Planetary Radio • May 20, 2014

Living and Working on Mars—A Conversation at the International Space Development Conference

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On This Episode

20140520 Charles Whetsel thumbnail

Charles Whetsel

Mars Program Formulation Office Manager for Jet Propulsion Laboratory

20140520 Geoff Notkin thumbnail

Geoff Notkin

Meteorite Man for Discovery Channel

20140520 Susan Jewell thumbnail

Susan Jewell

Space medicine researcher and Mars analog participant for Mars Initiative

Planetary Radio visits the 33rd ISDC to talk with three explorers who’ve set their sights on the Red Planet: MD and space medicine researcher Susan Jewell, Meteorite Man Geoff Notkin, and Mars Program Formulation Office Manager at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Charles Whetsel. Emily unveils a new image tool that lets you turn a clean Mars Rover into a very dirty one. Bill Nye contrasts a warming attitude toward planetary exploration with the growing chill between the US and Russia. Bruce Betts and Mat Kaplan give away a littleBits Space Kit—modular electronics fun created with NASA.

An Astronaut on Mars
An Astronaut on Mars A simulated view of an astronaut on Mars.Image: NASA Haughton Mars Project / Pascal Lee

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This week's question:

What is the third largest galaxy in the Local Group?

To submit your answer:

Complete the contest entry form at or write to us at [email protected] no later than Tuesday, May 27, at 8am Pacific Time. Be sure to include your name and mailing address.

Last week's question:

Who was the only Apollo astronaut who also became a U.S. Senator?


The answer will be revealed next week.

Question from the week before:

Measured across the Earth’s surface (not including the vertical distance), how far did Alan Shepard travel in Freedom 7?


Alan Shepard traveled about 302 statute miles or 485 kilometers downrange in Freedom 7, which was more than double the altitude he reached.