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Quesst STEM Learning Module

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The Quesst STEM Learning module cover, showing a boy holding a tablet with lines and drawings coming out of the tablet surrounding him. There are drawings of the X-59, math formulas and words like sound, noise, and sonic boom.



Grade Levels

Grades K-4, Grades 5-8, Grades 9-12, Informal Education


Physical Science, Waves, Flight and Aeronautics, Forces and Motion, Sound


Educator Guides, Lesson Plans / Activities, Other Multimedia

Quesst STEM Learning Module

NASA’s X-59 experimental aircraft is the culmination of decades of research on supersonic flight, sonic booms, and noise reduction. In 2025, the X-59 will begin community flight tests which will demonstrate that annoying sonic booms can be transformed into quieter “sonic thumps.” These flights and the data they generate will pave the way for a next generation of commercial supersonic flight.

This Educator’s Guide brings together a curated list of NASA activities and resources that can be used to explore the science and engineering behind the X-59. Our intention is to provide a broad range of activities that can be embedded in units about sound, energy, forces, or engineering. Students can engage with the Quesst mission in a variety of ways—including hands-on STEM activities, engineering design challenges, performance assessments, and more.


Engineering Quiet: Chevrons
Students design a device called a “chevron” that changes sound waves and can reduce noise levels. (Grades 6-8)

Noise: Chevrons Educator Guide

Noise: Chevrons Student Guide (Grades 6-8)

Explore Flight: Wind Tunnels
Students design an airplane and test its aerodynamics in a simple wind tunnel.  (Grades 6-8)

Wind Tunnels Educator Guide

Wind Tunnels Student Guide


NASA’s Junior Pilot Program
The Jr. Pilot Program is a series of engaging activities focused on a specific science concept and NASA program or mission. The first in the series, the X-59, allows elementary students the opportunity to explore our X-59 aircraft and the science of sound. Led by NASA’s Orville D. Squirrel, participants earn a certificate at the end of the publication.

NASA’s Junior Pilot Program: X-59

NASA’s Junior Pilot Program: X-59 (Black and White)

Identify the Sound

Make Your Own X-59
Students will learn how to make a paper airplane version of the X-59.

Make Your Own X-59

Seeing Sound
Sound reaches our ears because sound makes air particles move and bump into each other on a very small scale. This demo uses the reflected laser beam to magnify this motion and make it visible. (Grades K-8)

Noise: Seeing Sound (Grades K-8)

Seeing Sound Demo Video

Good Vibrations
Students learn about transfer of energy, forces, and interactions of energy and matter through hands-on activities. (Grades K-12)

Noise: Good Vibrations

Speed of Sound
Students conduct experiments to determine the speed of sound in air by using water, tuning forks and other materials.

Noise: Speed of Sound (Grades 9-12)

Forces of Flight
Students will learn about motion, forces and transfer of energy as they explore the basics behind the four forces of flight through hands-on stations.

Four Forces (5-8)

More Added Soon!


  1. The X-59/X-Planes
    NASA EDGE: Low-Boom Flight Demonstration
    Low Boom Flight Demonstrator
    History of X-Planes
  2. Supersonic Flight
    NASA EDGE: The Future of Commercial Supersonic Travel
  3. Sonic Booms
    Sonic Booms and the X-59
    NASA EDGE: NASA Lowers the Sonic Boom
    Experimental Aircraft Will Lower the Boom
  4. Sound
    What is Sound?
    Parts of a Sound Wave
    How Sound Travels and the X-59
  5. The Physics of Waves
    Longitudinal Waves
    Transverse Waves
  6. The Quiet Crew
    Playlist of all episodes


All About the X-59: A Digital Experience
Students learn about the X-59 by navigating an engaging website with information about the aircraft, the science of sound, and the people and engineering behind the design.

NASA Supersonic Research Reader
Students read about the history of supersonic research at NASA to provide context for how and why the X-59 was built and answer comprehension questions.

Supersonic: The History of NASA’s Sonic Boom Research (Educator Guides 5-8) + Student Assessment + Aircraft Data File (Excel)

Danielle Koch Leveled Reader
Students will learn about Danielle Koch, an Aerospace Engineer and her research on sound.

X-59 Mini Poster
Mini poster of the X-59 with information on Quiet Supersonic Flight Over Land and the X-59 Vehicle.


Lower the Boom Citizen Science Activity
Students design an inquiry experiment on ambient noise in their own communities and contribute this sound data to a global database of ambient sound levels.
Lower the Boom Citizen Science Guide Educator Guide Next Gen STEM — Aeronaut-X
Aeronaut-X—Zoom without the Boom: Looking to the Future of NASA Aeronautics Innovation

Sonic Boom Flight Recommendations
Students graph air pressure data resulting from sonic booms and make recommendations on where certain aircraft should fly.
Supersonic Flight Performance Assessment