Studying Sun Shadows Around the World
Two eighth-grade students at James Monroe Middle School in Albuquerque, New Mexico are collaborating with staff at several Antarctic stations including; the Amundsen-Scott South Pole and Palmer Stations to measure shadows. By comparing the length of shadow the sun casts from a one-meter stick at solar noon measured at locations experiencing either winter or austral summer these students are testing the “longer shadows in the winter and shorter shadows in the summer” understanding.
Students have also arranged for several snapshot winter readings to be taken across the continental United States on solstice. Measurements have been taken weekly from November through winter solstice 2007 with the teacher continuing the weekly measurements through December 2008. Students have e-mailed photos and data during the project and received responses from the station staff. The data collected at the South Pole is using the geographic South Pole to measure the shadow.
South Pole Shadow Team:
Chris Bender is a Research Associate responsible for the Cryogenics Program at the South Pole.
Al Baker is the Science Support Coordinator and is responsible for the proper and continuous operation of over 32 individual projects at the South Pole.
Ethan Good is a Research Associate responsible for operating and monitoring several space weather and aeronomy projects at the South Pole.
Charlie Kaminski is a Planning Support Manager and works closely with the NSF (National Science Foundation) to determine if there are sufficient resources at the South Pole to support new projects.
Palmer Shadow Team:
Phil Spindler, Senior Assistant Supervisor of Lab Operations, Palmer Station, Antarctica
Kim Baranowski, one of two artists currently on station.
November - December measurements:
Albuquerque New Mexico: 35