Essential Pittsburgh
7:34 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Friday Rundown: Moon Men and a Silent Movie Star

Computer generated image of the Penn State Lunar Lion Lander in space
Credit Penn State University Lunar Lion

These topics air Friday January 24, 2014 at noon and 8pm on 90.5 WESA. To leave a question or comment before or after the show dial 412-256-8783. Join the conversation LIVE between 12pm & 1 pm weekdays at 412-246-2002. More Essential Pittsburgh segments can be heard here.

Ending Legionella Outbreaks
A new report issued by the American Legion’s System Worth Saving Task Force has made recommendations to prevent future Legionella outbreaks at the city’s VA medical center. A report on the quality of care at the Department of Veterans Affairs Pittsburgh Healthcare System has also been issued by the American Legion. Joining us to discuss the report is Jacob Gadd, deputy director for health care and manager of the System Worth Saving program for the American Legion.

Funding a university-led mission to the moon
When the Google Lunar X Prize was first announced, private companies from all over the world jumped in to compete for a $30 million race to the moon.  As the only university-led competitor, the Penn State Lunar Lion team exemplifies a range of possibilities for private space exploration. With the launch of a crowdsource funding campaign to fuel the project, we talk to Lunar Lion Team Leader Michael Paul and student team members JP Muncks, a Masters Student in Aerospace Engineering and Liam Neigh a student with a double major in Information Sciences & Technology and Security Risk Analysis from Butler, PA.

Chaplin Centennial
This Sunday the Hollywood Theatre is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first film appearance of Charlie Chaplin's Little Tramp character in Kid Auto Races at Venice Beach, as well as the premiere of a brand new score of The Pawnshop, written and performed by Pittsburgh pianist Tom Roberts. We'll talk with Roberts as well as Dan Kamin, author of Charlie Chaplin's One Man Show and The Comedy of Charlie Chaplin.

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