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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

2015: A Great Year for Space Exploration

12/29/2015 | 28:50


Our year-end review features the “best of 2015” lists from Jason Davis, Casey Dreier, Emily Lakdawalla and Bill Nye the Science Guy. What’s Up offers planets, a comet, and a nice prize package for the space trivia contest.

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A Journey to Space

12/08/2015 | 34:34


  • Shell Amega, Vice President, Communications, California Science Center Foundation
  • Devin Waller, Exhibit Project Manager, California Science Center Foundation
  • Mark Krenzien, Director/Writer, Journey to Space 3D IMAX Film

Journey to Space is both a new and spectacular IMAX movie and an exciting, hands-on exhibition at the California Science Center. We learn about both this week.

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A Tiny Explorer Called Twinkle

12/01/2015 | 28:50


A small but talented UK team is building Twinkle, a small spacecraft with a big mission—exploring the atmospheres of planets orbiting other stars.

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From Mars to the Stars With Lou Friedman

11/10/2015 | 47:33


The founding Executive Director of the Planetary Society has just written “Human Spaceflight: From Mars to the Stars,” an optimistic view of humanity’s future in the solar system and beyond.

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A 35th Anniversary Party With Neil Tyson!

11/03/2015 | 31:47


It was a grand night at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. CEO Bill Nye led the Planetary Society’s 35th anniversary party with guests including Neil deGrasse Tyson and Deputy NASA Administrator Dava Newman. We present a very brief sampling of the celebration.

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A Conversation with Andy Weir of “The Martian”

10/27/2015 | 1:07:51


  • Andy Weir, Writer, Author of “The Martian”

“The Martian” has won universal acclaim from scientists, astronauts, NASA, science fiction fans, and people who thought they weren’t science fiction fans. Mat Kaplan talks with the author about his harrowing, uplifting, amazingly detailed and realistic tale.

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Pluto Amazes!

10/20/2015 | 38:40


  • Hal Weaver, New Horizons Project Scientist, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab

Hal Weaver is a very happy Project Scientist. His New Horizons spacecraft has shocked his fellow researchers with magnificent images and data. He shares the excitement this week.

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Big Rockets and Little LightSails

10/13/2015 | 28:50


Digital editor Jason Davis is a lucky guy. He follows and reports on human spaceflight progress, as well as the progress of the LightSail solar sail, which is about a year from its next flight.

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Imaging Hot Young Jupiters

10/06/2015 | 28:50


Franck Marchis is on the team that has delivered an actual image of a young, hot world about 100 light years from Earth. We talk with him on the 20th anniversary of the first exoplanet discovery.

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Humans Orbiting Mars!

09/29/2015 | 37:56


Scott Hubbard and John Logsdon led the Humans Orbiting Mars Workshop last spring. They return with Casey Dreier as the report on that workshop is released to the world.

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