On the radio + September 18, 2018 Zimmerman/Batchelor podcast

Please consider donating to Behind the Black, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.


Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:

Or with a subscription with regular donations from your Paypal or credit card account:


If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652

The Batchelor podcast is embedded below the fold in two parts. Meanwhile, I will be on the radio for extended appearances both tonight and tomorrow night. Tonight I make what I think will be my first appearance on Beyond Reality Radio from approximately 12 midnight to 2 am (eastern). Tomorrow I make another one of my long appearances on Coast to Coast from 12 midnight to 2 am (pacific).

Every one of these should be a blast.



  • wayne

    Yo, Mr. Z.:

    092018 – Space Exploration with Bob Zimmerman
    Beyond Reality Radio
    (cued to approximately the start time)

  • wayne

    Referencing “when did space exploration begin?”
    I might want to tag it as 1946.

    V2 test, White Sands, 1946
    First film of earth from “space”

    (there are longer versions of this available)

  • wayne

    the 19 minute version (with narration)

    V-2 rocket tests at White Sands

    “Initial V-2 assembly efforts produced 25 rockets available for launch. The Army assembled an Upper Atmosphere Research Panel of representative from the Air Material Command, Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), Army Signal Corps, Ballistic Research Laboratory, Applied Physics Laboratory, University of Michigan, Harvard University, Princeton University, and General Electric Company. German rocket scientists of Operation Paperclip arrived at Fort Bliss in January 1946 to assist the V-2 rocket testing program. After a static test firing of a V-2 engine on 15 March 1946, the first V-2 rocket launch from Launch Complex 33 was on 16 April 1946. As the possibilities of the program were realized, GE personnel built new control components to replace deteriorated parts and used replacement parts with salvaged materials to make more than 75 V-2 sounding rockets available for atmospheric and solar investigation at WSMR. Approximately two V-2 launches per month were scheduled from Launch Complex 33 until the supply of V-2 sounding rockets was exhausted; reduced frequency of V-2 sounding rocket investigations from Launch Complex 33 continued until 1952.”
    “Rockets returning to earth intact created an impact crater about 80 feet (24 m) wide and of similar depth which filled with debris to a depth of about 35 feet (11 m). In an effort to preserve instruments, dynamite was strategically placed within the airframe to be detonated at an elevation of 50 kilometres (31 mi) during downward flight at end of the high-altitude scientific observation interval. These explosives weakened the rocket structure so it would be torn apart by aerodynamic forces as it re-entered the denser lower atmosphere. Terminal velocity of tumbling fragments was reduced by an order of magnitude.”

  • Steve Earle

    Wayne: Fascinating info, thanks.

    “….dynamite was strategically placed within the airframe….”

    Sounds like an episode of Wile E. Coyote vs Roadrunner LOL!

  • wayne

    The dynamite thing’, was a new one on me! (I cannot vouch for it’s accuracy! But it akes perfect sense.

    Another great factoid “300 railcars filled with V-2 rocket parts were shipped to White Sands…”

    Mr. Z., great show! I always expect “aliens, et al” on these type of shows, but I was pleasantly surprised.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *