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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Space Policy Edition: Is Human Spaceflight a Religion?

Holy texts and salvation ideology. Saints and martyrs. True believers and apostates. This isn’t a religion — this is human spaceflight, argues Roger Launius, the former Chief Historian of NASA.

Day of Action 2024: The Planetary Society goes to Washington

This week on Planetary Radio, we'll share what happened during this year's Day of Action and why it matters.

Space Policy Edition: The power of the lunar sublime

Should policymakers spend more time looking - really looking - at the Moon? Chris Cokinos thinks so. He’s the author of a new book, Still As Bright, which explores the evolving role of the Moon in our culture, our history, and our dreams of spaceflight.

Space Policy Edition: Real and Acceptable Reasons for Space Exploration

Former NASA Administrator Mike Griffin discusses his claim that there is a tension between the so-called Real reasons that motivate spaceflight and the prosaic, Acceptable reasons used to justify space exploration within the public sphere.

Tales of totality: The adventures of an eclipse chaser

Jim Bell, a professor from the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University and former president of The Planetary Society's Board of Directors, shares captivating tales from his global eclipse-chasing journeys.

Geothermal activity on the icy dwarf planets Eris and Makemake

A team co-led by the Southwest Research Institute has made a groundbreaking discovery, revealing evidence of hydrothermal or metamorphic activity on the icy dwarf planets Eris and Makemake in the Kuiper Belt. The lead author of this research, Chris Glein, joins Planetary Radio to explain.

Space Policy Edition: The ahistorical era of commercial lunar exploration

Science historian Dr. Matt Shindell joins the show to discuss the unique era of commercial lunar exploration, and how planetary exploration has evolved and can continue to evolve on and around the Moon.

The Space Race: Honoring the first African-American space explorers

This week on Planetary Radio, we take a peek behind the scenes at National Geographic's new documentary, “The Space Race,” which celebrates the triumphs and struggles of the first African-American space pioneers and astronauts.

Space Policy Edition: Space isn’t black — it’s grey

Space policy expert Laura Delgado López joins the show to break down the new paper, “Clearing the Fog: The Grey Zones of Space Governance” by Jessica West and Jordan Miller.

Blazing a trail to the Moon

We're celebrating lunar missions and the space advocacy that helps make them happen this week on Planetary Radio.

Space Policy Edition: India’s growing space ambitions

UK-based space writer Gurbir Singh, author of the book The Indian Space Programme: India’s Incredible Journey from the Third World towards the First, joins the show to help us understand India’s growing ambitions and capabilities in space.

Space Policy Edition: Was the Space Shuttle a policy failure?

Though the Space Shuttle program lasted 30 years and built the ISS, it fell short of NASA's goals for cost, reusability, and reliability. Can a program be both a worldly success and a policy failure? In this Space Policy Edition, we dissect a classic space policy paper and debate its relevance today.

Space Policy Edition: What went wrong with Mars Sample Return

NASA's Mars Sample Return mission is both a top priority and seriously troubled. Independent review board chair Orlando Figueroa joins us to talk about the challenges and what must be done.

Space Policy Edition: Why lunar exploration must be of enduring national interest

Scott Pace, the prior executive secretary of the National Space Council, discusses why Artemis is of strategic value to U.S. national interests — and why the Moon is unique as a destination to drive global space exploration.

Space Policy Edition: What’s Going on with: Congress, MSR, and FAA Reauthorization?

We check in on the congressional budget process for NASA, Mars Sample Return’s spiraling cost growth, and the impending end of the regulatory holiday for human commercial space launch companies.

Space Policy Edition: The policy implications of active SETI

Would meeting an extraterrestrial civilization be good or bad for humanity? Astronomer Dr. Jacob Haqq Misra argues that knowing the outcome in advance is fundamentally impossible.

Space Policy Edition: SpaceX's Starship vs. the environment, with Eric Roesch

Eric Roesch, an environmental policy expert, joins Planetary Radio to discuss SpaceX's Starship, environmental regulations' role in commercial space travel, and responsible space exploration.

Adventures at the 2023 Planetary Defense Conference

Planetary Radio creator Mat Kaplan shares a look behind the scenes at the 2023 Planetary Defense Conference in Vienna, Austria.

Juice mission liftoff: A new era in icy moon exploration begins

Join us as we celebrate the successful launch of the European Space Agency's Juice mission with project scientist Olivier Witasse.

Space Policy Edition: The motives behind NASA's billions — Jean Toal Eisen on how Congress funds the final frontier

Jean Toal Eisen, former senior staff on the Senate Appropriations Committee, joins the show to reveal the decision-making process, priorities, and motivations of those who control the U.S. space program's funding.

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