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Planetary Radio

Planetary Radio

Each week, Planetary Radio visits with a scientist, engineer, project manager, astronaut, advocate or writer who provides a unique and exciting perspective on the exploration of our solar system and beyond. We also showcase regular features that raise your space IQ while they put a smile on your face.  Host Mat Kaplan is joined by Planetary Society colleagues Bill Nye the Science Guy, Bruce Betts, and Emily Lakdawalla. We hit the road now and then to produce a Planetary Radio Live show in front of an audience.  Drop us a line or enter the weekly space trivia contest at

Please support your local public radio station that airs the show! Check the station's online schedule or review our online list of affiliates. Satellite radio listeners can hear us Sunday evenings on the Sirius XM Public Radio channel.  Want to hear Planetary Radio on your local station? Ask them to contact us or review our radio affiliate information page.

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Recent Shows

Farewell Rosetta!

10/04/2016 | 30:38


  • Emily Lakdawalla, Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist, The Planetary Society

The European Space Agency’s magnificent Rosetta mission ended last week as the spacecraft gently touched down on the comet it has revealed.

More Info & Listen »

Rocket Road Trip!

09/27/2016 | 33:17


Planetary Society Digital Editor Jason Davis returns with the story of the ten-day trek across the South he just completed with two Society colleagues.

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Chris McKay, Larry Niven and Andy Weir at the Contact Conference

06/07/2016 | 32:32


Space art and science fiction joined science fact at the 2016 Contact Conference in Sunnyvale, California. We talk with three well-known visionaries.

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Getting Humans to Mars

05/31/2016 | 56:31


  • Stephen Jurczyk, Associate Administrator of the Space Technology Mission Directorate, NASA
  • Jim Free, Deputy Director of the Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, NASA
  • Rick Davis, Assistant Director for Science and Exploration, NASA’s Science Mission Directorate

Three NASA leaders talk with host Mat Kaplan about the progress we're making toward leaving footprints on the Red Planet.

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NASA’s Science Leader John Grunsfeld

05/17/2016 | 28:50


  • John Grunsfeld, Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate, NASA

John Grunsfeld closes our coverage of the Space Foundation’s 32nd annual Space Symposium in Colorado Springs. We also meet the leaders of the New Generation Space Leaders Program.

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Dream Chaser: The Return of the Spaceplane

05/10/2016 | 28:50


  • Mark Sirangelo, Corporate Vice President, Sierra Nevada Corporation's Space Systems

We’re back at Space Symposium for a conversation with SNC’s Mark Sirangelo, leader of that company’s effort to build the Dream Chaser. We’ll also hear a few moments of Bill Nye’s session at the annual gathering as he hosted Bernard Foing and Amy Mainzer.

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At Space Symposium With the Leader of the European Space Agency

05/03/2016 | 31:22


The annual Space Symposium in Colorado is a must-attend event for space leaders from around the world. Our coverage begins with United Arab Emirates Space Agency Director General Mohammed Nasser Al Ahbabi, and then moves to ESA Director General Jan Woerner and Chief Scientist Bernard Foing.

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Exploring Europa and Mining Asteroids at Yuri’s Night

04/19/2016 | 41:05


Our special coverage from the Los Angeles Yuri’s Night party continues with Chris Lewicki of Planetary Resources along with Bob Pappalardo and Boback “Mohawk Guy” Ferdowsi who are preparing an orbiter for Jupiter’s ocean world Europa.

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Michel Mayor, Discoverer of the First Extrasolar World

04/05/2016 | 39:41


Michel Mayor and his team rocked the astronomy world with their 1995 announcement, but this modest man says it was a discovery whose time had come.

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Ashwin Vasavada, Leader of Scientists Roving Mars

03/29/2016 | 38:02


  • Ashwin Vasavada, Mars Science Laboratory Project Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory

The new Mars Science Laboratory Project Scientist is not new to the mission. Ashwin Vasavada has worked on the Curiosity rover since 2004.

More Info & Listen »

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