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Ariel Waldman: What Can We Learn From Microscopic Life In Antarctica?

Part 2 of the TED Radio Hour episode Through The Looking Glass

Many people think of Antarctica as desolate. But wildlife filmmaker Ariel Waldman says the coldest continent is brimming with invisible life — that can only be seen through microscopes.

About Ariel Waldman

Ariel Waldman is a wildlife filmmaker whose work captures microscopic life in Antarctica. She is also the chair of NASA's Innovative Advanced Concepts project for developing long-term aerospace travel programs.

Waldman wrote the National Academy of Sciences report on the future of human spaceflight, and the science book What's It Like In Space?: Stories from Astronauts Who've Been There.

She serves as the global director of Science Hack Day, a grassroots endeavor to "make weird, silly or serious things with science." She was also the host and producer of Offworld, a show on Adam Savage's Tested. In 2013, she received an honor from the Obama White House for being a Champion of Change in science.

Waldman is a graduate of the Art Institute of Pittsburgh.

This segment of the TED Radio Hour was produced by Matthew Cloutier and edited by Sanaz Meshkinpour. You can follow us on Twitter @TEDRadioHour and email us at TEDRadio@npr.org.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Manoush Zomorodi
Manoush Zomorodi is the host of TED Radio Hour. She is a journalist, podcaster and media entrepreneur, and her work reflects her passion for investigating how technology and business are transforming humanity.
Matthew Cloutier
Matthew Cloutier is a producer for TED Radio Hour. While at the show, he has focused on stories about science and the natural world, ranging from operating Mars rovers to exploring Antarctica's hidden life. He has also pitched these kinds of episodes, including "Through The Looking Glass" and "Migration."
Sanaz Meshkinpour
WUSF 89.7 depends on donors for the funding it takes to provide you the most trusted source of news and information here in town, across our state, and around the world. Support WUSF now by giving monthly, or make a one-time donation online.