SoT 324: Kinetic Penetrator

Hosts: Ed Brown, Penny Dumsday, Lucas Randall

[00:01:18] Hyabusa 2, Japan’s latest sample return mission, has briefly landed on the asteroid Ryugu. It’s an ambitious mission looking at the building blocks of the solar system.
[00:16:14] And what’s the point of dragging samples all the way back to Earth, when we can send whole labs to celestial bodies?
[00:20:59] Echidnas are cute but spiky Australian native animals, with rather strange mating habits. But they’re in high demand on the illegal pet trade, so wildlife forensic scientists have developed a technique to track where they’ve been smuggled from.
[00:28:34] The commercial arm of the Mars One plan to colonise the red planet has filed for bankruptcy. Was this an interplanetary Fyre Festival?
[00:35:56] Australian scientists may have found a way of developing a universal flu vaccine, that would work against all strains and eliminating the need for yearly flu shots.

This episode contains traces of Mars One CEO Bas Lansdorp answering questions in a company-produced interview back in 2015.