Pi Day, the informal holiday beloved by math enthusiasts – and even by the math averse – is almost here!
The first known celebration occurred in 1988, and in 2009, the US House of Representatives passed a resolution designating March 14 as Pi Day and encouraging teachers and students to celebrate the day with activities that teach students about pi.
"Craters become more elliptical if the projectile hits the surface at a lower angle, so I use pi to measure how round a crater is to see if it impacted at a low angle.” "We use pi every day commanding rovers on Mars," said Hallie Gengl, a rover planner for the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity, "Everything from taking images, turning the wheels, driving around, operating the robotic arm, and even talking to Earth.” Bryana Henderson, who specializes in planetary ices, uses lasers to explode ice samples and study their composition.
In the Pi Day challenge, students use pi to calculate that change in velocity.” In the challenge, students will also use pi to calculate how much sunlight is blocked by our solar system’s innermost planet as it passes between Earth and the sun.
On March 16, the answers to all four problems and the steps needed to find those answers will be released in a companion infographic on the Pi Day challenge activity page.