Airborne Research Experience for Educators Web Activity

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Airborne Research Experience for Educators

Web Activity

Complete these questions using information found at the links below. Feel free to cut and paste, but please convert all text to one font type, size, and color before you submit to Vikki Costa at This information-gathering activity will help you learn about the Dryden Flight Research Center (DFRC), Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility (DAOF), DC-8 platform, scientific instruments, and research studies. It will also help develop your fluency in Internet search and retrieval! We’ll be asking you to reflect on what you’ve learned in your daily blog.

Dryden Flight Research Center (DFRC)

Where is the Dryden Flight Research Center located, and why is this location suitable for its purpose?


Expand the left hand navigation for About Dryden and click on Mission Statement. What is Dryden’s mission?


Dryden Flight Research Center Fact Sheet

How does the Center support the space shuttle program?


What is the Environmental Research Aircraft and Sensor Technology (ERAST)?


Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility (DAOF)

DAOF is a former aircraft assembly hangar located in Palmdale, CA. It is a satellite facility of NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base. Scroll to the bottom of the link above and click on each of the DAOF Aircraft. Record an interesting fact about two of the aircraft that you might our while in California this summer.


Review information at What is NSERC and how is it involved with the DC- 8 airborne science laboratory?


Palmdale AERO Institute

AREE is a program of the AERO Institute. What is the common goal of AERO Institute constituents? For additional information about the AERO Institute, check out their organization at


DC-8 Fact Sheet

Identify eight areas of science for which data gathered by the DC-8 at flight altitude and by remote sensing have been used.


What are the three types of missions flown by the DC-8?


Identify three aircraft features or capabilities for research.


DC-8 Fact Media

Use the Image Viewer to find an interesting picture of the DC-8. Copy and paste the picture in the box to the left, then reduce the size to about one inch square.


Select and view 2-3 video clips on the DC-8. Explain why you selected these videos to view.


Airborne Research Instruments

How many instruments have been flown on Airborne Science Program aircraft, and who owns them?


Click on the right hand link to the instruments on the DC-8. Review the different instruments, researchers, institutions, and parameters. Make note of an interesting trend or experiment.


During the AREE experience, we’ll be using the MODIS/ASTER Simulator (MASTER) and Whole Air Sampler (WAS) to collect data. Click on the left hand navigation Facility Sensors and read about MASTER. Identify one type of data MASTER can collect.


NASA Airborne Science Program

What are the objectives of the NASA Airborne Science Program?


Click on the Spring Newsletter in the left hand navigation. What was Operation Ice Bridge all about?


Back on the Airborne Science Program homepage, there is a right hand link to the Student Airborne Research Program, our partner program. Review the Overview and Program Description on this link and record something new you’ve learned.


Click on Participants, then on names to learn about the university faculty involved and possible NASA participants in this program. Compose a question you’d like to ask three of these scientists when you met them in person. (Don’t forget to include their names!)




Under Dr. Sherwood Rowland’s name, click on 1995 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Read the Presentation Speech and Press Release for the award. Review his autobiography, Nobel Lecture, interview. For what discovery was he honored?


While you are at the Nobel Prize site, spend some time looking at other winners and at the resources on the web. How might you use this site in your classroom?


AREE Web Activity

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