All's not as it appears, this tale has many twists -
but if I wasn't here documenting the story
would that mean that the plot did not exist?

— Peter Hammill

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Updated: 3 hours 43 min ago

Bonus Episode: Dust with Dr. Paul Sutter

Sun, 03/17/2019 - 4:38pm

BICEP-2

Recorded during the Astrotour to Costa Rica, Fraser talks to Dr. Paul Matt Sutter about the nature of dust and BICEP 2’s claim of discovering primordial gravitational waves.

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Show Notes

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Transcript

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Categories: Astronomy

Ep. 522: Judging Age & Origins, part 1 – Earth Rocks

Thu, 03/14/2019 - 11:04pm

People always want to know how old everything is. And more specifically, they want to know how we know how old everything is. Well, here at Astronomy Cast, it’s our job to tell you now only what we know, but how we know what we know. And today we’ll begin a series on how we know how old everything is.

This is part one of a double episode.

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Show Notes

How do we age Earth rocks?
How Old Is Earth?How Does Carbon Dating Work?
Radiocarbon Dating
Radioactive decay
Uranium to Thorium
Paramagnetism
How do Geologists know how old Rocks are?

Transcript

transcript
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Categories: Astronomy

Ep. 521: The Deep Space Network

Mon, 03/04/2019 - 12:55pm

We always focus on the missions, but there’s an important glue that holds the whole system together. The Deep Space Network. Today we’re going to talk about how this system works and how it communicates with all the spacecraft out there in the Solar System.

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This episode is sponsored by: Barkbox

Show Notes

Deep Space Network – 3 facilities
Goldstone Deep Space Communications Complex
(Official site for Goldstone)
Madrid Deep Space Communications Complex
(Official Site for Madrid DSC)
Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex (CDSCC)
(Official site for CDSCC)

Operations Control Center at JPL

NASA Eyes website – see DSN’s current communication targets live

Transcripthttp://traffic.libsyn.com/astro52/AC_521_Raw_2019_03_11.mp3

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Categories: Astronomy

Ep. 520: Transients: What They Are and Why They Matter, Part 2

Thu, 02/28/2019 - 10:45pm

This is our second episode in a two part series where we look at Transients in astronomy. In last week’s episode, we talked about things that change here in our own Solar System. Now we’ll talk about everything else in the Milky Way and beyond.In this episode we mentioned donations and tours. Click to learn more!

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This episode is sponsored by: 8th Light

Show Notes

Transient astronomical object
supernovae
novae
dwarf nova outbursts
gamma-ray bursts
tidal disruption events
gravitational microlensing
transits
eclipses
variable stars

Transcript

transcript
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Categories: Astronomy

Ep. 519: Transients: What They Are and Why They Matter

Fri, 02/22/2019 - 2:42pm

Astronomers have found that sometimes the Universe changes. Things move, things explode, things get brighter or dimmer. In fact, knowing this has helped astronomers discover some very important aspects of the Universe. Today we begin a two part series on Transients and their role in astronomy.

This is part one of a double episode.
In this episode we mentioned donations and tours. Click to learn more!

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This episode is sponsored by: 8th Light

Show Notes

What is a Transient?

Local (within solar system) transients – comets, asteroids & Kuiper Belt Objects

Surveying the Solar System – LSST

New Horizons

Finding transient objects by using comparison photos, missing light, etc.

Transient lunar phenomena

History of Transient Lunar phenomena

Clyde Tombaugh’s discovery of Pluto

Dark Spots and flashes on Jupiter

Transcript

transcript
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Categories: Astronomy