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The dramatic inside story of the first four historic flights that launched SpaceX-and Elon Musk-from a shaky startup into the world's leading edge rocket company. In 2006, SpaceX-a brand-new venture with fewer than 200 employees-rolled its first, single-engine rocket onto a launch pad at Kwajalein Atoll. After a groundbreaking launch from the middle of the Pacific Ocean, the Falcon 1 rocket designed by Elon Musk's engineers rose in the air for approximately thirty seconds. Then, its engine flamed out, and the rocket crashed back into the ocean. In 2007, SpaceX undertook a second launch. This time, the rocket rose far into space, but just before reaching orbit it spun out of control. Confident of success in 2008, Musk and his team launched their third rocket with several paying customers. The first stage executed perfectly, but instead of falling away, it thudded into the second stage. Another failure. Elon Musk had only budgeted for three attempts when he founded SpaceX. Out of money and with a single Falcon 1 rocket left in its factory, SpaceX decided to try one last, dramatic launch. Over eight weeks, engineers worked furiously to prepare this final rocket. The fate of Musk's venture mirrored the trajectory of this slender, single-engine rocket aimed toward the skies. If it crashed and burned, so would SpaceX. In September 2008, SpaceX's last chance for success lifted off . . . and accelerated like a dream, soaring into orbit flawlessly. That success would launch a miraculous decade for the company, in which SpaceX grew from building a single-engine rocket to one with a staggering 27 engines; created two different spacecraft, and mastered reusable-rocket descents using mobile drone ships on the open seas. It marked a level of production and achievement that has not been seen since the space race of the 1960s. But these achievements would not have been possible without SpaceX's first four flight tests. Drawing on unparalleled access and exclusive interviews with dozens of former and current employees-engineers, designers, mechanics, and executives, including Elon Musk-Eric Berger tells the complete story of this foundational generation that transformed SpaceX into the world's leading space company. Liftoff includes more than a dozen photographs.
Soon to be a major motion picture, First Man by James Hansen offers the only authorized glimpse into the life of America's most famous astronaut, Neil Armstrong - the man whose "one small step" changed history. In First Man, Hansen explores the life of Neil Armstrong. Based on over 50 hours of interviews with the intensely private Armstrong, who also gave Hansen exclusive access to private documents and family sources, this "magnificent panorama of the second half of the American twentieth century" (Publishers Weekly, Starred Review) is an unparalleled biography of an American icon. When Apollo 11 touched down on the moon's surface in 1969, the first man on the moon became a legend. Hansen vividly recreates Armstrong's career in flying, from his seventy-eight combat missions as a naval aviator flying over North Korea to his formative transatmospheric flights in the rocket-powered X-15 to his piloting Gemini VIII to the first-ever docking in space. For a pilot who cared more about flying to the Moon than he did about walking on it, Hansen asserts, Armstrong's storied vocation exacted a dear personal toll, paid in kind by his wife and children. In the years since the Moon landing, rumors swirled around Armstrong concerning his dreams of space travel, his religious beliefs, and his private life. This book reveals the man behind the myth. In a penetrating exploration of American hero worship, Hansen addresses the complex legacy of the First Man, as an astronaut and as an individual. In First Man, the personal, technological, epic, and iconic blend to form the portrait of a great but reluctant hero who will forever be known as history's most famous space traveler.
The design processes behind a giant leap for mankind. Neil Armstrong in a space suit on the moon remains an iconic representation of America's technological ingenuity. Few know that the Model A-7L pressure suit worn by the Apollo 11 astronauts, and the Model A-7LB that replaced it in 1971, originated at ILC Industries (now ILC Dover, LP), an obscure Delaware industrial firm.Longtime ILC space suit test engineer Bill Ayrey draws on original files and photographs to tell the dramatic story of the company's role in the Apollo Program. Though respected for its early designs, ILC failed to win NASA's faith. When the government called for new suit concepts in 1965, ILC had to plead for consideration before NASA gave it a mere six weeks to come up with a radically different design. ILC not only met the deadline but won the contract. That underdog success led to its greatest challenge: winning a race against time to create a suit that would determine the success or failure of the Apollo missions-and life or death for the astronauts. A fascinating behind-the-scenes history of a vital component of the space program, Lunar Outfitters goes inside the suit that made it possible for human beings to set foot on the Moon.
Are we alone in the universe, or are there other life forms 'out there'? This is one of the most scientifically and philosophically important questions that humanity can ask. Now, in the early 2020s, we are tantalizingly close to an answer. As this book shows, the answer will almost certainly be that life forms are to be found across the Milky Way and beyond. They will be thinly spread, to be sure. Yet the number of inhabited planets probably runs into the trillions. Some are close enough for us to detect evidence of life by analysing their atmospheres. This evidence may be found within a couple of decades. Its arrival will be momentous. But even before it arrives we can anticipate what life elsewhere will be like by examining the ecology and evolution of life on Earth. This book considers the current state of play in relation to these titanic issues.
In 2017, scientists at an observatory in Hawaii detected an interstellar object near Earth, which they named 'Oumuamua. The more scientists looked at it, the weirder it got - this cigar-shaped object didn't behave like any other asteroid or comet seen in our Solar System before. To Avi Loeb - the very eminent chair of the Harvard astronomy department - it felt like potential evidence of extraterrestrial intelligence and technology and when he said so publically, there was a media storm. No scientist had ever been prepared to go on record saying this before. In Extraterrestrial, Loeb explains what the extraordinary discovery of 'Oumuamua and the latest astronomical research means for our place in the universe as we know it. Through a fascinating tour of the universe from its earliest time, he reveals the latest scientific research into other probably Earth-like planets that could host life - and what this means about our place in the universe as we comfortably know it.
Commercial Uses of Space and Space Tourism combines the perspectives of academics, policy makers and major industry players around three central themes: the international legal challenges posed by the dramatic changes to the spacefaring landscape; the corresponding legal and regulatory responses to these challenges at the national level; and topical questions of global space governance. Chapters cover emerging activities in commercial spacefaring, including space tourism and space transportation, and identify the regulatory issues that may arise in the absence of a clear boundary between airspace and outer space. By taking a pragmatic, inductive approach, the book aims to breathe new life into the discussion of the air-space boundary, while informing readers about the many exciting recent developments in commercial spacefaring. This book will appeal to lecturers, academics and students in space law and air law, as well as policy makers and industry practitioners involved in the regulation of orbital and suborbital commercial spaceflight, both manned and unmanned.
A miracle energy source, Lumite, has been discovered on the moon. The dark days of future Earth - torn apart by war and energy crisis - finally appear to be over. Aggie is the violet-eyed poster girl for the mining company, Lunar Inc, persuaded to campaign for a hopeful new future. But a chance meeting with one of the prisoner-miners, the darkly attractive Danny, changes her mind about everything she knows about her world ...
From Stone Age to space age, people have looked up at the stars and been inspired by their beauty, their patterns, and their majesty. Beneath the Night is a history of humanity, told through our relationship with the night sky. From prehistoric cave art and Ancient Egyptian zodiacs to the modern era of satellites and space exploration, Stuart Clark explores a fascination shared across the world and throughout millennia. It is one that has shaped our scientific understanding; helped us navigate the terrestrial world; provided inspiration for our poets, artists and philosophers; and it has given us a place to project our hopes and fears. In the stars, we can see our past - and ultimately, our fate. This is the awe-inspiring story of the universe, and our place within it.
With private space companies launching rockets, satellites, and people at a record pace, and with the U.S. and other governments committing to a future in space, Glenn Harlan Reynolds looks at how we got here, where we're going, and why it matters for all of humanity.
