Broadcast 3931 Sarah Scoles

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

The Space Foundation Conference

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Guest:  Sarah Scoles;  Topics:  Sarah talked about your science journalism, nuclear and also extraterrestrial work, articles, and books including her current work in progress, we talked about her target market for her articles, commercial space, Artemis, settlement, SSP and much more.

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We welcomed our guest back to the show by leading off with a short discussion on the success of the DART mission earlier today.  From DART we moved on to talking about Jupiter which on Monday of this week was the closest to Earth in decades plus it was very bright being in opposition to the Sun.  Jupiter is still incredibly bright in the night sky so if you have not seen it yet, be sure to do so. You can't miss it. 

I changed the subject with Sarah to her interest in nuclear weapons including the work she was doing on her latest book which she described for us.  Her upcoming book is titled "Mass Defect: Life In The Nuclear Age."  Sarah described it to us and said it would likely not be out for a year. I asked her lots of questions about her interviews with the weapons scientists, engineers, plus I even asked her if she got tours of any of the nuclear weapons facilities.  We talked about the opinions of the people working on these weapons. My experience with the few I have talked with seemed to parallel hers so listen to what we both had to say about this particular issue.  Later in the discussion she talked about weapons verification, measuring radiation, supporting arms control and more. 

Sarah's other interest topic per her main website page,, dealt with searching for life, extraterrestrials, UFOs and now the UAP concern.  We had a nice visit on this subject, then Ft. Worth John called and we talked about the UAP congressional hearings, lying and covering up on the subject, possibly even with members of congress.  At one point John had a good point about congressional members lying in favor of the UAP being from elsewhere when he said supporting such ideas were usually career killers.  He posed the question to Sarah and me as to what would be the incentive to lie to the public saying there were from elsewhere. Typically the lie is to say this or that and they attempt to dismiss the object or the sighting.  Don't miss all of the discussion with John and Sarah.  Before moving on to commercial space, I asked Sarah why she had an interest in ET searches and the like.  She told us an interesting story from her childhood so listen for it.

I asked Sarah some additional questions about Artemis.  Bill from Tucson asked for her opinion should Starship prove successful would it lead to the cancellation of SLS.  She was not sure of that and thought that there might be valid reasons for a government big launcher separate from why a commercial heavy launcher existed despite the costs for the government rocket being much greater.  I asked Sarah if she had an interest in SSP or covered it.  She did know about it but it was not one of her main journalistic topics of interest.  For SSP, she mentioned some of the government research projects like the one with the Naval Research Lab (NRL).  She also thought the more narrow military interest in SSP seemed like a good idea but then she spoke about using SSP in space, beaming back to Earth from space, and beaming power to spaceships in space.  Don't miss all of what she said about SSP.

We moved on to space settlement.  She did not write much about it but said one of the issues was that a settlement would require substantial amounts of power and that today would be very challenging.  As we were nearing the end of the program, we talked about the role of commercial space in national security citing the imaging satellites and what they have been doing in the Russian-Ukrainian war.  Also mentioned was Starlink over Iran and some of the Chinese statements made regarding Starlink.

Please post your comments/questions for Sarah Scoles on our archive page for this show.  You can reach Sarah through me or her website.




Sara is a science & space journalist. We will talk with her about science, space and Starship plus much more.

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27 Sep 2022 Sarah Scoles
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  • The Space Foundation Conference

  • The Space Foundation Conference

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  • The Space Foundation Conference