Mars Beckons India – Mars mission set for November launch

The dramatic announcement by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in August 2012 to launch a mission to Mars surprised everyone. It went further. In order to catch the next Mars launch window ISRO committed to a launch in November 2013. Miss that and they will have to wait for at least two years for the next one. This is an extra-ordinarily bold undertaking for a space agency with the experience of only a single mission beyond Earth orbit under its belt.

Episode 57: 15 October 2012 – Cassini Huygens Mission

Launched 15 years ago today, the Cassini Huygens mission has been one of the outstanding successes of solar system exploration and a model of NASA ESA collaboration. In episode 14 Professor John Zarnecki spoke about the science conducted from the surface of Titan by the Huygens lander in January 2005. The European Space Agency’s Huygens probe had […]

Episode 56: 7th October 2012 – SpaceguardUK

As the dinosaurs on the Earth 64 million years ago discovered, comets and asteroids have the potential for unexpected arrival with devastating consequences. The spectacular collision of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 with Jupiter in July 1994 dramatically raised awareness and no doubt a little concern amongst the heads of governments across the planet. Since then, the […]

From Dying Stars to the Birth of Life – Book Review

Title: From Dying Stars to the Birth of Life: The New Science of Astrobiology and the Search for Life in the Universe Publisher : Nottingham University Press Author: Jerry L Cranford ISBN : 978-1-907284-79-3 Price: £24.99 [237 pages hardcover] Subtitled as “The new science of astrobiology and the search for life in the universe”, this […]

Episode 29: Venus

In size, mass and orbit Venus is the nearest Earth has to a twin in the Solar System. It is the brightest object in the sky after the sun and moon, hottest planet in the solar system, has a day longer than its year, is named after the Roman goddess of love and yet it […]

Episode 28: Apollo 13

On this day 40 years ago the crew of Apollo 11 fulfilled one of mankind’s longest held dreams and walked on the surface of the Moon. One of them Buzz Aldrin in episode 12 of ATUK, recalled a little of that experience. Today’s episode is a short recording with Fred Haise when he visited Pontefract […]