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Blue Dot: Celebrating 45 years of the epic Voyager missions

Dave gets a chance to revisit one of his favorite topics -- the twin Voyager spacecraft that began their explorations of the outer solar system and now interstellar space -- 45 years ago. Launched in the late summer of 1977.

Voyager 1 flew by Jupiter and Saturn and became the first human-built object to enter interstellar space ten years ago on August 25, 2012. Voyager 2 flew by all four of the gas giant planets: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. Both spacecraft's flybys of the outer planets and their attendant moons rewrote the textbooks about the outer solar system, discovering volcanoes on Jupiter's moon Io, detecting possible oceans on Europa, and enough discoveries and data to keep planetary scientists busy for decades to come.

Dave talks to Linda Spilker, a planetary scientist who joined the missions the year they launched, astrophysicist Merav Opher from Boston University about the interstellar medium that the twin spacecraft are now traveling through, and finally, Project Manager Suzanne Dodd puts the missions in perspective in terms of history and legacy. A must-listen for all fans of Voyager!

Dave Schlom is the longtime host and creator of Blue Dot. From surfing to Voyager in interstellar space, rock guitar to orcas in our imperiled oceans, the topics on Blue Dot are as varied as the host’s interests and connections -- which are pretty limitless! An internationally respected space history journalist, Dave is also deeply fascinated by all aspects of the grand workings of nature’s awesome machinery on scales ranging from galactic to subatomic. And topics take in all aspects of the arts and sciences.
Matt Fidler is a producer and sound designer with over 15 years’ experience producing nationally distributed public radio programs. He has worked for shows such as Freakonomics Radio, Selected Shorts, Studio 360, The New Yorker Radio Hour and The Takeaway. In 2017, Matt launched the language podcast Very Bad Words, hitting the #28 spot in the iTunes podcast charts.