On Air

Assignment Discovery

Friday, 9 a.m. Discovery


"Biomes: The Threat of the Sea." The threat of global warming makes the Arctic particularly vulnerable to rising sea levels. Trail scientists who are studying the effects of rising waters, and learn from the residents who are struggling to save their land.

Raging Planet


Saturday, 2 p.m., 8 p.m. and 11 p.m. Discovery

"Tidal Wave." Emerging from deep water at only one or two feet high, tidal waves can stretch 600 miles from crest to crest and can climb to a height of 500 feet by the time they reach land. These crashing walls of water are triggered by underwater earthquakes.


Saturday, 3 p.m., 9 p.m. and midnight Discovery

Discover a geologic force capable of generating skyscraper-sized waves. Huge landslides create these walls of water. The next one might send a monster wave across the Atlantic and straight for the East Coast of the United States.

The Next Wave

Saturday, 4 p.m. and 10 p.m. (Repeats Sunday at 1 a.m.) Discovery

"Science of Tsunamis." Discovery demystifies one of the most dangerous and enigmatic forces on earth - tsunamis. See the science behind their devastating power. Understand where they come from and what we can do to better prepare. It's not if it will happen again, but when.


Outdoors Maryland

Saturday, 5:30 p.m. WMPT

"A Crew of One." Hundreds of deep-sea fishermen and -women descend on Ocean City each year for the annual White Marlin Open. Crews join forces and hire fishing boats in hopes of winning a lot of cash for catching the most and biggest marlin. Outdoors Maryland photographers travel with a man who fished the Gulf Stream waters over the Baltimore Canyon as a crew of one.

"The Casting Call." Anglers who surf fish claim it's more art than science - knowing how the waves break, discovering the delicate balance between temperature, bait, time and tide. On Assateague Island at the right time of year, the right conditions can trigger Drum-mania along the edge of the land as anglers race to catch the greatest living prize the Atlantic surf has to offer: the red drum.

"Salt H20 and a Fly." An intriguing twist on an old sport: saltwater fly-fishing on the Chesapeake. It's a sport that calls for a proper temperament and an understanding of the fish mind.

Outdoors Maryland


Tuesday, 7:30 p.m. (Repeats Thursday, 5:30 a.m., and Jan. 15, 5:30 p.m.) WMPT

"Snow Surfing." Snowboarding has taken the place of skiing for many at Western Maryland's winter resorts. In 2000, it was the fastest-growing sport in the United States. In just 36 years since its invention, snow surfing has claimed a quarter of all winter sport enthusiasts who brave the slopes.

"A Mountain in Our Backyard." The mountains of Western Maryland are mere foothills compared with sky-scraping peaks like the Rockies. But even in its time-worn condition, Maryland's highest peak, Backbone Mountain, offers two intrepid winter campers a challenge they won't soon forget.

"Ready for Anything." Whether trying out the beginner's hill or the expert run, the unexpected can happen on the slopes. The Ski Patrol at the Wisp resort is ready to handle any and all emergencies.


Tuesday, 8 p.m. WMPT, WETA


"The Boldest Hoax." Who perpetrated Piltdown Man, the greatest scientific fraud of the 20th century?

Sky Watch

Thursday, 8:33 a.m., WYPR (88.1 public radio)

"Spotting Black Holes and Gamma-rays." Hosts are Jim O'Leary, senior director of technology, IMAX and Davis Planetarium at the Maryland Science Center, and Carol Christian, deputy head of the Community Missions Office of the Space Telescope Science Institute.

Online blog

Read Sun science writer Frank Roylance's weather and astronomy blog, updated daily at