Modeling Gamma Ray Data and Analysis

Contact Information:

  • Matt Laird. Email:
  • Heather Murphy. Email:


The HAWC Cooperative has provided the public with accurate Gamma-ray data, but what would a scientist do with this data? This lesson plan is designed to mimic the procedures for data analysis conducted by scientist in the field of Gamma-ray astronomy. Students will download, manipulate, and interpret the data using free software by following these steps by step instructions. For the personal challenge the students will look at the data acquired on their birthday and determine if there was a Gamma-ray burst (fire works show) for them that year. Real data and Real analysis!

Lesson Content Overview:

  • Elaborate (2-3 days): Students will go through the steps of downloading, formatting, manipulating, plotting and analyzing data from the HAWC Observatory. This data will show the student how much Gamma Ray activity was present on their Birthday in 2015.

Connections to Prior Learning:

Supporting Material: