Planetary Radio

Series produced by Mat Kaplan

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The Planetary Society's travel show that takes you to the final frontier, featuring commentary by Society CEO Bill Nye the Science Guy.

Public radio's only long format, weekly series devoted to space exploration and the scientists, engineers, astronauts and visionaries who lead it. Most episodes include an in-depth interview along with regular segments that incude:

Planetary Society CEO Bill Nye the Science Guy's weekly commentaries...Emily Lakdawalla's Snapshots From Space...What's Up! (...in the night sky, with other fun and intriguing space info and a weekly contest.)

Several episodes each year are recorded live before an enthusiastic audience, often with live music. We also cover special space events, like the landing of the Curiosity Mars Rover, and take listeners to the places where scientists learn about the cosmos, like Chile's Atacama Desert.

Episodes are available from the PRSS each Tuesday on channel A68.5, from 1600-1630 Eastern. We also make a 128kb MP3 available to stations at our website.

Every week, Planetary Radio visits with a scientist, engineer, astronaut, project manager, advocate, visionary or writer who can provide a unique perspective on the quest for knowledge about our solar system and beyond. We also showcase regular features that raise your space IQ while they put a smile on your face.

Past guests have included Buzz Aldrin, Sally Ride, X Prize Founder Peter Diamandis, Ray Bradbury, Bill Nye the Science Guy, Steve Squyres of the Mars Exploration Rover Project, Galileo's Daughter author Dava Sobel, interplanetary volcano expert Rosaly Lopes, the European Space Agency's Bernard Foing and scores of other leaders.

Each episode also includes an irreverent look at the current night sky with astronomer and Planetary Society Director of Projects Bruce Betts. These "What's Up!" segments also include a Random Space Fact, This Week in Space History, and our popular weekly space trivia contest.

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Public radio's only long format, weekly series devoted to space exploration and the scientists, engineers, astronauts and visionaries who lead it. Most episodes include an in-depth interview along with regular segments that incude: Planetary Society CEO Bill Nye the Science Guy's weekly commentaries...Emily Lakdawalla's Snapshots From Space...What's Up! (...in the night sky, with other fun and intriguing space info and a weekly contest.) Several episodes each year are recorded live before an enthusiastic audience, often with live music. We also cover special space events, like the landing of the Curiosity Mars Rover, and take listeners to the places where scientists learn about the cosmos, like Chile's Atacama Desert. Episodes are available from the PRSS each Tuesday on channel... Show full description


291 Pieces

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Caption: Artist’s concept of the New Horizons spacecraft as it approaches Pluto and its largest moon, Charon, in July 2015., Credit: JHUAPL/SwRI
Humankind’s arrival at Pluto is barely two months away. The science and images have already started to flow from New Horizons, according to the mis...

Bought by KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KWMR, and KFCF FM


  • Added: May 11, 2015
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: A depiction of the MESSENGER spacecraft is shown flying over Mercury's surface displayed in enhanced color., Credit: NASA/JHU APL/Carnegie Institution of Washington
We open with the countdown to destruction--the MESSENGER spacecraft’s impact on Mercury ended its spectacularly successful mission. Principal Inve...

Bought by KRZA, KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KWMR and more


  • Added: May 04, 2015
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: LightSail voyages across the cosmos., Credit: The Planetary Society
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 tes...

Bought by KMUD, KWMR, KFCF FM, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, and WXAV 88.3FM


  • Added: Apr 27, 2015
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: The Planetary Defense Conference in Frascati, Italy hosted Planetary Radio Live., Credit: Mat Kaplan
Planetary Radio Live was the only public event at the just-completed Planetary Defense Conference in Italy. Join us for excerpts from an all-star c...

Bought by KRZA, KMUD, KWMR, WXAV 88.3FM, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio and more


  • Added: Apr 21, 2015
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: A six-meter Supersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator (SIAD) is spin tested in a JPL clean room., Credit: Mat Kaplan
Landing on Mars is hard, and the bigger you are, the harder it gets. Rob Manning returns to tell us about one of NASA’s best hopes for getting much...

Bought by KMUD, WXAV 88.3FM, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, KWMR, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Apr 12, 2015
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: NASA's pathways to the Red Planet., Credit: NASA
A human mission to orbit Mars might be possible by 2033, and it might be accomplished at reasonable cost and with existing or nearly-ready technolo...

Bought by KWMR, KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Apr 07, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: Towering mock-up of Bigelow Aerospace's Olympus space habitat., Credit: Mat Kaplan
Bigelow Aerospace’s BEAM expandable/inflatable space module will be attached to the International Space Station later this year. Mat travels to the...

