The following problems apply the math skills listed in order to explore and understand various proceses that relate to the Landsat mission. The topics range from how remote sensors collect and interpret photons to how Landsat is currently used to monitor the effects of climate change on the Earth. Some problems discuss satellites other than Landsat, but still shed light on how instruments like Landsat operate. Each link includes a one-page worksheet and the accompanying teacher’s solution. NASA has created an entire series of space math books. which can be viewed and downloaded from here. The three sources used here are Remote Sensing Math (RS), Earth Math (E) and Electromagnetic Math (EMS).
Problem Topic |
Math Skills |
Source |
Grades 3-5 | ||
Creating an Image from Numbers | Patterns, scale drawings, geometry, graph analysis | RS 100 |
Interpreting a False-Color Image of Comet Tempel-1 | Patterns, geometry, graph & table analysis | RS 101 |
Grades 4-6 | ||
A Satellite View of Downtown Las Vegas | Technology, rulers, scale drawings | E 30 |
Exploring Washington DC from Space! | Technology, rulers, scale drawings | E 31 |
Grades 6-8 | ||
Paris – In a Different Light | Technology, rulers, scale drawings, trigonometry | E 32 |
Glacier Retreat | Technology, rulers, scale drawings | E 33 |
Estimating Biomass Loss From a Large Fire | Technology, rulers, scale drawings, area | E 34 |
Electromagnetic Waves | Time, distance, speed, unit conversion | EMS 15 |
Exploring the Infrared Band, relating energy frequency and | Time, distance, speed, scientific notation, unit conversio | nEMS 23 |
Sun in Radio .06m 5GHz | Technology, rulers, area, scale drawings, scientific notati | onEMS 30 |
Image Formats : Taking a digital picture | Technology, patterns, geometry | RS 1 |
Images as Arrays of Numbers | Patterns, arrays, matrices | RS 4 |
SDO – Reveals Details on the Surface of the Sun | Scale drawings, geometry | RS 35 |
Landsat – Exploring Washington DC | Scale drawings, geometry | RS 40 |
Landsat – Glacier Retreat | Time, distance, speed, area, scale drawing, geometry | RS 41 |
Landsat – Exploring Biomass Loss from a Large Fire | Percentages, area, scale drawings, geometry | RS 42 |
Image Blurring and Motion | Time, distance, speed, geometry | RS 44 |
Creating and Interpreting Images | Patterns, area, graph analysis, modeling | RS 56 |
Graphical Reflectivity Measurements | Geometry, graph analysis, modeling | RS 57 |
MMM – A Mineral Study of Mare Orientale | Patterns, percentages, scale drawings, geometry | RS 58 |
Hinode – Seeing the Sun at X-ray wavelengths | Scale drawings, geometry, unit conversion | RS 63 |
Seeing the Sun at Radio Wavelengths | Scale drawings, unit conversion | RS 64 |
Data Archiving Through the Ages | Patterns, time, distance, area, geometry, unit conversio | nRS 87 |
Landsat: Multi-Wavelength Imaging | Area, geometry, table analysis | RS 96 |
Landsat: Identifying Thematic Content | Geometry, graph analysis | RS 97 |
Landsat: Creating 2-D Thematic Images | Scale drawings, geometry, graph analysis | RS 99 |
Grades 6-9 | ||
Identifying Materials by their Reflectivity | Averages, percentages, modeling | E 9 |
Reflectivity Fingerprints | Inquiry, patterns | E 10 |
Carbon Dioxide Production and Sequestration | Percentages, volume, unit conversions, rates | E 20 |
Grades 9-12 | ||
The Great Gulf Oil Catastrophe of 2010 | Averages, percentages, modeling | E 45 |
Telemetry – Transmitting data back to Earth | Patterns, arrays, matrices | RS 9 |
Geometry and Angular Size | Geometry, fractions, solving for X, unit conversion | RS 31 |
Resolving the Moon | Scale drawings, geometry, unit conversion | RS 32 |
Angular Resolution and Wavelength | Scientific notation, unit conversions, evaluating function | RS 45 |
Digital Imaging and Filters | Area, graph analysis, modeling | RS 52 |
MMM-Water on the Moon | Area, volume, scientific notation, unit conversion | RS 61 |
Terra – Carbon Monoxide a Deadly Trace Gas | Scale drawings, unit conversions, rate | RS 65 |