Episodes

Ep. 429: Living on Mars  

When Elon Musk announced plans to send humans to Mars, he conveniently left out one important aspect. How are we supposed to survive on a place this hostile to life? Seriously, Mars sucks, and it's going to take some impressive techniques and technologies to make it on the Red Planet.

Ep. 428: The Moons of Mars  

We begin a miniseries on Mars. How many episodes will we do? Who knows? But we start today with a discussion of the two Mars moons, Phobos and Deimos.

Ep. 427: Click Bait vs Clear Science  

Did you hear that Dark Energy doesn't exist any more? Neither does Dark Matter? It turns out that NASA recalculated the Zodiac and now you're an Ophiuchan! Science is hard enough, but communicating that science out to the public when there are publications hungry for traffic is even harder! Here's how to parse the click-bait science titles.

Ep. 426: Confirmation Bias  

I hate to tell you this, but that meat computer in your skull is constantly betraying you. Don’t worry, we’ve all got the same, but fortunately, scientists have learned how this happens, and can help us make sure our science, and lives don’t suffer because of it.

Ep. 425: Naming Spacecraft  

Have you ever noticed spacecraft missions have some pretty cool names? How does anyone decide what to call these things?

Ep. 424: Lightning  

It turns out that nature figured out how to use electricity long before humans did. Lightning storms are common across the Earth, and even the Solar System. What causes this electricity in the sky, and how can science use it?

Ep. 423: Cyclones  

As Hurricane Matthew reminded us, cyclonic storms are a force to be reckoned with. What causes these storms, and how can they form across the Solar System.

Ep. 422: Geysers  

So if you’ve been to Yellowstone National Park, you’ve seen one of the most amazing features of the natural world – geysers. In today’s episode, we’re going to talk about geysers on Earth, and where they might be in the solar system.

Ep. 421: Space Games!  

As you probably know, Fraser is an avid video gamer, especially if it has anything to do with space. Today we turn things around, as Fraser talks about the games he plays, and what he thinks you should be playing too.

Ep. 420: FIRE!  

One of the most dangerous things that can happen inside a spacecraft is fire. Seriously, it’s NASA’s worst nightmare, and for good reason. Fire acts differently in space, and astronauts are always on alert. Here’s why.

Ep. 419: DragonCon 2016 Live - Rocket Girls  

This episode is a special live show that took place at DragonCon 2016 in Atlanta, GA. Pamela hosted a panel of amazing scientists and engineers who all happen to be women, and they discussed the unsung women of NASA and the early Space Age and their roles as “human computers”, and the current climate at JPL for women scientists and engineers.

Ep. 418: Error 418 – I’m a Teapot!  

One of the most familiar asterisms in the night sky is the Teapot, in Sagittarius. Today we’re going to talk about that and have a bonus conversation about Bertrand Russell’s Teapot Argument.

Ep. 417: Error 417: Expectation Failed  

In all fields of science, sometimes more is learned when you fail at what you’re trying to do than when you succeed. So what new science discoveries have failed expectations given us in astronomy?

Ep. 416: Fireballs from the Sky!  

Every now and then we look up and see bright fiery balls falling from the sky. Don’t panic, these are just bolides. Sometimes they leave trails, sometimes they explode, and sometimes they survive all the way to the ground.

Ep. 415: Temperature of the Universe  

The temperature of the Universe can vary a dramatic amount from the hot cores of stars to the vast cold emptiness of deep space. What’s the temperature of the Universe now, and what will it be in the future?

Ep. 414: Navigating Far  

In our last episode, we talked about what it’ll take to navigate across the Solar System. In this episode we scale things up and speculate how future civilizations will navigate to other stars and even other galaxies.

Ep. 413: Navigating Near  

It’s hard enough finding your way around planet Earth, but what do you do when you’re trying to find your way around the Solar System? Today we’ll talk about how spacecraft navigate from world to world.

Ep. 412: The Color of the Universe  

What color is the Universe? Turns out this isn’t a simple question, and one that scientists have really been unable to answer, until now!

Ep. 411: Science of Sunset Colors  

We all enjoy beautiful, multicolored sunsets. But what causes the brilliant oranges, pinks and purples that we see, and why does it change from day to day and season to season?

Ep. 410: Planet 9 Facts and Fiction  

The discovery of Planet 9 has caused a wonderful, confusing uproar and a flood of misinformation in the news and social media. We’ll sort out what we actually know, what things just aren’t true, and what things might be possible!

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