Cosmos Episode 8: Sisters of The Sun

Cosmos Episode 8: “Sisters of the Sun” is the eighth episode of the American documentary television series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey. It premiered on April 27, 2014 on Fox, and will air on April 28, 2014 on National Geographic Channel.[1] The episode explores the violent cosmic phenomenon of supernovas, which on average occur once per galaxy per century or one billion times per year in the observable universe.[2]  In Cosmos Episode 8, the ship of the imagination travels to distant galaxies and examines the chemical composition of the stars. The episode pays homage to the discoveries of two female astronomers, Cecilia Payne (voiced by Kirsten Dunst) and Annie Jump Cannon (voiced by Marlee Matlin), and the obstacles faced by female scientists, especially those working in the early 20th century.[3] Payne discovered the chemical composition of stars and that they consist largely of Hydrogen. Cannon developed the first catalog for the spectral characteristics of stars.[1] Cosmos episode 8’s title refers to the scientific contributions of the female scientists featured in the episode as well as how their discoveries helped advance our knowledge of the composition of stars

Production Notes For Cosmos Episode 8: Sisters of The Sun

Marlee Matlin, the only deaf performer to have received an Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in the 1986 filmChildren of a Lesser God, has collaborated with Cosmos executive producer Seth MacFarlane before in Family Guy where she voiced the character of Stella, Peter Griffin’s deaf co-worker at Pawtucket Brewery.[1] Here, Matlin provides the voice of Annie Jump Cannon, a deaf astronomer at Harvard who, along with Edward C. Pickering, is credited with the creation of the Harvard Classification Scheme, which was the first serious attempt to organize and classify stars based on their temperatures.