The search for life on Mars


Electricity is a every day resource of our human life, for example we use light and that is a use electricity. Electricity can come in different currents, for a light bulb a electric charge going through a circuit from a battery through wires to a switch which goes to the light bulb, and from there it goes trough a wire back to the battery (see example 1). Electricity can also come in different forms, There are three different forms of electricity Discharge, Static, and Current. Discharge is a very uncontrolled form of energy, if you look at a plasma globe that is a form of discharge, because the force of energy is very uncontrolled. Static energy is seen when you rub a balloon on your head and then pick up paper cuttings. Current energy is a flowing type of energy that can be very easily controlled, this is seen when you flow electricity through a wire.
(example 1)

If you were to go to Mars than you would need electricity for just about every thing that you do. In you cabin of the rocket you would need light bulbs for light, all the wired controls would be electric. Also if you wanted to communicate with you partner you would need electricity to get you microphone to the other persons. If you wanted to start the ship then you would need electricity to get the signal to the launch pad and rockets. I our life you use electricity every day because it is used for light and for all the main things that us humans use.


Magnetism is the attraction or repletion in two different magnetic figures, a magnetic figure has all the atoms going in the same direction. Each magnet has a north and south pole this is essential on all magnets.There are three magnetic pieces of matter that are iron, cobalt, nickel, these are not magnetic until you get a magnet beside it. A electromagnet is a magnet that only works when electricity is flowing through the magnet. The electromagnet is very strong and very useful in life because if you wanted to pick up a iron bar that you cant pick up than you can get it on the magnet and then turn the switch off and the iron bar will fall off the magnet. The strongest points of the magnet are the very tip of the north pole and the very tip of the south pole which makes in between the poles the weakest point. All magnetic have a magnetic field which is how far and where the field of magnetism is.

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Figure 1: Magnetic field

On Mars it is needed to have magnetism. You need a compass and that takes a magnetic iron to point at the north and south poles of mars. This is needed so that if your people on earth say to go west then you can go to the west of mars. The magnetic field of mars can keep you safe because the magnetic field might repel and attract some matter. If you find new magnetic material on mars that could be useful to find that and tell that to the world that we know earth. Also the mars rover might have a magnet in it which helps find new material on mars.

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Figure 2: mars rover

Crash course in astronomy

The big bang

The universe busted from a atom to what we know as now to our universe. The universe started small and grew rapidly. The Anti quarks and quarks is what help to make up the universe. Protons and neutrons made up antiprotons, they get destroyed and turn back into energy. The tempter falls very quick. Protons and neutrons make Helium nucleus. At 300,000 years atoms start to be made. 2 billion years later galaxy's begin to be made. The galaxy's were a lot closer before the world came to be. When the galaxy's hit they make a bigger one.

Milky way
The milky way is a insiders view of our planets. There is a disk beyond the galaxy and gas and dust in the middle of the disk. The center is a bulge and to the left about have way out is the sun. Star cluster are scattered in the halo. Four spired arms are seen if you look from the top. In the middle the stars are manly red and yellow. At the middle of the bulge is the nucleus which a black hole with dust. The sun takes 250 million years to go around once. The galaxy could be 5 times bigger than we see it as.

A blast of a star exploding makes cores in the gas which slowly come back together. The core does not want to come back and at the middle the gas heats and a proto star forms. The wind of gas from the star moves the core away and is a new star. The biggest stars are blue and white. A big star is bigger than the sun. The sun is the 5th biggest star but the sun is the brightest though. The sun blows up and goes down to as big as the earth in the stars core it collapse and creates a explosive.

The sun
The sun is much nearer. The corona in the middle of the sun is very hot. The center of the sun is 15 million degrees and is denser than iron. The energy radiates to the end of the core. Solar flares can blast particles from the sun to the earth it is so powerful. The magnetic field keeps the earth safe by putting the heat to the south and north poles. The partials hit the atmosphere making it glow. The sun has it magnetic field which is a lot stronger than the earths magnetic field.

history of solar system
The sun formed when gravity pulled together a cloud of gas and dust. In the disk solid materials accumulated into planets. In the outer solar system 4 very large planets. Which was Jupiter Uranus Saturn and Neptune. The solar system grew disk of there own. In the inner solar system there were too many collisions for big planets to form so the 4 terrestrial planets were made which are earth, mars, mercury, and venus. Moon was made in a collision with earth and a planet about the size of mars.

History of rockets

The Hero engine is a steam powered engine. It had water in a kettle and a fire under the water with a tube coming from the water to a sphere that has 2 L shaped tubes on different sides of the sphere. This allowed the gas to escape from the kettle and make the sphere move in a circle motion. The Chinese made the exploding rockets for festivals and activates made for saltpeter, sulfur, and charcoal dust in a bamboo tube. They then shot the bamboo filled tubes with bow and arrows to make then launch off but soon the found out that it could just launch themselves by escaping gas, and this was the first true rocket. The Chinese made rockets for war and they had a capped in gunpowder with a fuse at the end making it launch itself by releasing gas, it had a stick at the end to make it fly in a general direction.

