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Cambridge Illustrated Dictionary Of Astronomy

This lavishly illustrated new dictionary written by an experienced writer and consultant on astronomy provides an essential guide to the universe for amateur astronomers of all ages. It can be used both as a comprehensive reference work, and as a fascinating compendium of facts to dip into.

Making Sense Of Space Spatiality And Technology

Making sense of these three themes is no small matter. Space is an absolute as it is not defined in terms of anything other than itself spatiality is personal, human scale and experiential and technology is the cultural product of our skills and crafts. It is, perhaps, unsurprising that we turn to philosophy for an explanatory framework. Heidegger notes in the same section of his Being and Time as the previous quotation that The bare space is still veiled. Space has been split up into places. The presence of the term place in both references is not a coincidence. Early writers were clear about the fundamental association between being and place. In the fourth century B.C., for example, we find Archytas of Tarentum observing that to be (at all) is to be in (some) place (Casey, 1997 4) an observation that virtual reality researchers have returned to in recent years (cf. Turner & Turner, 2006).

State Of The Universe 2007

I am enormously indebted to them for their major contributions to this volume. The topics highlight some of the most active areas of current research, reflecting the state of our knowledge now, and placing many of the news stories in the first section of the book into a broader context. The remaining nine chapters in the features section focus on specific topics currently undergoing the most active research. Ray Villard, a science writer in his own right and Hubble's Press Officer since the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope, brings us the highlights of the year from that most magnificent of instruments orbiting a few hundred kilometers above our heads. The Milky Way was a hot topic at the January 2006 Winter AAS meeting, with many new results from the Spitzer Infrared Space Telescope, and from the SDSS. Chris Wanjek, an experienced science writer, provides a dramatic overview of the most recent results, from the central bar to a warped disk. This book is...

Welcome To Space Exploration 2008

As the series unfolds our team of writers will not only report on both the pathfinding voyages of robotic space probes and human missions, but will also review future activities and look back to the great events of the past. Leonard David,'s senior space writer, looks at how a human flight to an asteroid might be undertaken. Dominic Phelan, a Dublin-based writer with a special interest in the Russian space programme, visits the Institute for Bio-Medical Problems

Calibrating Calendars Using Eclipses

In 168 B.C. the Romans defeated the Greeks in the Battle of Pydna, a town on the western side of the Gulf of Salonika. The battle was pivotal for the eventual Roman control of Greece because it quelled the Macedonians. (These were the people who in the latter half of the fourth century B.C. had produced Alexander the Great, and under him conquered an empire stretching from the eastern end of the Mediterranean all the way to India.) The Romans recorded this battle as occurring, on their haphazard calendar, on September 3. From this, one might imagine that it took place in early fall. In fact we know that the Battle of Pydna was fought near midsummer's day. The great writers Livy and Pliny recorded that a lunar eclipse was predicted by the tribune Sulpicius Gallus and seen on the night before the conflict, giving courage to one side while the other was filled with dread. Perhaps the Roman generals chose the date on the basis of the prediction, telling their troops ahead of time that...

Early Ideas On Space Travel

Although space travel had been a popular topic for fantasy since Roman times, it was not until the 19th century that writers began to seriously consider its problems. French author Jules Verne launched his heroes to the Moon with a giant cannon (in fact, the acceleration would have killed them), while British writer H. G. Wells invented a material that shielded his lunar capsule from the effects of Earth's gravity. In reality, the only practical solution was the rocket. Long used as a military weapon, a rocket's self-propelled nature means that it can push itself forward without a medium to travel through, making it ideal for the vacuum of space.

Nature and Scope of the Planetary Sciences

It is no wonder that the whole idea of evolution is so magical and counterintuitive to so many people, and that the critics of science so frequently are able to defend their positions by quoting the science of an earlier century. We often hear expressed the idea that the spontaneous rise of life is as improbable as that a printshop explosion (or an incalculable army of monkeys laboring at typewriters) might accidentally produce an encyclopedia. But have we ever heard that this argument is obsolete nonsense, discredited by the scientific progress of the 20th century Sadly, there is a gap of a century between the scientific world view taught in our schools and the hard-won insights of researchers on the present forefront of knowledge. The great majority of all people never learn more than the rudiments of Newtonian theory, and hence are left unequipped by their education to deal with popular accounts of modern science, which at every interesting turn is strikingly non-Newtonian. News...

