Mission: Mars

Mission: Mars


Using online research from the Mission: Mars student esheet, and your book, Mission: Mars, help create a mock Wiki page explaining the role of technology in making it possible for humans to reach Mars by 2035.

Motivation Questions

Curiosity Rover Report: Rover Walkabout
Name three of Curiosity's instruments and describe how technology helps produce information about the Martian landscape.



Why is the Martian geologic feature called Pink Cliffs interesting for scientists to investigate?



Scholastic Mission: Mars
Why is Mars interesting to study?



Why does an astronaut talk about ping pong? Do they play it in space?



The Making of Mission: Mars
From the left menu bar, select the Drawing and Paintings page and go there. What kind of things does Pascal Lee draw, and why?



Now click on Paintings in the left menu bar: Compare the Mars Dust Storm painting with the Human Exploration of the Martian Moon Deimos. What do they have in common in terms of what he chose to paint?

Directions for wiki

You should write and/or illustrate two sections, as explained below.

  1. Everyone is to complete an About Mars section, for general background. Use your book and own Web research.
  2. Alone or in pairs, create entries on this student sheet ONLY for your Group’s Wiki topic. Emphasize the role of technology in the planned U.S. human mission to Mars by 2035.

About Mars

Mars is the ____planet from the ___ and the second smallest planet in the solar system after _______.  It is named after the Roman god of ________. Due to the presence of _________on its surface, its _____is _______ and gives rise to the nickname “The ______ Planet.” Mars is a terrestrial planet—meaning it is made of ____, not gas—and has a thin __________.  Many of its topographical features are similar to Earth and Earth's moon, among them: impact craters, ________, ____________, ___________polar ice caps. Mars has a rotational period and _________ that produces seasons.


Topic 1. Getting to and Landing on Mars:  Describe challenges to landing on Mars. Explain the benefit of Delta II propulsion technology. Sketch or Illustrate the “Seven Minutes of Terror” and main steps of descending to the Martian surface.




Topic 2. Living and Working on Mars: What life support is needed? What is an extremophile? What do they tell us? How and where do scientists collect samples and make observations on Mars?



View the Mars Science Laboratory Rover video and describe 3-4 technologies the robot uses on its head, neck, and body to gather data that provide evidence for conditions on Mars.




Topic 3. Communicating about Mars: What kind of technology is needed to connect to Earth from Mars?


What kind of messages could be sent—will be sent? A poem or haiku?




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