astronomy paper propose a mission to space- College Paper Lab |

College Paper Lab

astronomy paper propose a mission to space- College Paper Lab |

In this project, you will write a formal paper written at a college level, double-spaced, your name/date/title on the first page. This paper will be a research proposal to NASA, proposing a new unmanned space probe to be sent to investigate an object in our solar system other than the Earth. The purpose of science is to learn new things about the universe, so your probe must be designed to solve mysteries, make discoveries, answer questions, gain information, and learn about some object in our solar system. Professional scientists are constantly writing proposals, which are reviewed by panels of other scientists who select the very best to receive things like funding and telescope time.

Your mission must be a new idea. I do not want a report about an existing mission that NASA has launched or is working on. I want you to use your creativity and your knowledge of astronomy to come up with your own unique idea for a mission. Of course NASA is working on a lot of missions, for example a mission to Jupiter. This doesn’t mean that you can’t propose a mission to Jupiter. It means that you can’t propose a mission to Jupiter that is identical to the one that you can find on NASA’s web pages. You have to invent your own spacecraft, deciding how it will get there and what instruments it will carry. Your goal in this paper is to convince NASA that this is a very important mission and will answer lots of important questions, so they should spend the money necessary to build and fly your mission.

This paper must answer the following questions:

  1. Where will this probe go? You may send it to any place in our solar system. Your proposal should contain a detailed and thorough introduction to the body you plan to study and what we currently know about it.
  2. What other missions (if any) have been sent to your target? What missions have returned data from this body? What are our principal sources of information about this location? Discuss the missions that have told us about this target in the past and report the principal findings of each mission.
  3. Will this probe be a lander, an orbiter, a flyby mission, or something else? If it is a lander, will it be a rover? How long will this mission last?
  4. What instruments will this probe carry? Explain the purpose of each instrument, and why the data it will return is important and useful. (Examples of instruments: The Voyager probes carried visible light cameras. The Magellan probe to Venus carried radar so it could map Venus’ surface under the thick clouds. The Galileo probe to Jupiter carried devices to detect magnetic fields. The Viking landers on Mars carried mini-biology labs in order to look for bacterial life.)
  5. What scientific question(s) will this probe answer? Explain the unsolved mystery or mysteries that your mission will be designed to address. Your proposal should contain a detailed and thorough introduction to each of these unsolved mysteries. State your questions explicitly, using a question mark at the end of each question. Please be specific, and be sure to explain exactly how the instruments carried by the probe will allow it to answer each of these questions.
  6. Why are these scientific questions important? Make a persuasive case for why your mission would be a worthwhile use of NASA’s resources. Remember: The goal of any scientific investigation is to gain new knowledge about our universe.

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