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In this episode, Todd Pedlar leads a discussion with Dan Dawson and Charles Hackney concerning the erstwhile planet, Pluto, an episode topic sparked by the fascinating recent discoveries by New Horizons, the NASA interplanetary probe that passed by Pluto in July of 2015.   A few of the highlights of Episode 8 are discussions of

  • Our models of the solar system, and the understanding of the planets, from ancient times to today
  • The ancient and particularly human fascination with the night sky – and also with other beings and worlds “out there”
  • The “Space Race” and geopolitical connections among nations concerning space exploration
  • The particular history of the New Horizons space probe

and, nearly last, but certainly not least – the hosts geek out on some of the photographs in the most recent New Horizons releases, which are reproduced here (click on the image to download):

Detail_LORRI_Panorama(Fig. 1 – Detail of LORRI Panorama)Surface Features(Fig. 2 – Surface Features)Mountains(Fig. 3 – Mountains)Monstrous Cratering(Fig. 4 – Monstrous Cratering) Varied Terrain(Fig. 5 – Varied Terrain) Snakeskin(Fig. 6 – Snakeskin)LORRI_Panorama(Fig. 7 – LORRI Panorama)Pluto-Wide-FINAL-9-17-15(Fig. 8 – Pluto WIDE Final)



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