A masterful, genre-defying narrative of the most ambitious science project ever conceived: NASA's deep-space mission to Europa-the Jovian moon where might swim the first known alien life in our solar system-powered by a motley team of obsessives and eccentrics. When scientists discovered the first ocean beyond Earth, they had two big questions: "Is it habitable?" and "How do we get there?" To answer the first, they had to answer the second, and so began a vivacious team's twenty-year odyssey to mount a mission to Europa, the ocean moon of Jupiter. Standing in their way: NASA, fanatically consumed with landing robots on Mars; the White House, which never saw a science budget it couldn't cut; Congress, fixated on going to the moon or Mars-anywhere, really, to give astronauts something to do; rivals in academia, who wanted instead to go to Saturn; and even Jupiter itself, which guards Europa in a pulsing, rippling, radiation belt-a halo of death whose conditions are like those that follow a detonated thermonuclear bomb. The Mission is the Homeric, never-before-told story of modern space exploration, and a magnificent portrait of the inner lives of scientists who study the solar system's mysterious outer planets. David W. Brown chronicles the remarkable saga of how Europa was won, and what it takes to get things done-down here, and up there. Written with verve, humor, and uncanny empathy, The Mission is an exuberant masterclass in how a few determined cogs can change an entire machine.
There's no better guide through mind-expanding questions such as what the nature of space and time is, how we fit within the universe, and how the universe fits within us than Neil deGrasse Tyson. But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in digestible chapters consumable any time and anywhere in the busy day. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry reveals just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.
The search for life on Mars-and the moral issues confronting us as we prepare to send humans there Does life exist on Mars? The question has captivated humans for centuries, but today it has taken on new urgency. As space agencies gear up to send the first manned missions to the Red Planet, we have a responsibility to think deeply about what kinds of life may already dwell there-and whether we have the right to invite ourselves in. Telling the complete story of our ongoing quest to answer one of the most tantalizing questions in astronomy, David Weintraub grapples with the profound moral and ethical questions confronting us as we prepare to introduce an unpredictable new life form-ourselves-into the Martian biosphere. Now with an afterword that discusses the most recent discoveries, Life on Mars explains what we need to know before we go.
In the summer of 1975, NASA brought together a team of physicists, engineers, and space scientists-along with architects, urban planners, and artists-to design large-scale space habitats for millions of people. This Summer Study was led by Princeton physicist Gerard O'Neill, whose work on this topic had previously been funded by countercultural icon Stewart Brand's Point Foundation. Two painters, the artist and architect Rick Guidice and the planetary science illustrator Don Davis, created renderings for the project that would be widely circulated over the next years and decades and even included in testimony before a Congressional subcommittee. A product of its time, this work is nevertheless relevant to contemporary modes of thinking about architecture. Space Settlements examines these plans for life in space as serious architectural and spatial proposals.
The cutting-edge science that is taking the measure of the universe The Little Book of Cosmology provides a breathtaking look at our universe on the grandest scales imaginable. Written by one of the world's leading experimental cosmologists, this short but deeply insightful book describes what scientists are revealing through precise measurements of the faint thermal afterglow of the Big Bang-known as the cosmic microwave background, or CMB-and how their findings are transforming our view of the cosmos. Blending the latest findings in cosmology with essential concepts from physics, Lyman Page first helps readers to grasp the sheer enormity of the universe, explaining how to understand the history of its formation and evolution in space and time. Then he sheds light on how spatial variations in the CMB formed, how they reveal the age, size, and geometry of the universe, and how they offer a blueprint for the formation of cosmic structure. Not only does Page explain current observations and measurements, he describes how they can be woven together into a unified picture to form the Standard Model of Cosmology. Yet much remains unknown, and this incisive book also describes the search for ever deeper knowledge at the field's frontiers-from quests to understand the nature of neutrinos and dark energy to investigations into the physics of the very early universe.
