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Learners will study the essential components and variables of an ion propulsion system. Activities include an on-line ion propulsion engine simulation and design. Included are changes in energy and fuel consumption as a result of variable changes... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Free

Learners will investigate how water and ice exist in the atmosphere as they study water vapor condensing, find that clouds are made of tiny droplets of water, and notice that snow forms in clouds. Activities include demonstrations by the teacher,... (View More)

This is a detailed historical lesson about comets, distant icy worlds often visible to observers on Earth. Learners will consider the essential question, "What are comets?" They will practice observation skills as they enact a story of comets... (View More)

Learners will demonstrate the size (volume) differences between Earth, Earth's Moon, and Mars. An extension is provided to estimate the distance between the Earth and the Moon, and the Earth and Mars, using the scale of the play dough planets'... (View More)

Learners will explore the relationship between angular size, actual size, and distance by using their finger, thumb and fist as a unit of angular measurement. Includes teacher background, student data sheet, and extensions.

This is a design challenge about heat transfer and insulation. Learners will apply the scientific method to design and build a container that will keep items cool when placed in boiling water. They will practice collaboration in team-building and in... (View More)

Audience: High school
Materials Cost: Over $20 per group of students

This is a lesson about designing and building an effective sunshade for a model MESSENGER craft. Learners will build a model of MESSENGER. They will use a scientific approach to solve problems and work as a cooperative team. They will discover their... (View More)

Learners will design and conduct experiments to answer the question, "how does distance and inclination affect the amount of heat received from a heat source?" They will measure heat change as a function of distance or viewing angle. From that... (View More)

This is a lesson about radiation and the use of the scientific method to solve problems of too much radiation. Learners will build snow goggles similar to those used by the Inuit (designed to block unwanted light, while increasing the viewer's... (View More)

Learners will construct a simple device to measure how effective different materials are for protecting against sunlight, explain how heat relates to the motion of atoms and molecules, describe how heat can be transmitted from one place to another,... (View More)

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