Rendezvous With A Comet

This page contains materials for groups preparing to fly a Rendezvous With A Comet mission.

If you have not yet booked a mission and are looking to do so, please visit this page.

Required Materials

To ensure the success of the mission, we require that each group arrive with two things prepared in advance: two (2) copies of the Crew Manifest and a set of name tags. The Crew Manifest is our way of telling which student is on which team, and the name tags tell each student what team they are on. You can find each of these documents below.

Crew Manifest Please fill out this document for your class size based on the numbers we have provided on the form. This is the best way to ensure your group will be well balanced! Note: there is a new version of the Crew Manifest this year. Please use this version!

Name TagsYou can create your own name tags if desired, but this document is a PDF that can be edited to include each student’s name and the name of your school. You can use this document in a variety of ways (printing on a sticker sheet, putting in a name tag holder, printing out and using yarn to make a necklace, etc.) but we ask that there be two easily distinguishable colors for the group that will start in the Space Craft and the group that will start in Mission Control.

Additional Materials

There is no limit to how far you can take a Challenger mission in your own classroom! The links below provide various resources that can enhance your mission.

Mission Resources

Comet Overview and Team Descriptions

Crew Patch

Student Placement

Mission Newspaper Template


Skill Building Activities – Six key skills that are utilized in every Challenger mission.

Cometary Orbits – Teach your students what orbits are really like in space and identify the difference between the orbits of Planets and Comets.

The Comet Show – A student involved activity making a comet nucleus in a bag. This activity does involve dry ice so make sure you are aware of the safety concerns.

Cooking up a Comet – Teacher lead demonstration to teach your students what a Comet is actually made of by making a model of one in the classroom. Also demonstrate what happens as the Comet gets warm when approaching the Sun. Photographs of a similar lesson and some extra reading can be found here: School of Doubt

Comet Flip Book – Have your students make a flip book, that explains the ion tail of a comet in a fun and interactive way.

Comet vs. Asteroids – A fact sheet from NASA to help understand what the difference is between a Comet and an Asteroid.


NASA- How to Cook a Comet

JPL- Rosetta Mission


Additional Questions

Feel free to contact us with any additional questions or concerns!