chhaya (hchhaya@ti.com ) with questions about the project.

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