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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 planetaryradio@planetary.org.

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.

iTunes and other podcast aggregators like Stitcher make it easy to listen and subscribe. Just search for "Planetary Radio." or click the links below.

Subscribe: Planetary Radio: Space Exploration, Astronomy and Science Standard RSS Feed

Recent Shows

The Royal Observatory, Greenwich and the Quest for Longitude

07/28/2015 | 43:09

Guests

Come with us on a visit to the home of the prime meridian for a conversation with the curator of the Royal Observatory, Greenwich about the race to create a practical means for determining longitude.

More Info & Listen »

Saving the Planet: Voices From the Planetary Defense Conference

06/30/2015 | 28:50

Guests

  • Linda Billings, Research Professor, George Washington University
  • James Burke, Project Manager, Ranger program
  • Paul Chodas, Manager, NASA NEO Program Office, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Tom Jones, Astronaut, Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition
  • Nahum Melamed, Project Manager, Aerospace Corporation
  • Jason Reinhardt, MacArthur Nuclear Security Predoctoral Fellow, Stanford University
  • Travis Brashears, Gould Law Student, University of Southern California
  • Philip Lubin, Professor of Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara

We’ve already brought you Planetary Radio Live from the 2015 PDC near Rome, Italy. Now you’ll hear a small sampling of the scientists, engineers, policymakers and media experts who spent five days considering how humanity will respond to a potentially disastrous threat. Bruce Betts celebrates the great Jupiter-Venus conjunction in What’s Up. Bill Nye and Emily Lakdawalla return next week.

More Info & Listen »

Exploring the Seas of Earth and Other Worlds

06/23/2015 | 28:50

Guests

We return to the beautiful Aquarium of the Pacific in southern California for a fascinating conversation about ocean science. What we learn down here is furthering our research around the solar system. William Patzert, Jerry Schubel and Steven Vance join Mat Kaplan on stage. Emily Lakdawalla tells us what Curiosity, the Mars Science Laboratory rover, has been doing lately. Bruce Betts is keeping his eye on converging Jupiter and Venus.

More Info & Listen »

Countdown to LightSail: An Update

04/28/2015 | 28:50

Guests

The road to space has been a rocky one for most spacecraft, and LightSail is no different. Challenges remain even with the May 20th launch of a test mission approaching. Embedded LightSail reporter Jason Davis checks in with the latest news.

More Info & Listen »

Saving the Planet at the Planetary Defense Conference

04/21/2015 | 28:50

Guests

  • William Ailor, Distinguished Engineer, The Aerospace Corporation
  • Fabrizio Bernardi, Chief Executive Officer, SpaceDyS
  • Paul Chodas, Manager, NASA NEO Program Office, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Lindley Johnson, Near Earth Object Programs Executive, NASA
  • Detlef Koschny, Co-Manager, Near-Earth Object Segment of the Space Situational Awareness Programme (SSA-NEO), ESA/ESTEC
  • Amy Mainzer, NEOWISE Principal Investigator, Jet Propulsion Lab

Planetary Radio Live was the only public event at the just-completed Planetary Defense Conference in Italy. Join us for excerpts from an all-star celebration of worldwide efforts to find, track, characterize and eventually deflect killer Near-Earth Objects.

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Discovered: Titan's Magic Island

07/08/2014 | 29:50

Guests

Cornell grad student Jason Hofgartner reports on the discovery of what appears (and disappears!) to be an island on one of Titan’s frigid lakes.

More Info & Listen »

At Spacefest VI With Apollo Astronaut Gene Cernan and a Host of Proud Space Geeks

05/27/2014 | 34:47

Guests

  • Dan Durda, Near Earth Object astronomer and astronomical painter
  • Marc Rayman, Dawn Chief Engineer and Mission Director, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Eugene Cernan, Apollo 17 Commander, NASA
  • Laura Danly, Astrophysicist and Curator, Griffith Observatory

Planetary Radio visited Spacefest in Pasadena to talk with planetary scientist and space artist Dan Durda, Marc Rayman of the Dawn asteroid mission, and a guy who calls himself the Space Cowboy. We also eavesdrop on Apollo 17 Commander Gene Cernan and his lifelong fan, Griffith Observatory Curator Laura Danly.

More Info & Listen »

Microbes in Orbit: Cheryl Nickerson’s Revealing Biomedical Research

04/08/2014 | 42:43

Guests

You may have heard that the sometimes deadly Salmonella bacterium becomes stronger in microgravity. Cheryl Nickerson tell us about this and other results her team has conducted in low Earth orbit.

More Info & Listen »

Rocketing Into the Aurora With Neal Brown

04/01/2014 | 28:50

Guests

  • Neal Brown, Former Director, Poker Flat Research Range

It’s back to Alaska, this time to the Poker Flat Research Range, where former Director Neal Brown and his staff launched sounding rockets into the heart of the Aurora Borealis. Emily Lakdawalla explores newly-discovered and very distant dwarf planets, and Bill Nye the Science guy has the latest on NASA’s planetary science budget.

More Info & Listen »

Alaskan Aurora Adventure!

03/18/2014 | 28:50

Guests

  • Neal Brown, Former Director, Poker Flat Research Range

Join Mat Kaplan and other Aurora “virgins” as they seek the Northern Lights in Fairbanks, Alaska, and meet retired rocketeer and Director of the Poker Flat Research Range, Neal Brown

More Info & Listen »

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