Multiple visions of space

Multiple visions have been put forth about humankind's diaspora in space by cosmic philosophers and prophets. Perhaps science fiction writers best bestirred our imaginations about space, from authors like the 17th-century Jules Vernes to the 20th-century Robert Heinlein ( The professional visionaries range from 19th-century Russian science teacher Konstantin Tsiolkovski to 20th-century American engineering professor Robert Goddard and Romanian mathematician Hermann Oberth. Their utopian dreams were translated to realities by teams of German, Russian, or American rocket engineers led by men like Sergei Korolev, Wernher von Braun, and Krafft Ehricke 7 . Their forecasts of yesterday are today's realities, such as satellite telecommunications, remote sensing, Earth observation, manned and unmanned missions aloft, and more. During the past several decades, visions of orbital space colonies and artificial worlds have been set forth in classic books in many...

The Basic Principles of Robotics

Robotics is the science and technology of designing, building, and programming robots. Robotic devices, or robots as they are usually called, are primarily smart machines with manipulators that can be programmed to do a variety of manual or human labor tasks automatically, and with sensors that explore the surrounding environment, including the landscape of interesting alien worlds. A robot, therefore, is simply a machine that does mechanical, routine tasks on human command. The expression robot is attributed to Czech writer Karel Capek, who wrote the play R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots). This play first appeared in English in 1923 and is a satire on the mechanization of civilization. The word robot is derived from robata, a Czech word meaning compulsory labor or servitude.

The Dreams And Theory Of Space Travel 18651939

While scientists made few advances in rocketry during the last half of the nineteenth century, writers began exploring the theoretical applications of rockets not as weapons but as vehicles for space travel. In 1865, the science-fiction writer Jules Verne published his classic novel From the Earth to the Moon, a tale of a human flight to the Moon via a 10-ton bulletlike capsule fired by a huge cannon. Verne was the first writer to make space travel appear possible, although the technology he chose (a large cannon firing a crew-capsule projectile) was not correct. His three passengers definitely would have been crushed to death by the acceleration. In 1869, Edward Everett Hale published The Brick Moon, describing a human-crewed space station. Another gifted writer, H.G. Wells, also stimulated the minds of future space pioneers with such exciting tales as The War of the Worlds (1898) and The First Men in the Moon (1901). In the former tale, Earth is almost conquered by technically...

Anaxagoras Makes the Celestial Bodies Mundane

Athens was at the focus of new ideas concerning nature. It is regarded that Anaxagoras (ca. 500-428 BC) imported natural philosophy to Athens from Ionia. Perhaps the first scientist in the modern sense of the word, he was born in the city of Clazomenae and had given away his considerable possessions to devote his life to science. When asked why it was that people are born, he replied that it is in order to investigate sun, moon, and heaven. Around the age of 40, Anaxagoras came to Athens. There he had among his friends the statesman Pericles. The tragedy writer Euripides was one of his pupils.

European Space Case Study

The multicultures of modern Europe have been developing a space ethos for centuries in their art, science, and literature. The early dreamers of space travel came from Europe (e.g., Italy's inventive artist, Michelangelo France's science fiction writer, Jules Verne and Romania's mathematician, Hermann Oberth). The drawings and writings of such visionaries inspired generations of future space scientists and engineers worldwide, but especially in Germany where rocket pioneering abounded in the first half of the 20th century. Europe's entry into the Space Age occurred in World War II, with the negative impact of missiles from Peenemunde on a devastated England. However, with their minds on the Moon, many of the German rocket scientists there under Wernher von Braun were transformed from war to peace by being absorbed into either the American or Russian space programs 34 . Since 1958, Western European nations have collaborated, originally through the European Launch Development...

Life And Work At A Moon Base

There will be lots to do at a lunar base. Geologists will study the Moon with the intensity and vigor they do on Earth, with emphasis on field studies. Astronomers will make magnificent observations of the universe. Solar scientists will study the solar wind directly and investigate past activity trapped in layers of regolith. Writers and artists will be inspired by a landscape so different from Earth's. Life scientists will study how people adapt to a gravity field one-sixth as strong as Earth's, and figure out how to grow plants in lunar greenhouses. Engineers will investigate how to keep a complex facility operating continuously in a hostile environment. Mining and chemical engineers will determine how to extract resources from Moon rocks and regolith. The seemingly dry lunar surface contains plenty of the ingredients to support life at a Moon base (oxygen and hydrogen for water, nitrogen and carbon for the growth of plants), including the construction

The motion of the Moon

Ptolemy stated that Hipparchus wrote a work (now lost) entitled On the Displacement of the Solstitial and Equinoctial Points. Surprisingly perhaps, Hipparchus' discovery was mentioned by only a few Greek writers (see Dreyer (1953), p. 203) it took on a much greater significance in later centuries. Ptolemy Almagest, Book IV, 2.

