Podcast – A Discussion With CASCA President Rob Thacker on Canadian Astronomy Missions

The Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST). Credit: NASA.

Canada has a vibrant astronomy community involved in ground-based and space-based astronomy programs and missions. According to my guest, Rob Thacker, we’re doing ok with ground-based astronomy programs but are failing when it comes to space-based astronomy missions.

Rob Thacker is a professor and Canada Research Chair in Computational Astrophysics at Saint Mary’s University.  He is also the new president of the Canadian Astronomical Society (CASCA), a society of professional astronomers.

When he isn’t teaching or doing research, he co-hosts the CBC Nova Scotia radio show, the Sound of Science, is also a guest on News 1310’s Ottawa Today, and appears on the Science Ship on Rogers TV.

Our topic this week is Canadian astronomy missions and a recent independent report that offered mix results on the Canadian Space Agency’s space astronomy and planetary missions programs. The lack of funding was one of the issues the report mentioned.

Also to note, the Canadian Space Agency’s Departmental Plan for 2018-19, basically the agency’s blueprint of what it will do in this current fiscal year, has no funding for any new astronomy missions.


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About Marc Boucher

Boucher is an entrepreneur, writer, editor & publisher. He is the founder of SpaceQ Media Inc. and CEO and co-founder of SpaceRef Interactive LLC. Boucher has 20+ years working in various roles in the space industry and a total of 30 years as a technology entrepreneur including creating Maple Square, Canada's first internet directory and search engine.

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