You can now enable the Amazon Astronomy Cast skill on your Alexa enabled device (in the US now, Canada soon)!
You just log into your Alexa dashboard, go to the Skills, and look for “Astronomy Cast.” Or, even easier than that, just say “Alexa, enable Astronomy Cast!”
You can tell Alexa to skip episodes, back up or jump forward within the same podcast for a certain number of minutes, and many other commands.
Here’s a video from another podcast, The School of Podcasting, that shows you how it works!
And Amazon really care about Ratings and Reviews – so make sure to Rate / Review the Alexa skill for us!
We’ve got two new podcasts from the Astronomy Cast team of Dr. Pamela Gay and Fraser Cain: Ep. 313: Precession, and Episode 314: Acceleration.
The Earth is wobbling on its axis like a top. You can’t feel it, but it’s happening. And over long periods of time, these wobbles shift our calendars around, move the stars from where they’re supposed to be, and maybe even mess with our climate. Thank you very much Precession.
Put that pedal to the metal and accelerate! It’s not just velocity, but a change in velocity. Let’s take a look at acceleration, how you measure it, and how Einstein changed our understanding of this exciting activity.
When too much material tries to come together, everything starts to spin and flatten out. You get an accretion disc. Astronomers find them around newly forming stars, supermassive black holes and many other places in the Universe. Today we’ll talk about what it takes to get an accretion disc, and how they help us understand the objects inside.
In the end, everything dies, even plucky space robots. Today we examine the last days of a series of missions. How do spacecraft tend to die, and what did in such heroes as Kepler, Spirit, and Galileo (the missions… not the people).
Even the ancient astronomers knew there was something different about the planets. Unlike the rest of the stars, the planets move across the sky, backwards and forwards, round and round. It wasn’t until Copernicus that we finally had a modern notion of what exactly is going on.
Sometimes a trilogy needs four parts! The Astronomy Cast team of Fraser Cain and Pamela Gay have taken a look at the history and modern era of space stations, as well as peering into the future at some space station concepts still in the works. You can listen to this four-part series at the Astronomy Cast website, or at the links below:
And the podcast is also available as a video, as Fraser and Pamela now record Astronomy Cast as part of a Google+ Hangout. You can see their latest Hangouts at the Astronomy Cast YouTube page. They record most Mondays at 18:00 UTC (3:00 PM EDT, 12:00 PDT) at Google+.
Astronomy Cast has recently uploaded several new podcasts, and while we normally post them separately here on Universe Today, since there are a number of them arriving at once, here’s a list of the new ones:
We’ve recently had a ‘changing of the guard’ at Astronomy Cast as far as getting things posted to the AC website and getting podcasts loaded to the feed, and are now getting caught up. But as you probably know, Fraser and Pamela now record Astronomy Cast as part of Google+ Hangouts. You can watch them record live at Google+ (they usually record on Mondays at 12 noon Pacific time) or at the AstrosphereVids You Tube channel (where you can watch past Hangouts as well).
When Edwin Hubble observed that distant galaxies are speeding away from us in all directions, he discovered the reality that we live in an expanding Universe. Hubble worked to calculate exactly how fast this expansion is happening, creating the Hubble constant – which astronomers continue to refine and reference in their research.
When an object is orbiting the Earth, it’s really falling. The trick, described in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, is how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. There are several different kinds of orbits, and they are good for different reasons. From suborbital jumps to geostationary orbit, time to learn everything there is to know about going around and around and around.