Pedal on the Petals

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There are two square-wheeled trikes, one for adults and one child-sized. The track is shaped like a flower, with ridges that have catenary cross-sections. Each wheel on the trike is a different size, in proportion to its distance from the center, so each turn of each wheel covers the same angular distance along the flower. One trike has the small wheel on the right, and will go around the track clockwise, while the other has the opposite orientation.

It is important to start the trike with a corner of each wheel set into a trough (low point) of the track. For small children, it may be helpful to start with one pedal up (as opposed to both pedals level).

The mathematics to prove that the correct track shape is a catenary involves integral calculus.

Riders should enter and exit the track only at the entrance to the exhibit; help visitors form a line if there are many people waiting. If the line is long, limit riders to no more than 3 times around the track. Racing the trikes is not allowed. If a visitor engages in unsafe behavior, ask the visitor to leave the exhibit.

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Pedal on Petals
Pedal on Petals
Pedal on Petals