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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.
Short Answer Questions
1. The primary discipline that Sagan argues nations benefit from by investing in space exploration is called which of the following?
2. What type of missions does Sagan recommend in order to prepare to deal with Earth-bound asteroids?
3. At the time this book was written, about how many asteroids were known to have paths that take them close to the Earth?
4. What moon was found to have volcanoes?
5. Which of the following planets is NOT known to have a ring system?
Short Essay Questions
1. What does Sagan think were the major upsides of the Apollo missions?
2. What major environmental catastrophes does Sagan warn against in Chapter 14, "Exploring Other Worlds and Protecting One"?
3. What profit motivations exist in a manned mission to Mars?
4. What is the purpose of SETI and how does it operate?
5. Why does Sagan believe it is unlikely that a manned mission to Mars will be carried out in the near future?
6. What promising signs does Mars have for being host to life?
7. What does Sagan say that it is probably the fate of humanity to "live in the dark"?
8. How well can an asteroid's path be calculated?
9. What resources does Sagan believe that carbon asteroids have that make them suitable for human habitation?
10. What does Sagan believe black holes have to offer?
Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:
Essay Topic 1
In Chapter 1, Sagan discusses in detail the photo of the "pale blue dot" for which he named this book. He regards it as a singular and impressive symbol of man's place in the universe.
1) Describe how the photo of the "pale blue dot" was taken, the risks involved, and how Sagan was personally involved in its creation.
2) Describe the photo itself, using details from the book.
3) Explain how Sagan thinks that this photo demonstrates part of the triumph of the Voyager spacecraft.
4) Discuss in detail the meaning of this photo to Sagan and what it says to him about man's place in the universe.
Essay Topic 2
Uranus was the first new planet discovered, aside from the five known to ancient cultures.
1) Discus the discovery of Uranus and what made this discovery unusual and unique.
2) Describe the planet Uranus, including a discussion of its unique inclination and theories to explain this feature.
3) Discuss Sagan's impression of the planet and the likelihood that it or its moons could harbor life.
Essay Topic 3
Volcanoes are quite common and relatively active on Earth, and can be observed on solid planetary bodies throughout the solar system.
1) Describe the process of volcanism in general, its causes, and its impact on the environment.
2) Discuss the function and nature of volcanoes on Earth and how they interact with the upper atmosphere and eject particles into space.
3) Describe some of the known active or dormant volcano system observed on other planets and moons.
This section contains 804 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)