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A TEACHER'S GUIDE TO PLASMA SCIENCE RESOURCES

Introduction | Basic Information | Plasmas in Nature | 
Man-Made Plasmas | Resources for Students | 
Resources for Teachers | Plasma Outreach Near You 

A PLASMA OUTREACH PROGRAM NEAR YOU

The sites below point toward outreach programs that either have a plasma component or could support a discussion of plasma. If you cannot find an outreach program near you, remember that a local college/university may house a chapter of the Society of Physics Students (SPS). Often these students do physics outreach into their local communities.
Click on the for a check list of National Science Standards the site fulfills.

Plasma On The Internet: A comprehensive site that lists plasma-related research sites around the nation and the world.

Science 2 Schools: The site, supported by theĀ University of Illinois Physics Van, provides a directory of science assemblies, workshops, exhibits, or mobile labs that can come to your school.

The World Wide Web Virtual Library - Plasma Science and Technology Sites Worldwide: Plasma-related research sites around the world. Part of the larger Perspectives on Plasma site.

ALABAMA:

Auburn University, Plasma Program

The Marshall Space Center (Huntsville, AL): Sponsors a speakers' bureau, tours, partnerships and workshops as well as providing information.

University of Alabama, Department of Astronomy and Physics (Tuscalusa, AL): Hosts Public Nights, an evening program open to the public for viewing celestial objects. See their web site for dates and times.

ALASKA:

Poker Flat Research Range (Poker Flat, AK) is "the world's only scientific rocket launching facility owned by a university," the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF). They offer general information, scientific data, tours, aurora activity information, etc.

The Geophysical Institute, Space Physics and Aeronomy Group (Fairbanks, AK): Conducts research in the Earth's geophysical environment from the space around the sun to our atmosphere.

ARIZONA:

Lowell Observatory (Flagstaff, AZ)

National Solar Observatory (Kitt Peak, AZ)

University of Arizona, Physics Dept. Outreach (Tucson, AZ): Outreach is not specific to plasmas, but may include plasmas.

ARKANSAS:

University of Arkansas, Center for Mathematics and Science Education: STEPUP - Student and Teacher Education Outreach Programs with University Partners. Will do in-class science presentations upon request.

CALIFORNIA:

General Atomics Educational Web Site

Jet Propulsion Laboratory (Pasadena, CA): All topics (earth, solar system, stars & galaxies, technology) have links to Public Services (Tours, Talks) or Educational Materials.

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, The Center for Science & Engineering Education (CSEE)

: Provides a list of websites for education programs and activities throughout the lab, including Utube videos.

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Science and Technology Education Program

Lockheed Martin Space Plasmas Group

Mt. Wilson Observatory: A tour of the observatory, or a night viewing through the telescope, could supplement a discussion of plasma.

Sonoma State University - Education and Public Outreach: Formal and informal educational materials for grades 4-14 are provided, including gamma-ray burst real-time sky map, and interactive activities focusing on NASA space science missions.

Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC): Hosts public lecture series, tours of SLAC, and regional science bowls for high school students.

Stanford University, Stanford Solar Center: This site presents a collection of fun educational activities based on Solar Oscillations Investigation and Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) data.

UC Irvine Physics Road Show

COLORADO:

Center for Integrated Plasma Studies: Has some links to education materials through their different Research Groups.

Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at U of Colorado, in association with NASA: CU/LASP Rocket Experiment

National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Public Outreach Events: Hosts professional development workshops, interactive on-line courses, exhibits, and Science Saturday events, spanning topics such as climate change, modeling earth systems, weather, and observational systems.

National Renewal Energy Lab (NREL): Lists educational opportunities for K-12, college and post-graduates, and teachers, as well as educational resources.

Physics Department, U of Colorado: Click on the Outreach button on the Physics page.

Science from CU: Has a "States of Matter" link that deals with plasma.

Space Science Institute (Boulder, CO)

University of Colorado at Boulder maintains a number of outreach sites, including Fiske Planetarium and Sommers Bausch Observatory.

CONNECTICUT:

Educational Outreach in Physics, Southern Connecticut University (New Haven): Dr. James Dolan is listed as being in charge of educational outreach. Plasmas are not specifically mentioned.

DELAWARE:

Mount Cuba Astronomical Observatory

University of Delaware, Physics and Astronomy Outreach (Newark): Summer internships and outreach programs for students.

FLORIDA:

Florida Agricultural Mechanical University, Center for Plasma Science and Technology: This site is a resource for up-to-date plasma research information on remote sensing research in the nation's defense, fusion and plasma research for alternative power and advanced materials, and advanced computations research in support of plasmas and photonics physics.

Florida Solar Energy Center (University of Central Florida)

National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (Tallahassee)

GEORGIA:

Discover Georgia's Magnificent Planetariums: A listing and description of all planetariums in Georgia.

Georgia Science Olympiad: Southern Polytechnic hosts the Georgia Science Olympiad, a science competition for teams from K-12, engaging students in doing and applying science. Visit this site to learn more about the competitions and how to register your team of up to 15 members.

Georgia State University Department of Physics and Astronomy, Cosmic Ray Project: Schools participate in a Large Scale High Energy Cosmic Ray Energy project, with teachers and students maintaining the operation of detectors and participating in data analysis. This site also provides resources for up-to-date information (including geomagnetic fields), simulations and other resource links.

Georgia Tech - Materials Society (GHOST): Georgia High School Outreach for Science and Technology (GHOST) brings materials science to Atlanta area classrooms and enables high school teachers to take their classes to the Georgia Tech MSE department. The site does not mention any specific plasma education.

HAWAII:

Joint Astronomy Center Public Outreach: The JAC provides a number of outreach opportunities, including school visits, public lectures and demonstrations. Highlights include telescope information, news/press releases, career opportunities, resources, interactive activities, posters, celestial visuals and much more for teachers and students. You may even locate your own birthday star on this site.

University of Hawaii, Institute for Astronomy (Maui): Astronomy Projects.

IDAHO:

Discovery Center of Idaho: Interactive programs, ranging from 1-hour presentations for schools and communities to half-day training for teachers. Plasma science is not mentioned as a specific topic. Star Lab rental is also available.

Idaho National Laboratory (INL): Type "plasma" in the search box for more specific information on plasma physics. The education link in the side bar can point you to tournaments and "high school action team" opportunities.

ILLINOIS:

Argonne National Laboratory, Division of Educational Programs: Lists several K-12 Programs, including field trips and speakers bureau.

Fermilab Education Office

Northwestern University, Physics and Astronomy Public Outreach: This outreach program hosts public lectures based on the science behind popular physics subjects, ranging from MRI scanners to the internet. The complete content lectures are available as movie files.

Physics Van Outreach Program (University of Illinois Physics Department): Includes shows, demonstrations, and much more!

University of Chicago Center for Astrophysical Research in Antarctica

University of Chicago Center for Cosmological Physics

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Offers Science2Schools Programs for grades 5-8 focusing on Newton's Laws of Motion and Electrical Science.

INDIANA:

Indiana University Bloomington Science Outreach Programs: The Science Speakers Bureau makes available Indiana University faculty researchers to visit the classroom for presentations of your choice. A search for plasma physics results in an abundance of available information and resources from the IU departments of physics and mathematics.

Purdue University Physics Outreach Program

IOWA:

Ames Laboratory, Tours

Science Center of Iowa: Boom and Simply Electrifying are two plasma related assembly programs offered for your schools, grades K-8. Educator resources are also available for visits to the IMAX theatre and planetarium.

University of Iowa Department of Physics and Astronomy: Hawk-Eyes on Science Outreach Program

University of Iowa Department of Physics and Astronomy: Radio and Plasma Wave Group

KANSAS:

University of Kansas Center for Science Education

KENTUCKY:

University of Kentucky (Lexington, KY): Physics and Astronomy, Education and Outreach.

LOUISIANA:

Louisiana State University Physics and Astronomy Outreach (Baton Rouge, LA)

Sci-Port - Louisiana's Science Center: Plasma physics is a component of many of the Sci-Port field trip site programs. Click on "For Educators" in the side bar for more specific teacher resources and outreach programs and exhibits. Includes traveling science workshops - Sci-Port Traveling Science workshops are designed for middle and high schools located within 60 miles of Sci-Port. Light Detectives involves a spectroscope, elements, and the chemical composition of a new star.

MAINE:

University of Maine Physics and Astronomy Outreach (Orono, ME)

MARYLAND:

The NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (Greenbelt, MD): Offers resources to local residents as well as sponsoring programs throughout the U.S. Workshops, partnerships, information and more are available. The pages for their Education Programs and their Speakers Bureau are especially helpful.

Space Telescope Science Institute (NASA) (Baltimore)

University of Maryland, Lecture-Demonstration Facility Search Engine: University of Maryland, Lecture-Demonstration Facility hosts this search engine site for resources specific to plasma physics.

