Đang chơi bàiWhat we do here is, we build the explorers [satellites, spacecraft and probes] that go onboard the spaceships. So anything that goes up and kind of orbits the earth or goes out to space and visits other planets, we’ll build here, but other folks will build our spaceships for us.
What is the James Webb Space Telescope?
Đang chơi bàiThe itself is meant to follow up the , so there are a lot of differences and similarities.
Đang chơi bàiSo the Hubble [Telescope] orbited [moved around] the earth; whereas James Webb [Space Telescope] to do its work, it has to go literally almost a million miles away from the earth. And it needs to do that to look in what’s called the and it needs to operate at a very cold temperature, we’re talking like -400 degrees F [Fahrenheit] in order to do what it needs to do.
Đang chơi bàiSo this is a scale model [smaller version] of what the eventual James Webb Telescope will look like. What we have here is called a primary mirror and what happens is light comes in, bounces off of here [the primary mirror]; goes into the secondary mirror. There’s a third mirror [behind the primary mirror] and all of our science instruments are located back here [behind the primary mirror]
What’s interesting here is with this big primary mirror, it’s made out of all different smaller mirrors and it’s about six times larger than the Hubble mirror.
What we have down here [below the primary mirror] is called the sun shield. We need to keep all of these instruments cool, and on this side [below the sun shield] warm. So this side, over here, [the top of] the sun shield, it’s almost like you have a million SPF sunscreen protecting all of the instruments up at the top.
Đang chơi bàiWhat’s behind me is a very, one of the largest clean rooms on the east coast. Everyone who works in there has to have a clean room suit and put on a mask and it’s very important to keep clean because the James Webb Space Telescope is an optical item [relating to or using light]. So we don’t want anything like dust or smudges or anything like that, or oils, to get onto the mirrors.
What advice do you have for kids?
Đang chơi bàiTry your best in school and always try and participate. I think one key trait here and almost anywhere is the ability to speak and listen. So if you’re able to answer questions or ask questions in class and become comfortable doing those things, that’ll help you out in the long run, no matter what you do. If you want something in engineering, looking up things like mechanical engineering drawing classes, things like that, that help you interpret [understand] drawings, that will be beneficial.
Joy Beasley, Cultural Resources Program Manager: What most people think about when they think of is going out in the field and digging things up and finding bones and pots and things like that. And that's certainly a big part of what goes into archeology. But probably the bigger part and the more important part is being able to explain what those bits and pieces actually mean.
We use things like shovels and sometimes picks. We also use smaller like trowels or smaller digging spades.
Kate Birmingham, Archeologist: One of the tools that we use is something called a screen. Which it's sort of like your window screen, but a little bigger. And we put the dirt in there and shake it. So what that does is it separates all the smaller dirt particles from the artifacts (handmade objects) and then you look through what remains in the screen.
Joy: This was actually part of a plantation (large farm or estate) that was established in 1794 by a family of French people. They had about 748 acres total and they had 90 enslaved laborers in their possession.
Đang chơi bàiAn eyewitness account that gave us a little bit of a clue as to the general location of where the slave quarters were, and then we really had to go out and start digging. We uncovered just a wide . Everything from broken glassware and ceramics, to rusty old nails and pieces of hardware. Lots of food remains, so bones and shell.
Kate: This is a shell pendant and this is made of oyster shell, like the shell that we have here. So this would've been made, likely by one of the enslaved individuals. And they would've taken the larger shell and they would have made it into this decorative object and then inscribed all of these little lines that go down here. And the hole that they would have probably put a cord through to wear it.
Đang chơi bàiThis is actually an 1817 U.S. large cent, which is equivalent of what today is the penny. And you can probably tell that it's much bigger than a penny today. And that's one of the attributes (characteristics) along with the date that help us figure out when this was made.
What’s cool about Science is scientists have these ideas and they don’t know whether they’re [ideas are] true or not. And to convince other people, they do experiments [a scientific test]. They try to prove it [their idea] and it’s really fun when they finally do prove it and say “A-ha! I was right!” and then they share it [their idea] with the world and people see the world a different way.
Why did you want to study the brain?
I think I thought the brain was interesting because it’s a lot of “us,” who we are. But when you learn about how it works, all the little machinery in it, all the things it does, it actually is [a] really sophisticated machine.
I am at the so we’re interested in how the brain relates to addiction. An addiction is when you do something that’s bad for you, but you just can’t stop. Like some people get addicted to drugs; they take the drugs they know they’re bad for them, but they just can’t stop doing it.
And we believe that addiction is a brain disease [illness or sickness] and that’s why we study the brain is we want to understand how the brain gets addicted to drugs and how we can get a person to be un-addicted by changing the brain.
What’s your day like?
Each day is different. Some days I go and talk to kids at schools about brains. Some days I talk to famous scientists. They call me with great ideas about what they discovered. It’s almost like, as if would call me and say “Hey Dave! I just came up with the !” Everyday involves some learning, something new I learn about the world in Science.
Do you have any advice for kids?
Đang chơi bàiKeep asking questions. Keep trying to discover things. Don’t accept things for just the way they are. I mean, scientists that’s what they do. They question.
Meet Adan, a telecommunications engineer for NASA. He talks about his job and the MMS mission.
Adan: I basically design communication systems for spacecraft.
What is a communication system?
A communication systems is the ears and mouth of the spacecraft because it allows for the ground station on earth to send commands to the spacecraft for them to be processed. And also while the spacecraft is orbiting earth, it’s collecting all this good data that needs to be sent back to earth.