The Drawing Board and the Cockpit

In the 1930s writer-pilot Ernest Gann described himself as a ''craftsman'' and ''a skilled artisan,'' with no interest in the machinery itself. ''In the beginning many of us were scientific barbarians,'' Gann wrote, ''we had neither the need nor the opportunity for technical culture.''18

The Congressional Role in Balancing Civil Military Responsibility

Unfortunately, this short-term task of drawing a clear delineation between civilian and military concerns in space was probably impossible. General Medaris, already experienced in space as the director of the Army's Ballistic Missile Agency, explained, Neither this bill nor succeeding events can completely define in all cases where the division point is. . . . I find it very difficult in my own mind, with assurance, to divide out the scientific, the peaceful, and the military. 181 DOD witnesses urged Congress to adopt some mechanism for close cooperation and granting the DOD flexibility to pursue a wide variety of R&D that could lead to national security hardware at some point in the future. General Schriever, director of the Air Force's ICBM development team, expressed a sentiment common among military witnesses when he said that I think any civilian agency that is established should not have an inhibiting influence on the military's being able to carry out its requirements. 182 Most...

Hipparchus Discovers the Slow Wobbling of the Celestial Sphere

Later Pliny the Elder (AD 23-79), the Roman writer, expressed his admiration for Hipparchus' catalog He made something that would be courageous even for the gods - he counted the stars and constellations, with future generations in mind, and gave them names. For this purpose he built instruments, with which he determined the location and size of each star. Thanks to this it will be easy to learn, not only if stars are born or if they die, but also if they move away from their positions and if their light grows brighter or fainter.

The Birth of Computer Graphics

In the ensuing decades, large companies and organizations gradually twigged onto the idea that computer graphics and animations were going to be among the 'next big things' to impress an increasingly sophisticated general public and to sell their products. In 1982 the Walt Disney Studios released Tron, a movie that was groundbreaking for its extensive use of computer graphics. Fascinated by video games, the movie's writer and director Steven Lisberger was inspired to

Archytas c 428c 350 BC

An ancient Greek who figures semimythically in the annals of rocket history. According to Aulus Gellius, a Roman writer, Archytas lived in the city of Tarentum in what is now southern Italy. Around 400 B.C., Gellius relates, Archytas mystified and amused the citizens of Tarentum by flying a pigeon made of wood. Apparently, the bird was suspended on wires and propelled by escaping steam one of the earliest references to the practical application of the principle on which rocket flight is based. See Hero of Alexandria.

New Captains at the Cape

Most Launch Operations Center personnel remained on the Cape, where LOD had been a tenant. Some NASA elements continued as tenants in Air Force space for several years. In this period many offices had to get by with inadequate facilities, which impaired morale and reduced productivity. George M. Hawkins, chief of Technical Reports and Publications, pointed out that four technical writers worked in an unheated machinery room below the umbilical tower at LC-34. At one time pneumonia had hospitalized one writer and the others had heavy colds. When it came time to install machinery there, they urgently requested assignment to a trailer. Russell Grammer, head of the Quality Assurance Office, established operations in half a trailer at Cape Canaveral with seven employees. When the staff grew to 13 times that size, his force had to expand into other quarters. The Quality Assurance people worked in such widely scattered places as an old restaurant on the North Cape Road, a former Baptist...

Herbert George Hg Wells 18661946

Wells was a novelist and science-fiction writer whose works popularized the idea of space travel and inspired the pioneers of astronautics. The son of a shopkeeper, Wells was born on September 21, 1866, in Bromley, England. In 1884, he entered the Normal School of Science in South Kensington under scholarship, but uninspired by routine academics, he left that institution in 1887 without a degree. Most of his education came from omnivorous reading, a habit he developed as a child while convalescing from a broken leg. He taught in private schools for four years and eventually received a degree from the Normal School of Science in London. He settled in London, where he worked as a teacher and wrote extensively on educational matters. Wells's career as a science-fiction writer began in 1895 with the publication of his immensely successful book The Time Machine, the story of a man who travels 800,000 years into the future. The work embodied Wells's fascination with technological...

Apple Ladles on the Sauce

Many Mac users today are professional writers and graphics people. Space artist David A Hardy obtained his first PowerMac 7100 (with 512 MB of RAM) in 1991 since then he has gradually moved up. He now has a 24-in. iMac (with an Intel Core Duo chip and 4 GB of RAM) running OS X 10.4.11 'Tiger.' Hardy's most used program - and one that he admits not being able to do without, for digital graphics

Temporary Conclusions on Egypt

This chapter discussed, in brief, what we know about Egyptian astronomy during the Middle and New kingdoms. Our knowledge is inadequate, as it is based on second-hand material drawn in coffins or painted in tombs. But I think that if one considers seriously even just the few sources that we have, and puts them together with a series of objective data on the astronomical orientation of the temples, there is enough material to conclude that, at least starting from the Middle Kingdom, astronomical knowledge in Egypt was absolutely complete and comparable to that of any other great civilization, if not superior to it, as testified to by famous Greek writers (curiously enough, these conclusions can also be drawn from Neugebauer's works even though he takes every opportunity to affirm his lack of esteem for the Egyptian scientists).

