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ASTRO BLOG

What is a Tippe Top and How Does it Work?

At first glance, a Tippe Top looks like a normal spinning top. A few moments after you spin it however, the tippe top flips over and begins spinning on its thin stem, raising its center of mass upwards! This marvel of a toy stumped physicists and was popular among many well-known figures in the mid-1900s….

How to Tie Some Knots

One of AstroCamp’s best activities is our ropes course! From zipline to skycoaster, we encourage kids to push themselves to overcome the challenge. But there’s a lot of unseen work that goes into setting up these activities! One of the most important jobs is getting all the knots tied! We use an assortment of different…

Does Salt Water Boil Faster?

It seems like there’s an old wives’ tale for everything — from cleaning to maintaining your health, there’s always some trick to doing things better. The same goes for cooking, too! One of the classic examples is to add salt to your water in order to get it to boil faster. But is this actually…

Why Do We Have Seasons?

Happy Thanksgiving! It’s been almost two months since autumn started — the leaves have begun to fall, and the air is getting a lot cooler. Without fail, this season comes at the same time every year and there’s a simple reason for it! It’s a common mistake to think that the seasons change due to…

Newton’s Law of Cooling

One of Newton’s famous contributions to physics was his work in thermodynamics — the study of heat and energy flow. He developed a physical law that showed the proportional relationship between heat loss and the temperature difference between an object and its surroundings: Newton’s Law of Cooling. Despite its name, it can be used to…

What is a CCD Telescope?

During our Space Night, you’ll eventually find yourself in an area with tools that allow you to look at the beautiful night sky. Each station has its own set of binoculars, Dobsonian telescope, and either a Celestron or Meade telescope mounted on an electric motor. But in the center of the telescope area sits another…

Oxidizing Metals vs Organic Materials

When certain metals reach a high enough temperature, they can catch fire. What’s happening here is similar to what happens when wood ignites. The material captures oxygen from the surrounding air and binds it in a reaction that gives off heat and light. This reaction is the fire that we see. We define “organic material”…

How We Landed on the Moon

Since 1966, NASA has been landing the unmanned Surveyor probes onto the surface of the moon to collect data. In December 1968, NASA managed to get a manned spacecraft into lunar orbit with the Apollo 8 mission. The next goal to accomplish was to combine these feats in order to land a crewed spaceship onto…

How We Got to the Moon

During the 1960s, NASA had the daunting task of landing a person on the moon. When John F. Kennedy announced the goal to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade, they had only recently sent Alan Shepard into space for the first time. It would be another nine months before…

How We Got to Orbit

Getting to space is not a difficult task, but staying in space is an entirely different challenge. At the altitude of the International Space Station — 250 miles — a spacecraft must have a horizontal velocity of about 5 miles per second. That’s roughly 17,000 mph. As the mass of the object or vehicle being…

WELCOME TO OUR ASTROCAMP BLOG

We would like to thank you for visiting our blog. AstroCamp is a hands-on physical science program with an emphasis on astronomy and space exploration. Our classes and activities are designed to inspire students toward future success in their academic and personal pursuits. This blog is intended to provide you with up-to-date news and information about our camp programs, as well as current science and astronomical happenings. This blog has been created by our staff who have at least a Bachelors Degree in Physics or Astronomy, however it is not uncommon for them to have a Masters Degree or PhD. We encourage you to also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Google+, Twitter, and Vine to see even more of our interesting science, space and astronomy information. Feel free to leave comments, questions, or share our blog with others. Please visit www.astrocampschool.org for additional information. Happy Reading!

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