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Hunting for Martian Life. The Perseverance Rover
2020 Technology HD
Meet Perseverance, NASA's latest rover, as it heads to Mars to answer one question: did life exist on the red planet? On the way, it will lay the foundation for human exploration of our closest neighbour.
Today, Mars is hostile to life. It's too cold for water to stay liquid on the surface, and the thin atmosphere lets through high levels of radiation, potentially sterilizing the upper part of the soil. But it wasn't always like this. Some 3.5 billion years ago or more, water was flowing on the surface. It carved channels still visible today and pooled in impact craters. A thicker carbon dioxide atmosphere would have blocked more of the harmful radiation. The Mars 2020/Perseverance rover is designed to better understand the geology of Mars and seek signs of ancient life. The mission will collect and store a set of rock and soil samples that could be returned to Earth in the future. It will also test new technology to benefit future robotic and human exploration of Mars, as the Ingenuity Helicopter.
Coming of Age In The Anthropocene
At 11 o'clock on New Year's Eve of the Cosmic Calendar, Homo erectus stood up for the first time, freeing its hands and earning the species its name. They began to move around, to explore, daring to risk everything to get to unknown places. Our Neanderthal relatives lived much as we did and did many of the things we consider to be 'human.' More restless than their cousins the Neanderthals and Denisovans, our Homo sapiens ancestors crossed seas and unforgiving landscapes, changing the land, ocean and atmosphere, leading to mass extinction. The scientific community gave our age a new name, 'Anthropocene.'
Since the first civilizations we've wondered if there's something about human nature that contains the seeds of our destruction. Syukuro Manabe was born in rural Japan and took an intense interest in Earth's average global temperature. In the 1960's, he would assemble the evidence he needed to predict the increase of Earth's temperature due to greenhouse gases until it becomes an uninhabitable and toxic environment, leading to our extinction. 'This doesn't have to be,' says Neil deGrasse Tyson, 'it's not too late. There's another hallway, another future we can still have; we'll find a way.'
Cosmos: Possible Worlds
2019 Technology HD
The most innovative area of human motion lies not on Earth, but with the exploration of space. Space is the most hostile environment we know. Navigating it involves crossing unprecedented distances. It's the greatest engineering challenge humanity has ever undertaken.
Meet the pioneers who've dreamed of reaching other worlds, pushing the boundaries of space exploration, and the private space entrepreneurs jostling to offer the tantalizing prospect of cheap, frequent travel beyond the atmosphere into Earth orbit.
Death Dive to Saturn
Almost everything we know today about the beautiful giant ringed planet comes from Cassini, the NASA mission that launched in 1997 and arrived at Saturn in 2004. Since then, the space probe has been beaming home miraculous images and scientific data, revealing countless wonders about the planet, its rings and 62 moons - including some that could harbor life. When the mission approached its final days, it attempted one last set of daring maneuvers - diving between the innermost ring and the top of Saturn's atmosphere.
Aiming to skim less than 2000 miles above the cloud tops, no spacecraft has ever gone so close to Saturn, and hopes were high for incredible observations that could solve major mysteries about the planet's core. But such a daring maneuver comes with many risks and is no slam dunk. In fact, slamming into rocks in the rings is a real possibility. Join NASA engineers for the tense and triumphant moments as they find out if their bold re-programming has worked, and discover the wonders that Cassini has revealed over the years.
2018 Nature HD
The extraordinary story of Earth and why it is special and uniquely brimming with life among a largely unknown but harsh cosmic arena. It will be told by eight astronauts from their unique perspective of being away from Earth. In the first episode, Astronaut Chris Hadfield reveals the unlikely and unexpectedly interconnected systems that allow life on our planet to breathe.
One Strange Rock
Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey
The Human Body
George Harrison Living in the Material World
Jonestown: Terror in the Jungle
The Sky at Night
Apocalypse: World War 1
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