Destination Mars Additional Information

Recommended Web sites:
You can learn more about the Mars Gravity Biosatellite Program at Institute of Technology).

Follow the adventures of Spirit and Opportunity on Mars at (Jet Propulsion Lab/NASA).

Additional information about Mars and the Mars rovers can be found at University).

Cowen, Ron. 2004. A new flight plan. Science News 165(March 13):170-172. Available at

McDonagh, Sorcha. 2004. Roving the Red Planet. Science News for Kids (Jan. 28). Available at

Sohn, Emily. 2004. Rover makes splash on Mars. Science News for Kids (March 10). Available at

______. 2003. Dreams of floating in space. Science News for Kids (Sept. 10). Available at

Books recommended by SearchIt!Science:

The Mystery of Mars— Sally Ride

Published by Crown Publishers/Random House, 1999.

For many years, Mars was the mysterious red planet. But with the help of unmanned spacecraft, scientists have learned a lot about our “next door neighbor.” Find out what scientists have figured out about its past. See what astronauts would discover if they were to visit there now. Learn about plans for future exploration.

Life on Other Worlds— Ray Spangenburg, Kit Moser

Published by Franklin Watts/Scholastic, 2002.

While “no serious scientist” is pursuing the idea that UFOs could travel to Earth from other planets, “a growing group of scientists is seriously investigating the possibility that life exists on other worlds.” This in-depth look at astrobiology—the study of extraterrestrial life—begins by discussing how people throughout history thought about extraterrestrial life and goes on to explain the beginnings of both our solar system and life on our planet. Then, the book discusses the possibility of life within our solar system, mentioning Jupiter’s moons, and the search for life outside of our solar system, including Project Ozma and SETI.

The Adventures of Sojourner: The Mission to Mars that Thrilled the World— Susi Trautmann Wunsch

Published by Mikaya Press, 1998.

Martians or not, here we come. On July 4, 1997, after a 7-month flight from Earth, a spacecraft crashed down onto the rocky ground of Mars. Why was this mission attempted and what was the outcome? This book details the history of the ideas and observations people have had about Mars, concluding with this special groundbreaking mission to unlock its secrets. It’s a suspenseful story of an extraterrestrial nature, full of color photos supplied by NASA. Take this 119-million-mile trip and see for yourself.

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Power Words

zero gravity A condition in which an object appears to have no weight because it is moving in such a way that it balances out the pull of gravity.

Astronauts in orbit around the Earth experience zero gravity and float around inside their spacecraft. This happens not because the astronauts no longer have any weight, but because the spacecraft undergoes just enough acceleration as it moves around the Earth to counterbalance the pull of gravity. If the spacecraft and its astronauts actually had no weight, they would drift away from Earth into space.

Copyright © 2002, 2003 Houghton-Mifflin Company. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

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