Warm up exercise: Binary Code
Learn how we use binary code
to talk to spacecraft and then use the table provided to encode your own name in binary.
Download the level one/middle school handout.
Download the level two/high school handout.
Activity: From Pixels to Images
You have just discovered a brilliant new supernova remnant using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. The Director of NASA Deep Space Research has requested a report of your results in her office in 45 minutes. Unfortunately, your computer crashed fatally while you were creating an image of the supernova remnant from the numerical data and you also lost a small amount of back up data. To fix the situation you will create, by hand, an image of the supernova remnant.
To do so, you will use raw (or unprocessed) data from the Chandra satellite. Additionally, you will prepare a written explanation of your discovery and answer a few of the Director's questions.
Understanding cosmic distance to a supernova remnant
Students work with a photograph to determine its scale and the time taken by light and matter to reach a specified distance.
Grade: 6-8 /Topics: Scale drawings; unit conversion; distance = speed x time
Rate of change of expanding debris for a supernova remnant
Using a millimeter ruler and a sequence of images of a gaseous shell between 2000 and 2005, students calculate the speed of the material ejected by Supernova 1987A.
Grade: 6-9 | Topics: Measuring; Metric Units; speed=distance/time
Chemical makeup of part of Cassiopeia A's atmosphere:
Students determine the mass of the carbon atmosphere of the neutron star Cas-A.
Grade: 8-10 | Topics: Volume of spherical shell; mass = density x volume