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Space Update

Date: 03-26-06
Host: George Noory
Guests: Phil Plait

George Noory welcomed astronomer Phil Plait, who gave a run down on recent developments in NASA's exploration of space and shared examples of "bad astronomy" that have been circulating.

Plait expressed excitement about the recent Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) images. He said as the MRO gets closer to the Red Planet image resolution will increase dramatically, making it possible to see two people standing next to each other (if people actually lived on Mars, of course). He mentioned a total solar eclipse scheduled to take place on March 29th, but noted that only people in parts of South America, West and North Africa, South East Europe and Central Asia to will be able to see it.

Plait waxed philosophical about religion and science, the Big Bang and Multiverse theories, as well as discussed the importance of humans returning to the moon. He commented on the International Space Station, which he called a "colossal waste of money" because astronauts there spend 90% of their time just maintaining the facility. Plait looked forward to a day in the not-so-distant future (perhaps five years) when civilian companies routinely launch into space. He also talked about Sirius and the Dogon tribe of Western Africa who worship it, planet formation in the universe and SETI. Read more at a special page Plait created for Coast listeners.

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Bumper music from Sunday March 26, 2006

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