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.



Latest Episodes

#104: A Beautiful Rocket Butterfly

July 31st, 2019 · 58 minutes

As 2024 gets closer and closer, NASA is hard at work on SLS and Orion, but is also partnering with several companies to move several projects forward in parallel. Stephen and Jason then mark the passing of NASA's first Flight Director, Chris Kraft.

#103: Apollo 11

July 16th, 2019 · 37 minutes

50 years ago, humans first set foot on the moon. The work of the crew of Apollo 11 has inspired people for five decades, and their legacy continues to shine on today. In this episode, Stephen and Jason discuss three aspects of the mission that aren’t as well known, including Neil Armstrong’s brush with death in a training exercise, the science per…

#102: Important Business Meetings

July 5th, 2019 · 47 minutes

Orion and the Mobile Launch Platform are making progress, InSight's struggles continue and NASA is sending a 8-rotor drone to Saturn's moon Titan.

#101: Behind the Back Fence

June 20th, 2019 · 37 minutes

The Artemis Budget is becoming more and more real, as NASA promotes the number of companies involved in building its hardware. Elsewhere, ESA is preparing to go to Jupiter with the JUICE robotic mission and Bigelow has big plans for the ISS.

#100: There's Nobody in Charge

June 6th, 2019 · 52 minutes

Jason and Stephen discuss the debate around Starlink and its impact on astronomy, cover the latest GAO report and talk about the importance of Commercial Moon Landing Services.

#99: Apollo 10

May 21st, 2019 · 36 minutes

In May 1969, Tom Stafford, John Young and Gene Cernan took their Apollo spacecraft within 48,000 feet of the lunar service.

#98: The Moon is Having a Moment

May 7th, 2019 · 48 minutes

This fortnight: checking in on the SLS' test procedures and the on-going planning to return to the moon in 2024, and then a dose of planetary defense.

#97: The Titans Who Live There

April 23rd, 2019 · 50 minutes

Stephen and Jason talk the news, from blackholes to Beresheet, and spacesuits to backronyms. Then, a bit about the Crew Dragon anomaly.

#96: Probably Not Space Cows

April 9th, 2019 · 48 minutes

Rocket Lab has a new satellite platform, while methane cycles have been measured on Mars. Elsewhere, NASA continues to work through the details of its new 2024 lunar goal and 2007 OR10 needs a name.

#95: The Red Flag

March 26th, 2019 · 41 minutes

Vice President Mike Pence has challenged NASA to return to the moon within five years.