576 episodes

The surprising connections in science and technology that give you the Big Picture. Astronomer Seth Shostak and science journalist Molly Bentley are joined each week by leading researchers, techies, and journalists to provide a smart and humorous take on science. Our regular "Skeptic Check" episodes cast a critical eye on pseudoscience.

Big Picture Science SETI Institute

    • Science
    • 4.5 • 865 Ratings

The surprising connections in science and technology that give you the Big Picture. Astronomer Seth Shostak and science journalist Molly Bentley are joined each week by leading researchers, techies, and journalists to provide a smart and humorous take on science. Our regular "Skeptic Check" episodes cast a critical eye on pseudoscience.

    CRISPR Mosquitoes*

    CRISPR Mosquitoes*

    The powerful gene editing tool CRISPR is already being tested on animal and plant cells. It has even been used on humans. How might this revolutionary tool change our lives? On the one hand, it could cure inherited diseases and rid the world of malaria-spreading mosquitoes. On the other hand, scientists using it are accelerating evolution and introducing novel genetic combinations that could transform our biological landscape in unforeseen ways. We explore the ramifications of this revolutionary technology.
    Guests:
    Nathan Rose – Molecular biologist and head of malaria programs at U.K. based biotech company, Oxitec.
    Hank Greely – Law professor and director of the Center for Law in the Biosciences at Stanford University and author of “CRISPR People: The Science and Ethics of Editing Humans.”
    Antonio Regalado – Senior Editor for Biomedicine, MIT Technology Review.
    *Originally aired April 17, 2023
    Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake
    Big Picture Science is part of the Airwave Media podcast network. Please contact advertising@airwavemedia.com to inquire about advertising on Big Picture Science.
    You can get early access to ad-free versions of every episode by joining us on Patreon. Thanks for your support!
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 54 min
    Don't Lighten Up

    Don't Lighten Up

    A canopy of stars in the night sky is more than breathtaking. Starlight is also an important tool that astronomers use to study our universe. But the growth of artificial light and light pollution are creating dramatic changes to the nighttime environment. Let your eyes adjust to the dark as we travel to a dark sky reserve to gaze upon an increasingly rare view of the Milky Way and explore what we lose when darkness disappears.  
    Guests:
    Kim Arcand – Visualization scientist & emerging tech lead, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and author of “Light: The Visible Spectrum and Beyond".
    Don Jolley – Teacher of Math and Sciences at the Bolinas School in Marin, California who has been leading dark sky tours for three decades.
    Christopher Kyba – Interdisciplinary Geographic Information Sciences Research Fellow at Ruhr University Bochum.
    Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake
    You can get early access to ad-free versions of every episode by joining us on Patreon. Thanks for your support!
    Big Picture Science is part of the Airwave Media podcast network. Please contact advertising@airwavemedia.com to inquire about advertising on Big Picture Science.
     
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 54 min
    Aliens Now

    Aliens Now

    We are closer than ever to finding aliens according to astrophysicist Adam Frank. He isn’t alone in his optimism. Over the last two decades, the tools used to search for extraterrestrials have been advancing mightily. Where we were once only monitoring with radio telescopes, we are now actively looking for bio and technosignatures on exoplanets. Find out why scientists think new technology may be a game changer in the hunt for life off Earth.
    Guest:
    Adam Frank – Astrophysicist and author of a new book “The Little Book of Aliens”
    Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake
    You can get early access to ad-free versions of every episode by joining us on Patreon. Thanks for your support!
    Big Picture Science is part of the Airwave Media podcast network. Please contact advertising@airwavemedia.com to inquire about advertising on Big Picture Science.
     
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 54 min
    Skeptic Check: The Body Electric*

    Skeptic Check: The Body Electric*

    Electricity plays an important role in our everyday lives, including allowing our bodies to communicate internally. But some research claims electricity may be used to diagnose and treat disease? Could electric pulses one day replace medications?
    We speak with experts about the growing field of bioelectric medicine and the evidence for electricity’s healing abilities. Their comments may shock you.
    Guests:
    Sally Adee – Science journalist, author of “We Are Electric: Inside the 200-Year Hunt for Our Body’s Bioelectric Code, and What the Future Holds"
    Samantha Payne – Assistant Professor of Biomedical Sciences at University of Guelph
    Kevin Tracey – Neurosurgeon and President of the Feinstein Institute at Northwell Health
    *Originally aired June 5, 2023
    Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake
    Big Picture Science is part of the Airwave Media podcast network. Please contact advertising@airwavemedia.com to inquire about advertising on Big Picture Science.
    You can get early access to ad-free versions of every episode by joining us on Patreon. Thanks for your support!
     
