#15 - Dr. Duncan Lorimer - Pulsars, Discovering Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs), and Creating Music


In this episode Brendan is joined by Dr. Duncan Lorimer. Duncan Lorimer is a Professor of Physics at West Virginia University and is interested in compact objects (black holes, neutron stars and white dwarfs) which he studies using radio pulsars. In 2007, his research group discovered a new type of object that had never been observed before - fast radio bursts (FRBs). These objects are still a mystery. Duncan is also a very good blues/folk musician who's music can be found at soundcloud.com/duncan-lorimer. I encourage you to check out his music! More information about Duncan can be found at duncanlorimer.com. A film detailing the efforts to get high school students involved in radio astronomy research at Green Bank, WV can be viewed at lgmfilm.com.

Throughout the episode we discuss pulsars, fast radio bursts, what it's like to discover a new type of astronomical object, Green Bank, West Virginia, getting high school students involved in research, and writing/playing music. 

#14 - Nate Stewart - Bombs, Flu Vaccine Myths, and Mental Health

In this episode, Brendan is joined by Nate Stewart. They talk about the recent bomb scares across America, the state of journalism, green bean casserole, flu vaccine myths, Stephen Hawking's wheelchair auction, mental health, and the importance of communication.

Be sure to support the show by leaving a rating or a review and subscribing to receive future content. Consider becoming a Patron by donating to the show on Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/thestateoftheuniverse

#12 - Bernie Taylor - Before Orion, The First Astronomers, Astrology, and Recognizing Genius

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Bernie Taylor is an independent naturalist, thought leader and author whose research explores the mythological connections and biological knowledge among prehistoric, indigenous and ancient peoples. His works in these areas include Biological Time (2004) and Before Orion: Finding the Face of the Hero(2017). 

More about Bernie Taylor and his work can be found on his website. Bernie can also be found on Twitter @BernieTaylorOr and Instagram @BeforeOrion.

Throughout the interview, we mention several images/depictions of The Cave at El Castillo. Some of these images are shown below and more can be found on Bernie’s personal website.

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#10 - Dr. Sam Sternberg - CRISPR, GMO's, and Bioethics


Samuel H. Sternberg, PhD, is a protein-RNA biochemist and CRISPR expert. He runs a research laboratory at Columbia University, where he is assistant professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics. He is the co-author, along with Jennifer Doudna, of A Crack in Creation, a popular science book about the discovery, development, and applications of CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology.

For more information about Sam and his work, visit his website or follow him @shsternberg.

#9 - Dr. Brian Keating - Reforming the Nobel Prize


This episode features Dr. Brian Keating. Brian is a professor of physics at the Center for Astrophysics & Space Sciences (CASS) in the Department of Physics at the University of California, San Diego. He is also the author of "Losing the Nobel Prize: A Story of Cosmology, Ambition, and the Perils of Science's Highest Honor." 

More information about Brian can be found here and his book can be purchased here.

#8 - James Barrat - Will Artificial Intelligence Destroy Us?


James Barrat is an author and a producer/director of documentaries. His book Our Final Invention "explores how the pursuit of Artificial Intelligence challenges our existence with machines that won’t love us or hate us, but whose indifference could spell our doom." Elon Musk has cited Our Final Invention as a book that should be read by people living in today's world. He has also produced and/or directed documentaries for National Geographic, Discovery Channel, PBS, and more. 

More information about James Barrat can be found here. You can follow James on Twitter @jrbarrat.

#6 - Dr. Joan Nichols - Bioengineering Lungs, Health Effects of Space Travel, and Succeeding in Science


Dr. Joan E. Nichols is a Professor of Internal Medicine, and Microbiology and Immunology and the Associate Director of the Galveston National Laboratory at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Her recent work has shown that lungs grown in the lab can be successfully transplanted into a living pig. This may have clinical ramifications in the coming decades.

Dr. Nichols personal profile can be found here and an overview of her work can be found here.