The Planets – BBC2

Professor Brian Cox continues his tour of the solar system, revealing that it was once home to not one, but two blue planets. He also addresses plans to take humans to Mars

Professor Brian Cox continues his tour of the solar system, revealing that it was once home to not one, but two blue planets

In the early years of the solar system there was a beautiful water world, an oasis of hope in a sterile universe.

This planet was not Earth, but a young Mars.

The Planets - picture of Mars

A Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter

In the second film of this landmark series, Professor Brian Cox explains how our nearest neighbour once had the same potential as Earth, before its fate was altered by an asteroid storm that lasted millions of years. Yet was Mars once home to life?

As Brian ponders this question, he also looks to the future and our plans to send a human to the red planet…

Holst: The Planets with Professor Brian Cox

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Brian Cox and conductor Ben Gernon

Music to science: Brian Cox with conductor Ben Hernon of the BBC Symphony Orchestra

Also on BBC2, this week, Holst: The Planets with Professor Brian Cox (Saturday 1 June, 9pm) sees Brian give a scientific explanation about each planet in Holst’s 100-year suite, played by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Ben Gernon at the London Barbican.

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