This Week in Space

Mar 4th 2022

This Week in Space 1

Atomic Rockets!

Hosted by Rod Pyle, Tariq Malik

Starlink to the rescue, moon impact mystery, RTGs explained

New episodes posted every Friday.
Category: News

We talk atomic rockets and nuclear power sources (RTGs) in space. In "The Martian," Watney used a surplus Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator to heat his rover but real spacecraft, like the Galileo and Cassini probes to Jupiter and Saturn, have used nuclear isotopes to power their vast arrays of instruments. And, the amazing Voyager spacecraft still talk to us from beyond the solar system powered by a small plutonium pellet. 
Then we warp into the amazing world of atomic rocket engines or Nuclear Thermal Rockets. In old sci-fi movies, everything cool was atomic and rockets were no exception. But did you know that America and the Soviet Union experimented with fission-reactor rockets, with the US actually testing a fission-powered rocket in Nevada for over 90 minutes? And now, they are back, promising to cut travel times to Mars and beyond. Join Rod Pyle and's Tariq Malik for atomic rockets!
We also talk about the war in Ukraine and if Starlink can help connect a besieged country. Plus, that wayward rocket finally hit the moon.

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