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UC Berkeley astrophysicist Bill Holzapfel takes us on a tour of the South Pole Telescope and explains how it is unlocking the secrets of the Universe. The Mars Phoenix Lander will have been collecting data and sending it back to earth for a month! Exploratorium Senior Scientist Paul Doherty will examine the data and tell us what new information we've gained about Mars. We'll also get an update on our old friends, the Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity!
Learn more about the new mission to Mars! The Mars Phoenix Lander touched down on the Red Planet on Sunday, May 25, 2008, and began collecting data. Phoenix is designed to study the history of water and search for complex organic molecules in the Martian arctic's ice-rich soil. Join Exploratorium Senior Scientist Paul Doherty as he walks us through the mission and shows us the first pictures that the Phoenix Lander sends back! This machinima, a movie made entirely within Second Life (a 3-D virtual world), shows a simulation of the impact of a meteor on the surface of Mars. Scientist working on the South Pole Telescope explain data collection, focusing on the telescope's receiver, a precise instrument with a thousand "eyes" pointed to the distant universe. An introduction to making a simple rocket and a rocket launcher, including a demonstration of how the finished model will fly. A step-by-step demonstration of how to make a simple rocket, including a discussion of materials needed and where to get them. A step-by-step demonstration of how to make a launcher to send your rocket sky-high, including a discussion of materials needed and where to get them. The science behind the rocket and rocket launcher in the Bottle Blast Off activity, with troubleshooting tips for how to fine-tune the nose and fins of the rocket for better flight. Also includes tips on how to take the activity further by making a simple inclinometer to measure how far your rocket flies.
Hear more from scientists working on the Ice Cube telescope at the South Pole.