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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.

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

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Recent Shows

OSIRIS-REx Readies for Asteroid Bennu

09/15/2015 | 28:50


  • Dante Lauretta, OSIRIS-REx Principal Investigator, University of Arizona

Dante Lauretta heads the most ambitious mission to an asteroid ever mounted. With one year left till launch, he returns to Planetary Radio with an update.

More Info & Listen »

The Launch of LightSail

05/26/2015 | 28:50


This special edition takes you behind the scenes on May 20, 2015 as LightSail is lifted into orbit. You’ll hear the thrilling launch, meet key team members as they prepare for the big moment, and hear a special status report from Planetary Society CEO Bill Nye.

More Info & Listen »

Spiraling Closer to Ceres With the Dawn Mission’s Marc Rayman

05/19/2015 | 33:59


  • Marc Rayman, Dawn Chief Engineer and Mission Director, Jet Propulsion Laboratory

It’s the biggest dwarf planet between here and Pluto, and it has a new permanent resident. The Dawn spacecraft is orbiting Ceres in the asteroid belt, revealing it as never before. What are those bright spots anyway? We spend time with Dawn’s Chief Engineer and Director, Marc Rayman.

More Info & Listen »

Big News From Little Worlds

03/24/2015 | 28:50


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

Senior Editor Emily Lakdawalla has returned from the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in Texas with the latest revelations about our solar system. She shares them in an extended report.

More Info & Listen »

Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides on LauncherOne and the Return of SpaceShipTwo

03/10/2015 | 28:50


6,000 job-seekers came to the new Long Beach, California home of Virgin Galactic’s LauncherOne rocket on a recent morning. We sit down with CEO George Whitesides for a conversation about this new effort and the return of SpaceShipTwo.

More Info & Listen »

Jim Bell Welcomes “The Interstellar Age”

03/03/2015 | 46:07


  • Jim Bell, President of the Board of Directors, The Planetary Society

Planetary scientist and author Jim Bell has just written “The Interstellar Age—Inside the Forty-Year Voyager Mission.” He talks with Mat Kaplan about the magnificent grand tour of the outer solar system that is now headed toward the stars.

More Info & Listen »

Jonathan Goff Says Let’s Redirect an Asteroid

02/24/2015 | 28:50


ARM is the Asteroid Redirect Mission, and sometimes it seems that it doesn’t have a friend in the world. But it does, and Jonathan Goff of Altius Space Machines is one.

More Info & Listen »

Year of the Icy Worlds

02/10/2015 | 28:50


  • Bob Pappalardo, Principal Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Marc Rayman, Dawn Chief Engineer and Mission Director, Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • Linda Spilker, Cassini Project Scientist, Jet Propulsion Laboratory

We’ll visit the Jet Propulsion Lab on its Icy Worlds Day to learn more about spacecraft exploring Ceres, Enceladus and Europa from leaders of these missions.

More Info & Listen »

Tales From a 4 Billion Year Old Piece of Mars...On Earth

02/03/2015 | 28:50


  • Mark Thiemens, Professor and Dean, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of California San Diego
  • Robina Shaheen, Project Scientist, University of California San Diego

Robina Shaheen and Mark Thiemens tell us how an ancient Mars meteorite has revealed much about the red planet. Mat holds a tiny fragment of the rock in their UC San Diego lab.

More Info & Listen »

The Exciting Year Ahead on the Final Frontier

01/06/2015 | 28:50


The Planetary Society’s experts look forward to a great year of firsts in the solar system and beyond.

More Info & Listen »

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