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The Exciting Year Ahead on the Final Frontier

New Horizons at Pluto, July 2015

Air Date: 01/06/2015
Run Time: 28:50

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  • Bruce Betts, Director of Science and Technology, The Planetary Society
  • Jason Davis, Digital Editor, The Planetary Society
  • Casey Dreier, Director of Space Policy, The Planetary Society
  • Emily Lakdawalla, Senior Editor and Planetary Evangelist, The Planetary Society
  • Bill Nye, Chief Executive Officer

Topics: Enceladus, Dione, Saturn's small moons, Akatsuki (Planet-C), Venus Express, MESSENGER, Dawn, Saturn's moons, Saturn, Shoemaker NEO Grants, Saturn's rings, Jupiter's moons, Pluto, Europa, Charon, Planetary Deep Drill, comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko, Planetary Radio, Venus, LightSail, Planetary Society People, Mars, Planetary Society, Bill Nye, FY2015 NASA Budget, New Horizons, Cassini, Mercury, podcasts and videos, Curiosity (Mars Science Laboratory), asteroid 1 Ceres, commercial spaceflight, Rosetta and Philae, Space Policy, Future Mission Concepts, asteroids, human spaceflight, astronaut, International Space Station

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The Planetary Society’s experts look forward to a great year of firsts in the solar system and beyond. Bill Nye the Science Guy provides a status report on the Asteroid Redirect Mission. We also talk about robotic exploration with Emily Lakdawalla, human spaceflight with Jason Davis, and the outlook for space program funding with Casey Dreier. Bruce Betts and Mat Kaplan begin the What’s Up segment with a preview of even more 2015 efforts.

Dawn in LAMO at Ceres

NASA / JPL-Caltech

Dawn in LAMO at Ceres
Artist’s concept of Dawn in LAMO, pointing its scientific instruments at Ceres.

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Trivia Contest

This week's prize is a 200 point account with, valued at $200 US, for astronomical observation from instruments throughout the world.

This week's question:

Besides Galileo (the man, not the spacecraft) who was the first person to discover a moon circling another planet? (Not Earth’s moon, but you might earn extra points if you tell us who discovered that moon, too. Also, a Nobel prize.)

To submit your answer:

Complete the contest entry form at or write to us at no later than Tuesday, January 13, 2015 at 8am Pacific Time. Be sure to include your name and mailing address.

Last week's question:

How many rockets carried humans into orbit in 2014?


The answer will be revealed next week.

Question from the week before:

Of spacecraft that have visited at least one giant planet (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune) which spacecraft had the greatest dry mass?


Cassini is, by far, the largest spacecraft that has visited a giant, outer solar system planet.


No trivia contest spoilers please!

Bongs: 01/06/2015 03:35 CST

Loved the show, but missed the old theme. Bring it back, please!

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