The Composition of the Interstellar Medium

Hydrogen gas may exist in the ISM in any of three forms as molecular hydrogen (H2), neutral atomic hydrogen (H), or ionized hydrogen (H+). The latter two forms of hydrogen are designated as HI ( hydrogen one atomic hydrogen) and HII ( hydrogen two ionized hydrogen, H+). This system of nomenclature is used with other atoms and molecules also to indicate the degree of ioniza-tion of a particle. Thus, HeI is neutral helium (He0), HeII is singly-ionized helium (He+), and HeIII is doubly-ionized helium (He2+). Some writers use a slightly different designation, with the element's symbol and the roman numeral separated by a space, as H I, H II, and He I.

Canopus Venerated by the Arabs

For many centuries, the Arab peoples have had a great fascination and respect for Canopus. One name that they gave to Canopus was Suhail. Several bright stars seen low in the south by the Arabs were called Suhail or Suheil and Wezen. Wezen means weight, presumably a reference to the way in which a bright star near the horizon would seem to be hanging low with the heaviness of its own great load of light. Suhail is said by star lore expert Kunitzsch to be of unknown origin. But astronomy writer and classical

Back To The Main Ship

Mars is the fourth known planet in order outward from the Sun, and is in many ways the most Earthlike. Science-fiction writers have used Mars more than any other extraterrestrial place as the setting for civilizations, outposts, and evolution. It is interesting to suppose that the first Martians will come from Earth. Will you live to see the invasion of Mars by Earthlings

What Might Live There

Science-fiction writers have taken advantage of the fact that Mars, while not a hospitable place by Earthly standards, at least presents an environment where life might survive with the proper equipment. Thus H. G. Wells' novel The War of the Worlds, published around the year 1900, created a cult of people who believed in the existence of native Martians. Ironically, it was our own Earthly disease bacteria that prevented us, in this horrifying tale, from being annihilated by the gigantic, slimy aliens whose ships came streaking down like meteorites and who stalked our planet in armored contraptions resembling nothing humanity had ever seen before.

Below the Rayleigh Limit

An investigation into this by the writer has produced the graph in Figure 10.4 which shows the least angular separation at which close double stars in various apertures have appeared to be just distinguishable from a single image and it shows a surprisingly good correlation from the smallest to the largest aperture considered.

Project Mercury and the Pilots Role

Writer Tom Wolfe's book The Right Stuff and the popular (somewhat fictionalized) movie of the same name captured these tensions surrounding Mercury. Wolfe cast the debate between traditional test pilots like Chuck Yeager who compared riding atop a Redstone rocket to ''spam in a can'' and the hopeful, though uncertain astronauts. ''The difference between pilot and passenger in any flying craft,'' Wolfe recounted, ''came down to one point control.''20 Wolfe wrote about the macho conflict between the Edwards test-pilot crowd (the men who founded the SETP) and the relative upstarts that would form the team known as the Mercury Seven (none of them SETP members), and how the test pilots gradually saw their glory eclipsed by the huge public response to Mercury. Whatever its limitations, the resonance and public impact of Wolfe's writing testifies to the issue's central place in the cultural image of the program.

Conclusions On Emerging Space Culture

To this writer, it seems unlikely that global space agencies will provide the initiative and innovation required to fully promote space settlement and commercialization. But, it is more likely that private enterprise and non-profit organizations will be the force behind this, particularly in the formation of space culture. Furthermore, catalysts for lunar activity will likely come from world commerce, which appreciates the return on investment that can be realized by utilization of space resources, such as space-based energy. Your author agrees with Professor Haym Benaroya of Rutgers University, previously cited, who concludes that space and planetary science, concerned about the accumulation of knowledge and understanding, must be decoupled from space engineering and industrialization which have more specific, immediate goals and realistic schedules they are two different yet parallel cultures.

The Paths of Brahe and Kepler Intersect

Tycho Brahe had received The Mystery of the Universe as a gift from Kepler in 1597. He realized that the writer must be a very talented young man. When Rudolph II, the emperor of Germany, gave Brahe the position of Imperial Mathematician in Prague, Brahe decided to invite Kepler for a visit in 1600. They first met in February in the castle of Benatek close to Prague, just a week or so before Giordano Bruno was burnt at the stake in Rome. Kepler stayed with Brahe till the summer. Then he went back to Graz to find out that he was no longer welcome at the University. He returned to Prague to become the assistant of Brahe. This started an important phase

