The Search For Life on Mars

By Aryan A

From Big Bang to Galaxies

The universe was the size of an atom until it expanded and made more particles.There were particles of energy, quarks and antiquarks which formed protons and neutrons when the universe was a 10th of a millisecond old. When the protons, neutrons, and the anti protons collide they become energy. After 1 second the temperature has fallen to 1 billion degrees and the universe is overtaken by light energy and radiant energy like electrons. After three minutes the particles combine to make helium nuclei. After the temperature has fallen to 3,000 kelvin the protons start to orbit electrons without being stripped apart from the heat. Radiation is now aloud to move along the universe and the fog has cleared. After two thousand years of the big bang Galaxies start to form and our galaxy formed when the universe was 3 billion years old.

The Milky Way Galaxy

Nearly all Galaxies are made up of stars. The Milky Way galaxy has a crust of stars and inside that crust there is some dust. The Milky Way Galaxy has a bulge in the middle which is made of old stars and in those old stars there is a black hole. Our Galaxy is forming with a dwarf planet Galaxy and that means that the dwarf planet galaxy is going to spin with the way our galaxy's arms move. The Galaxy rotates clockwise and the Milky Way Galaxy has four arms. something around each galaxy has a force pulling on it and we call it dark matter because we truly don't know what this mysterious force is.

History of The Solar System

The first planets occurred which were large. The planets formed through constant bombardment and the metal went to the center with the rock on the outside which then cooled off and solidified. The moon was also formed by bombardment that’s why its shell has craters in it. Comets were formed from planetesabuls from the outside the solar system which reach the hot surface of the sun and create comets. Rings around the planets are most likely stray planetesabuls that are being ripped apart by gravity when they get close to the planets. A 15 kilometer object hit earth which made a lot of animals extinct like dinosaurs.


By Aryan A

The Rockets first started with the Greeks . A man named Hero of Alexandria boiled water and put pipes in the water connecting to a sphere which then releases the gas in an l shaped pipe to create a thrust. The Chinese made rockets for religious festivals. The rockets were made of sulfur, saltpeter and charcoal dust. The Chinese then used it in the battle of Kai-Keng. The Chinese had rockets on a stick and the Chinese fired these rockets at the Mongols. The stick was used to guide the rocket while the gas from the rocket propelled itself.

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky thought liquid propellants for rockets would achieve greater range for the rocket. Robert H. Goddard was the first one to achieve a good rocket with liquid propellants. On March 16,1926 Goddard's rocket flew for two and a half seconds , climbed 12.5 meters and landed 56 meters away. The Wright brothers plane's fore runners were Goddard's rockets and that’s when flight began.

Goddard's rockets were became better and he put a gyroscope and a parachute in it so that it returns safely. The Germans made rockets that were than used against London in WWII. The rocket was not as big as the rockets compared to today, the rocket itself had greater thrust because it had a mixture of alcohol, water, and liquid oxygen. These rockets could blow up cities. When the Germans lost many of the unused rockets were taken and some of the scientists moved to the United States while the other moved to the Soviet Union. Then the US and the Soviet Union noticed that the rockets werent only for War but also for traveling in outer space.

The Soviets launched a satellite with a dog named Laika in it, and the dog survived seven days because it had to be put to sleep before the oxygen ran out. Explorer I was sent at January 31,1958. In October that year, the US organized a space program that was called National Aeronautics and Space Administration also known as NASA. NASA was a civilian agency that was trying to peacefully explore space for the good of humans. NASA then sent out more rockets that orbited the earth and landed on the moon. Robots were sent to different planets, satellites let scientists explore the space and our planets, check the weather and contact each other. Rockets have helped us explore the universe.

Rocket Stages

Learn more about this project

Exploration of Mars

Dozens of robotic spacecraft and rovers, have been launched toward Mars ever since the 1960s. These missions aimed at gathering data about current conditions and answering questions about the history of Mars as well as a preparation for a human mission to Mars. The rover Opportunity is still running and is still sending signals back to us. Mars odyssey detected a vast amount of Hydrogen which means water use to run on mars. The orbiter entered Mars orbit on December 25, 2003, and Beagle 2 entered Mars' atmosphere the same day. However, attempts to contact the lander failed. Communications attempts continued throughout January, but Beagle 2 was lost in mid-February.


Rocket Labels And Parts of The Rocket


Rocket Launch Results

The purpose of this experiment was to see whose rocket could go the highest. Everybody used the same rocket kit and made everything the same except for the amount of glue and talcum powder. When we painted the rockets the mass changed because we used a different amount of paint. When we went outside to launch the rocket we launched it the same way as everybody else launched it. When the rockets came down some of the parachutes didn't open and some fins broke. The highest rockets went 89.6 meters high except some of them broke while coming down. Two rockets were tied for 1st place.
The heavier the rocket was, it didn’t go as high, but the lighter it was it went pretty high. If the rockets mass was in the middle it didn’t go to high, but if it was the lightest or the heaviest it went pretty high. The lightest and the heaviest rocket tied for first place. Many rockets were destroyed because the mass of the rocket while coming down crashed it, and since some of the parachutes didn’t open they didn’t recover nicely. The painting really changed the mass because the more paint you have the more mass there is. Everyone used the same kit so there wasn’t any difference in the kit except for the glue and talcum powder. I could improve the rocket by adding more talcum powder to the parachute and adding more fins.

Rocket Launch With Extra Fins Results

The purpose of this experiment was to see whose rocket could fly the highest. In the mass vs. max altitude graph the rockets didn’t fly so well because the rockets that had a not so high or not so low mass didn't go that high an failed. The rockets that had the lowest mass and the highest mass went the farthest . The rocket with the most mass went the highest and the rocket with the lowest mass went 2nd highest. I don’t really think the mass affected the rocket as much as the extra fins did.

In the graph, max altitude vs. added fins the rockets didn’t do so well. We added extra fins on our rockets to see if it would change the height. Some of the rockets failed and flew to the ground but three rockets made it past 30 meters. The fins really changed the rocket because it changed how the air would flow around it and it also changed its direction. The direction of some of the rockets changed a lot while some didn’t really change. I think new fins can help in certain places but if but if you put a fin in the wrong place you could come crashing down immediately.

Robotic History

Early water clocks are sometimes grouped with the beginning of robotics. They began in China in the 6th century BC. The Cosmic Engine, is a 10-metre clock tower built by Su Song in Kaifeng China. China featured mechanical mannequins that chimed the hours, ringing gongs or bells among other devices. Concepts akin to a robot can be found as long ago as the 4th century BC, when the Greek mathematician Archytas made a mechanical bird he called "The Pigeon" which was steam powered.
Al-Jazari, an Arab Muslim inventor during the Artuqid dynasty, designed and constructed a number of automatic machines, including kitchen appliances, musical automata powered by water, and the first programmable humanoid robot. Al-Jazari's robot was a boat with four automatic musicians that floated on a lake to entertain guests at royal drinking parties. His mechanism had a programmable drum machine with pegs that would bump into little levers that operate the percussion. The drummer could be made to play different rhythms and different drum patterns by moving the pegs to different locations. Da Vinci's notebooks contains detailed drawings of a mechanical knight in armor which was able to sit up, wave its arms and move its head and jaw.


Robot Driving Challenge

Lego Mindstorms is a program that lets you tell a robot what to do. With Mindstorms you can tell your robot to go forward left right and many other directions. Lego Mindstorms is a software on your computer and to tell your robot what to do you have to get these little blocks that are on the left side of Lego Mindstorms. With those blocks you can program the motor to go left, right, forward backward, and even make noise. When the right wheel spins fast and the left wheel spins slow it will turn and same with the other side. If you move the wheels forward it will go forward and if you want it to go backward it will go back. This video shows you how we made our robot do its first driving challenge.

Geology tests: our way and the robots way.

Geologists can test minerals in several different ways. One way they can test the minerals is with the streak test. With the streak test you have to scratch a piece of porcelain and see what color you get. Another test is the hardness test, the hardness test can see how hard a mineral is. To try the hardness test you have to get a mineral and an object you will scratch the mineral and see if there is a scratch on it if not then the mineral is harder. You can also do a taste test but that is only with some minerals you can tell the mineral by its taste. These are some ways to do a test on minerals.
The rover was sent to mars with things to do experiments on mars. One of the ways the rover is going to do studies is by drilling a hole in the rock and taking the powder left from the rock then analyzing it. The next way it can study the rock is if it is in a high place it can shoot a laser and take that powder. The rover is trying to get studies so that we can know if life was once on mars and its historical background. The rover is at least the size of a car so it is big enough to do experiments with rocks inside of itself.

Characteristics of Life and Life on Mars

Everything that is alive has all of these characteristics. Living things have to be made of cells, cells are the units of life. They all need something like water or food. All living things are homeostatic that means that we don’t change on the inside. Living things respond to stimuli, stimuli is when something will react to things like we scream if someone scares us. Living things reproduce an grow, reproduce means that it can have an offspring of it's own like we have kids. Living things can also adapt, adaptation means that they will change over time according to where they live or how they live. Respiration is another thing they need because some living things make food and some.


Rovers do experiments on different things on different planets to see if it has life. One of the experiments it can do is taking in soil and heating it up or changing the temperature. The rover can take in soil and mix it up with a little water that had different things in it and the life forms would metabolize the nutrients and let out either carbon dioxide or methane gas, and the methane gas can be measured with a probe that measures radiation. The controlled experiments like heating up and keeping the soil in a dark room did not work out so well, but when you mix the water in with the soil you got a lot of radiation signals from the probe. After they put the test under a mathematical test it said that there could be life in the frozen water beneath.
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