In the last blog post, we explored the "A's" and now we will tackle C through I. Why? Well, apparently that's the sweet spot of 400-600 words to grab the reader's attention! Be sure to check out the Launchpad questions at the end of this post for further thought and exploration.
Look close... this is the technology that sent astronauts into space! We wear more advanced technology around our wrists each day in the form of Smart Watches than what sent man to the moon in 1969.
Cosmology- The study of the universe, including its origins. According to NASA, it is “the scientific study of the large scale properties of the universe as a whole” and includes puzzling concepts such as string theory, dark matter, and even the fate of the universe. The average base salary for a Cosmologist in the United States is $83,000 and the rewards are endless!
Escape velocity- In society, we have maximum speed limits. In physics, we have minimum speeds limits! Escape velocity is the minimum velocity that allows an object or vehicle to escape gravity. The escape velocity for Earth’s Gravity Well is 25,000 miles per hour. Now that's fast!
Exoplanets- Planets that are located outside of our solar system. Explore an interactive gallery of the intriguing and exotic planets discovered so far: Exoplanet Exploration Program
Extravehicular Mobility Unit (EMU)- A two-piece spacesuit that allows an astronaut to live and communicate outside a spacecraft. Although the suit is a spacecraft in and of itself, it allows astronauts to work outside of a spacecraft (also known as a spacewalk.) Check out this Interactive Spacesuit Experience to get a better understanding of what it’s like to be in an EMU.
Gravity Well- a deep hole in space, a force that presses us to Earth, an obstacle stretching a million miles up and out, with us at the bottom. The Gravity Well poses our generation’s biggest obstacle and most promising challenge, a new frontier to explore, tame, and domesticate.
Habitable zone- A region in space where planets contain liquid water, between the boiling and freezing points. Seven Earth-sized planets have recently been discovered, three of which are in the habitable zone. This planetary system is called TRAPPIST-1.
Hubble Space Telescope (HST)- A powerful telescope in low Earth orbit since 1990. Hubble boasts an eight-foot mirror as well as four instruments that measure light fromcelestial objects in visible, near-ultraviolet, and near-infrared wavelengths. Take a peek at the mesmerizing collection of images taken from the HST: Hubble Space Telescope Images.
Inverse square law- Any relation where the force between objects (like gravity) decreases with the square of the distance between them. A spacecraft 6,000 miles from Earth experiences one quarter of the gravitational pull that it would 3,000 miles from the planet.
If a physical location were to be named after you, what would it be, where, and why?
Visit this Play and Learn for a fun and interactive way to teach grades K-4 about Extravehicular Mobility Units Dress Me for Space.
Dig Deeper: Beyond the definition in this blog post, what is the gravity well and what promises are held within?
What is the significance of the Treasure Trove of Planets Found, three of which are in the habitable zone?
Here is a free resource to use with grades 5-12 to help students understand how the brightness of light can be used to measure distances to stars and far away galaxies: The Inverse Square Law of Light
“Answering the question ‘are we alone’ is a top science priority and finding so many planets like these for the first time in the habitable zone is a remarkable step forward toward that goal.”