NRO Jr: Kindergarten through 5th Grade - Text Only Home Page

Simulations

Have you ever tried a simulation? They are not quite games, but they are fun to play with. Here are a few Ollie came up with for your enjoyment. Simply click on the page image to start the simulation.

While in orbit, Ollie can see comets better than people can. This is because he is in space and has a great view of everything out there. The only time we can see comets is every few years when they pass close to Earth. Thanks to your computer, you can have a chance to control and play with a comet simulation. When you move your mouse, the comet will follow, even below the Earth’s horizon. Try it out!

(The image on the opposite page of this text is of the woods at night. Many stars are in the sky, there is a half-moon, trees and tall grass below, and a golden comet with a long tail is flying around.)

Imagine being able to control a Mars probe as if it were a remote control car. With this simulation you can. Just move your mouse around the landscape and the probe will follow, even into caves. There is a storm brewing up on the simulation, so you might lose communication with the probe. If the storm gets too powerful see if you can stow the probe away in the cave until it clears.

(The image on the opposite page of this text is of the red Martian surface with wind blowing and the bronze Mars probe racing around leaving behind white tracks on the ground.)

Here is an interesting simulation featuring Ollie himself. It is a simulator-in-progress to show how orbits can be changed just by moving a certain element. There is still much work to be done on this one, but we thought you would like to play with what we have so far. See how far, or how close, you can get Ollie to orbit the Earth. Have fun!

(On the opposite page of this text there is picture of outer space with mixtures of reds, blues and yellows. Ollie the Satellite is racing around Earth and there is also an “X” and a white spot. Ollie is on a white round track around these three objects and there is a white square on the track. On the upper left-hand corner of the screen is the following: “X” equals the Midpoint- Use this to move the simulation around in space. Earth equals the main focus point of the orbit. The White Square equals Apogee, the fartherest point from Earth. Move this to adjust the eclipse of the orbit. The White Circle equals the Focii. This is the imaginary point between the Apogee and Earth. This is used to tune your orbit.)

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