MASSACHUSETTS:

MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center Educational Outreach

MIT's Educational Outreach Programs: Click on the MIT Outreach Data Base, then type "plasma fusion" into the search box to find out more about Middle School and High School Outreach Days focused on plasma and fusion research and Plasma Science and Fusion Center Tours.

MICHIGAN:

Eastern Michigan University Physics and Astronomy Outreach (Ypsilanti, MI): Also look at side bar for Society of Physics Students and Sherzer Observatory, both of which also do outreach.

Michigan State University Physics and Astronomy Department Outreach (Lansing, MI)

University of Michigan Physics K-12 Programs (Ann Arbor): Although the site does not specifically mention plasma science outreach, the University of Michigan does research involving plasmas. Check out also their Saturday Morning Physics Program, which may involve discussion of plasma from time to time.

MINNESOTA:

University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering - K-12 Outreach: Scroll down the classroom resources page for links to Physics Force: The Next Generation and the Minnesota Space Grant Consortium, and be sure to check out the teacher development opportunities involving particle physics, fluid power, and astronomy.

University of Minnesota Space Plasma Physics Group (Twin Cities, MN)

MISSISSIPPI:

The University of Southern Mississippi Center for Science and Math Education: From this page you can explore science education opportunities hosted by USM Center for Science and Math Education, including the Science and Engineering Fair, the MIssissippi Science Olympiad and Teacher workshops.

MISSOURI:

Honeywell Federal Manufacturing and Technologies: Bring an Engineer to Class program

Honeywell FM&T: FMA Live! By making science fun and relevant to students' everyday lives, FMA Live! aims to inspire students to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

Missouri State University K-12 Science Outreach: This site provides information on various science competitions for students in Missouri.

University of Missouri Science Outreach

MONTANA:

University of Montana Blue Mountain Observatory

NEBRASKA:

University of Nebraska Lincoln Physics and Astronomy Outreach: Includes programs for teacher development and for students.

NEVADA:

University of Nevada, Physics on the Road

NEW HAMPSHIRE:

Experimental Space Plasma Physics Group, University of New Hampshire (Durham, NH)

NEW JERSEY:

Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory Educational Programs

Robert A. Schommer Observational Observatory (Rutgers)

Rutgers University Physics and Astronomy Outreach

NEW MEXICO:

Bradbury Science Museum Programs (Los Alamos, NM)

Los Alamos National Laboratory

National Atomic Museum

National Solar Observatory

Sandia National Lab, Educational Partnerships

NEW YORK:

Brookhaven National Laboratory

Cornell Center for Materials Research: This site offers activities and education modules, but not much related to plasma. However, a search for plasma or plasma education will take the searcher to "Ask a Scientist" references, where a lot of plasma information if available via links.

Cornell University (Ithaca, NY): Includes teacher resources, workshops and tours, K-12 programs and more. They are not about plasmas, but provide general physics information useful in developing a foundation for understanding plasmas.

Laboratory for Laser Energetics (Rochester, NY): Focuses on Inertial Confinement Fusion. Follow the education link to the High School Program, and learn about a recent Summer High School Outreach Program.

NORTH CAROLINA:

Morehead Observatory Guest Night (Chapel Hill, NC)

OHIO:

Ohio House of Science and Engineering: This outreach program involves scientists and engineers from both the academic and public realm in mentoring, collaborating, and networking with K-12 schools. Wonders of Our World (W.O.W.), is a program with many experiments that support plasma education and takes science outreach to the students in elementary and middle schools.

Ohio State University (Columbus, OH): Department of Astronomy Public Outreach

Ohio University Society of Physics Students: In the past, this chapter of the Society of Physics Students has offered successful after-school programs for elementary schools. Check to see what is available for the current year.

OKLAHOMA:

University of Tulsa, Jerome Dean McCoy, Jr.: Jerome Dean McCoy, Jr. presents physics shows for K-12 audiences, and provides professional development seminars in the Tulsa area and around the state.

OREGON:

George Fox University Science Outreach Program: Services provided by GFU include youth science classes, equipment loan, laboratory and facility outreach, and Star Lab programs, with opportunities for brainstorming to meet the needs of teachers and students.

Pine Mountain Observatory (University of Oregon)

University of Oregon GK-12 Science Outreach Program: University of Oregon Ph.D. students serve as science resource specialists for teaching hands-on physical science and mathematics in partnering Oregon elementary and middle schools.

PENNSYLVANIA:

University of Pennsylvania, Department of Physics and Astronomy Outreach

SOUTH CAROLINA:

Carolina Science Outreach: This outreach program offers presentations for all ages addressing the basic elements of matter, how particle accelerators work, what the future looks like, or even topics chosen by you.

