Join NASA And The Nerd Side ... There Will Be Pi
What do you get when you take the sun and divide its circumference by its diameter? Pi in the sky! The number pi, that is.
It's March 14, or 3-14, the first three digits of the infinite number pi, otherwise known as National Pi Day.
To celebrate, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is serving up the Pi Day Challenge — a series of math problems related to NASA missions.
The cosmic questions in the challenge cover the exploration of earth, our planets and beyond the solar system.
JPL education specialist Lyle Tavernier says he hopes the problems will help kids engage with math in a real-world sense:
"There's a lot of math phobia out there," Tavernier said. "And kids can learn at an early age [that's] untrue, but that they think they're bad at math. And sometimes, they just need an accessible way to get into math."
But if you're hungry for more, he says you can always use the number pi to calculate the circumference of a literal, edible pie.
"I actually have a pie pan that is shaped like the letter pie," Tavernier said. "So I will probably make a pineapple upside-down cake. I know it's a terrible pun, but I do enjoy that."