Improving human factor research

This sobering assessment highlights what this writer has already reported in Chapters 2 and 3. NASA has begun to address some of these issues by expanding research in human factors, especially functional esthetics, as well as in life sciences, especially with reference to life support systems for the Space Station 11 . The prospect of building a Moonbase within a dozen years has prompted some physicians, such as Ron Schaefer, to examine future medical care for lunar dwellers. With proper selection and effective paramedic services, Dr. Schaefer feels that explorers' illness and accidents can be coped with adequately for up to six months' stay. Beyond that timespan, he is concerned about the treatment of acute illness, severe injuries, and chronic conditions. Schaefer anticipates problems on the lunar surface related to

Eudoxus And Concentric Spheres

Concentric Spheres Aristotle

The first major attempt to develop the fledgling paradigm of uniform circular motion into a successful science was made by Eudoxus. He arrived in Athens a poor youth, about 23 years old, traveling as assistant to a physician. Diogenes Laertius, a Greek biographer of the third century a.d. , wrote in his Lives of Eminent Philosophers that when Eudoxus was about 23 years old and in straitened circumstances, he was attracted by the reputation of the Socratics and set sail for Athens with Theomedon the physician who provided for his wants. Diogenes also quoted other writers on Eudoxus, noting that Sotion in his Successions of the Philosophers said that Eudoxus was also a pupil of Plato and that Apollodorus stated that Eudoxus flourished about the 103rd Olympiad and died in his fifty-third year.

Humanitys next giant leap

Speaking before the National Conference of the Aviation Space Writers' Association in San Diego (May 13, 1987), Schirra urged more research on human survival issues, such as what would be involved in manned Mars spaceflight of several years.1 Dr Bruce Cordell when at General Dynamics Advanced Space Systems also addressed this matter of 2-year to 4-year missions to Mars and its moons. He noted that NASA planners are concerned about such spacefarers in terms of these five dimensions 4

The geostationary satellite

Every orbit has its own period of revolution, T, given by equation (13.31). For a circular orbit of an approximate height of 35 000 km, the period is 23h56m, in other words 1 sidereal day. A satellite placed in a circular equatorial orbit at such a height will, therefore, remain above a particular point on the Earth's equator. Such geostationary satellites are used for communications purposes, relaying radio and television signals over most of the Earth. These now numerous satellites are said to occupy the Clarke belt, so named after the science fiction writer, Arthur C Clarke, who first suggested the use of stationary satellites for communication purposes. It may be noted that because of the relative proximity of stationary satellites, their apparent position in the sky suffers from a substantial parallax.

Science as a Tool of

These considerations can be rephrased in a different way, which can help us to appreciate their significance under a different perspective. If science is the tool by which human beings establish a cognitive and operative interaction with nature, then mere common sense tells us that the central, albeit implicit, task of science is to situate us as knowing and free subjects in the very picture of the universe we ourselves make, by means of science, for our own use. Indeed, we have started this book by pointing out that the primary significance of science is to provide a critical analysis of sensory experience, which is a necessary condition for applying ethical values to concrete situations. Of course, science is also important because it makes technological advances possible, but that is a secondary aspect should anybody doubt that this is the case, let that person consider the current passionate debates about many issues of science (e.g., evolution), and the fact that what science...

Eddington and His Legacy

In studying dimensions and fundamental constants over several decades, the writer has come to realize that much modern work on these topics has its roots in the views of Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington (1882-1944 for a recent interdisciplinary review of his contributions to physics and philosophy, see the conference notes edited by Price and French, 2004). He was primarily an astronomer, but with a gift for the pithy quote. For example We are bits of stellar matter that got cold by accident, bits of a star gone wrong. However, Eddington also thought deeply about more basic subjects, particularly the way in which science is done, and was of the opinion that much of physics is subjective, insofar as we necessarily filter data about the external world through our human-based senses. Hence, the oft-repeated quote To put the conclusion crudely - the stuff of the world is mind-stuff. The purpose of the present section is to give a short and informal account of Eddington's views, and thereby...

Stranger Than Fantasy

I find it especially remarkable how seemingly bizarre and counterintuitive the laws of nature are compared to even the wildest flights of human fancy. Reading or watching science fiction, one often gets the impression of great creativity on the part of the writers How do they think of those things For the most part, science fiction writers are able to extrapolate from existing technologies and scientific discoveries very effectively. By the time of Jules Verne, for example, submarines, rockets, telegraphs, and trains were already around as bases for his science fiction concepts. He used them to explore the implica The more we learn about such fields as genetics, quantum mechanics, general relativity, astrophysics, and superstring theory,2 the more fantastic things we learn about how nature works. Rarely, if ever, does a science fiction writer come up with an original, valid idea comparable in complexity and bizarreness to what scientists have discovered. This struck home for me a few...

