Humans in Space with Neil deGrasse Tyson & Lauren Lyons

From StarTalk.

What technology can we look forward to in commercial spaceflight? Neil deGrasse Tyson and comedian Chuck Nice discover SpaceX, other space startups, and what is going on in the commercial space industry with engineer and executive Lauren Lyons.

Learn about commercial spaceflight launches and what it is like to work at SpaceX, Blue Origin, and Firefly. We break down different roles to get a payload safely to space, as well as Lauren’s work on Falcon-9. What happens during launch failures? How do you figure out what went wrong when everything gets blown up?

What is the difference between NASA and private enterprise? We break down the differences in risk tolerance for private industry and also the billionaires in space narrative. What are the current unsolved challenges in commercial space travel? Could we build a floating human colony in space? How could asteroid mining extend our reach into the solar system?

Learn about some exciting new startups, The XPRIZE, and technology to let humans live and work in space. We discuss the emerging commercial industry in Europe and how to organize companies to achieve their goals. All that, plus, what do we have to look forward to in the next generation of space?

Thanks to our Patrons Constance Kane, Amanda, Kareem Roberts, Emily Kaneko Reynolds, John DeLong, Eric Peters, and Jamie Irvin for supporting us this week.

NOTE: StarTalk+ Patrons can listen to this entire episode commercial-free.

Get the NEW StarTalk book, ‘To Infinity and Beyond: A Journey of Cosmic Discovery’ on Amazon:

Support us on Patreon:


About StarTalk:
Science meets pop culture on StarTalk! Astrophysicist & Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson, his comic co-hosts, guest celebrities & scientists discuss astronomy, physics, and everything else about life in the universe. Keep Looking Up!

#StarTalk #neildegrassetyson

00:00 – Introduction: Commercial Spaceflight
3:04 – Working on Falcon-9 & Launching TESS
12:44 – Learning From Launch Failures
17:22 – The Difference Between Commercial Space & NASA
18:49 – The Billionaire Space Race Narrative
22:05 – What Are Current Unsolved Challenges in Commercial Space Travel?
31:24 – Building Floating Colonies in Space & Commercial Space Stations
36:30 – New Space Tech: Reusable Rockets & Refueling Stations
43:23 – Getting Space Startups To the Next Level