How Does the Kepler Telescope Work?

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In March 2009, NASA launched the Kepler Space Telescope to look for exoplanets. Almost immediately, it identified planets and has continued to work for many years. An informative video introduces this telescope, how it works, and shares some of its discoveries.

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CCSS: Adaptable
NGSS: Designed
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Instructional Ideas
  • Create a model of a star with two planets, one large and one small, orbiting it at different time intervals and discuss what the Kepler telescope should see
Classroom Considerations
  • Relies on prior knowledge of the transit method, exoplanets, telescopes, and stars
  • Video allows for streaming or downloading as needed
  • Provides accessibility options including closed captioning and enhanced DVS
  • Works well in a traditional or flipped class
  • None