Rube Goldberg Machine Contest to light up HUB this weekend

How many engineers does it take to change a light bulb? Come watch Penn State students compete in the 4th Annual Penn State Rube Goldberg Machine Contest and find out.

Inspired by the "Inventions" cartoons of the late Reuben Lucius Goldberg, this annual "Olympics of Complexity" challenges students nationwide to design a machine that completes a simple task in a complicated way. This year's national challenge: replace an incandescent light bulb with a more energy-efficient, light-emitting design.

The free event will be held on Saturday, Feb. 28, in Alumni Hall at the HUB-Robeson Center. Doors will open to the public at 1 p.m. The contest will start at 2 p.m. and will last approximately two and a half hours.

Sponsored by the Penn State Engineering Society, the competition is open to students in engineering-affiliated clubs throughout Penn State. This year's line-up includes teams from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (University Park); the Engineering Club (Brandywine), the Envisioneers (University Park), the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (University Park) and the Society of Women Engineers (New Kensington).

The winner will be eligible to represent Penn State at the 2009 National Rube Goldberg Machine Contest at Purdue University on Mar. 28.

More information is available online at


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Last Updated March 19, 2009