Playlist Science


Neil Armstrong's footprint on the moon

Who Are the 12 Men Who Walked on the Moon?

In a span of just three years, NASA sent twelve people––all men––to the moon. Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin are household names, but what about the others? Among them are a man who overcame dyslexia, one who believed in UFOs, and another who subscribed to creationism.
NOVA: Back to the Moon. Image: WGBH

A New Era of Lunar Exploration and Possibility

Fifty years after the first lunar landing, there's a new wave of interest in returning to the moon and utilizing its resources, as China, India, and Japan amp up their space programs and NASA starts turning towards private companies to achieve its own ambitious goals. 
Apollo 11 astronauts

When the Moon Landing Became a Conspiracy Theory

Less than a decade after Apollo 11 landed on the moon, the first widespread conspiracy theories emerged, claiming that the landing was a hoax. Even today, vloggers on YouTube and podcast hosts still promote several conspiracy theories that are easily debunked from scientific, photographic, and physical evidence.
Ed White, the first American to walk in space, on Gemini 4 mission. Photo: Courtesy of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, June 1965

Our Summer of Space Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Lunar Landing

Fifty years ago, on July 20, 1969, humans landed on the moon for the first time. To celebrate that epochal achievement, we have a whole lineup of space-themed programming this summer. Get a preview of our new Summer of Space programming here!  
Emily Graslie on Chicago Tonight on April 10, 2018

Emily Graslie Is Making a Show With Us!

Emily Graslie, the creator and host of the endlessly enlightening science YouTube channel The Brain Scoop and the Field Museum's Chief Curiosity Correspondent, is making a show with us exploring the fossils and incredible geology of the Northern Plains region where she grew up.
The iconic Earthrise photo from Apollo 8. Photo: NASA

The First Time Humans Orbited the Moon

On Christmas Eve of 1968, the three astronauts of Apollo 8 read from the Bible while broadcasting images of the moon from closer than any person had ever been. Not only was it the first manned spacecraft to orbit the moon, it also gave us one of the most iconic images ever. 
Leon Lederman. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Nobel Prize-Winning Fermilab Physicist Leon Lederman Has Died

Lederman, who won a Nobel Prize in 1988 for demonstrating that there are at least two kinds of particles called neutrinos, coined the Higgs boson's nickname "the God particle," and worked at Fermilab outside Chicago as well as the University of Chicago, has died at age 96.
A jumping spider in Nova Wonders. Photo: WGBH Educational Foundation

'NOVA Wonders' About Science's Unanswered Questions

NOVA usually focuses on questions scientists know the answers to, but the new miniseries NOVA Wonders asks the questions we don’t fully understand: what is dark matter? Is there extraterrestrial life? Can build a truly intelligent artifical intelligence?
Understanding the Opioid Epidemic

Understanding the Opioid Epidemic

Understanding the Opioid Epidemic explores the roots of the crisis and stories of people affected. Get even more background from Frontline, through one of their investigative films and various articles examining the opioid crisis.
An illustration of a black hole. Image: Courtesy WGBH

Curving Spacetime: Mind-Boggling Facts about Black Holes

They're a curvature in spacetime that even light can't escape; an object sucked into one is crushed into an infinite density. We haven't been able to see them, but we can hear them, in a sense. Learn more confounding information about these enigmas of space.
A double-decker bus during the Great Smog of London, in 1952

When Pollution Blocked Out the Sun

65 years ago on December 5, a deadly smog descended on London. Transportation stopped, people fell into the Thames, and an estimated 12,000 people died. Today, New Delhi has similar problems. How serious is pollution today?
Astronaut Scott Kelly. Photo: Victor Zelentsov / NASA

How a Year in Space Affects the Human Body

Astronaut Scott Kelly spent 340 days in space while his twin brother Mark stayed on Earth. Scientists are comparing the brothers to understand the effects of space on the human body. What have they learned? How do humans fare after a year in space?
Frontline: War on the EPA. Photo: Reuters/Christopher Aluka Berry

Scott Pruitt and the 'War on the EPA'

The director of the Frontline investigation War on the EPA discusses the "role reversal" at the EPA under Scott Pruitt, where "the regulated become the regulator," and the importance of battles over environmental regulation in the election of Donald Trump. 
A rendering of NASA's Cassini above Saturn's northern pole, ready to dive into Saturn's rings. Image: Courtesy NASA

Eight Mind-Expanding Discoveries Made by NASA's Cassini Mission

NASA's Cassini spacecraft has been orbiting Saturn for thirteen years, gathering data about the planet, its many unique moons, and its mysterious rings. Now it is poised to make a final dive into the planet's atmosphere. What have scientists learned from this extraordinary mission?
Jupiter, Saturn, and Neptune in photos taken by the Voyager spacecraft. Photo: NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory

One of Humanity's Most Astonishing Achievements

With less computing power than a smartphone, the Voyager spacecraft have traveled more than twenty-two billion miles between them, carrying a Golden Record documenting earth. Launched forty years ago, the Voyager mission is the first human-made object to reach interstellar space.
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