Science Writer Lee Billings on the Discovery of a Potential New World
KPCW Cool Science Radio
On today's episode of Cool Science Radio : We talk about the dawn of a revolution in astronomy with our guest, science writer Lee Billings. For the first time ever, astronomers may have glimpsed light from a world in a life-friendly orbit around another star. This promising potential world was spied around Alpha Centauri. Could it be a planet? Could it be a "warm Neptune", or is it a mirage? Billings explores the potential of these findings and how it could bring about a new era in astronomy.
Exocast-31b: with special guest Lee Billings, plus Waterworlds and exoplanet news
On the 31th episode of Exocast: Hugh is joined in the virtual exocast studio by Science Journalist Lee Billings a writer for Scientific American and author of “5 billion years of Solitude”. Andrew dives into waterworlds inside and outside of our solar system and what we can learn about habitability. Hannah takes a look at what exoplanet news had been released over the past months and highlights the great work done by furloughed US scientists who keep the Hubble Space Telescope alive and healthy.And Lee, adopts the newly discovered Barnard’s Star b into the Exocast Adopted Planets family and promises to keep a good eye on it in the coming years for us.
Lee Billings on the Search for Life in a Silent Universe
Point of Inquiry
It’s a big cosmos out there. It wasn’t too long ago that we couldn’t be sure that any planets existed anywhere outside of our own solar system. But in just the past handful of years, we’ve learned that planets orbiting stars are the rule, not the exception, which suggests that there may be 200 billion planets just in our galaxy alone, and trillions upon trillions of planets throughout the known universe. Surely, many of the planets in the Milky Way must be home to life forms, and even technologically advanced civilizations. So where the heck are they? Why can’t we find them? Why won’t they talk to us? Would we even know it if they did? To talk about the prospects for life on other worlds, intelligent and otherwise, Point of Inquiry host Paul Fidalgo talks to journalist Lee Billings. Lee is a reporter and editor for Scientific American covering space and physics, as well as the author of Five Billion Years of Solitude: The Search for Life Among the Stars. Billings explains how this quest, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, has become increasingly daunting even as our knowledge of the cosmos grows richer. It is a quest rife with pitfalls, paradoxes, and plain old speculation, and so far, it has proven fruitless. But despite our apparent solitude, we keep looking. We keep listening. And we keep reaching out. Do we have the patience and the will to continue searching and waiting for a sign that may never come?
Lee Billings ("Five Billion Years of Solitude: The Search for Life Among the Stars") joins the show. We discuss the fascinating history of Earth as well as the ongoing search for other planets in the solar system.
This week Matt, Jesse and Andy are joined by Caltech Planetary Science Postdoctoral Scholar Bjoern Benneke and author Lee Billings to talk about the many topics covered in Lee's new book, Five Billion Years of Solitude: The Search for Life Among the Stars, including: Hunting for exoplanets! Dating sites for farmers! The Drake equation! Earth's recent trend toward radio silence! Oxygen: The first great pollution crisis! Harold Urey's pessimistic time capsule predictions! Energy-hungry alien civilizations creating Dyson spheres! Competition in the exoplanet field! The philosophical reasons for searching for extraterrestrial life!
BwBMSIS # 23 - Author Lee Billings presents "Five billion years of solitude"
Welcome to the conversation. It is September 5th 2013, and this is our 23rd podcast. Today will be a discussion led by Author Lee Billings on his latest book "Five billion years of solitude". The show is 36 mins long. Audio soundtrack courtesy of the Symphony of Science.
Lee Billings is a science writer whose work has appeared in Scientific American, New Scientist, and Popular Mechanics, among other publications. His new book, Five Billion Years of Solitude: The Search for Life Among the Stars, is an intimate history of Earth and the quest for life beyond the solar system. In this exclusive interview, he reveals why we may never find life on other planets.