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Collisions and Craters in the Solar System: Impacts!
Educational Resources


Downloadable Products

Link Description
DPS Slide Set: Another Impact on Jupiter This four-slide powerpoint by the Division of Planetary Science includes basic information for college-level introductory courses.
DPS Slide Set: Asteroid Detected Before Impact This four-slide powerpoint by the Division of Planetary Science includes basic information for college-level introductory courses.


Images
Link Description
Terrestrial Impact Craters This slide set of 40 images shows craters around the world and on terrestrial bodies.
Near Earth Object Program: Images of Meteor Crater in Arizona Meteor Crater (also known as Barringer Crater), the first to be identified as an impact crater, is the best preserved crater on Earth and measures 1.2 km in diameter.
Near Earth Object Program: Images of Chicxulub Crater This is a radar image of the southwest portion of the buried Chicxulub impact crater in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. Scientists believe the crater was formed by an asteroid or comet which slammed into the Earth more than 65 million years ago. It is this impact crater that has been linked to a major biological catastrophe where more than 50 percent of the Earth's species, including the dinosaurs, became extinct.
Craters on Mars These assorted Themis Image of the Day shots show the variety of craters on Mars, taken with a combination of visual and infrared imagery.


Video
Link Description
How to Make a Crater How can cake ingredients be whipped into a moon-like crater? This video demonstrates an impact activity that works in classrooms, camps and at home.
Robot Astronomy Talk Show: Asteroids Will an asteroid strike the Earth and wipe out all life as we know it? IR-2 and his robotic crew make random phone calls to find out.
LRO Observes the LCROSS Impact NASA scientists have revealed the lunar soil inside shadowy craters is rich in useful materials, that the Moon is chemically active and that it also has a water cycle. The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, by observing the impact of the LCROSS spacecraft, helped contribute to these new findings.
Deep Impact Mission Video This video, divided into sections, animates and describes the mission that impacted comet Tempel 1.
Counting Craters on the Moon NASA scientists have been counting craters to create the first comprehensive catalog of large craters on the Moon. Through these data, scientists have discovered that in the Moon's early history the proportion of large impact craters to small impact craters was higher. This provides clues to the chaotic early days of the inner solar system, including Earth's own history.


Podcasts
Link Description
Taking a Hit: Asteroid Impacts and Evolution Collisions with our planet over 4.5 billion years have profoundly influenced the evolution of life. Dr. Morrison, one of the world's experts on the study of asteroid impacts, discusses the past and the future of these catastrophic hits.
Astronomy Behind the Headlines: Impact on Jupiter On July 19, 2009, a dark-colored scar appeared high in the clouds over Jupiter's southern polar region. Dr. Heidi B. Hammel is one of the astronomers who have studied the aftermath of this latest collision to learn about how Jupiter's atmosphere responds to such collisions.
Lunar Crater Clues Impact cratering is one of the most important processes for planets and other terrestrial bodies and what we learn from the pristine craters on the Moon can tell us about the early days of Earth and our solar system.
LCROSS and the Land of Lunar Shadows The LCROSS mission has allowed us to take a peek inside a permanently shadowed crater at the Moon's south pole. The LCROSS team released their most recent findings from their year-long analysis.


Animation
Link Description
Simulation of Moon Formation Impact In these research simulations, the smaller, impacting Mars-sized object impacts the Earth obliquely. Most of the impacting object eventually ends up on the Earth, but some fraction of it remains dispersed in a cloud of debris orbiting the planet. The entire impact sequence covers about 24 hours of simulated time.
Zoom to Meteor Crater This animation starts with a global view of the Earth and zooms down to the Meteor Crater in Arizona.
Deep Impact This animation shows a conceptualized view of Deep Impact's encounter with comet Tempel 1.


Interactives
Link Description
What If It Hit My Town In this interactive, you can adjust the type and size of the impactor and the location on Earth. The program shows the region of the resulting crater, and several of the devastating effects beyond the crater.
Make a Crater on the Moon This interactive allows you to adjust a variety of variables regarding the impactor and the Moon. (This interactive is more appropriate for upper-level high school and college students due to the number and level of detail.)
Planet Impact! Put gravity to work as you use Jupiter for target practice.
What the Odds? In this simple sorting game participants are given a few different threats, and order them by lifetime risk of death.
MoonZoo MoonZoo enlists citizen scientists to classify lunar features. In the Crater Survey you can identify and mark craters of interest to scientists.
Be a Martian Count craters observed from spacecraft studying Mars.
Dawn Clickworkers Contribute to the scientific understanding of the surfaces of solar system bodies -- help DAWN mission scientists categorize their crater observations on Vesta and Ceres.
Night of the Comet This interactive Deep Impact feature includes slides and video about the mission that impacted comet Tempel 1.
Keeping an Eye on Space Rocks This flash interactive investigates Near Earth Objects (comets and asteroids) and craters in our solar system.
Crater Timemap Use the map to explore all of the verified impact craters on Earth, and the timeline to learn when each impact occurred.


Networks
Link Description
The Amateur Observers Originally put together to support NASA's Discovery mission Deep Impact, the AOP is continuing and expanding. They are observing the asteroids Vesta and Ceres in support of the NASA Discovery mission Dawn and comet Hartley 2 in support of EPOXI.
Solar System Ambassadors The Solar System Ambassadors is a nation-wide network of volunteers who are trained to communicate the excitement of NASA's space exploration missions and recent discoveries to people in their local communities.
Museum Alliance The Museum Alliance is a network of museums, science centers, planetariums, observatories, parks, NASA visitor centers, nature centers, zoos, and aquariums that bring current NASA science and technology to their visitors through professional development of their staff and access to NASA staff, content and materials.
Night Sky Network This site can connect you to amateur astronomy clubs, events, a night sky planner, and more.
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Last Updated: 16 Apr 2014