May 26, 2016 7:52 pm

Get a “Venusian Update” this Friday from Dr. FunkySpoon

Artist's depiction of Akatsuki near Venus, courtesy of Akihiro Ikeshita, via Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.

Artist’s depiction courtesy of Akihiro Ikeshita, via Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.

Once again, this week, we’re revisiting one of our more popular episodes featuring StarTalk All-Stars host Dr. David Grinspoon. It’s “Cosmic Queries: Venus” and we’ve extended it with what David is calling a “Venusian Update.”

In it, David fills Chuck Nice in on what happened with the ESA’s Venus Express, the mission for which Dr. FunkySpoon was an Interdisciplinary Scientist, and upon which he had a big impact.

He also updates us on the never-say-die story of Japan’s Venus orbiter, Akatsuki, and how the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, JAXA, turned apparent failure into an incredible success story.

Finally, David tells Chuck Nice about the projects that NASA is considering for future missions to explore Earth’s “Evil Twin.”

Even without the newly recorded additions to the show, the original is a classic. David and co-host Leighann Lord answered fan-submitted questions about our neighboring planet, shrouded in mystery thanks to the runaway greenhouse effect that has made it nearly impossible to study in great detail. You’ll hear about the only mission to ever land on Venus and send back pictures, the Soviet Venera spacecraft, as well as the planet’s unique challenges to exploration. Explore theories about Venus’ unusual rotation – its year is shorter than its day – and why it rotates in a different direction than Earth.

Please join us for Extended Classic: Cosmic Queries Venus, with Dr. FunkySpoon, this Friday at 7 pm EDT on our website, as well as on iTunes Podcasts, Stitcher, TuneIn, SoundCloud and now, on Google Play Music.

That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!
–Jeffrey Simons

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