Bought by KWMR, KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Mar 30, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: One of the best images so far of dwarf planet Ceres, centered on the mysterious "bright spots.", Credit: NASA / JPL / UCLA / MPS / DLR / IDA
Senior Editor Emily Lakdawalla has returned from the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in Texas with the latest revelations about our solar sy...

Bought by KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KFCF FM, and KWMR


  • Added: Mar 23, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: Former Curiosity Rover Project Scientist John Grotzinger, Credit: Mat Kaplan
The Mars Science Laboratory rover has accomplished its primary goals on the Red Planet, and John Grotzinger has left his central role to become Cha...

Bought by WTJU, KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KWMR and more


  • Added: Mar 17, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: Elected officials hear about Virgin Galactic's LauncherOne rocket and WhiteKnightTwo air launch vehicle., Credit: Virgin Galactic
6,000 job-seekers came to the new Long Beach, California home of Virgin Galactic’s LauncherOne rocket on a recent morning. We sit down with CEO Geo...

Bought by KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KWMR, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Mar 10, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: Jim Bell's new book chronicles the Voyager mission to the outer solar system and beyond., Credit: Dutton Publishing
Planetary scientist and author Jim Bell has just written “The Interstellar Age—Inside the Forty-Year Voyager Mission.” He talks with Mat Kaplan abo...

Bought by WTJU


  • Added: Mar 03, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Artist's conception of an astronaut collecting a sample from a retrieved asteroid., Credit: NASA
ARM is the Asteroid Redirect Mission, and sometimes it seems that it doesn’t have a friend in the world. But it does, and Jonathan Goff of Altius S...

Bought by KMUD, KFCF FM, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, KRZA, WXAV 88.3FM and more


  • Added: Feb 23, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: Orbital image of what is believed to be the Beagle 2 lander on surface of Mars., Credit: HiRISE/NASA/JPL/Parker/Leicester
The Beagle 2 Mars lander disappeared after it separated from the Mars Express orbiter on Christmas Day, 2003. Eleven years later, it has been foun...

Bought by KMUD, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KWMR, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Feb 16, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: Cassini Saturn mission Project Scientist and host Mat Kaplan touch the plumes of Enceladus at JPL., Credit: Merc Boyan, The Planetary Society
Emily Lakdawalla coined the phrase, and it is exquisitely appropriate. We’ll visit the Jet Propulsion Lab on its Icy Worlds Day to learn more about...

Bought by KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, KFCF FM, and KWMR


  • Added: Feb 10, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 3
Caption: A small fragment of Mars meteorite ALH 84001, Credit: Robina Shaheen and Mark Thiemens
Robina Shaheen and Mark Thiemens tell us how an ancient Mars meteorite has revealed much about the red planet. Mat holds a tiny fragment of the roc...

Bought by KMUD, KFCF FM, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, WYAP and more


  • Added: Feb 03, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: Artist's conception of the LightSail solar sail., Credit: The Planetary Society
The Planetary Society has just announced that LightSail A will be launched into low earth orbit in May. We’ll talk with Project Manager Doug Stets...

Bought by KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KFCF FM, KMUD, KWMR and more


  • Added: Jan 26, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 6
Caption: Artist's conception of exoplanet Kepler -186f., Credit: Wikipedia
Astronomer and planetary scientist Courtney Dressing is the lead author of research that may have found the formula for the mass and composition of...

Bought by KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, WYAP, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Jan 19, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 4
Caption: Artist's conception of the completed European Extremely Large Telescope, Credit: ESO
Joe Liske, host of Hubblecast, is also the top scientist on the European Southern Observatory’s European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT), now und...

Bought by KWMR, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, and KFCF FM


  • Added: Jan 13, 2015
  • Length: 28:50
  • Purchases: 4
Caption: Artist's conception of the Dawn spacecraft approaching Ceres in the asteroid belt., Credit: NASA/JPL
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 ...

Bought by KFCF FM, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, WXAV 88.3FM, KWMR, and WYAP


  • Added: Jan 05, 2015
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 5
Caption: Orion spacecraft is recovered by the USS Anchorage, Credit: NASA
Our annual review of the greatest events and accomplishments over the last year features analysis and commentary by Bill Nye the Science Guy, Emily...

Bought by KWMR, KSVR Studios: Skagit Valley Radio, KMUD, WXAV 88.3FM, and KBRP Community Radio


  • Added: Dec 30, 2014
  • Length: 28:51
  • Purchases: 5