The Project SMART Space Science module focuses on real-world physics and current technologies and provides challenges that could be presented in high school Physics classes.

Now under construction, this website will provide teacher information such as:

  • general lessons in space science
  • classroom demonstrations
  • circuit design and construction
  • microcontroller programming
  • integrating a payload. 

balloon launch
Research projects and
poster presentations

Project SMART
Teaching Materials
In the near future we hope to
provide detailed guidelines for teaching
  • scientific ballooning
  • instrument design for scientific instrumetns
  • microprocessor circuit design and programming for instrument control, data acquisition, and flight control
Be sure to check back at this site for updated teaching materials.

Project SMART: Space Science
Teacher Information

SPACE SCIENCE RESEARCH begins with the Sun—the source of light and heat, but also a source of an expanding ionized gas called plasma that fills the space between the planets.

Solar activity can lead to changes in the near-Earth environment as benign as the aurora and as significant as regional power outages. The sun is also a source of energetic charged particles called radiation than can disable spacecraft and endanger astronauts.

UNH Physics faculty and research staff working on Project SMART are actively engaged in obtaining a better understanding of solar activity and solar eruptions, the evolution of the interplanetary gas, it's interaction with the near-earth environment, the production of aurora, and the prediction of power outages. They build instruments to fly in space, analyze data returned by those instruments, and develop theories and computer simulations to model the dynamics of the coupled systems.

study group
  Balloon payload, developed by Project SMART students and their mentors.  
balloon launch
SMART study group

One Project SMART Space Science project has been a helium balloon experiment. The balloons carry miniaturized video and still cameras,and scientific payloads that include a computer microcontroller that gathers data and controls aspects of the flight.

At the close of the Project SMART Insitute, students present posters on research projects done in collaboration with physics faculty who are building instruments for upcoming satellite missions or analyzing data from past and current missions involving UNH.

"The students are doing real science that is not coming out of a textbook. They build the satellite components, launch what they created to collect real environmental and performance data and get it back for analysis. It's a very rich experience for them."
— Rich Levergood, Project SMART faculty
     and H.S. Physics Teacher

Link to more teacher information...