The European Moon program

In a letter to the author (January 7, 1994), Dr. Bonnet indicated that a second-phase report is under way to define a European global view for both lunar exploration and exploitation. However, he wrote that ESA sees lunar industrialization as a longer term goal which they are not addressing at this stage. This writer

Cyrano de Bergerac Savinien de 16191655

French writer whose works combine political satire and fantasy. He is most familiar in modern times from the 1897 novel Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand, which describes him as being gallant and brilliant but ugly with a large nose. As a young man, Cyrano joined the company of guards but was wounded at the siege of Arras in 1640 and retired from military life. He then studied under the philosopher and mathematician Pierre Gassendi, who had a significant influence on him. In his Histoire des Etats et Empires de la Lune (History

Macromanagement of space enterprise

The prototypes of 21st-century management, particularly with reference to managing large-scale enterprises, may be found partially in the last half century within the global space program 2 . The Space Age inaugurated a number of macroprojects by both the U.S.A. and the former U.S.S.R. of such scope and magnitude that another type of management had to be created to ensure successful achievement 3 . The opening of the high frontier is a powerful catalyst not only to the development of new technologies, but also to the advancement of numerous fields of knowledge, such as macroengineering and macromanagement. The premier space writer, Leonard David, said it best

Exhibit 98 Prototype Of Future Macromanagers John Pierce

When John Robinson Pierce died in 2002 at age 92, his obituary recalled more than his design and launch of Telstar 1, the world's first commercial, communication satellite. He was also remembered for his contribution of writing 20 books and 300 technical papers. While few may have read his Theory and Design of Electron Beams, millions have devoured his science fiction stories and books published under the name J. J. Coupling (meaning a process in physics for determining wave functions). For this author realized that most leaps forward in knowledge and technology are anticipated by writers from Leonardo daVinci to Arthur C. Clarke, to the latest science fiction scribes, like David Brin. Pierce confessed that he only tried to make real what he and others dream about by making calculated guesses about the future. For him fiction was creative thought that leads to solutions, yet observes scientific laws. His writings helped pay for his tuition and expenses at California Institute of...

From Elation to Shock

The 22 grainy black and white pictures returned by Mariner 4 changed mankind's notion of Mars forever. No canals, no ancient cities. . . . For many it was a disillusioning blow that almost killed the romance of the red planet forever. The science fiction writers would be forever forced to revise their Martian fables, no more Barsoom and the beautiful Princesses, no elegant crystal cities or lush jungle landscapes. The masterworks of Burroughs and Bradbury would finally have to be appraised in a different way, as great literary works from a different and more romantic era.23

Red Sirius the Dogon and Triple Sirius

Is it possible that Sirius B became a white dwarf as recently as two thousand years ago A number of ancient writers seem to say that Sirius was reddish (others, such as Manilius, speak clearly of its blueness). In, Burnham's Celestial Handbook, Robert Burnham lists Aratus, Cicero, Horace, Ptolemy, Seneca, and others as having made comments indicating the Dog Star's ruddiness. Could Sirius B have still been a red giant then, dominating the coloration of the point of light called Sirius even to the naked eye What could be the explanation for the Dogon having such knowledge Some sensationalistic fringe-science writers have suggested that the most likely explanation is that extraterrestrials visited ancient Egypt and Sumeria and the knowledge they imparted about the companion of Sirius passed down to the Dogon A philosophic principle that scientists favor, called Occam's Razor, says that the simplest explanation that could be the correct one most often is the correct one. We don't have to...

The Apollo Heritage Of Innovative Management

It is this writer's contention that much of what is currently being characterized as the new management is partially the heritage of that space effort. This is especially pertinent with the building of large-scale technological undertakings, whether on this planet or in orbit. Those engaged in macro enterprises that involve many systems, disciplines, institutions, and even nations will have to apply in even more creative ways the legacy which the Apollo program gave to management. And the forerunner of space macromanagers to come was James E. Webb, NASA administrator during that momentous period 12 . Not only is more research needed in this regard by academics, but studies and conferences should be directed to what constitutes macromanagement, which the late Dalton McFarland described as the managerial imperative 13 . Currently, the term has a double, but complementary meaning macromanagement represents a post- or metaindustrial management approach, but it can also be employed to...

The Greatest Intellectual Challenge to Humankind

Philosophers of science who write on issues related to the ontology of spacetime regard the block universe view as undoubtedly wrong and believe that some kind of objective becoming and time flow must exist. The presumption that the world cannot be four-dimensional is sometimes considered so self-evident that any attempts to question it are virtually reprimanded. In 1991 Stein 23 criticized the Rietdijk-Putnam-Maxwell argument 24-26 according to which special relativity implies that reality is a four-dimensional world. Stein argued that their use of the concept 'distant present events' is a fallacy 23, p. 152 The fact that such a fallacy (again, if I am right) not only persists among some writers, but is allowed by referees to find continued publication, is a phenomenon that itself calls for reflection. Leaving aside the question of whether Stein is justified in making such a remark, it will be discussed in the next section whether he is right to object to the use of 'distant present...