The journey into space is a dangerous one, and although some aspects of space travel seem to be routine it still takes humanity to the limits of what is technically possible. It is an environment that forgives no mistake, and where carelessness usually has fatal consequences. This book records more than a dozen American and Soviet space disasters from 1967 to the present day. Presented are tragic and near tragic missions such as NASA's Gemini 6A and 8, Apollo 1 and 13, the Challenger and Columbia space shuttle disasters, as well as the Soviets' Soyuz 1, 11, and 18-1, and more. The concise and detailed history is presented along with rare photographs, transcripts of mission conversations, as well as detailed timelines.
In this new colour presentation Jonathon Ray chronicles 60 years of true space science findings by both leading astronomers and NASA. The truth is that there is evidence all over our solar system that we are not alone and that humans may have origins on other planets. Gathered from 20 years of research and photographs, the information presented here just may change how you view human existence and purpose forever. Space science information and discoveries must always be presented truthfully and unedited to the general public. The advancement of the human species is at stake. If in fact our national or international space exploration programs find evidence that there are alien races living in our solar system -- past or present, then it is critical that this information be shared not only with the scientific community but with the entire general public. Advancements in distant space travel, alternative energy, environmental protection and universal understandings are at stake.
Explore our wonderful world through some of its weirdest, most astonishing and interesting facts. From the editors at Ripley's and IFL Science comes a book that will fascinate, entertain and give a deeper understanding of the world around us - as well as provide some nifty facts for your next family quiz! Did you know that there may be mini black holes passing through Earth every day? Or that the secrets of digestion were discovered by testing on a gentleman who was curiously living with a 6-inch hole in his stomach? What if we told you the colour pink isn't real? These are all Weird True Facts. Ripley's Believe It or Not! Weird True Facts is compulsory reading for anyone interested in science, the natural world and beyond but also for anyone looking for a tantalising fact for their next networking event. Prepare to be amazed by these very weird, all true, believe-it-or-not facts!
"How do alien, faraway worlds reveal their existence to Earthlings? Let Donald Goldsmith count the ways. As an experienced astronomer and a gifted storyteller, he is the perfect person to chronicle the ongoing hunt for planets of other stars." -Dava Sobel Astronomers have recently discovered thousands of planets that orbit stars throughout our Milky Way galaxy. With his characteristic wit and style, Donald Goldsmith presents the science of exoplanets and the search for extraterrestrial life in a way that Earthlings with little background in astronomy or astrophysics can understand and enjoy. Much of what has captured the imagination of planetary scientists and the public is the unexpected strangeness of these distant worlds, which bear little resemblance to the planets in our solar system. The sizes, masses, and orbits of exoplanets detected so far raise new questions about how planets form and evolve. Still more tantalizing are the efforts to determine which exoplanets might support life. Astronomers are steadily improving their means of examining these planets' atmospheres and surfaces, with the help of advanced spacecraft sent into orbits a million miles from Earth. These instruments will provide better observations of planetary systems in orbit around the dim red stars that throng the Milky Way. Previously spurned as too faint to support life, these cool stars turn out to possess myriad planets nestled close enough to maintain Earthlike temperatures. The quest to find other worlds brims with possibility. Exoplanets shows how astronomers have broadened our planetary horizons, and suggests what may come next, including the ultimate discovery: life beyond our home planet.
Humanity has always looked to the stars, but it hasn't been until relatively recently that we have managed to travel into space. Carolyn Collins Petersen takes us on a journey from the first space pioneers and their work, through the First World Warled technological advances in rocketry that formed the basis for the Space Age, to the increasing corporate interest in space. This detailed examination of our steps into space is viewed from our potential future there - on Mars to be exact - and considers how we will reach that point. The author concludes with our current advances and our immediate ambitions in space exploration. The future and its scientific possibilities are enthralling: who will be the first to step on Mars? Will matter/antimatter annihilations take us to the Kuiper Belt, or will it be ion propulsion? What is the Alcubierre Warp Drive? Will it take us to the stars?
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