Earth Science

PocketLab Voyager Study of LIDAR Basics

Submitted by Rich on Thu, 12/14/2017 - 19:09

LIDAR—an acronym for Light Detection and Ranging—is a method for remote sensing to measure distances.  While LIDAR commonly uses reflected laser light to accomplish this, students can investigate LIDAR principles by using Voyager’s Gyroscope and IR Range Finder in conjunction with the PocketLab-Scratch integration.  PocketLab support has described a project in which Voyager was mounted to an RC BB-8 Star Wars toy to map a two dimensional image of a “room”.  In this lesson, the aut

Is Global Warming FAKE NEWS? Creating a Bottle Ecosystem

Submitted by DaveBakker on Tue, 07/25/2017 - 22:56

Can you devise an experiment to see whether increased CO2 (carbon dioxide) in the atmosphere contributes to warming? We found a teacher who tweeted exactly what you need! @MontessoriMicky  shared with us his lesson plan on a Bottle Ecosystem and had his class run an experiment using PocketLab to measure the heat absorption of a glass bottle filled with CO2 vs normal air as a control.

PocketLab Voyager: How to Discover an Exoplanet

Submitted by Rich on Thu, 07/13/2017 - 00:53

Over the past twenty years, scientists have discovered hundreds of what are known as exoplanets—planets that orbit stars outside of our own solar system.   Different groups of scientists worldwide have used a variety of methods to detect these planets.  In this lesson we will investigate a method that has been quite fruitful in finding exoplanets as a result of the Kepler Mission, launched by NASA in 2009.  Another similar mission is CoRoT, led by the French Space Agency.  These missions identify exoplanets by a method called transit, in which the b

Ceiling Fan in Winter

Submitted by PocketLab on Fri, 06/02/2017 - 18:08

Exploration

When it is cold outside, it is often thought that fans aren’t needed. However, it may be that a fan can bring warm air near the ceiling down to floor level, increasing comfort without raising the thermostat. Energy could therefore be saved.

Objective

In this experiment, students will:
1) Determine how a ceiling fan affects the temperature in a room, both near the floor and near the ceiling.

Download PDF for complete lab activity

Saving Energy with Curtains

Submitted by PocketLab on Fri, 06/02/2017 - 18:04

Exploration

Does closing blinds or curtains save energy? Often the blinds or curtains in a room are left open when it is cold outside, even when no one is using the room. Would closing them save energy?

Objective

In this experiment, students will:
1. Determine how to use curtains to save energy when it is cold outside.

Download PDF for complete lab activity

Take a hike!

Submitted by PocketLab on Fri, 06/02/2017 - 17:51

Exploration 

As a hiker changes elevation during a hike, the atmospheric pressure will change. The air pressure at sea level, is vastly different than the air pressure at the top of a mountain. In some regions, it can be even be difficult for people who are not from that region to breathe, because they are not used to the changes in altitude. Using PocketLab, determine the relationship between elevation and air pressure.

Objective