Emerging Space Roles Of Earthbased Managers

Managing unmanned space missions Galileo. This unmanned spacecraft was managed by teams of JPL scientists of different generations during its six-year journey across the Solar System until July 1995, when Galileo automatically released a probe to descend into Jupiter's atmosphere at a speed of 170,600 kilometers per hour. The probe, pictured going through the Jovian atmosphere, collected the first sample of that planet's chemical make-up, winds, and clouds, while radioing back data to Earth for 57 minutes. The automated Galileo Orbiter mission studied the Jovian system's moons, rings, and magnetic fields. Source artwork, JPL NASA in Ad Astra, September October 1995, p. 17 text, a Los Angeles Times editorial (December 7, 1995). Tom Harris, a Canadian space writer, observed ''Today's Galileo spacecraft encounter with Jupiter provides exactly the kind of cultural influence society needs today Although Galileo is one of the last of the large planetary explorers, a new series...

Launching A Rocket Getting into Space

Why not put a satellite into orbit by firing it horizontally at very high velocity from a very tall mountain The great English scientist Sir Isaac Newton examined this question in the seventeenth century. Much like the illustration in Figure 4.9, Newton's notes contained a sketch that described the possible trajectories of a cannonball fired horizontally from a very tall mountain at different speeds. Although there are many engineering limitations with this suggestion (for example, atmospheric friction and excessively high launch accelerations that would destroy most payloads), the concept is quite useful in exploring launch physics. If we look back to chapter 3, we find that Jules Verne, the famous French writer, suggested a similar gun-launch-to-space approach to send his passengers on their fictional voyage around the Moon. We will also use the cannon-on-a-tower concept to help explain why orbiting objects fall around Earth.

Weighing invisible matter

Covered as front page news by the New York Times. I can still remember that it was the Monday (in July 1987) after a US-flagged tanker hit a mine in the Persian Gulf. I spent much of the day answering phone calls from science writers and assuring them that there was no danger we would be sucked into these black holes at any time in the future. Despite the excitement surrounding this result I had misgivings. After all, we'd found what we'd been after could we have fooled ourselves There were some unexplained features in the data, and the analysis had been done with spherical models. My view of science now is that we sometimes progress through optimistic interpretation, and I don't worry so much about a result that might turn out to be wrong because of some new development (in fact, I think it's vital to publish those results). Back then, however, I agonized over the possibility of getting ''caught'' in an error.

Predictions of Trouble

Since Newswald was a contributing editor of Space Aeronautics, it may well be that he contributed the section entitled Men in Space Chambers Guidelines Are Missing in the Aerospace Perspective section of that magazine during the same month that his review appeared in Science Journal. The editorial reflects the ideas and the wording of his review. The Guidelines writer began The odds are that the first spaceflight casualty due to environmental exposure will occur not in space, but on the ground. He saw no real formulation of scientific procedures involving safety - such as automatic termination of a chamber run in the event of abnormal conditions. By now, he stated, NASA and

Sagittarius A Rips a Star Apart

In this excerpt from an article in the October 2001 issue of Astronomy magazine, science writer Robert Zimmerman describes the possible origins of Sagittarius East. It is now believed to be the remnants of an unusual supernova created by the immense gravitational effects of the black hole Sagittarius A*.

The Hunches of Tom Baron

He believed his company would not respond to his warnings and wanted to get his message to the top command at KSC. While a patient at Jeff Parrish Hospital in Titusville, Florida, during December 1966, and later at Holiday Hospital in Orlando, Baron expressed his fears to a number of people. His roommate at Jeff Parrish happened to be a KSC technical writer, Michael Mogilevsky.23 After Baron claimed to have in his possession documentary evidence of deficiencies in the heat shield, cabling, and life support systems, Mogilevsky went to see Frank Childers in NASA Quality Control on 16 December. Childers called in an engineer of the Office of the Director of Quality Assurance, and Mogilevsky related Baron's complaints and fears again.24

Preface the rationale for planetary analog studies

Just before I left to attend the June 2001 Geologic Society of London Geologic Society of America Meeting in Edinburgh, Scotland, I received two e-mail messages. The first was from a UK-based freelance science writer, who was producing a proposal for a six-part television series on various ways that studies of the Earth produce clues about Mars. He requested locations where he might film, other than Hawaii. I was amazed that he seemed not to be aware of all of the locations on Earth where planetary researchers have been studying geologic processes and surfaces that they believe are analogous to those on Mars. In retrospect, his lack of knowledge is understandable, as no books were in existence on the topic of collective Earth locales for Martian studies and no planetary field guides had been published that included terrestrial analogs of the newly acquired data sets Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, Mars Exploration Rovers, and Mars Express. Historically, NASA published a series of...

