In this activity, learners discover that one way to cool an object in the presence of a heat source is to increase the distance from it or change the angle at which it is faced. Learners perform an experiment that measures how the heat experienced by a test subject changes as the distance or the viewing angle changes. Learners distinguish which effect is more important for determining the seasons on Earth. Learners examine how NASA's MESSENGER mission to Mercury takes advantage of these passive cooling methods to keep the spacecraft comfortable in a high-temperature environment.


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