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Note: These handouts are 2-sided printable documents in PDF format. PDF files require Adobe Acrobat Reader, a free plug-in. See our Download Center for help.

Handouts & Activities: Chandra Lithographs

1. How to Hold a Dead Star in Your Hand pdf (2017)
Objects in space are rather far away. The moon is our closest celestial neighbor at nearly a quarter million miles from earth, and the nearest star, our sun, is 93 million miles away.

2. How to Talk Like a Spacecraft: Binary Code pdf (2017)
How does binary code from a spacecraft get to where it needs to go? Travel the roughly 40,000-mile path Chandra observations take to reach ther destination and find out how binary code works along the way.

3. Micro to Macro pdf (2017)
The simple question of "how big is this?" often turns out to be not so simple to answer. We can explore this idea of scale through the imagery that different disciplines of science generate. Despite their disparate subject matters, these images possess many similarities and offer an opportunity to explore the wonders and beauty of science from "micro" to "macro".

4. Make the Most of Your Universe pdf (2017)
Whether we are gazing at our closest star, the Sun, during the day, or following the majestic display of planets, stars, and galaxies at night, the sky connects us all. We invite you to explore tools to help you better understand the Universe that all of us inhabit.

5. Women in the High Energy Universe pdf (2016)
Women in the High-Energy Universe highlights and promotes the many important ways that women contribute to the pursuit of understanding the Universe through high-energy astrophysics. We've asked various women connected with NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory to tell us—in their own words—about their experiences and perspectives of their careers.
See also: Women in the High Energy Universe

6. Printable 2017 Chandra Calendar pdf (2016)
Print your own 2017 Chandra calendar with spectacular images from the past year. Featured objects include supernova remnants, galaxies in various shapes & sizes and clusters of galaxies deep in outerspace.

light Chandra
light CasA
SN1987A Supernova 1987A

7. 3D Printing Handouts pdf (2015)
Learn how to print your own 3D copies of the Chandra X-ray Observatory spacecraft and the first-ever 3D print of an exploded star Cassiopeia A.

More Information

Chandra 2-pager
Chandra 4-pager

8. Light in the Universe pdf (2015)
Light is energy that can take on many forms. Radio waves, microwaves, infrared, visible, ultraviolet, X-ray and gamma radiation are all different forms of light.

More Information

Black Holes Black Holes
more info
Exoplanets Exoplanets
more info
Galaxies Galaxies
more info
Galaxy Clusters Galaxy Clusters
more info
Solar System Solar System
more info
Supernovas Supernovas
more info

9. Chandra Science By Topic pdf (2015)
From black holes to galaxy clusters, these small format poster handouts provide a general overview on Chandra science topics.

10. CHANDRA X-ray Observatory pdf (2015)
NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory is a telescope specially designed to detect X-ray emission from very hot regions of the Universe such as exploded stars, clusters of galaxies, and matter around black holes.

More Information

Bullet Bullet Cluster
more info
CasA Cassiopeia A
more info
CenA Centaurus A
more info
G292 G292.0+1.8
more info

NGC 2392 NGC 2392
more info
NGC 602 NGC 602
more info
SagA Sagittarius A*
more info

11. Highlights from Chandra pdf (2015)
Recent highlights from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory in a 2-sided, image on the front, text on the back format.

12. Hour of Code pdf (2015)
Coloring the Universe/Computing does not end with computers. Grades 4-12 students can learn how astronomers use computers to create images and understand their data (no prior coding experience necessary). Working with data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and other telescopes on topics from exploded stars, to star-forming regions, to the area around black holes, students learn basic coding (for beginners - no experience required) and follow a video tutorial to create a real world application of science, technology and even art.
Guide | Print
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13. Einstein All the Time High Res. pdf (2015)
Einstein's fingerprints can be found on virtually every scientific result obtained with Chandra data. These results in turn have expanded our concept of the Universe far beyond what was imagined at the beginning of the 20th century. Three of Einstein's discoveries are described.

14. Color the Universe (2013) pdf (2013)
This 22-page activity book for kids includes general information on light, X-ray astronomy, and NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. It also looks at our solar system and Milky Way Galaxy, black holes, supernovas, galaxy clusters and more. Each image is accompanied by a summary of information. Activities include mazes, word searches, connect-the-dots, and coloring.

15. Hot Stories of Cool Science: Star Birth Edition (2013) pdf (2013)
This 26-page ebook for kids (PDF) includes general information on stellar birth: Stars are amazing. They look like tiny pinpoints of shining light that seem to last forever. However, that is not the case. Just like people, stars are born, live for a while, and then die. Let’s find out more about baby stars.

16. OpenFits, Unlocking the mysteries of astronomical image processing pdf (2013)
With a basic understanding of astronomical data and image processing software, you can create your own astronomy images from FITS files. “FITS,” which stands for Flexible Image Transport System, is a digital file format used mainly by astronomers. Check out to download FITS files for some of our favorite Chandra images and learn how to compose your own versions of these high-energy astronomy images.
See also: openFITS - Create Images from Raw Data

17. Tracking Chandra pdf html (2012)
Is Chandra really up there? In case you wondered, take a look at these pictures shot by a 25 cm telescope. Special feature: a tutorial that lets you see what Chandra's orbit looks like using online software.

18. The Unexpected: from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory pdf (2011)
Looking back on the accomplishments of NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory over the past dozen years, and trying to predict what it will find in the future, one thing is certain: we can expect the unexpected. This booklet lists some of the expectations for the Chandra mission along with some of the unexpected discoveries.

19. Stellar Evolution pdf (2010)
A star’s ultimate fate depends on its mass. It can fade into obscurity (brown dwarf or red dwarf), become a white dwarf (sun-like stars), explode as a supernova and leave behind a neutron star or a black hole (massive to very massive stars), or be disrupted entirely (white dwarfs in close binary systems, or extremely massive stars).
See also: Interactive Guide to Stellar Evolution

20. Chemistry & the Universe pdf | flash (2010)
Chemistry, the study of the intricate dances and bondings of low-energy electrons to form the mole-cules that make up the world we live in, may seem far removed from the thermonuclear heat in the interiors of stars and the awesome power of supernovas. Yet, there is a fundamental connection between them.
See also: Elemental Change, Chandra, Cosmos and Chemistry and Chemistry and the Universe.

21. The Extraordinary Universe pdf | flash (2010)
We list some of Chandra's most significant discoveries. These and other successes are prologues to what can be achieved by Chandra in the future. While expanding the realm of the known, Chandra is also raising new questions and pointing the way for future exploration of the high-energy Universe.
See also: Cool Stories From The Hot Universe and The Extraordinary Universe with Chandra

22. Constellation Activities & Poster set (2009)
Astronomers have been building telescopes both in space and on the ground -- to help further our understanding of the Universe. This set of handouts/activities and posters represents some of the most dramatic images made by combining data from the best of modern telescopes.

23. Celestial Fireworks: Supernova Remnants High Res. pdf (2008)
Supernovas that signal the end of massive stars are some of the most dramatic events in the cosmos. With its unique mirrors and instrumentation, Chandra has captured these celestial explosions in spectacular X-ray images.

24. Exploring Black Holes High Res. pdf (2008)
With its unique properties, Chandra is peerless as a black hole probe - both near and far. Not even Chandra can "see" into black holes, but it can tackle many of their other mysteries.

25. Chandra Specifications High Res. pdf (2008) (html)
Information on the overall specifications (size, weight, orbit, etc), spacecraft specifications, science instruments and the telescope system.

26. Chandra Explores "Downtown" in the Milky Way High Res. pdf (2008)
The Milky Way is our home galaxy - a vast rotating spiral of gas, dust, and hundreds of billions of stars. Learn about Chandra observations in the Galactic neighborhood, including supernovas, black holes, neutron stars and more.

27. Galaxy Clusters Optical/X-ray Comparison pdf (2008)
What is the X-ray Universe? Why observe the Universe with different types of telescopes? These questions and others are answered. Special feature: an activity in which you make an X-ray image of a galaxy cluster.

The Universe 4-pager
2-pager 2-pager

28. The Universe in a Jelly Bean Jar pdf | flash (2008)
Most of the Universe is dark. The protons, neutrons and electrons that make up the stars, planets and us represent only a small fraction of the mass and energy of the Universe. The rest is dark and mysterious. How can X-rays help reveal the secrets of this darkness?
One page PDF of Universe handout (2015)
See also: The Universe Darkly and The Universe.

29. Chandra Favorites pdf (2006)
We asked you which images you enjoyed the most for each year since Chandra launched in 1999. Here are the results. We hope you enjoy the winning pictures and learn more about the exciting Chandra science behind the images. Thank you for voting!

30.The Solar System Through Chandra's Eyes High Res. pdf (2009)
Chandra's specialty is probing the super-hot regions around exploding stars, galaxies, or black holes. But Chandra has also shown that the relatively peaceful realms of space, such as our Solar System, sometimes shine in X-ray light. Note: Comes with detachable bookmark.

31. The Many Faces of Cassiopeia A pdf (2005)
Chandra has been involved in unlocking the mysteries of a stellar explosion in our Galaxy. With its keen X-ray vision, Chandra can resolve incredible detail and new features in the gas and debris still aglow from the original explosion of Cassiopeia A.

32. CXC EPO Program Description/Cluster Activity pdf (2002)
The goals of the Chandra EPO program are to share new discoveries about the universe with broad segments of the public, engage the imaginations of students, teachers and general public, and increase learning opportunities.

33. Chandra's 2nd Anniversary pdf (2001)
For the 2nd anniversary of Chandra's launch and First Light, we bring you a look back at some of the spectacular observations that Chandra has taken as well as some highlights of Chandra discoveries.

34. Chandra's Discoveries pdf (2001)
Catch a glimpse of selected black holes, pulsars, exploding stars, galaxy clusters and other objects Chandra has observed. Also includes images and descriptions of Chandra's launch and mission astronauts.

35. Chandra Early Images pdf (2001)
A look at some of Chandra's early images, including Cassiopeia A, M82, Crab Nebula, Andromeda, Eta Carinae, A2142, N132D, 3C295 and Hydra A.

36. Cassiopeia A pdf (2001)
Cassiopeia A (Cas A) is the 320 year old remnant of a massive star that exploded. The Chandra X-ray image made with the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer (ACIS) shows an expanding shell of hot gas produced by the explosion.

37. Crab Nebula pdf (2001)
The Crab Nebula consists of the Crab pulsar surrounded by a diffuse cloud, or nebula. It was created in a supernova explosion seen on Earth in 1054 AD.

38. Supernova Portrait Gallery pdf (2001)
Cassiopeia A, E0102-72, and N132D are examples of what happens after a massive star explodes. The Crab Nebula, PSR 0540-69, and G21.5-0.9 are also the remains of massive stars that have exploded, but the effect of a collapsed core in the form of a neutron star, or pulsar, is visible.

39. The Chandra X-ray Center pdf (2001)
An overview of the Chandra X-ray Center (CXC) and the Operations Control Center (OCC).