The Cosmic Shed
An alien planet with water and Ad Astra

An alien planet with water and Ad Astra

September 22, 2019

Scientists have announced the first ever discovery of water vapour on an alien world outside our solar system. We bring you the lead author on the paper that made the discovery Professor Giovanna Tinetti of University College London in this episode of The Cosmic Shed.


An artists impression of K2-18b (not a Star Wars Droid but a watery exoplanet)

Just a few years ago, exoplanets (planets orbiting other stars than our own) were theorised but we'd never actually detected any. With improving techniques, telescopes and technology, astronomers have now found over 4000 and begun to be able to peak into their atmospheres. It's worth stopping for a moment to think about. Planets orbiting stars lightyears away from Earth and astronomers can peer into the their atmosphere by analysing the light signatures. Truly astounding. Perhaps even more wonderfully, one of the very first planets to reveal its atmosphere to us has revealed water vapour.

Water is essential for life on Earth. 

Listen now to Professor Giovanna Tinetti on The Cosmic Shed.


Prof Giovanna Tinetti tells The Cosmic Shed about the watery exoplanet K2-18b 

If you want to gaze up at K2-18b and wonder what might be floating or wandering around there, you'll find the star it orbits around the constellation of Leo.

We also discuss Ad Astra.


Brad Pitt in Ad Astra

Show notes

Get your tickets for our double bill of Tron and Tron Legacy with added science here.

Life After the Navigator (and on the Moon)

Life After the Navigator (and on the Moon)

August 14, 2019

We travel back to the 1986 classic Flight of the Navigator as we talk to Lisa Downs, the film maker in the midst of producing Life After the Navigator, a documentary tracking what has happened to Joey Cramer, star of the Disney film.


Lisa Downs with Joey Cramer filming Live After the Navigator (c) Lisa Downs

Lisa and Andrew discuss their love of the 80s classic scifi and Lisa tells us about the wonderful film she is making about Joey Cramer, the child star at the centre of the film and some dramatic real life stories.

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Lisa Downs and our Andrew

This being The Cosmic Shed, we find time to bring you some wonderful science too so we catch up with Dr Nicol Caplin, Astrobiologist at the European Space Agency to talk about those tardigrades on the Moon. Are they as big an issue as some are making out?

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Dr Nicol Caplin (ESA) and our Andrew discuss those Tardigrades on the Moon

Nicol also gives us some details on how you can visit ESA in the Netherlands for their open day in October 2019

Download, sit back and let time slip by.

show notes

Life After Flash is here 
The teaser for Life after The Navigator is here
You can get tickets for Tron Fest here
The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

The Cosmic Shed Live - TRON in the Planetarium

The Cosmic Shed Live - TRON in the Planetarium

August 7, 2019

We're delighted to announce TRON in the Planetarium at We Curious in Bristol on December 10th 2019. GET YOUR TICKETS NOW

Continuing our series of Classic Sci-fi in the Planetarium at Christmas, The Cosmic Shed returns with a brand new live event and screening. We've not got much time for the science chat - around 20 minutes or so before we all settle in for the wonderful TRON.

Do you believe in the users?

We will be joined on the day by Dr Pete Etchells, author of Lost in a Good Game as we explore the wonder of the films and whether the headlines we read about gaming being bad for us and to blame for much of society's ills are true...

We're doing it all in aid of Special Effect, the wonderful charity who help disabled people to get gaming.

Let your friends know you are going and invite them to come along with our Facebook event

notes

The wonderful people at Icon Book are giving one copy of Pete's book "Lost in a Good Game" for the first 30* lots of tickets sold for what we are calling Tron-Fest

*One book per transaction. Book to be collected at Tron-Fest from Pete himself!

Trekonomics: The Economics of Star Trek

Trekonomics: The Economics of Star Trek

August 6, 2019

Manu Saadia is the author of Trekonomics: The Economics of Star Trek and he joins us for this episode of The Cosmic Shed podcast.

Obviously, we're no strangers to Star Trek with previous guests including Marina Sirtis, Nichelle Nichols and Benedict Cumberbatch but economics is new to us. Those who came to our live event with Andy Weir will know that our Andrew has something of a disdain for economics but add Star Trek to it and he, and we, are all ears.

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Talking economics and Star Trek is fun. Ti, Andrew and Manu.

We also announce the winners of our From The Earth to the Moon competition and there's a treat (in the form of a sneak peak at our forthcoming announcement) at the very end. Apparently people don't listen to the end of podcasts but we know you guys do so thanks again for listening.

We hope you enjoy this new episode.

show notes

Manu was talking to Andrew and Ti.
You can buy Manu's book here

You can hear our episode with Marina Sirtis here
Previous episodes of The Cosmic Shed where we have discussed Star Trek include:
Star Trek Discovery with Prof Ethan Siegel
Door Twelve of The Cosmic Shed Advent Calendar
The Cosmic Shed Live - The Wrath of Khan
The Cosmic Shed Live - First Contact

HBO’s From The Earth to the Moon

HBO’s From The Earth to the Moon

July 31, 2019

We're going back to the Moon as we talk all things From The Earth to the Moon. We speak to two Apollo Astronauts and two people heavily involved with the wonderful HBO miniseries; Graham Yost and Paul McCrane.

