Extra: Libby Jackson – A Galaxy of Her Own




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In this podcast extra episode we’re talking to Libby Jackson, physicist and engineer, who’s the Manager of Human Spaceflight and Microgravity at the UK Space Agency and was a European ISS flight controller and the spokesperson for Tim Peake’s spaceflight.

  • Being weightless
  • The value of space research to everyday life
  • Following your dreams
  • Her new book: A Galaxy of Her Own
  • Forgotten heroines of the world’s space programmes

Extra: AstroCamp Autumn 2018




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In this podcast extra episode, we go a step further than just talking about astronomy and look forward to a long weekend of practical astronomy.

This episode discusses the value of star parties and whets your apetite for Awesome Astronomy’s AstroCamp event in the Welsh Brecon Beacons International Dark Sky Reserve.

Come share the eyepiece with us, enjoy a talk from the UK Space Agency’s Libby Jackson and win some astronomy prizes!

Extra: Chewin’ the fat with a Nobel Laureate




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In this podcast extra episode, Jeni teams up with our good friend Dr Chris North from the Pythagoras Trousers podcast to speak to Caltech’s Linde Professor of Physics and Nobel Laureate Barry Barish. In this interview we discuss:

  • The early days of experimental particle physics
  • Building the advances in technologies for today’s experiments and detectors
  • The fear of failure creating resistance to building LIGO
  • Wanting to collect direct detections of signals from the Big Bang
  • The first detection of gravitational waves
  • The pomp, circumstance & minutiae of a Nobel Prize award
  • Post Nobel science influence
  • Advice for people wanting a career in STEM

Extra: Space Force




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In this podcast extra episode, there was only one thing playing on all our minds – Space Force. What is it? Why is it? What will it look like? Just like us, I’m sure you’ll be none the wiser after this in-depth look into:

  • President Trump’s plan to create the US Space Force
  • The lesser known Welsh Force
  • The International Space Treaty
  • A few diversions into the future of aircraft technology

Extra: Galaxies, Work Placement Opportunities & Diversity in Science.




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In this podcast extra episode, released during Pride month, we return to this April’s European Week of Astronomy and Space Science where we spoke to Dr Ashley Spindler to find out more about:

  • Galaxy evolution, the evolution of galaxy structures and star formation from the MaNGA project using Sloan Digital Sky Survey data
  • South East Physics Network placement opportunities for post graduate students
  • The challenges and obstacles that still exist for the LGBT community in the workplace and education efforts to make science environments more open and welcoming to all people.

Ashley can also be found at @Ashley_Nova_ on Twitter.

Extra: Farewell Alan Bean

This podcast extra is a re-release of our full length interview with the 4th man to walk on the moon aboard the Apollo 12 mission in 1969.

Alan Bean was not only a fighter pilot, Navy test pilot, astronaut, moonwalker, space station commander and artist, but he was also a very considerate, genuine and self-effacing gentleman. We are hugely saddened by the loss of such a lovely man but heartened that he passed away peacefully surrounded by his family.

In this interview, recorded in October 2015 we discussed:

  • journeying to the moon on a Saturn V rocket
  • your rocket getting struck by lightening
  • the mission’s colourful commander (Pete Conrad)
  • what the moon looked and felt like underfoot
  • the science conducted on the surface of the moon
  • the future of human spaceflight
  • and the Martian Olympics

Farewell Alan Bean. You leave us with only four humans that have memories of walking on the moon but a rich legacy of technological and scientific accomplishments.

Extra: AstroCamp Spring 2018




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Welcome to AstroCamp!

In this podcast extra episode, we welcome you to the practical astronomy arm of the Awesome Astronomy empire, as we take a run through what people can expect at our AstroCamp star party in the Brecon Beacons International Dark Sky Reserve on the extended weekend of 14-17th April 2018.

We also take a look at the social and educational aspects of star parties and round everything off with some of our favourite solar system and deep sky objects visible this spring to observe for yourself.

If you haven’t booked a place yet and would like to come, head over to www.astrocamp.org.uk We’re taking bookings all the way up to the 13th April 2018.

See you under the stars!

Extra: Why do we believe in conspiracy theories?




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An extended Hat of Woo if you like, but for this podcast extra episode we dip our hands back into the festering corners of Paul’s hat to take a look at the root causes and the psychology of belief in conspiracy theories.

Not why are they wrong but why do humans believe in conspiracy theories at all?

Do we shoot ourselves in the foot through our educational policies and methods of teaching?

Are we just hardwired to believe in falsehoods, whether more elaborate or more simple than the truth?

Extra: SpaceX and the Future of Spaceflight




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This Awesome Astronomy episode is inspired by last week’s incredible SpaceX launch and listeners’ requests to talk a bit more about SpaceX and the advances in commercial spaceflight. In this Podcast Extra, we’re joined by spaceflight aficionado Gavin Price (@pilliarscreatio) to discuss:

  • The inaugural Falcon Heavy launch and what it achieved
  • Was the launch awesome or all hype?
  • How good is the Falcon Heavy really?
  • Will Falcon Heavy or Elon’s next ambitious rocket make NASA’s rocket redundant?
  • How about other organisations? (ULA/Arianne/Blue origin etc)
  • Where do the commercial companies leave the likes of Soyuz? (TsSKB-Progress)
  • Where do we see access to space in ten, fifteen, twenty years time?
  • Will Elon make good on his plan to colonize Mars?