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# NuSTAR Educators Guide: Building a Stable Mast

NuSTAR has a 10-meter rigid mast that separates the optics from the detector. Inspired by this, students will design, test, and build a lightweight mast 1 meter tall that can fully support the weight of a typical hardcover textbook (~2 kg). The... (View More)

# NuSTAR Educators Guide: Focusing X-Rays

Students will use the law of reflection to reflect a laser beam off multiple mirrors to hit a sticker in a shoebox. Since X-ray telescopes must use grazing angles to collect X-rays, students will design layouts with the largest possible angles of... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: \$5 - \$10 per group of students

# Exploring the Milky Way

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)

Audience: Middle school
Materials Cost: Free

# The Inverse Square Law of Light

This lesson provides a way for students to determine the relationship between the distance from a light source and its brightness. Once students discover the relationship, they can begin to understand how astronomers use this knowledge to determine... (View More)

# Discovering Your "Yardsticks" Are "Metersticks"

This lesson uses a simple discrepant event to demonstrate the underlying cause for early miscalculation of the size of the Milky Way galaxy. By standardizing the Cepheid period-luminosity relationship without recognizing there were two types of... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: \$1 - \$5 per group of students

# Determining the Nature, Size, and Age of the Universe

In this lesson, students measure the size of several galaxies to reproduce a plot of Hubble's Law. The goal of this lesson is to give students the chance to simulate the process that led to the notion that the universe is expanding, provide insight... (View More)

Keywords: Data graphing

# Dark Matter NASA Conference

Students explore the evidence for dark matter using the measurements made by the ROSAT X-ray satellite for a small group of galaxies. Prerequisite knowledge: students should be familiar with the Law of Universal Gravitation and able to work with the... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

# Beam Me Up

In these activities, students investigate how gamma ray bursts emit energy in beams (as opposed to emitting light in all directions) and investigate the implications of this on the total number of gamma ray bursts seen in the universe. This activity... (View More)

# Angling for Gamma Ray Bursts

In this activity, students determine the direction to a gamma ray burst using the times it is detected by three different spacecraft located somewhere in the solar system. We assume that all the spacecraft are in the plane of the Earth's orbit... (View More)

# Gamma Ray Burst Distribution on the Sky: The Plots Thicken

In this activity, students look at the distribution of aluminum foil balls arranged in a circle on the floor, and compare them to the distribution of gamma-ray bursts on the sky. This activity is part of a unit designed to use gamma-ray bursts -... (View More)

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