Dave Schlom

Host, Blue Dot

Dave Schlom has taught the physical sciences at Corning Union High School since 1991. A lifelong amateur astronomer and astronomy educator, he has a passion for both the earth and the space sciences, which are the principal areas of focus for guests on Blue Dot. He started doing radio interviews on space and astronomy topics for local stations like KFM and KPAY in the 1980s and into the 90s, where he was a popular go-to guest for local radio personalities. He is also an expert on the history and geology of Lassen Volcanic National Park, where he has served as a volunteer for decades. Dave enjoys a quiet life at home with his partner in life, Cheryl, and their two dogs, Elvis and Pearl, at their Red Bluff residence.

YouTube screengrab

Physics Girl, aka Dianna Cowern, has created a lot of buzz about science and herself online. Her YouTube channel educates and fascinates, aiming to make science interesting and fun (See "How to Make a Cloud in Your Mouth" below). Dave Schlom's conversation with Cowern was going so well that we kept it rolling well past the usual four-minute mark. 

Macmillan Publishers

Bill Nye has been communicating science for decades. His hit show "Bill Nye the Science Guy" educated millenials (and their parents) in the '90s, and since then he's been spreading the good word: science rules. His new book is "Unstoppable: Harnessing Science to Change the World," and it aims to do just that: encourage people to address the changing climate. 


In our warming world, Greenland's glaciers are melting at an alarming rate. Recently, NASA scientists announced that one of the continent's major northern glaciers, Zachariae Isstrom, is entering an accelerated rate of retreat after millennia of glacial stability. It's a big glacier, and a big deal since it contains 5 percent of Greenland's ice sheets. 

Josh Willis is principal investigator of NASA's Oceans Melting Greenland program. He explained what "OMG" means to him.


NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory 2 recently completed its first year of operation monitoring carbon dioxide being emitted and absorbed around the planet. It's the first time scientists have been able to accurately assess global carbon levels from space.

Annmarie Eldering is deputy project scientist for OCO-2. She spoke with Dave Schlom about the new data, but started with what exactly it is.

We all hear about the weather — "Did you hear that it's going to rain?" — but someone at some point had to actually figure out what the weather looks like. Michelle Mead, a warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Sacramento, and she's one of the folks who does the legwork to let us know that yes, it's going to rain. 


Dave Schlom talks with Daniel Stern, project scientist on NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR). The array looks for supermassive black holes, and has recently discovered that there may be many more in the universe than previously thought.


Is there water on Mars? Was there at some point? If so, what are the implications for life on the Red Planet? Dave Schlom talks to Leslie Tamppari about the recent findings of the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter that point to new evidence for water on Mars, and what that might mean.

Jason Sussberg

Bill Nye produced 100 episodes of  "Bill Nye the Science Guy" during the 1990s, winning 19 Emmy Awards  in the process. Since then, he's continued to be a voice for science and science education. Jason Sussberg and David Alvarado are directing the crowd-funded documentary (with Nick Gordon and Nick Pampanella producing) about Bill, and Sussberg spoke about it with host of the Blue Dot Report Dave Schlom. Dave being the Bill Nye fan he is, the conversation went too long for our radio broadcast. 

Kacey Gardner / NSPR

On this special episode of The Blue Dot Report, produced for North State Suds and Spirits Day as part of NSPR's fall membership drive, Dave Schlom investigates the science behind beer, with a guest who knows quite a bit about it. 


After years of drought and with winter not far off, it seems everyone has an opinion on this year's El Niño — or lack thereof. Host Dave Schlom spoke with Dr. Bill Patzert, an oceanographer for NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory to get some authoritative answers on whether we'll see an El Niño winter, and what that does (and does not) mean.