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Resources for the segment: "Challenges of Dealing With Atmospheres: Entry, Descent and Landing"
Resources for Educators

Mars Science Laboratory Video Archive -- Find interesting videos to show in the classroom about the technologies and steps for the entry, descent and landing of the new Mars rover Curiosity.

We suggest the following videos:
  • Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover Animation (Full Version) -- This 11-minute animation depicts key events of NASA's Mars Science Laboratory mission.
  • Landing System Drop Test -- This video shows engineers test the first-of-its-kind landing system, the sky crane, on NASA's Mars Science Laboratory.

NASA Animation Shows Mars Science Laboratory in Action -- An 11-minute animation shows the MSL entry, descent and landing sequences. It depicts how the spacecraft will separate from its launch vehicle near Earth. It also shows Curiosity zapping rocks on Mars with a laser and examining samples of powdered rock. A shorter, narrated version is also available at http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20110624.html.

NASA eClips™ Real World Educator Guide: Preparing for a Soft Landing -- Thinking and acting like engineers, students design and build spacecraft models. They calculate the speed and acceleration of the models.

NASA Explorer Schools NASA NOW Minute: Aerobraking -- Entry, Descent and Landing -- Watch this video as NASA engineer Jill Prince explains aerobraking.

Incredible Light Bulb Drop Challenge -- Create a way to slow down a spacecraft so instruments are not damaged.

Mars Pathfinder Egg Drop Challenge -- Design, build and drop your "Pathfinder" from a high place and see if your payload, an egg, survives.

Adventures in Rocket Science Educator Guide -- This guide contains 25 activities designed for informal education venues. Discover how the shuttle used a drag chute to slow its re-entry and how parachute area is related to drop time.

The Courage to Soar Higher -- Activities in these integrated units allow students to explore rockets and build their own wind tunnels.

Vertical Height of the Atmosphere -- Learn about the layers of the atmosphere and make a profile of Earth's atmosphere in NASA's Students' Cloud Observations On-Line, or S'COOL, hands-on activities.

Solar System Exploration Education -- Explore NASA activities to help students learn more about Mars. Build an edible Mars spacecraft; design an entry, descent and landing system to protect your rover; plus do many more.

NASA 21st Century Explorer: Why Do We Want to Study and Travel to Mars? -- Learn more about the robotic missions that have gone to Mars.

Resources for Students

NASA eClips™ Video Clips About Getting to Mars -- With these fun, short videos, learn about which designs are right for getting to and landing on Mars.
Drive the Mars Rovers -- Choose a rover and begin exploring the geology of Mars in this NASA interactive.

Space Place: Let's Go to Mars -- Pack your spaceship and blast off for the Red Planet in this interactive game.

Eyes on the Solar System -- Use this 3-D interactive website to follow NASA's missions to Mars. See what the spacecraft looked like and where they traveled.