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Our Ti with Graham Yost, guest for this episode, also wrote Speed.

Paul (Robocop, 24, Fame) plays Pete Conrad in From the Earth to the Moon and Graham (Speed, Band of Brothers, The Pacific) was the series producer and writer of more than one episode of the wonderful miniseries.

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Our Andrew with Fred Haise, Apollo 13 Astronaut who you'll hear in this episode

Andrew, Ti and Steve gather in the shed to discuss the series ans are joined by Tom Adams who also performs a song about Apollo 11 astronaut Mike Collins. We also hear Andrew's interviews with Alan Bean and Fred Haise.


Tom Adams and Ti Singh in The Cosmic Shed

You could also win the Blu Ray box set of the miniseries by following us on Twitter and/or Facebook and entering the competition. Thanks HBO.

show notes

Steve mentions this video from Brady Haran
Andrew mentions this companion episode of The Cosmic Shed 
Ti mentions book Born to be Bad which you can buy here.
The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network
You can buy the BluRay of From the Earth to the Moon here

Explorers - The Spirit of Apollo

Explorers - The Spirit of Apollo

July 16, 2019

The Apollo missions took humanity's spirit of exploration to its most brilliant so far and we celebrate that sense of adventure with this special episode of The Cosmic Shed podcast.

Michaela Musilova, Emma Brisdion and Lizzie Daly join us to share their love of science and exploration and tell us about their latest adventures including delving into the lava tubes of volcanoes, climbing mountains in the arctic and exploring human and elephant conflict in Kenya.


Michaela Musilova tells us about the lava tubes on the Moon and Mars

Michaela is a friend of the Cosmic Shed and first joined us for our episode on The Martian book when we also spoke to Andy Weir (for the first time) and Chris Hadfield.


Emma Brisdion joins us from The Arctic

Emma is one of the hosts of The For What it's Earth podcast, part of the Stimulus Network and the host of Fields Notes on Climate Change.

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Lizzie is a biologist and presenter. Penguins love her too.

Lizzie joins us to tell us about the PhD she is embarking on exploring the conflict between humans and elephants but, this being the shed, we find time for a whole lot more besides.

Download, relax and listen. 

show notes

You can subscribe to The Cosmic Shed podcast
The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

Mika McKinnon - Science Adviser to Star Trek and SGU

Mika McKinnon - Science Adviser to Star Trek and SGU

July 5, 2019

Mika McKinnon is a field geophysicist, disaster researcher and science adviser to The Stargate Universe and Star Trek Discovery. Mika joins us for this episode of The Cosmic Shed.


That's Mika's handwriting you see on the blackboards in the SGU

Mika joins our Andrew to discuss being a science adviser, being in the writers room on Star Trek Discovery and all the fascinating science she gets involved in with SETI and more.

show notes

Mika mentions the Osiris-REx mission and the Hyabusa2 mission.
Andrew mentions The Asteroid Trillionaires
You can subscribe to The Cosmic Shed podcast
The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

 

 

 

 

Sheddy McShedFace - A trip to the Antarctic

Sheddy McShedFace - A trip to the Antarctic

June 21, 2019

It's an action packed episode today as Russell Arnott reports back from his exciting science expedition to Antarctica on the RRS James Clarke Ross.

The James Clarke Ross is a British Antarctic Survey ship and Russell was on board for a whole host of adventures including the saving of a baby dolphin.

show notes

The Cosmic Shed is now part of The Stimulus Network
Russell Arnott is a friend of the shed and a Researcher in Phytoplankton

Jim Al-Khalili - Sun Fall

Jim Al-Khalili - Sun Fall

June 8, 2019

Professor Jim Al-Khalili makes some of our favourite science documentaries. He's professor of Theoretical Physics, Chair of Public Engagement in Science at the University of Surrey and now he's written a Science Fiction novel.

We're delighted to welcome him to this very special episode of The Cosmic Shed.

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Jim Al-Khalili and our Andrew at Cheltenham Science Festival

Jim and Andrew were chatting at Cheltenham Science Festival in 2019.

Listen by pressing play or download via your usual podcast app.

show notes

Get your copy of Sun Fall by Jim Al-Khalili here
Jim first joined us for our episode on Jurassic World way back in Episode 9 of The Cosmic Shed

Jim recommends The Three Body Problem bu Liu Cixin

You can subscribe to The Cosmic Shed podcast.

The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

 

Lost in a Good Game

Lost in a Good Game

June 6, 2019

Are computer games really bad for us? Is Psychology in a bit of a mess? Who did Andrew meet at MCM ComicCon?

All these questions, and more, answered in this episode of the Cosmic Shed as we're joined by Dr Pete Eetchells, author of the wonderful book, Lost in a Good Game and researcher in the short and long term effect of video games.

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Dr Pete Etchells and his wonderful book Lost in a Good Game.

