Craters Research Project
Split into teams.  Each team takes a question:

-Where are the main craters in the world?  How big (diameter and depth) are they?

-Where are the major craters in the solar system?

-Why are there regions on the moon with few or no craters while other parts have millions of craters?

-What is some of the evidence that leads us to believe a giant cometary or asteroid impact resulted in the extinction of the dinosaurs?

-What are meteors made of?

-What is the difference between these terms: asteroid, comet, meteor, meteorite, and chondrites.

-If a 100-meter diameter asteroid has an energy of 1 Hiroshima bomb, use simple proportionalities (kinetic energy and mass-volume) to show than a 1000-meter (1 km) diameter asteroid will have an energy roughly equal to ______ Hiroshima bombs. Show your work.

-Argue the case for and against the funding for Astronomers to hunt for Apollo asteroids.

-What causes meteor showers?  Do any of these meteorites ever cause damage?

-What are the Kuiper Belt and the Oort Cloud?  Why might these be important to know about in geology?

-Where are most of the asteroids in the solar system?  Where did they come from?

-Why do comets have two different tails, a dust tail and a gas tail?

-Normally, metallic (iron) meteorites are the most commonly found, because stony meteorites are easily mistaken for ordinary rocks. There is a place on Earth, however, where it is easy to find a representative sample of meteorites. Where is it, and why is a sample collected there representative?

-How do astronomers use meteorites and craters to find the age of our solar system?

-What is the anatomy of a crater? Draw a crater or make a model of one and label its main features.

-Design an lab/activity/experiment that would demonstrate the differences in the impact craters of meteorites of various sizes and velocities.  Write it up as though the entire class will do it.


Copyright Alexplorer. Some items taken from or adapted from other materials. This page is free for use in a classroom setting.
Back to the Geology index