Space

Where can I find information about space?

Image: The Andromeda Galaxy by Bryan Goff on Unsplash.

Entry last updated: 15/06/18

Introduction

Space, or outer space, is the area outside our planet Earth's atmosphere. People have always been interested in the stars in our night sky, asking - what is out there! This question led us to develop technology (new tools) to help us study, and even visit space. As far as we know space has no end, it goes on forever, so there is a lot to learn about it.

Facts and Pictures

The following websites provide good information about space. They also include some great pictures - some taken using telescopes in observatories, some from satellites, and some created by science artists that show what we think something might look like, even though we can't see it yet!

NASA for Students

NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) is an American organisation which is recognised as one of the most reliable sources of information about space. They have lots of information for every level, and even have some games to play.

  • Use the Topics and Missions tabs at the top of the page to find out about space exploration
  • or if you're looking for something specific, like black holes, try the search box at the top of the page.
Tips: A website’s address (URL) can give you a hint about how reliable it is. Look for addresses in the results that include .gov or .edu in the URL. These are quality sites from overseas government or educational organisations.

ESA Kids

ESA is like NASA, but covers Europe's space research - there are 22 countries involved. You can find lots of information here, from comets and meteors, to living in space.

Ask an Astronomer

This is a website supported by NASA, and has more simple information than the two websites above. It has answers to lots of questions about space, including questions about life on other planets, and terminology (special words) to do with space.

Tips: Not sure what a word means? Try using Google as a dictionary. The trick is to type the word define in front of the word you want to define, then click Search. E.g. If you wanted to define the word nebula, your search would be define nebula. This searches for all the meanings on the web that define your word.

Cosmos4Kids

We like Cosmos4Kids because it has lots of good information on astronomy - the study of the u niverse and the changes that take place in and around all objects moving through space.

  • Select a topic from one of the 6 listed, such as Galaxies or Exploration.
  • You can also use keywords to search for what you are looking for - but ignore the advertisements (or ads) which might appear in the first box shown.
Tips: Search words, or keywords, are the most important words in our question. Usually it’s better to leave out small words like ‘the’, ‘a’ and ‘of’ and just choose the main ones, e.g Asteroids comets. We can always change our keywords or add more if we need to.

DK Find Out!

DK Find Out! is a great site for finding reliable information about all kinds of topics and it's being added to all the time.

  • Go to their page about Space and select the topic you are interested in.
Tips: Websites that have .com or .int in the address can have good information, but you need to assess how reliable it is. Check the About DK link on this website to find out what the Agency’s mission and values are.

Articles and Videos

Thanks to spacecraft and powerful telescopes we are now able to observe and measure things in space and the universe more closely. Try these websites for more detailed information about our topic.

BBC Space

The BBC is one of our trusted sites for all sorts of information about the world, and in this case, information that's out of this world!

  • Here you'll find information about space exploration, planets, and the science that is used to help us learn more about space.
  • Unfortunately the videos from this page don't work in New Zealand, so try the videos at the BBC World Service Space site instead.

Science in Context

Another good place to look for scientific information is EPIC. EPIC is a collection of reliable databases covering lots of different topics, and it's put together especially for New Zealand school students. You may need a password from your school or local library to access it.

Science in Context is one of the EPIC databases and has lots of articles from encyclopedias, magazines and journals.

  • In the search box use keywords to help you find what you are looking for.
  • Make sure to scroll down the page to see images, audio, news and videos.

Britannica School

This is another EPIC resource, so we know it's reliable. Britannica School is an online version of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

  • Choose the level best suited to you.
  • Search using keywords such as 'galaxy' or 'black hole'.
Tips: To get to the EPIC resources you will need a password from your school librarian first. Or you can chat with one of our AnyQuestions librarians between 1 and 6pm Monday to Friday and they will help you online. Some EPIC databases may also be available through your public library.

Books

There are many great books about space, the different features of space, and about our exploration of space! Here are some recommended titles to look for at your local or school library.

Non-Fiction

Fiction

For more information, try these Many Answers entries:

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