Chinese exploding rocket

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky a Russian proposed an idea of traveling to space by rocket in 1898. In the early 20th century Robert H. Goddard experimented with rockets. His first experiments were with solid propellant rockets and found out that they were better with liquid fuel. Like the wright brothers he was the forerunner of rockets birth and the true beginning of a new era. In Germany the Society for space travel came up with the first V-2 rocket which was used against London during WW2. The United States got started by a German rocket scientists who came to the U.S.A that shared knowledge which got our space travel started. On the 4th of October 1957 the Soviet Union launched a satellite into space called the Sputnik I. About a year later the U.S army launched Explorer another satellite. After all the space race chaos slowed down the space sciences has gotten to be as we known it as today.

NASA modern day rocket

Rockets Experiment

In our class we did a rocket experiment and got to build our own rockets to put together and then launch. This is useful on a trip to mars because in order to get to mars you must be able to handle a rocket and know the steps in the rockets trip. The steps in the rocket trip are ignition; lift off, coasting, Apogee which is the peak of the rocket then ejection, and recovery. These steps are simple and needed to get to mars and with this you can get a rocket safely to mars. Over all this was an easy experiment and fun to launch a rocket with your partner and the launch was very fun.


Our rocket did well it flew very high and the bad thing was how far away the rocket went. In my group it was Ryan and I and our rocket flew well but it did spired and flew off track to the tennis courts. The painting made it heavy and gave it our own personal look to our rocket. I think that we made our rocket well but we could have made it not so lopsided. It would have helped our rockets flight if we would have made our rocket with more care and made the launch lug strait.

Rover drop

In science class were did a mars rover drop to simulate how the mars rover would land onto mars. Ryan and I made our rover covered in bubble wrap that was in a cup that was in an air filled zip lock bag. The plastic bag had a string that was on the two balloons and above that was a parachute to help slow down the fall. However the string that was holding the bag with our rover in it detached from the balloons and parachute causing the bag and rover to drop and hit the ground very hard. Luckily the rover was still in one piece and our rover had success. I think that next time we need to make a higher quality rover and make the landing softer for the rover.

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robot history

Today Toys such as the Lego Mindstorm help kids learn about commands, as well as having fun with the robot. Robots that are used to help with cars and other components they don’t get tired and employers don't have to pay them. Today robots are used for a variety of reasons. From placing a part for a car on a conveyor belt to entertaining small kids, robots have always been useful. They have taken new life, becoming more realistic and being able to perform more commands. They have allowed us to get to information about the universe around us. For instance, the rovers and orbiter on Mars are still collecting data for the NASA scientists. Robots also are used to help the handicapped such as a robotic arm that are just like real arms. Robots really do make our lives easier.

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Mars rover: this shows the technology from NASA with the robots

In the later years the robots were used for many things but one was that they were human like machines that exist to serve their creators. This did not work to well and the time has changed a lot from before. On the very late notice The word ROBOT is used for the first time in the context of mechanical people in a play called Rossum's Universal Robots. Around 1495, before he began work on the Last Supper, Leonardo Di Vinci designed the first humanoid robot, this is like how the people said that the robot should be the creators server. In all I think that the robots for earlier days and robots now are very different.
Historic robot: this shows how the robot should serve their creator

Programming robots

In class we are discovering how to program a robot to make it move and sense when to stop or run. On our tables we have a programming guide for the LEGO MINDSTORM robot which allows us to make the robot move. The program has many different guides on how to make the robot go, stop, and go certain distances, and turn. This program is essential in making the robot move and turns how you want it to. The robot can move forward, back it can do a point turn and curved turn making the robot very easy to work with.
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Lego MINDSTORM brick which is used for programming

In class we are also using the MINDSTORM program to put sensors on my robot. The sensors are helpful to sense when they need to stop or turn. There are multiply sensors which are the sound sensor, touch sensor, ultrasonic sensor, and the light sensor. The sound sensor is useful so that when you clap you can make it turn or stop, even start instead of having to do that manually. The Ultra sonic sensor sends out waves and they will bounce off of an object and come back to the robot making it stop or turn when it get to a certain distance. I have only done the Sound and the Ultrasonic sensors this is a fun activity to do in class because you get to learn about what NASA has to deal with all the time with there rovers.


Geology on Mars

There are many ways to identify minerals. One of the ways is you can use different objects, such as nails or glass to determine the hardness of a mineral this will help to slim down the rocks. The most common way and not always the best way to classify minerals is to judge them by their physical appearance. Their color and the way they form can give clues to the identity of the mineral. Also, the way the mineral breaks can also give clues about its identity. If a mineral break in clean plates the rocks has cleavage, if it breaks in jagged and uneven chunks, it means the rock fractures. Another method is the hardness test, as for certain minerals have certain hardness levels. When two solids are scraped against each other, the one with the lesser hardness will be scratched. You can also judge a mineral by if it’s opaque or not, especially when shined on with a UV light. Certain minerals will shine different colors when under the light. There is also a streak test that can be used on the rocks, and the color of the scratch on an unglazed porcelain tile. All of these ways work to figure out what mineral you are trying to find out what it is.
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this streak test shows how the different minerals make different streak colors.

The rover Curiosity was sent to Mars and landed, and is now roving to take data from the soil and sending the data to us on earth that allows us to learn about mars. Curiosity has two labs that are taking data to analyzing the rocks and minerals that are on mars. The rover takes the material from mars surface and analyzes the material. The labs use a laser to heat up the rocks and minerals in order to make it easier to identify them. Because it contains these labs, Curiosity's main mission is to uncover the geology of Mars.
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this shows how Curiosity observes material on mars