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 54 min
    Flower Power*

    Flower Power*

    Before everything could come up roses, there had to be a primordial flower – the mother, and father, of all flowers. Now scientists are on the hunt for it. The eFlower project aims to explain the sudden appearance of flowering plants in the fossil record, what Darwin called an “abominable mystery.”
    Meanwhile, ancient flowers encased in amber or preserved in tar are providing clues about how ecosystems might respond to changing climates. And, although it was honed by evolution for billions of years, can we make photosynthesis more efficient and help forestall a global food crisis?
    Guests:
    Eva-Maria Sadowski - Post doctoral paleobotanist at the Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin
    Regan Dunn - Paleobotanist and assistant Curator at the La Brea Tar Pits and Museum
    Royal Krieger - Rosarian and volunteer at the Morcom Rose Garden, Oakland, California
    Ruby Stephens - Plant ecology PhD candidate at Macquarie University in Australia, and member of the eFlower Project
    Stephen Long - Professor of Plant Science, University of Illinois
    Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake
    *Originally aired March 13, 2023
    You can get early access to ad-free versions of every episode by joining us on Patreon. Thanks for your support!
    Big Picture Science is part of the Airwave Media podcast network. Please contact advertising@airwavemedia.com to inquire about advertising on Big Picture Science.
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 54 min
    Animals Being Jerks*

    Animals Being Jerks*

    They’re cute and cuddly. But they can also be obnoxious.
    Science writer Mary Roach has numerous tales about how our animal friends don’t always bow to their human overlords and behave the way we’d want. The resulting encounters, such as when gulls disrupt the Vatican’s Easter mass, make for amusing stories. But others, such as wolves threatening farmers’ livestock, can be tragic.
    We hear what happens at the messy crossroads of human and wildlife encounters.
    Guest:
    Mary Roach – Author of bestselling nonfiction books, most recently “Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law.”
    *Originally aired September 13, 2021
    Featuring music by Dewey Dellay and Jun Miyake
    You can get early access to ad-free versions of every episode by joining us on Patreon. Thanks for your support!
    Big Picture Science is part of the Airwave Media podcast network. Please contact advertising@airwavemedia.com to inquire about advertising on Big Picture Science.
     
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 54 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
865 Ratings

865 Ratings

MarkChicagoIL ,

Deleted review

Deleted review

Pollyollygayotic ,

Love the pod!

I listened to the episode about the ocean genome and found it extremely interesting and informative! Way to go big picture science, can’t wait to hear more! Shannon rocks.

burnbizzle ,

One of the best science podcasts, keep up the good work!

This is one of the best science podcasts available. The hosts are excellent, they are always well versed on the topic, sprinkle their delivery with a tad of natural humor, always ask they key insightful questions, and cover the topics well.

It’s not often you get that combination, really exemplary work!

Very impressive, keep it up!

Top Podcasts In Science

Hidden Brain
Hidden Brain, Shankar Vedantam
StarTalk Radio
Neil deGrasse Tyson
Radiolab
WNYC Studios
Short Wave
NPR
Ologies with Alie Ward
Alie Ward
Something You Should Know
Mike Carruthers | OmniCast Media | Cumulus Podcast Network

You Might Also Like

Science Magazine Podcast
Science Magazine
Planetary Radio: Space Exploration, Astronomy and Science
The Planetary Society
Science Friday
Science Friday and WNYC Studios
SpaceTime with Stuart Gary
Stuart Gary
Universe Today Podcast
Fraser Cain
Why This Universe?
Dan Hooper, Shalma Wegsman

More by Wizzard Media

Dan Carlin's Hardcore History
Dan Carlin
Dan Carlin's Hardcore History: Addendum
Dan Carlin
Common Sense with Dan Carlin
Dan Carlin
Philosophy Bites
Edmonds and Warburton
Astronomy Cast
Fraser Cain and Dr. Pamela Gay
KunstlerCast - Suburban Sprawl: A Tragic Comedy
James Howard Kunstler & Duncan Crary