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Carpe Noctem: Dark Sky Movement

NASA image of USA lights from spaceIs light pollution affecting health and the environment? The world’s first academic center dedicated to studying the quality of night skies hopes to find out. Learn about the dark-sky movement and find resources for “seizing the night” – including marking International Dark Sky Week on April 22 – 28, 2017.

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“Adopt” a Piece of the Planet

NASA Adopt a PlanetIt’s hard to top NASA for an out-of-this-world way to celebrate Earth Day 2017. The space agency is inviting people from around the globe to virtually “adopt” one of 64,000 individual pieces of Earth as seen from space by one of its 18 Earth science instruments.

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NASA’s Real-Life Martian Sfx

Habitat from the movie The MartianIf NASA loves the The Martian, it may be because the 21st Century Fox film starring Matt Damon draws on real-life technologies the U.S. space agency already has or is developing for a manned mission to Mars.

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Ripening Fruit in Space

spaceship shaped like appleIn this NASA activity, students in grades 1-8 learn about the challenges of space nutrition and designing food packaging by observing, measuring, comparing, and contrasting the ripening of fruits and vegetables when exposed to air and the effect of chemical treatments to inhibit ripening.

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Are We Alone?

young astronaut looking for life on mars The year is 2032 and your middle-school explorers have successfully achieved a manned mission to Mars! After establishing criteria to help look for signs of life, they conduct a scientific experiment in which they evaluate three “Martian” soil samples and determine if any contains life.

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Get Me Off This Planet!

spaceship illustration on marsIn this lesson to teach middle school students how a spacecraft gets from the surface of the Earth to Mars, students first investigate rockets and how they are able to get us into space, then discuss the nature of an orbit as well as how orbits enable us to get from planet to planet.

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Solar Plane Soars into History

Solar Impulse 2 lands in HawaiiWhile solar-powered cars have yet to cruise much beyond design competitions, Swiss engineer André Borschberg swooped across the Pacific and into the record books when his solar-powered plane landed in Hawaii on July 3, 205 – five days after taking off from Japan.

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NASA’s Space Ace

Space AceHad the WNBA existed during her childhood, Aprille Ericsson jokes that she might have gravitated to pro basketball as a profession. Instead, the Brooklyn, N.Y., native became an aerospace engineer and NASA’s first African American Ph.D. rocket scientist.

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Camp SOAR @ Texas A&M

Camp SOARCamp SOAR is a five-day summer camp at Texas A&M University for rising high school juniors and seniors interested in aerospace engineering. The 2014 session runs from July 20-25.

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