Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space Test | Final Test - Hard

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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. When did the belief that Venus was a "sister planet" to Earth become dispelled?

2. About how many channels does SETI search for signs of extraterrestrial communication on?

3. Where does Sagan think it is most likely that life will be found on Mars?

4. What happens to the number of asteroids and comets in the solar system as time goes on?

5. What does Martian soil seem to contain?

Short Essay Questions

1. What location in the solar system either have or are believed to have once had volcanoes?

2. How could planetary tides pull a small planet apart?

3. What major environmental catastrophes does Sagan warn against in Chapter 14, "Exploring Other Worlds and Protecting One"?

4. How well can an asteroid's path be calculated?

5. What is the purpose of SETI and how does it operate?

6. What does Sagan believe black holes have to offer?

7. What resources does Sagan believe that carbon asteroids have that make them suitable for human habitation?

8. Why does Sagan suggest that space exploration aids in protecting the planet?

9. What types of strategies are most practical for stopping an Earth-bound asteroid?

10. What profit motivations exist in a manned mission to Mars?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The Apollo Missions had an enormous impact on the field of space exploration, on the international status of the United States, and on the public's interest in space and science in general.

1) Describe the Apollo moon landings, their operation, mission, and the scientific information gained from them.

2) Discuss the effect that Sagan says the landings had on the international standing of the United States.

3) Explain how the moon landings impacted the field of space exploration and sparked the public's interest in the field. Cite Sagan's arguments to explain specific ways that this occurred.

Essay Topic 2

Neptune is the most distant planet in the solar system.

1) Describe how Neptune was discovered.

2) Discuss and explain some of Neptune's distinguishing characteristics, including its warmth and Jupiter-like atmosphere.

3) Summarize Sagan's assessment of the planet an its importance in the field of space exploration. Why was it visited by the Voyager probes?

Essay Topic 3

Titan is the largest moon of Saturn and the most Earth-like of all of the moons in the solar system, making it a good candidate for finding extraterrestrial life.

1) Describe the characteristics of the moon Titan, including a discussion of its atmosphere and hydrocarbon lakes.

2) Assess the specific characteristics of the moon that make it suitable for life.

3) Discuss Sagan's personal involvement in the study of Titan, its importance to him, and why he believes the moon warrants further study.

(see the answer keys)

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