Calling Music Buffs: Help Make a Playlist for NASA’s OSIRIS-REx Sample Delivery

Calling all music buffs! This one’s for you. We’re gearing up for the Sept. 24 landing of NASA’s first asteroid sample and we want you to provide the soundtrack. Your song requests could be featured during a week of live episodes on Third Rock Radio and on the official Return of the Rock playlists. Third Rock Radio is a NASA- and space-themed online radio station.

From Sept. 18 to 22, Third Rock Radio will host daily OSIRIS-REx-themed shows from 3-5 p.m. EDT featuring your song suggestions on themes related to NASA’s daredevil mission. Third Rock Radio is produced and published by Houston-based RFC Media under a Space Act Agreement with NASA.

You can submit your song requests at Third Rock Radio or on NASA’s social media. Your name or social media handle and your song suggestion could end up on Third Rock Radio!

The daily themes are:

Monday, Sept. 18: Road Trip

Space is big and interplanetary travel takes a long time. OSIRIS-REx launched on Sept. 8, 2016, collected an asteroid sample in 2020, and now is returning to Earth to deliver the sample on Sept. 24. If you were riding along with OSIRIS-REx, what songs would you play to pass the time while you travel?

Tuesday, Sept. 19: Give Me the Rock

Asteroid Bennu is a rubble-pile asteroid, an amalgamation of rocks and dust held loosely together by microgravity. After OSIRIS-REx collected a sample from asteroid Bennu’s surface, scientists discovered that the asteroid was so loosely packed that if a person were to step onto it they would feel as if they were stepping into a child’s ball pit. To honor this rocky world, name a song that ROCKS!

Wednesday, Sept. 20: Time

On Sept. 24, OSIRIS-REx will deliver a capsule containing rocks and dust from asteroid Bennu that could be more than 4.5 billion years old. These rocks are a time capsule from the dawn of our solar system. Share your favorite songs related to time.

Thursday, Sept. 21: The Power of Science

From signs of ancient water on Bennu to particles spewing from its surface, OSIRIS-REx discoveries continue to surprise us. What surprises will we learn when scientists worldwide analyze the asteroid sample in their labs? Give us a song that is science related, or about inventions, discoveries, or anything else that gets you jazzed about the solar system!

Friday, Sept. 22: The Final Countdown

OSIRIS-REx is almost here with the asteroid sample! In these final moments, we need a soundtrack to pump us up and celebrate the hard work that has gone into this historic sample return mission.

The rules:

    1. Songs with explicit titles, lyrics and themes will not be played on air or appear in the playlists.
    2. Third Rock Radio has the flexibility to select which songs will air from the submissions. Third Rock Radio does not guarantee to play any specific song. Want to know if your submission made the cut? Don’t miss the live shows!

– Molly Wasser