Leaving Earth: Space Stations, Rival Superpowers, and the Quest for Interplanetary Travel
Robert Zimmerman

Price: $27.95 FREE for Members
Type: eBook
Released: 2003
Publisher: Joseph Henry Press
Page Count: 537
Format: pdf
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0309085489
ISBN-13: 9780309085489
User Rating: (3 Votes)

From Publishers Weekly

In the aftermath of the space shuttle Columbia disaster, Americans may have forgotten that for a quarter-century men and women circled Earth in space stations for as long as a year at a time. Most of these astronauts were from Russia and the Warsaw Pact countries. Zimmerman (Genesis: The Story of Apollo 8) recounts this era of space exploration, beginning with the American-Russian rivalry in the 1960s and concluding with their present-day collaboration on the International Space Station. He reminds us about the short-lived 1970s Skylab program, which was to have been followed by other U.S. space stations. Granted access to Russian archives and interviews with cosmonauts and their families, the author describes the Soviet program in great detail. The original Russian space stations, he reports, were intended primarily for propaganda and military purposes, but they also included a variety of scientific experiments and perfected the use of unmanned "freighters" to bring supplies and parts from Earth. If readers remember anything about the Russian program, it is probably the troubled final months of the Mir station, but Zimmerman describes the heroic efforts of cosmonauts to put out fires and make extended space walks to undertake complicated repairs. The Russians also conducted extensive research on the effects of living in space on the human body, research that will be invaluable for possible future travel to other planets. This book will be of interest primarily to scientists and hard-core science buffs, but it will undoubtedly be the leading book on the Russian space station program for the foreseeable future.Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.


"...a scientifically vivid and intensely personal book... a grand chronicle of an overlooked human adventure..." -- Focus, December 2003"...an exceedingly thorough and very enjoyable historical account. .. an easy-reading but detailed history of the space station..." -- Observatory, June 2004"...an excellent interpretive history... This book is superior to many aerospace histories done by professional historians and 'space experts.'" -- Eyepiece, December 2003"...the accounts of the close calls and disasters are often fascinating..." -- Library Journal"...well-written, informative account... good read and perhaps the best source of information on a neglected part of space history" -- Astronomy, October 2003"A seamless recounting of methodical discoveries and political maneuverings alike, Leaving Earth is a super contemporary history..." -- Library Bookwatch, December 2003"Space enthusiasts worried about where the manned space program is headed will take some heart..." -- The Washington Times, August 31, 2003"Zimmerman presents a profusion of striking vignettes..." -- Invention & Technology, Fall 2003"an engaging narrative of human experiences with longer and longer space missions..." -- Nature, December 2003Winner of 2003 Emme Award -- American Astronautical Society

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