Form a small team comprised of children and adults, design a robot, solve the challenge, and be part of the Google Lunar X PRIZE race to the Moon with LEGO® MINDSTORMS®
Target Age Group
Students will understand the relative sizes of the Sun and planets by converting them on a computer to a scale where the Earth is a basketball and the Moon is a tennis ball.
You will need
Computer with internet access
What to do
1. On a rainy day, you can compare the sizes of the planets without going to a parking lot by using Google Sketchup. Start with the self-paced tutorial to learn how to draw circles on the virtual ground. Sketchup allows you to input the radius of circles in a box on the lower right of the screen so that you can get precise drawings. You can also
watch the box in the lower right of the screen to see the dimensions while you stretch out your circle manually.
2. After you have drawn the Sun, add the planets and Earth-Moon system over the top.
3. Even if it’s still raining, you can use Sketchup to add a Google Earth view of your local parking lot to the Sketchup drawing space and place your planet drawings right outside your door, or anywhere you wish.
What's Going On?
For the computations of the diameters for the Sun, Jupiter and Saturn at the scale where the Earth is a basketball, please go to the Planetary Parking Lot Answer Sheet at the end of this Guide.
Download complete guide as [PDF ]