Ruth Patrick Science Education Center

Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL): In partnership with education institutions, SRS offers hands-on programs for pre-college students and teachers, research opportunities, work-based learning opportunities, and various workshops, tours, lectures, and demonstrations.

TENNESSEE:

East Tennessee State University, Physics and Astronomy Public Outreach: This site provides information on physics seminars, planetarium programs for the public and special presentations for school groups, as well as astronomical events and research.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Education Programs

University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Physics and Astronomy Outreach: A teacher's resource distribution center as well as numerous programs designed for K-12 students are available, ranging from star parties, quantum mechanics, lasers, to the structure of atomic nuclei and more.

Vanderbilt Center for Science Outreach (Nashville): Limited physical science workshops for teachers and a summer workshop for planning have been offered in the past. Click on this site for contact information, and to view future offerings.

TEXAS:

Angelo State University Society of Physics Students Facebook Page: This group won the 2009 Blake Lilly Prize for outstanding physics outreach. Click on this link to get to the Facebook page for a group committed to spreading physics outreach to those ranging in ages from kindergarten to undergraduates in college.

CASPER - Center for Astrophysics, Space Physics & Engineering Research, Baylor University (Waco, TX)

Texas A&M University, Physics and Astronomy, Exploration Station: Provides links to an annual Physics Festival, Physics Shows for schools in Brazos Valley, and a Saturday Morning Physics Program.

Texas State University Student Organizations: Visit this site to see what the Society of Physics Students and Mexican American Engineers and Scientists are offering in the San Marcos area in the way of outreach for children interested in physics.

University of Texas, High Intensity Laser Group (Austin, TX)

University of Texas at Austin, Physics Programs and Outreach Opportunities: Click on The Physics Circus for numerous demonstrations for local K-12 schools and communities.

UTAH:

Brigham Young University Astronomical Society: This student run organization provides weekly public planetarium shows and monthly star parties.

Brigham Young University Society of Physics Students: Sign up to have BYU Society of Physics Students give demonstrations in your classroom.

The Leonardo - The Leo on Wheels: The Leo on Wheels travels throughout Utah to middle schools to engage students in interactive exhibits and inquiry-based activities to learn about energy, force and motion.

University of Utah Chapter of Society of Physics Students (SPS): Can be contacted for outreach.

University of Utah, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Outreach: Click on ASPIRE for interactive lessons and labs as well as the link for direct support for teachers and students. In addition to the ASPIRE programs, Star and Solar parties are hosted at the Observatory, and telescopes are available for traveling. Includes the MESA Recruiting Partnership, a program designed to support the underserved ethnic minority and female students in middle and high school students in the STEM areas of study.

VERMONT:

Fairbanks Museum and Planetarium (St. Johnsbury, VT)

Vermont Astonomical Society: Visit this site for up-to-date information on public star parties, and to arrange a presentation or a telescope-making class for your school or group.

VIRGINIA:

Science Museum of Western Virginia: This outreach program targets preK-5 grades with several physical science topics that provide basic preliminary information for plasma physics.

Science Education at Jefferson Lab

Virginia Air and Space Center: The Virginia Air & Space Center has created an array of educational programming for grades pre-K through 12, designed to meet the Virginia Standards of Learning guidelines and stimulate student interest in the fields of air, space, science and technology.

Virginia Tech, College of Science, Science Outreach Program (SOuP): This program focuses more on life and earth science. I did not find anything relevant to plasma.

WASHINGTON:

James Richard Jewett Observatory, Star Parties! Star Parties are held for the general public at the Jewett Observatory. The WSU Planetarium is used for astronomy classes and school groups for free one-hour sky tours.

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (Richland,WA)

Seattle University, PhysFest: In the spring of the year, Seattle University hosts a PhysFest for high school seniors interested in studying physics at Seattle University.

University of Washington, Aero and Astro, K-12 Outreach: Representatives from the Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Student Chapter will come to you and assist with engineering and science related projects. The also have a searchable K-12 Resource Guide.

University of Washington Plasma Science

WEST VIRGINIA:

West Virginia University Plasma Physics Laboratory

WISCONSIN:

K-12 Engineering Outreach Program (University of Wisconsin - Madison)

UW-Madison Astronomy Outreach: The University of Wisconsin Space Place is an education center, which regularly fields questions about astronomical events and occurrences like meteor showers, solar flares, and space probes.

The Wonders of Physics (University of Wisconsin)

WYOMING:

University of Wyoming Physics and Astronomy Outreach (Laramie,WY): Includes numerous observatories.

 

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