User login


Mass of the Earth


Source Institutions

    The Exploratorium

Add to listGo to activity
Mass of the Earth

In this activity, learners use basic measurements of the Earth and pieces of rock and iron to estimate the mass of the Earth. Learners will calculate mass, volume, and density, convert units, and employ the water displacement method. To calculate an even more accurate estimate of the mass of the Earth, this resource includes optional instructions on how to measure the iron core mass.

Quick Guide


Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
45 to 60 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
free

Age Range:
Ages 14 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity

Language:
English

Materials List (per student)


  • A piece of rock (a chunk of basalt)
  • A hammer
  • Graduated cylinder
  • Balance or digital scale that can read to the 1/10 of gram
  • Source of geophysical facts to check your answers
  • A diagram of the interior of the earth (optional)
  • Pieces of iron (or steel nuts and bolts) (optional)
  • Water

Subjects


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Structure
      • Rocks and Minerals
  • Mathematics
    • Algebra
      • Equations and Inequalities
      • Variables and Expressions
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
    • Measurement
      • Units of Measurement
      • Size and Scale
      • Circles
    • Number and Operations
      • Exponents
      • Fractions
      • Multiples and Factors
      • Operations
  • Physical Sciences
    • Structure and Properties of Matter
      • Mass and Weight
      • Volume and Density
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Communicating Results

Informal Categories


  • Nature and Environment

Audience


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities

Other


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access

By:

  • Muller, Eric

Rights:

  • All Rights Reserved, Exploratorium, ©2010

Share


User Lists


This resource is part of these lists: