2 mins read 21 Dec 2020

The Skyentist 39 - The 2020 Great Conjunction

The Skyentists, astronomers Kirsten Banks, and Ángel López-Sánchez talk about the Jupiter and Saturn Great Conjunction of 2020.


After a long break, The Skyentists, astronomers Ángel López-Sánchez and Kirsten Banks, are back!

We start our Season 4 with a special episode with two main topics: the Great Conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn happening on Monday 21st of December 2020 (that is actually our "What's up!") and summarising some of the most important astronomy news that have happened in 2020 while we were away (our extended "Space News" for this episode).

We talk about the Nobel Prize in Physics 2020, merging black holes, exoplanet candidates in other galaxies, the first all-sky radio map obtained with the Australia SKA Pathfinder (ASKAP) and, of course, the issue of the phosphine gas in Venus.

Ángel also explains why some people have connected the Jupiter and Saturn conjunction with the "Christmas Star".

The Skyentists

Kirsten Banks is a proud Wiradjuri woman, astrophysicist, and science communicator. She’s always had her eyes on the skies and loves to share her passion for space and astronomy. Kirsten jumps at almost every opportunity to share the wonders of the Universe with a wide range of people, from speaking to students at schools to sharing her love for space on national television programs such as ABC’s Q&A. In the years to come, Kirsten looks forward to completing a Ph.D. and becoming Dr. Kirsten Banks. 

Dr. Ángel López-Sánchez is an astronomer and science communicator at the Australian Astronomical Optics and the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the Macquarie University. He studies how the gas is converted into stars in nearby galaxies and how this affects galaxy evolution. He also provides support for visiting astronomers to the Anglo-Australian Telescope. He is a globally-recognised science communicator, with visibility in Spanish and Australian printed, broadcast, and social media (one of the Top-100 most-followed astrophysicists on Twitter). His stunning astronomy timelapse videos have received 1/4 million views on YouTube and have been used by ABC (Australia), BBC (UK), TVE (Spain), and in Science Museums worldwide. He is very active in social media, his Twitter feed is @El_Lobo_Rayado.

This podcast is syndicated with permissions.