Wednesday November 22nd 2017

A woman’s place is in science

graphLast October in a noisy ballroom in Nashville, Tenn., six girls sat at a round table to design a spacecraft that could land on the moon. They started by thinking about ways the craft could fail. If it lands too hard, for example, the astronauts could be injured or killed. And a parachute won’t help. It works only when it falls through the air — which the moon doesn’t have. At length, the girls settled on two designs. Both relied on springs to soften the landing.

Then came the harder part: Building and testing models. That wouldn’t be easy, considering that their materials were limited to a few drinking straws, a couple of notecards, a small paper cup and a handful of marshmallows. The marshmallows represented the astronauts. The cup was the spacecraft.

 

Read more in my recent piece for Science News for Students, here.

 

More from category

The quantum world is mind-bogglingly weird
The quantum world is mind-bogglingly weird

If you’re interested in the smallest things known to scientists, there’s something you should know. They are [Read More]

Auto-focus eyeglasses rely on liquid lenses
Auto-focus eyeglasses rely on liquid lenses

With round lenses set in super-thick frames, these new eyeglasses look like they belong on a cartoon character. But [Read More]

The Internet of Things wants to link all facets of our world
The Internet of Things wants to link all facets of our world

A 94Fifty looks like an ordinary basketball. You can inflate, dribble, pass, shoot, swoosh and slam-dunk it. But [Read More]

Star Trek technology becomes more science than fiction
Star Trek technology becomes more science than fiction

Fifty years ago, the first episode of Star Trek aired. It started as a quirky science-fiction television show that [Read More]

Archives