This Week In Space podcast: Episode 96 — It's Space TV!

On Episode 96 of This Week In Space, Tariq and Rod discuss science on television with History Channel producer Jeff Stepp.

Space and science TV has come a long way since the old-time staples like Mr. Wizard and the original Bille Nye, The Science Guy. Stepp joins us to talk about his work on “The UnXplained: With William Shatner” and other science shows — how are they conceived, what is production like, and what is the future of space and science-oriented media? 

We know Jeff to be a fine writer and responsible gatekeeper for high-quality, responsible science programming. Don’t miss this one!

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Space news of the week

  • Boeing’s Starliner capsule still on track for mid-April astronaut launch to ISS
  • ‘We proved that you can land wherever you want.’ Japan’s SLIM moon probe nailed precise lunar landing, JAXA says
  • Japan’s SLIM moon lander snaps final photos before going dormant during lunar night
  • Are they exomoons or not? Scientists debate existence of 1st moons seen beyond our solar system

Model Falcon 9!


Looking for a telescope to see planets and comets? We recommend the Celestron Astro Fi 102 as the top pick in our best beginner’s telescope guide. 

Finally, did you know you can launch your own SpaceX rocket? Model rocket maker Estes’ stunning scale model of a Falcon 9 rocket that you can pick up now. The launchable model is a detailed recreation of the Falcon 9 and retails for $149.99. You can save 10% by using the code IN-COLLECTSPACE at checkout, courtesy of our partners

About This Week In Space

This Week in Space covers the new space age. Every Friday we take a deep dive into a fascinating topic. What’s happening with the new race to the moon and other planets? When will SpaceX really send people to Mars? 

Join Rod Pyle and Tariq Malik from as they tackle those questions and more each week on Friday afternoons. You can subscribe today on your favorite podcatcher.

Host of This Week In Space on TWiT

Host of This Week In Space on TWiT

Rod Pyle

Rod Pyle is an author, journalist, television producer and Editor-in-Chief of Ad Astra magazine. He has written 18 books on space history, exploration, and development, including Space 2.0Innovation the NASA WayInterplanetary RobotsBlueprint for a BattlestarAmazing Stories of the Space AgeFirst On the Moon, and Destination Mars

In a previous life, Rod produced numerous documentaries and short films for The History Channel, Discovery Communications, and Disney. He also worked in visual effects on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and the Battlestar Galactica reboot, as well as various sci-fi TV pilots. His most recent TV credit was with the NatGeo documentary on Tom Wolfe’s iconic book The Right Stuff.

This Week In Space co-host

This Week In Space co-host

Tariq Malik

Responsible for’s editorial vision, Tariq Malik has been the Editor-in-Chief of since 2019 and has covered space news and science for 18 years. He joined the team in 2001, first as an intern and soon after as a full-time spaceflight reporter covering human spaceflight, exploration, astronomy and the night sky. He became’s managing editor in 2009. As on-air talent has presented space stories on CNN, Fox News, NPR and others.

Tariq is an Eagle Scout (yes, he earned the Space Exploration merit badge), a Space Camp veteran (4 times as a kid, once as an adult), and has taken the ultimate “vomit comet” ride while reporting on zero-gravity fires. Before joining, he served as a staff reporter for The Los Angeles Times covering city and education beats. He has journalism degrees from the University of Southern California and New York University.


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