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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

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.

More Info & Listen »

Movers and Shakers at SpaceCom Expo

11/24/2015 | 31:16


  • Chris Biddy, CEO and Founder, Aquila Space
  • James Causey, Executive Director, SpaceCom Expo
  • John Elbon, Vice President and General Manager, Boeing Space Exploration Division
  • Jeff Greason, CEO, XCOR Aerospace
  • Wendy Niemann, Associate Director of Industry Development, Destination Imagination
  • Ellen Ochoa, Director and Former Astronaut, NASA Johnson Space Center

We join 1,600 space entrepreneurs and visionaries in Houston, and talk with Boeing, XCOR, Johnson Space Center Director Ellen Ochoa and more.

More Info & Listen »

Solar System Revelations, and the World’s Biggest Telescope Threatened?

11/17/2015 | 28:50


Emily Lakdawalla returns from the annual Division for Planetary Sciences meeting with big news from around the solar system. Then we talk with science journalist Traci Watson about the departure of the great Arecibo radio telescope’s Director and the funding challenge that could shut down the observatory.

More Info & Listen »

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.

More Info & Listen »

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.

More Info & Listen »

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.

More Info & Listen »

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.

More Info & Listen »

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.

More Info & Listen »

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.

More Info & Listen »

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