Mars Exploration Rovers: Where Are They Now?
All web seminar participants use online tools that allow them to mark-up presenter's slides or share desktop applications in addition to engaging in chat with others online and answering poll questions

This Web Seminar was developed in collaboration with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) and Arizona State University’s (ASU) Mars Education Program. The event took place on June 5, 2008, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Eastern Time. The presenter was Dr. Steve Ruff, Faculty Research Associate in the School of Earth and Space Exploration’s Mars Space Flight Facility at ASU. Dr. Ruff gave an update on the Mars Exploration Rovers and the Phoenix Lander missions.

The presenter used images to tell the story of the Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, which arrived at Mars in 2004. Since then the Rovers have kept planetary scientists at NASA’s JPL busy as they analyze the data acquired by these robots while driving around the Red Planet. The presenter also gave an update on the Phoenix mission which arrived at Mars in May, 2008. The web seminar was designed for teachers of grades 5-12.

Thirty-four (34) participants were present at the live Web Seminar in addition to the presenters and the NSTA staff. Participating educators represented the states of Arizona, California, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Texas, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. All participants received a one-year subscription to one of NSTA’s SciGuides for completing the evaluation at the end of the program.

Here are some comments provided by the participants at the end of the Web Seminar:

  • "This was wonderful. Dr. Steve Ruff was great. The slides were great
    depictions of what he was talking about. I found myself saying "WOW"
    out loud many times. I have a better idea of specifics on distances and
    the paths each rover took."

  • "I didn't realize that the images (taken by the Rovers) could be
    so detailed."

  • "Presenter was excellent. I have attended the Mars program for
    elementary teachers at ASU and I enjoyed seeing an update."

  • "I really loved all of the photos and information given by the experts. It was
    given in an understandable way that I can share with my students."

Thanks to the participants and the presenter for the learning opportunity, the interactions, and a job well done!


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Underwritten by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory