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SYFY WIRE Bad Astronomy

Two Astronomers Talk Aliens

By Phil Plait

Many of you who read my blog are already aware of my dear friend Michelle Thaller, who’s an astronomer and a wonderful science communicator. She’s been on TV (we both do the talking head gig for How the Universe Works, for example), and she’s so good at telling people about science that NASA made her the assistant director for science communication at Goddard Space Flight Center.

She’s started a shiny brand new podcast called Orbital Path, which she’s doing for Public Radio Exchange. She invited me to be her guest on her very first episode! For this show, we talked about the weird star KIC 8462852—the one that shows a series of mini-eclipses that are probably from chunks of ice and gas clouds blocking the starlight but which might be a sign of gigantic megastructures being built by aliens. Of course, the odds of that are pretty long, but it was worth a follow-up. And even though no signals from aliens have been found, this does tell us something about ourselves.

If you like the podcast please give it a nice review on iTunes. You can follow Michelle on Twitter, and hey, if you happen to be in L.A. in January for the Gallifrey One Doctor Who con, come by and see us! We’ll be doing panels and stuff together there, too. I’m pretty excited about that.

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