Pete and Andrew discuss all things video games and we hear from some game developers including the people behind Eleven Eleven, a new way of storytelling in VR from Syfy.

We hear from the people developing the new Doctor Who VR game The Edge of Time and hear about the wonderful work being done by Special Effect, the charity who specialise in helping people with disabilities get gaming.

Aside from that, there are a surprise guest or two...

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Special Effect design gaming set ups for disabled people to get them gaming - brilliant.

A packed and rather wonderful episode of the Cosmic Shed. We know what you're thinking...what about the Science Fiction?! Don't worry. We're the shed. It's in there. Just listen in.

show notes

You can find out more about the wonderful Special Effect here, including how you can help them or vice versa

You can buy Pete's wonderful Lost in a Good Game Book here

Get your tickets for the next MCM Comic Con here

You can subscribe to The Cosmic Shed podcast.

The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

Godzilla

Godzilla

May 17, 2019

Up from the deep, you know the rest. We're joined by Aardman's Tom Vincent to explore all things Godzilla ahead of the new film in cinema's and Ti and Tom's Godzilla-Geddon in Bristol on May 25th.


Ti and Tom in The Cosmic Shed

We also hear from Dr Olivier Lambert, the co-author on the paper on the discovery of a Four Legged Whale with teeth. Yes, really. It was discovered just off the coast of Peru and dates back some 50 million years.


Godzilla and the Four Legged Whale with big teeth

Settle in, it's time for Godzilla and The Cosmic Shed. Listen in the usual way you listen to podcasts or press play on this page.

show notes

Get your tickets for Godzilla-geddon here

You can subscribe to The Cosmic Shed podcast.

The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network and so, now, is The Spooktator

May the Fourth be with Mark O’Connell

May the Fourth be with Mark O’Connell

May 4, 2019

It's Star Wars Day, May the 4th, and we're joined by Mark O'Connell, author of the wonderful book Watching Skies: Star Wars, Spielberg and Us.

Mark is, like our Ti, an author and the two of them sat down to discuss all things Star Wars and 80s nostalgia for this special Star Wars Day episode of the Cosmic Shed.

Pop on your Walkman, press play on the tape and go for a bike ride through the golden era of American cinema.

show notes

You can get your own copy of Watching Skies here
You can get your own copy of Ti's book Born to be Bad here
Our episode featuring Joonas Suatamo (Chewbacca) is here 
Our episode featuring Zach Galligan (Gremlins) is here
Our episode on the Physics of Star Wars is here
Our episode featuring Cavan Scott (Star Wars author) is here 
C3PO is played (in this episode of the podcast) by Alfie Wearn
Our episode on some rather interesting Star Wars research is here
Our episode on Ready Player One is here

In other words, you might as well subscribe to The Cosmic Shed podcast.

The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

April 25, 2019

We're joined by neuroscientist Dr Felicity Inkpen as we delve into Michel Gondry's 2004 film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

Can we remove memories? Should we? Would we?


Kate Winslet and Jim Carrey in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Andrew, Maddy and Steve gathered with Dr Felicity Inkpen in the shed and this fun and fascinating chat ensued. Happily, it's now a podcast so you can listen to it and no unethical company can remove it from your mind.

Download, press play or head over to wherever you subscribe to us from to listen now.


Dr Felicity Inkpen is a Physicist turned neuroscientist and an artist.

show notes

It's not mentioned in the episode but Dr Felicity Inkpen is also an artist

You can hear our episode on PIXAR's Inside Out here

The Cosmic Shed is part of the Stimulus Network

Robert Llewellyn (Kryten)

Robert Llewellyn (Kryten)

April 18, 2019

Robert Llewellyn (Red Dwarf, Fully Charged, Science Fiction author, Scrapheap Challenge, Carpool) joins Andrew ahead of the Fully Charged Live event at Silverstone (June 7-9, 2019).

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Andrew and Robert have a wide ranging chat all the way from Red Dwarf, through to the wonderful News From Trilogy and, of course, electric cars.

Download, press play or head over to wherever you subscribe to us from to listen now.

show notes

You can get your tickets for Fully Charged Live here

The Cosmic Shed is part of The Stimulus Network

Robert's Science Fiction Trilogy of novels are here

 

Spider-Man into the Spider-Verse

Spider-Man into the Spider-Verse

March 1, 2019

There were so many ways this episode could have gone. We explore the wonderful Spider-man into the Spider-verse and the science of multi-verses.


Miles Morales is Spider Man

Ti and Andrew are joined by Professor Jo Dunkley, professor of Physics and Astrophysics at Princeton University and try not to get too tangled up in her  research into the Cosmic Microwave Background or caught in the discussion about Dark Matter before we end up wondering if we really can spark a whole new universe just by typing this word instead of this one.

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Professor Jo Dunkley authored Our Universe.

Ben also pops in for a poem. In other words, it's a brand new episode of The Cosmic Shed and it's about Spider-Man.

show notes

You can explore more of these wonderful discoveries and ideas in Jo's book: Our Universe - An Astronomer's Guide

You can see Ti's appearance on Who wants to be a Millionaire here

You can see Donald Glover on Spider-Man here