Ep. 473: Remembering the Best Space Science of 2017


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2017 was a crazy year for, well, you know. But, it was a great year for space science, a kilonova, extrasolar planets, reusable rockets and more. Let's look back at the year that was and remember our favorite space science. We usually record Astronomy Cast every Friday at 3:00 pm EST / 12:00 pm PST / 20:00 PM UTC. You can watch us live on here on AstronomyCast.com, or the AstronomyCast YouTube page. If you would like to support Astronomy Cast, please visit our page at Patreon here - https://www.patreon.com/astronomycast. We greatly appreciate your support! If you would like to join the Weekly Space Hangout Crew, visit their site here and sign up. They're a great team who can help you join our online discussions! Download the show [MP3] | Jump to Shownotes | Jump to Transcript This episode is sponsored by: Barkbox Show Notes Gravitational Waves Icy Worlds More exoplanets Cassini's finale Trappist-1 system The Great American Eclipse Ceres Blue Origin's rockets and ships! Transcript Transcription services provided by: GMR Transcription Fraser: Astronomy Cast Episode 473: Remembering the Best Space Science of 2017. Welcome to Astronomy Cast, our weekly facts-based journey through the cosmos, where we help you understand not only what we know, but how we know what we know. My name is Fraser Cain. I’m the publisher of Universe Today. With me is Dr. Pamela Gay, the Director of Technology and Citizen Science at the Astronomical Society of the Pacific and the Director of CosmoQuest. Hey, Pamela. How you doing? Pamela: I’m doing well. How are you doing, Fraser? Fraser: Good. Happy New Year! Pamela: Happy New Year to you! We are between the American Geophysical Union Conference and the American Astronomical Society Conference in this weird, in between time of year where all of us are focused on trying to catch up on our inboxes. How are you doing? Fraser: Fine. I’m all caught up on my inboxes. It was nasty. I gotta say. I hit the ground running Monday this week, Tuesday this week – I guess that was in the New Year, Tuesday – and tried to catch up everything as best I could and I definitely just finished digging myself out from the pile. Pamela: And Monday is when the yearly firehose of press releases will begin with the AAS meeting – which I will actually be at and reporting information out from. So, everyone stay tuned for information from that. Then, in February, I’m actually gonna go to a computer science conference in Europe. So, all you folks over in Europe who are into computer science consider going to the European Testing Conference and perhaps I can see you there and it’ll be great to have another side of STEM to report out on. Fraser: Right on. Alright. 2017 was a crazy year for … well, you know. But it was a great year for space science; kilanova, extrasolar planets, reusable rockets, and more. Let’s look back at the year that was and remember our favorite space science. We’re just gonna take turns. How do you want to do this? Pull randomly? I refuse to have a number associated with this. There are no constraints on me. I am gonna range far and wide, talk about the stuff that I loved and – if stuff pops into my head and I’m remembering it – it was part of the greatest. This is how I’m gonna be going. Pamela: I am completely, completely down with that. Fraser: Okay. Pamela: So, what was your favorite because I’m sure you have strong opinions? Fraser: Oh, do you want to go straight to the favorite? Pamela: Yes. Fraser: Well, it’s gotta be the kilanova then. Pamela: Yes. Fraser: The big, big, big, big, big space news of the year had to be the discovery of these two colliding neutron stars that generated this enormous explosion, generated both gravitational waves and visible light in the electromagnetic spectrum. What that did was it was just this gigantic boon because they finally could see the objects that were colliding to create the gravit...

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