Liftoff is a fortnightly podcast about space, the universe, and everything. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to understand the latest developments as explained by enthusiastic space fans Stephen Hackett and Jason Snell.



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Latest Episodes

#85: There's No E in 'Flight'

November 20th, 2018 · 32 minutes

There was a false alarm concerning Opportunity, and drama about the SLS' future. That, and a conversation about Rocket Lab and a preview of InSight's landing.

#84: Emotions of Distant Galaxies

November 6th, 2018 · 59 minutes

NASA says goodbye to two spacecraft and Stephen and Jason review First Man.

#83: Apollo 7

October 22nd, 2018 · 34 minutes

In October 1968, Wally Schirra, Donn Eisele and Walter Cunningham spent 11 days in space working the bugs out of the Apollo spacecraft on its first crewed mission. The vehicle performed perfectly; the crew did not.

#82: Hubble Trouble

October 8th, 2018 · 57 minutes

Jason and Stephen discuss the latest Commercial Crew dates, and emerging issues with the Hubble Space Telescope, as well as exomoons and Jason's view of the latest SpaceX launch.

#81: Lasers Are the Best

September 28th, 2018 · 53 minutes

From a Californian satellite and the retirement of the Delta II to Hayabusa and Opportunity updates, it's been a busy couple of weeks. Plus, a review of Hulu's The First.

#80: Little Caesars Mars Probe

September 11th, 2018 · 64 minutes

Recent space news is all weird: Elon Musk's questionable podcast appearance, NASA looking into selling naming rights on its hardware, and a leak on the ISS.

#79: The Final Bridge to Crewed Flight

August 28th, 2018 · 37 minutes

NASA is inching toward crewed flights, with its Mobile Launcher Platform coming together and cis-lunar Gateway plans coming together, all while SpaceX and Boeing races to complete its crewed hardware. Elsewhere, Spitzer celebrates 15 years in space and OSIRIS-REx has spotted its target.

#78: Shed Some Sunlight on It

August 14th, 2018 · 42 minutes

The Parker Solar Probe is on its way to study our sun, as New Horizons is exploring what is at the outmost reaches of its influence on the solar system.

#77: Belly Flop Situation

August 1st, 2018 · 34 minutes

What goes around, comes around: The James Webb Telescope, water on Mars and the Space Force are all back in the news.

#76: Talking Curiosity with Emily Lakdawalla

July 3rd, 2018 · 39 minutes

Jason and Stephen are joined by Emily Lakdawalla to discuss her new book, The Design and Engineering of Curiosity: How the Mars Rover Performs Its Job.