Category Archives: Education

Free Astronomy Magazine – January-February 2018 Issue Available For Reading And Download

Greetings, fellow astrophiles!

The most recent issue of Free Astronomy Magazine (January-February 2018) is available for your reading and downloading pleasure at www.astropublishing.com (click the link to go directly to the issue).

Free Astronomy Magazine was featured as the first of a series of articles on great free online content for amateur astronomers (see A Universe Of Free Resources Part 1) and we’ll be keeping track of future publications under the Online Resources category on the CNYO website.

You can find previous Free Astronomy Magazine issues by checking out our Free Astronomy Magazine Category (or look under the Education link in our menu).

For those wanting a quick look at what the issue has to offer, the Table of Contents is reproduced below.

January-February 2018

The web browser-readable version of the issue can be found here:

January-February 2018 – www.astropublishing.com/1FAM2018/

For those who want to jump right to the PDF download (27 MB), Click here: January-February 2018

NASA Space Place – Sixty Years Of Observing Our Earth

Poster’s Note: One of the many under-appreciated aspects of NASA is the extent to which it publishes quality science content for children and Ph.D.’s alike. NASA Space Place has been providing general audience articles for quite some time that are freely available for download and republishing. Your tax dollars help promote science! The following article was provided for reprinting in January, 2018.

By Teagan Wall

2013february2_spaceplaceSatellites are a part of our everyday life. We use global positioning system (GPS) satellites to help us find directions. Satellite television and telephones bring us entertainment, and they connect people all over the world. Weather satellites help us create forecasts, and if there’s a disaster-such as a hurricane or a large fire-they can help track what’s happening. Then, communication satellites can help us warn people in harm’s way.

There are many different types of satellites. Some are smaller than a shoebox, while others are bigger than a school bus. In all, there are more than 1,000 satellites orbiting Earth. With that many always around, it can be easy to take them for granted. However, we haven’t always had these helpful eyes in the sky.

The United States launched its first satellite on Jan. 31, 1958. It was called Explorer 1, and it weighed in at only about 30 pounds. This little satellite carried America’s first scientific instruments into space: temperature sensors, a microphone, radiation detectors and more.

Explorer 1 sent back data for four months, but remained in orbit for more than 10 years. This small, relatively simple satellite kicked off the American space age. Now, just 60 years later, we depend on satellites every day. Through these satellites, scientists have learned all sorts of things about our planet.

For example, we can now use satellites to measure the height of the land and sea with instruments called altimeters. Altimeters bounce a microwave or laser pulse off Earth and measure how long it takes to come back. Since the speed of light is known very accurately, scientists can use that measurement to calculate the height of a mountain, for example, or the changing levels of Earth’s seas.

Satellites also help us to study Earth’s atmosphere. The atmosphere is made up of layers of gases that surround Earth. Before satellites, we had very little information about these layers. However, with satellites’ view from space, NASA scientists can study how the atmosphere’s layers interact with light. This tells us which gases are in the air and how much of each gas can be found in the atmosphere. Satellites also help us learn about the clouds and small particles in the atmosphere, too.

When there’s an earthquake, we can use radar in satellites to figure out how much Earth has moved during a quake. In fact, satellites allow NASA scientists to observe all kinds of changes in Earth over months, years or even decades.

Satellites have also allowed us-for the first time in civilization-to have pictures of our home planet from space. Earth is big, so to take a picture of the whole thing, you need to be far away. Apollo 17 astronauts took the first photo of the whole Earth in 1972. Today, we’re able to capture new pictures of our planet many times every day.

Today, many satellites are buzzing around Earth, and each one plays an important part in how we understand our planet and live life here. These satellite explorers are possible because of what we learned from our first voyage into space with Explorer 1-and the decades of hard work and scientific advances since then.

To learn more about satellites, including where they go when they die, check out NASA Space Place: https://spaceplace.nasa.gov/spacecraft-graveyard.

Caption: This photo shows the launch of Explorer 1 from Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Jan. 31, 1958. Explorer 1 is the small section on top of the large Jupiter-C rocket that blasted it into orbit. With the launch of Explorer 1, the United States officially entered the space age. Image credit: NASA

About NASA Space Place

With articles, activities, crafts, games, and lesson plans, NASA Space Place encourages everyone to get excited about science and technology. Visit spaceplace.nasa.gov (facebook|twitter) to explore space and Earth science!

CNY Innovation Challenge 2018 – Info Session 31 January 2018

Greetings, fellow astrophiles!

This in from the TACNY email list:

“You have a great program and it should continue. These kids are the future of innovation and business in our community. Please let SCORE know of mentoring opportunities for the next go. After all, this is what we do best.” -Gregory Schwarz, SCORE

The CNY Innovation Challenge aims to spark ideas to develop groundbreaking products or services and to foster entrepreneurship. We know that students have really good ideas that could turn into great inventions and this challenge has been designed to help guide those ideas from concept to completion. The process includes a crucial step – documenting intellectual property to protect concepts that could be used in a patent application. Teams will learn strategies to advance their idea and take a product/service to market. In addition to designing and developing an idea, you will need to have a solid go-to-market plan and a marketing pitch to “sell” your concept. See full rules.

The Challenge is open to students in grades 6-12. There will be winners in two brackets: high school (grades 10-12) and middle school (grades 6-9). Teams need to have a minimum of two students and a maximum of four. Top team prize for the high school category is $1,000 and top team prize for middle school level is $500. Additional prizes will be determined based on the number of entries overall.

Challenge problems:

Choose a problem in one of the following areas and think of a creative solution!

* Create a product/service that would make your school life easier
* Develop a way for students to save time/be more efficient
* Invent a way to increase understanding of various concepts taught in class
* Design an app that will help increase communication or make teleworking easier
* Fabricate an invention that would improve leisure activities
* Conceive an alternative to standardized tests for measuring student performance
* Build a product/service that will help the environment
* Devise a way to enhance family relationships
* Think of an idea that would help students determine a career path
* Generate a product/service that the world “can’t live without”

How to get started?

* Form a team! Talk to classmates about this exciting opportunity. All students will need to have formed a team before they can participate in the challenge. Two to four people per team.
* Send questions (webmaster@cnystem.com)
* Register to participate

Optional Kick Off Info Session on January 31, 4:30pm, at SRC, 7502 Round Pond Rd North Syracuse.

Technology Alliance of Central New York

Founded in 1903 as the Technology Club of Syracuse, the nonprofit Technology Alliance of Central New York’s mission is to facilitate community awareness, appreciation, and education of technology; and to collaborate with like-minded organizations across Central New York.

For more information about TACNY, visit www.tacny.org.