Since 2002, Planetary Radio has visited with a scientist, engineer, project manager, advocate, or writer who provides a unique perspective on the quest for knowledge about our solar system and beyond. The full show archive is available for free.
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The road to space has been a rocky one for most spacecraft, and LightSail is no different. Challenges remain even with the May 20th launch of a test mission approaching. Embedded LightSail reporter Jason Davis checks in with the latest news.
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.
The Beagle 2 Mars lander disappeared after it separated from the Mars Express orbiter on Christmas Day, 2003. Eleven years later, it has been found, partially-deployed on the Martian surface. Longtime Beagle 2 mission leader Mark Sims tells the story.
The Planetary Society has just announced that LightSail will be launched into orbit on its first test flight in May. We’ll talk with Project Manager Doug Stetson and embedded LightSail reporter Jason Davis about what to expect.
The Planetary Society’s experts look forward to a great year of firsts in the solar system and beyond.
Our annual review of the greatest events and accomplishments over the last year features analysis and commentary by Bill Nye the Science Guy, Emily Lakdawalla, Jason Davis, Casey Dreier and Bruce Betts, along with a special new year’s gift of Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Not just the air. Where is the water that was plentiful on the red planet billions of years ago? MAVEN may help answer these questions. Principal Investigator Bruce Jakosky reports on the early, exciting science data.
Not just landed. Orbited, too. European Space Agency Senior Science Advisor Mark McCaughrean helps us celebrate the Rosetta orbiter and the Philae lander.
Cassini is safe! Project scientist Linda Spilker returns with a regular update on Saturn, its moons and rings not long after learning that the mission is funded through its 2017 plunge into the planet.
If there’s life on Mars, it’s probably deep beneath the surface. That’s just one reason we need a tool like Planetary Deep Drill on the red planet and other mysterious worlds around our solar system. Honeybee Robotics’ Kris Zacny introduces us to the innovative prototype.
It was a terrible, tragic week for commercial space development. Historian and space policy analyst John Logsdon helps up understand the greater meaning of the SpaceShipTwo and Antares disasters on this special edition of Planetary Radio, with additional thoughts from Bill Nye.
Ilse Cleeves is lead author of a paper that concludes up to half of our solar system’s water is older than the solar system itself. The implications for life across the galaxy are profound.
Inspired by Star Trek, distinguished physicist Miguel Alcubierre developed the general relativity-based model for warp drive 20 years ago. Hear why he doubts it will ever be a reality, and learn about his current research on gravitational waves.
Explore Mars wants to look for life on the Red Planet. Not past life. Life thriving under the Martian surface right now. Chris Carberry will tell us how the ExoLance project might find it.
Harvard’s Henry Lin led work that determined the soon-to-be-launched James Webb Space Telescope may be able to detect an alien civilization by analyzing its atmosphere.
Venus Express Project Scientist Håkan Svedhem tells us about the spacecraft’s harrowing descent into the Venusian atmosphere, what it is currently up to, and what he’d like to see next at that forbidding planet.
24 spacecraft are either busy exploring the solar system or speeding toward an exciting destination. The Planetary Society's Senior Editor takes us on a whirlwind advance tour.
Take a spacecraft that can no longer survey the realm of galaxies and repurpose it to discover thousands of much nearer asteroids and comets. Put it to sleep for 2.5 years, then wake it up and start discovering even more! JPL’s Amy Mainzer is Principal Investigator for NEOWISE, the mission using this amazing space telescope.
Maybe it wasn’t “the comet of the century,” but ISON has left a scientific legacy that is beyond compare. That’s according to Karl Battams of NASA’s Comet ISON Observing Campaign on this week’s show.