Đang chơi bàiNarrator: One of Adan’s projects is the communication system for the . NASA wants to learn more about the Earth's protective magnetic layer, also called the magnetosphere, and the sun.
What I have in my hands right now, it’s the real antenna. The transmitter and receiver are connected to here. So if you need to transmit, you need to send your signal through here, it goes through this system, and it radiates into space.
Đang chơi bàiAnd whatever station is on the ground [earth] will pick up that frequency [signal] and you can actually receive all the information that you want.
Đang chơi bàiNarrator: To make sure the antennas for MMS will work as they were designed, Adan and other science engineers use a special room called the Anechoic Chamber.
You’ll notice that it has, it’s full of pyramids, tiny pyramids made out of foam. That carbon foam would actually absorb RF [radio frequencies].
Đang chơi bàiNow you know that if you’re transmitting through a regular room, a lot of the energy bounces back and forth. You don’t want the energy that comes or bounces from other sources. So that’s what the pyramids are there for. Anything that hits those pyramids, it actually gets absorbed and not reflected.
What advice do you have for kids?
Science can be challenging at times. Math can be challenging at times. If you see something and you’re curious about it, just ask the question; it’s not gonna hurt anybody. It’ll make you a better person just because you know something that you didn’t know yesterday.
Đang chơi bàiCoding is the process of building websites, applications [apps]. One thing that I know kids are really into is Minecraft. That whole game has been built on code. So has all of the social media, , , has all been written by people who write code.
Explain writing code
Writing code is telling the computer exactly what to do. It’s telling the computer to show these colors. When you click this button, it will lead you to another page.
You get to see your results, really fast. Either results that are wrong or results that are right. There is something really beneficial to seeing what you’ve built instantly. And being able to see other people interact with it.
Where can kids learn code?
Đang chơi bàiThe one that I always recommend to start off with is . And it gives you an introduction and it gives you a taste for it.
Đang chơi bàiIf we see our young people, especially young girls find an interest in it, we should be encouraging it. I think these programs that center that is so important and I hope that we can do that a lot more.
Once you code, you really see, like wow this is an amazing thing that people can do and it’s so exciting for young people to be excited about that. It kind of gets you on more of a personal level with technology.
Đang chơi bàiIt isn’t just about the technology, it isn’t about the Science, it also isn’t about just coding. It is around building things that connect people.
As a marine biologist we get to study the ocean and all the animals and creatures that live in it. I didn’t spend much time near the ocean, but once I saw the ocean, I became really fascinated with it. To be underwater and seeing things that were different and it just sparked that curiosity.
What do you like about your job?
The most fun parts of my job are that I’m going to see something and learn something new everyday and that I get to travel. I get to meet wonderful people who are also excited about what we’re doing.
Đang chơi bàiThe beautiful part of doing this job is it’s hard to say that there is a typical day. It’s the excitement of discovery. It’s the chance to be wowed and have that sense of wonder every single day.
What's your favorite animal?
Well my favorite creature is certainly the cowrie, which is a type of snail.
I mean they’re spectacular and they’re beautiful; they’re very shiny and most snails aren’t as shiny or maybe they’re only shiny in the middle where the animal comes out. It’s because the animal comes and covers the whole animal when it’s alive, so that makes the shell nice and smooth.
Đang chơi bàiEach of these different looking ones are different species [a group of living things] and they all have slightly different habitats [home of an animal or plant] that they live in, a different preference, different things that they like to eat. So you can tell from the smallest to largest, and yet they’re kind of in the same family, so they kind of have the same general shape, the same general feel.
Advice for kids
Đang chơi bàiIf you’re interested in pursuing marine biology or any kind of biodiversity [variety of life] study, I would encourage everybody to just get out and get out and walk around and observe the environment. Take the time, stop, look and ask questions.
Đang chơi bàiThe fun part about Science is that we’re still finding and learning and discovering new things about the ocean, about almost any place on the planet. And so there’s a lot of opportunity to explore.
What really impacts [us] the most is the things we use everyday, our phones, applications [apps], technology, websites. Someone is building this and are the people that are building it look like me or other people? Do they look like a diverse [different cultures] community?
A developer is someone that takes coding languages and builds website and applications. I am a front end developer. I’m working now on HTML and CSS [code to create websites] and really trying to improve the way that the website that I’m working on shows up on the internet [online].
What’s your day like?
It changes everyday. There are some days that I welcome guests from different countries who are wanting to know how to do what we do here at 18F. Other times I am sitting at my computer trying to fix bugs [errors in a computer program], trying to center a column or make a button look pretty.
What is 18F?
18F is group of technologists that are in the government. The group I’m surrounded by here at 18F are folks who are passionate about making the U.S. Government accessible [easy for people]. They happen to be people who know how to code and they really care. You find in government folks who are trying to do really good things.
What’s the hardest part of your job?
Government is big. The government provides so many services for the public. There is a ton to do. I really love it and and also feel overwhelmed sometimes about that amount of work.
What advice do you have for kids?
Sometimes you’ll be told that maybe this isn’t right for you or that coding can be tough. If you really think that building the way that you access websites is really exciting for you, then stick with it. I think it is a very rewarding job to be able to show the world like hey look I made this.
Share This Page:
Do you have a question?
Đang chơi bài
Ask a real person any government-related question for free. They'll get you the answer or let you know where to find it.