GREENBELT, Md., Oct. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center Visitor Center in Greenbelt, Md. will host this month's Sunday Experiment on Sunday, October 16 from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. EDT. It's a free afternoon of eye-opening, hands-on activities spotlighting the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM), a suite of instruments aboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity Rover, as well as Mars geology.
SAM will help scientists address the possibility that Mars was once able to support life, by understanding the climate and atmospheric evolution of the planet. Because of Mars similarities to our own planet, this research will help scientists predict what may happen predict the future of Earth as well as Mars.
Is the inside of a rock the same as the outside? Students will find out the answer to that question by using straws and Hershey Kisses candy to understand how exteriors are not always the same as interiors. Want to get creative? Students will be given a chance to give their own interpretations of what they think Mars might have been like in the past.
Students will also become little scientists in an activity that helps them understand gas on Mars by acting as SAM's Gas Chromatograph. Using a variety of edible liquids (like fruit juice), students will observe the properties of each at varying temperatures.
The Sunday Experiment, held the third Sunday of each month from September through May, features activities showcasing Goddard's world-renowned science and engineering research and technological developments. Families leave inspired by the activities, wowed by the scientists and engineers, and excited about Goddard's revolutionary research and technology.
In addition to celebrating all things science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, the Sunday Experiment celebrates major science missions that are managed by NASA Goddard and set to launch in the near future.
"The Sunday Experiment is a place where children and adults alike can discover the excitement of Goddard through fun and engaging hands-on activities," said Emilie Drobnes, of NASA Goddard, founder of Sunday Experiment.
For more information on the Sunday Experiment, visit Goddard's Visitor Center Web page:
For more information on SAM, visit: