AAS 202nd Meeting, May 2003
Session 10 Astronomy Education: Middle School to College
Poster, Monday, May 26, 2003, 9:20am-6:30pm, West Exhibit Hall

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[10.19] Education and Public Outreach Programs for Structure and Evolution of the Universe Themed Missions: CHIPS and SPIDR

B.J. Mendez, N. Craig (UC Berkeley)

The Cosmic Hot Interstellar Plasma Spectrometer (CHIPS) is the first NASA University-Class Explorer (UNEX) mission, and was launched on January 12th, 2003. It will study the extremely diffuse, hot gas inside the region surrounding the Sun out to a radius of about 300 light years known as the Local Bubble. The focus of the CHIPS education and outreach will be disseminating products produced during Phases C, and D to classrooms, and through professional development programs, science teacher conferences and other NASA OSS and SEU Education Forum branches. We have also developed an eight-page Educational Brief, titled "Cosmic Bubbles in the Interstellar Medium," for educators and students containing background information on the Interstellar Medium (ISM). Additional classroom testing and presentation of CHIPS activities will occur during Summer 2003 in Berkeley's Academic Talent Development (ATDP) program. One of NASA's newest SMEX missions is SPIDR (Spectroscopy and Photometry of the Intergalactic Medium's Diffuse Radiation), which when launched in 2005 will study the "cosmic web" of intergalactic gas spanning the Universe. The E/PO during Phase B of SPIDR will focus on partnerships with UC Berkeley's Lawrence Hall of Science GEMS program (Great Explorations in Math and Science). The first joint venture of GEMS and SPIDR will be the launch of a new GEMS site at the Lodestar Astronomy Center located in the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science in Albuquerque, NM in June, 2003. The SPIDR E/PO team is also partnering with LHS in the development of a new GEMS Space Science Strand that will include activities focused on the size and scale of the Universe.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 35 #3
© 2003. The American Astronomical Soceity.