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Astronomy Data Online NVO Outreach Meeting July 11, 2002 Jordan Raddick Johns Hopkins University

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Presentation on theme: "Astronomy Data Online NVO Outreach Meeting July 11, 2002 Jordan Raddick Johns Hopkins University"— Presentation transcript:

1 Astronomy Data Online NVO Outreach Meeting July 11, 2002 Jordan Raddick Johns Hopkins University

2 Problems of Teaching Astronomy Most classes are taught during the day Light pollution hampers observing Textbooks provide limited data –Often invented or out of date Equipment is prohibitively expensive Content quickly becomes outdated

3 Open 24/7/365 The virtual sky is always dark The seeing is excellent Terabytes of data are available –Data at all wavelengths Most data access is free Students use high-quality data from large professional observatories Partial Solution: Online Data Archives

4 One of the largest sky surveys in history –25% of night sky –100 million objects; 9 th to 23 rd magnitude –1 million spectra All data will be available online Goal: create a 3-D map of the universe Image courtesy Adrian Pope, JHU The Sloan Digital Sky Survey

5 SkyServer Education and outreach site for the SDSS – Will make all SDSS data available to general public Tools for accessing data –Images (JPEG, with links to FITS) –Spectra (GIF, with links to FITS) –Full photometric & spectroscopic data Projects for students and teachers

6 Navigation tool –Point-and-click access to sky Object Explorer –all data for a single object Query tool –SQL query language allows students to search data –Data can be exported to spreadsheets SkyServer Tools

7 SkyServer Projects Projects for upper elementary through college students Research Challenges –Independent, open-ended follow-up projects

8 Teacher Resources Full lesson plans available for all projects Goals, background knowledge, structure Advice on leading classes through project Sample solutions and rubrics Correlations to education standards –AAAS Project 2061 –NCTM Principles and Standards for School Mathematics

9 Example – Scavenger Hunt Designed for 4 th -8 th grade Look for different types of stars and galaxies Introduction to quantitative astronomical data

10 1929 – Edwin Hubble discovers expansion of universe Foundation of modern astronomy Students repeat discovery with SDSS data –Honors/AP high school –Intro college Example – Hubble Diagram continued

11 Example: Hubble Diagram Students calculate relative distances to galaxies Identify galaxies from images Use several methods to find distance continued

12 Example: Hubble Diagram Find redshifts (velocities) from observed spectra Use same templates as SDSS scientists continued

13 Example: Hubble Diagram Graph redshift vs. distance Straight line suggests universe is expanding Students asked about logic of argument Over 5,000 galaxies to choose from

14 The Power of SkyServer Richards, et al., Astronomical Journal, 2001 Lauren Saks, freshman creative writing major, JHU

15 Lessons Learned Creating tools is long and arduous –Browser compatibility Involve professionals from the beginning –Writers/curriculum designers –Teachers Different levels of education are very different audiences –K-3, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, introductory college, college majors continued

16 Lessons Learned Strike a balance between taking students seriously and confusing them –Challenging, but not too challenging –Reading level important –Were not quite there …and still learning…

17 Other Online Data Archives Many available, but scattered Educational support varies See SpaceLink, Hands-On Astrophysics (AAVSO) Telescopes in Education ISS-AT Lewis and Clark Education Project (EOS) Fire Information System (EOS) NASA Life Sciences Data Archive Landsat 7 Gateway The Planetary Rings Node SETI@Home Earth from Space Heavens Above Human Spaceflight Real-Time Data Multi-wavelength Milky Way Hands-On Universe StSci Archive (MAST, DSS, VLA FIRST, SDSS) Amazing Space activities (Galaxy Hunter, Hubble Deep Field Academy SkyView Distant Suns Home Planetarium HEASARC ROSAT Hipparcos SkyPlot Advanced Composition Explorer Mars Student Imaging Project The Daily Martian Weather Report PDS Mars Explorer

18 NVO Data in Education NVOs goal is to collect all data in one place All wavelengths –Need to teach multi-wavelength astronomy Can help unify disparate educational efforts under one rubric Were here to design that rubric –Here is my outreach fantasy of what that rubric might look like…

19 A model: The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) Started in 1990 as searchable index of lists compiled by users of rec.arts.movies newsgroup Centralized into web site in 1993-94 Incorporated in 1995, bought by in 1998 Redesigned in 1999 for ease of navigation continued

20 A model: The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) The IMDb didn't start as a dream to build a business or a web site. It started as a dream to make a tool that we, as movie fans, would find really useful and fun. continued

21 A model: The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) The NVO outreach web site didn't start as a dream to build a business or a web site. It started as a dream to make a tool that we, as astronomy fans, would find really useful and fun. continued

22 A model: The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) Data on almost 300,000 movies –Full cast & crew (cross-referenced) –Reviews, trivia, links Data submitted by registered users and checked by staff All data are free continued

23 A model: The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) Acknowledged source of accurate information –The Bible of movie information, even to professionals Education potential in film classes –Not sure how much educational use Over 12 million visitors per month

24 The Internet Sky Database? The NVOs goal for astronomers –make all astronomy data available through one framework Goal for the Public? –Make all astronomy data available from one web site NASA popularity proves demand is there –Pathfinder web site got 100 million hits from July 4-7, 1997 continued

25 The Internet Sky Database? Need to develop powerful tools –Many questions will begin: where do I look in the sky to find… –Marks vision from this morning –Consult with planetarium software developers

26 The Internet Sky Database? Educational uses will grow out of tools Need to market to general public We could become The Bible of astronomy information

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