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New Challenges for Discovery Await Us

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U.S. Space and Rocket Center


U.S. Space and Rocket Center


Good Morning America's Sam Champion takes us down 65ft. into the ocean to visit Aquarius, the world’s only underwater research laboratory. The lab is located off Key Largo, FL and is dedicated to exploring the many untapped resources that the ocean has to offer. Because the ocean covers three-fourths of the earth’s surface but only 10% of it has ever been explored, many scientists believe that it holds keys to curing certain human illnesses as well as abundant food sources. Ellen Prager, a marine biologist that works at Aquarius, takes us down into the lab and explains how aquanauts (ocean explorers), who live on Aquarius for 2 weeks at a time, are able to study marine life first hand and discover the secrets of what science calls the Last Frontier on Earth.

Length: 04:54

Content Areas: Science

Alabama Course of Study Alignments and/or Professional Development Standard Alignments:

SC (9-12) Earth and Space Elective
12. Describe challenges and required technologies for space exploration.
  • Identifying long-term human space travel needs, including life support
  • Identifying applications of propulsion technologies for space travel
  • Identifying new instrumentation and communication technologies needed for space information gathering
  • Examples: Mars Exploration Rover, Cassini spacecraft and Huygens probe, Gravity Probe B
  • Identifying benefits to the quality of life that have been achieved through space advances
  • Examples: cellular telephone, GPS
  • Identifying new technology used to gather information, including spacecraft, observatories, space-based telescopes, and probes
    SC2015 (9-12) Biology
    7. Develop and use models to illustrate examples of ecological hierarchy levels, including biosphere, biome, ecosystem, community, population, and organism.
    SC2015 (9-12) Biology
    13. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate information to explain how organisms are classified by physical characteristics, organized into levels of taxonomy, and identified by binomial nomenclature (e.g., taxonomic classification, dichotomous keys).
    a. Engage in argument to justify the grouping of viruses in a category separate from living things.
    SC2015 (9-12) Earth and Space Science
    6. Obtain and evaluate information about Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler, Newton, and Einstein to communicate how their findings challenged conventional thinking and allowed for academic advancements and space exploration.
    SC2015 (9-12) Environmental Science
    11. Engage in argument from evidence to defend how coastal, marine, and freshwater sources (e.g., estuaries, marshes, tidal pools, wetlands, beaches, inlets, rivers, lakes, oceans, coral reefs) support biodiversity, economic stability, and human recreation.
    SC2015 (9-12) Environmental Science
    17. Obtain, evaluate, and communicate geological and biological information to determine the types of organisms that live in major biomes.
    a. Analyze and interpret data collected through geographic research and field investigations (e.g., relief, topographic, and physiographic maps; rivers; forest types; watersheds) to describe the biodiversity by region for the state of Alabama (e.g., terrestrial, freshwater, marine, endangered, invasive).


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