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Clear It Out: Stent Design

45 minutes

Grade level: Lessons for 9-12

Big idea

Students will apply design and engineering principles to the design of a prototype. The prototype will be for stents, whose objective is to clear plaque from clogged arteries.

In the Film

In Superhuman Body, doctors need access to patients’ hearts for multiple reasons. One reason is to combat heart disease. Stents are expandable devices that have numerous uses but mostly allow doctors to widen blood vessels to increase blood flow.


  1. Students will apply design and engineering principles to craft a prototype stent for clearing plaque from clogged arteries.
  2. Students will test their designed prototypes and assess how well they perform.

Videos in this lesson

NGSS Standards

Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.