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**Earth and space science**

**Mathematics**

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This set of three videos illustrates how math is used in satellite data analysis. NASA climate scientist Claire Parkinson explains how the Arctic and Antarctic sea ice covers are measured from satellite data and how math is used to determine trends... (View More) in the data. In the first video, she leads viewers from satellite data collection through obtaining a time series of monthly Arctic and Antarctic average sea ice extents for November 1978-December 2016. In the second video, she begins with the time series from the first video, removes the seasonal cycle by calculating yearly averages, and proceeds to calculate the slopes of the lines to get trends in the data, revealing decreasing sea ice coverage in the Arctic and increasing sea ice coverage in the Antarctic. In the third video, she uses a more advanced technique to remove the seasonal cycle and shows that the trends are close to the same, whichever method is used. She emphasizes the power of math and that the techniques shown for satellite sea ice data can also be applied to a wide range of data sets. **Note: See Related & Supplemental Resources for the maps and data files (1978-2016) that will allow you to do the calculations shown in the video. These also include data for different regions of the Arctic and Antarctic, enabling learners to do additional calculations beyond those shown in the videos.** (View Less)

As science extension activities, this book of problems introduces students to mapping the shape of the Milky Way galaxy, and how to identify the various kinds of galaxies in our universe. Students also learn about the shapes and sizes of other... (View More) galaxies in our universe as they learn how to classify them. The math problems cover basic scientific notation skills and how they apply to working with astronomically large numbers. It also provides exercises in plotting points on a Cartesian plane to map the various features of our Milky Way. (View Less)

In these math problems, students will examine the characteristics of water droplets in clouds.

This activity is a short engineering design challenge to be completed by individual students or small teams. A real-world problem is presented, designing buildings for hurricane-prone areas, but in a simulated way that works in a classroom, after... (View More) school club, or informal education setting. Students are given simple materials and design requirements, and must plan and build a tower as tall as possible that will hold up a tennis ball while resisting the force of wind from a fan. After the towers are built, the group comes together to test them. If there is time after testing, which can be observational or framed as a contest between teams, students can redesign their towers to improve their performance, or simply discuss what worked well and what didn’t in their designs. (View Less)

Materials Cost: $1 - $5 per group of students

In this problem set, students learn about rainfall rates and how to convert them into the volume of water that falls.

This collection of 160 math problems covers the 20 science topic themes presented by the NASA/JPL Year of the Solar System (YOSS) website, covering the solar system, planets, the search for life, and robotics. Examples of topics included are: scale... (View More) of the solar system; asteroids; comets; moons and rings; volcanism in the solar system; ice in the solar system; water in the solar system; the Sun, transits and eclipses; astrobiology; magnetosphers and more. It is intended as a mathematics supplement for the science content presented at the YOSS website, and features grade-appropriate and Common Core State Standards-based math problems based on science content for grades 3-12. (View Less)

This is a lesson about the solar wind, Earth's magnetosphere, and the Moon. Participants will work in groups of two or three to build a model of the Sun-Earth-Moon system. They will use the model to demonstrate that the Earth is protected from... (View More) particles streaming out of the Sun, called the solar wind, by a magnetic shield called the magnetosphere, and that the Moon is periodically protected from these particles as it moves in its orbit around the Earth. Participants will also learn that the NASA ARTEMIS mission is a pair of satellites orbiting the Moon that measure the intensity of solar particles streaming from the Sun. (View Less)

In this lesson, learners will construct a 3D scale model of one of the MMS satellites. After, they will calculate the octagonal area of the top and bottom of the satellites, given the measurements of the satellite. Then, learners will compare the... (View More) octagonal cross-section area of the satellites with the circular cross-section area of the launch vehicle to determine if the eight-sided spacecraft will fit the circular rocket hull. This is lesson one of the MMS Mission Educator's Instructional Guide, which uses examples from the MMS Mission to introduce mathematics (focusing on geometry) in a real-world context. The lessons use the 5E instructional cycle. **Note: MMS launched March 12, 2015. For the latest science and news, visit the MMS Mission Website under Related & Supplemental Resources (right side of this page).** (View Less)

This is an activity about using models to solve a problem. Learners will use a previously constructed model of the MMS satellite to determine if the centrifugal force of the rotating MMS model is sufficient to push the satellite's antennae outward,... (View More) simulating the deployment of the satellites after launch. Then, learners will determine the minimum rotational speed needed for the satellite to successfully deploy the antennae. This is the seventh activity as part of the iMAGiNETICspace: Where Imagination, Magnetism, and Space Collide educator's guide. Instructions for downloading the iBook educator's guide and the associated Transmedia book student guide are available at the resource link. (View Less)

In this lesson, learners will first watch a video about the orbit and formation of the MMS satellites to learn about their flight configuration. After, they will research similar facts about other types of satellites. Next, learners will compute the... (View More) volume of MMS' tetrahedral flight configuration and investigate how the tetrahedral volume changes as the satellites change positions. Finally, they will create a report that outlines their findings. This activity requires student access to internet accessible computers. This is lesson three in the MMS Mission Educator's Instructional Guide, which uses examples from the mission to introduce mathematics (focusing on geometry) in a real-world context. The lessons use the 5E instructional cycle. **Note: MMS launched March 12, 2015. For the latest science and news, visit the MMS Mission Website under Related & Supplemental Resources (right side of this page).** (View Less)