|From Atomic Rockets, by Winchell Chung.|
However, as first mentioned way back in my July 3rd, 2009 post "Historical Accounts and Comparisons of Our Present Space Age with Other Era's" it's also useful to be aware of relevant history and related antecedents to insure that we don't just end up making the same mistakes as the people who came before us.
So here are seven interesting articles, websites and publications which provide a bit of context to the current space debates happening here and elsewhere:
|From Beyond Apollo.|
- Beyond Apollo - A website written by David Portree, who lists himself as a manager at an astrogeology science center with the US Geological Survey. Whatever his day job, his chronicles of space history through programs that were proposed but didn't happen (including a 1970 proposal for possible "Jupiter Moon Landings," a 1962 proposal for "Modular Space Station Evolving from Gemini" and a 1988 proposal for the "JSC's Shuttle Replacement") are fascinating reading and proof positive that there is really nothing new under the Sun.
- Canada's Fifty Years in Space: The COSPAR Anniversary - By Gordon Sheppard and Agnes Kruchio is a book on the history of Canadian ground based science activity, how that activity placed Canada in the forefront of nations with knowledge of space in 1958 and what Canada ended up doing with those skills over the next fifty years. Of note is the fact that the book finishes up in 2008, just before Canadian corporate space icon MacDonald Dettwiler (MDA) attempted, unsuccessfully to sell it's space focused assets to US based Alliant Techsystems (ATK). This single action essentially transformed Canadian space activities from being primarily science focused into a mostly political activity.
- Canadian Spaceflight History - A website providing a short history of Canadian space activities. It's compiled by Chris Gainor an aeronautical historian who also wrote To A Distant Day: The Rocket Pioneers, Arrows to the Moon, Canada in Space and Who Killed the Avro Arrow?
- Historical Investment Financing of Exploration for New Worlds, Current Analogies to Other Industries, and Ideas for the Future - This discussion paper on how explorers historically have been financed was originally presented at the 2006 International Space Development Conference (ISDC). The author, Eva-Jane Lark is Vice-President and Investment Advisor with BMO Nesbitt Burns, one of Canada’s largest full-service investment firms and this makes her a rarity for a space advocate because of her ability to assess the business case for space entrepreneurship (most space focused entrepreneurs seem to be engineers or scientists who belong to the Field of Dreams school of entrepreneurship which believes that clients and customers will show up magically, just as soon as something wonderful gets built).
Future Wars in Space by paleofuture
- The Paleofuture Blog -A similar forum to the Beyond Apollo website in that the focus is on "past visions of the future" but author Matt Novak has a broad target wrapped around the concept of retro-futurism, which is a trend in the creative arts to show the contemporary influence of historical (before 1960) depictions of the future. Articles on "The Domination of Space (1950's)" focused on the History Channel documentary "Sputnik Mania" and "The Challenge of Outer Space (circa 1950's)" show how popular perceptions (assisted by professional media presentations) helped to define space travel for the generation who worked on the Apollo Moon landings.
- Reaching for the High Frontier: The American Pro-Space Movement, 1972-1984 - by Michael A. G. Michaud is exceptional reading for developing background on the various space advocacy groups which grew out of the 1972–1984 period because of the stagnation of the US based National Aeronautical and Space Administration (NASA) budget and lack of clear policy direction. It’s hard not to read this book without becoming immediately aware of parallels between the period profiled and our present day, with its lack of direction and on-going commissions in Canada, the US and England focused on reinventing from scratch some sort of coherent and ongoing space policy (as per my June 21st, 2011 post "Two Years and More of Ongoing Policy Reviews").
- Space Mission Analysis and Design - By James R Wertz and Wiley Larson and known as SMAD in the astronautics trade. If you've got $200 dollars for some beach reading, this is the book the pro's use. It's a textbook quality publication and if it's technical and related to space activities but not in here, then it just doesn't matter from an engineering standpoint.
From: Dan Linehan (http://www.dslinehan.com/).
Here's another book you might consider for summertime reading. I'm the author of "SpaceShipOne: An Illustrated History." My new book just came out called "Burt Rutan's Race to Space." I've got some cool blurbs and reviews already. Here's something from Paul Allen and Hoot Gibson:
"With Burt Rutan’s Race to Space, Dan Linehan tells the dramatic story of Burt Rutan’s pioneering aviation work that has included building a racing biplane, the X Prize-winning SpaceShipOne and Voyager, the first airplane to fly around the world.
"Linehan gives Rutan the credit he is due as one of the architects of twenty-first century private space travel. As he did with his earlier book, SpaceShipOne: An Illustrated History, Linehan also shows himself to be an engaging writer who combines scientific know-how with behind-the-scenes reporting that makes Rutan’s Race read like an adventure story." -- Paul Allen.
"Dan has done a fabulous job of describing the incredible journey of one of the most accomplished aircraft designers of all time, Burt Rutan. If you weren’t impressed by Burt before now, you certainly will be after reading this absolutely fascinating story of the incredible journey of Burt Rutan—from a young model airplane champion to legendary aircraft designer among the ranks of Douglas, Heinemann, Lockheed, and Kelly Johnson.
"I personally read it from one end to the other and loved it. This is a book you will read from cover to cover without being able to put it down. What a fascinating story of the aircraft designer of our time, Burt Rutan. His accomplishments as an aircraft designer and builder revolutionized the way airplanes are made.
"Way to go Dan Linehan for creating a mesmerizing collection of stories!" -- Hoot Gibson
Please feel free to check out my website listed above for more info. Best wishes,
Editors Note: I'm still having trouble posting comments but if there is something you'd like to comment on, I'm posting comments manually so don't be shy. Send your questions, queries, concerns and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.