Sight The Great Andromeda 33 Galaxy

Sometimes astronomy writers suggest that except for the Great Orion Nebula, the grandest of all deep-sky objects is M31, the Great Andromeda Galaxy. Yet at the same time, some beginning amateur astronomers express disappointment in their view of M31 through a telescope. The disappointment is no doubt partly a consequence of the novice's expectations being set so high not only by words but also by spectacular photographs of M31. Still, I think a further reason for beginners' sometimes cool reactions to the Andromeda Galaxy is another and very interesting one. It is the fact that there is no other celestial sight whose visual grandeur is so much the combination of the very different appearances of it with different optical instruments. You really have to view M31 with the naked eye, binoculars, a low-power telescope, and a high-power telescope, and then put these visions all together in your mind to appreciate the full measure of visual glory that this majestic galaxy offers. Then, of...

The Companion Galaxies Dust Lanes and Star Cloud

What more of M31 can one see with binoculars than with the naked eye More of its structure and the beautiful sort of translucence of its bright central region. Even in the very small, inferior telescope of Galileo's observing rival Simon Marius, M31 was (in Marius's words, as translated by the pioneer and science writer Willy Ley) like a candle flame seen through the horn window of a lanthern lantern .

Safe Solar Eclipse Viewing

This Not with the naked eye, and certainly not through any optical device like binoculars or a telescope. At the time of the eclipse in August 1999 over England and much of Europe, the newspapers were full of warnings, telling people of the danger posed to their eyesight. This led one letter writer to the London Times to suggest that In view of the many warnings regarding adequate safety measures when viewing the eclipse, should we not be sensible and listen to it on the radio The following malapropism is especially delightful in that it appeared in the Lady, a hugely staid and strait-laced British magazine But few seem to realize that looking at an eclipse with the naked is dangerous . . . The danger attached to eclipse watching though is a serious matter.

The Basics of the Big Bang

Probably every human civilization has wondered about its place in the Universe, why Nature is the way it is, and whether it all could have been different. Many different modes of thought can be applied to these questions. Painters, musicians and writers celebrate Nature and try to convey its relationship to human life through their art. Theologians discuss the idea of Nature as a manifestation of God. Science represents a relatively recent innovation in human learning. In particular, the modern era of scientific cosmology began less than a century ago with the work of Albert Einstein.

Secular Inequalities Method Of Gauss

A beautiful method of calculating the secular perturbations of the first order, due to the action of one planet on another, was proposed by Gauss m 1818 It was this method which was applied by Adams to the path of the Leonid meteors Further developments have been given by several writers, and references will be found m an article * by H v Zeipel

Question of Balance

Born in Pest (one of three former cities that now form Budapest), Hungary, in 1848, the year of the Hungarian revolution, Eotvos was the son of a well-known poet, writer, and liberal politician a cabinet minister at the time, who figured prominently in his country's intellectual life. Eotvos first studied law but soon switched to physics and went abroad to study

Characteristics For Those Born In September

The month of September is governed by the planet Mercury and by the critical sign of Virgo. You are an intellectual, very critical and picky and you tend to work too hard. You are a master of communication and the option to become a speaker or a great writer is offered to you. You may also misuse this power and become sarcastic to others. You will always combine logic and intuition in dealing with life in general. Astrologically, you have been classified as the perfectionists . You can do well in the fields of medicine, law, teaching, writing, designing, and office work, and you are in some areas a refined artist. Your downfall is sarcasm and an overly concerned attitude with trivial matters. Some young Mercurial souls are overwhelmed with health

Reclaiming The Moon Rationale

In these pages, space writers made a case as to why humanity should do this. Jeff Foust gave a recent review of U.S. policy on returning to the Moon permanently, Vision for Space Exploration (see Chapter 1). That writer explained that NASA's implementation plan entitled Global Exploration Strategy, was developed with the participation of some 14 space agencies which identified 180 potential objectives for lunar exploration, divided into 23 categories ranging from astronomy and lunar geology, to commercialization and technology testing. Six exploration themes emerged for such endeavors human civilization, scientific knowledge, exploration expertise, global partnerships, economic expansion, and public engagement. Within that context, NASA then engaged in a Lunar Architecture study that favors the building of an international Moon base. Before 2020, a decision is to be made as to site for the first outpost the current consensus is a location in the lunar north or south pole. Some...

The Harsh Realities of the SETI EquationA Modem Heresy

An elegant way to express the likelihood that there may be other civilizations like ours in the Galaxy is the SETI equation, or Drake's equation. It is referred to by-many writers who touch on the sub ject of the search for extraterrestrial civilizations but few, if any, have bothered to look closely at its implications. That is what we will do now.

Forward Robert Lull 1932

A science consultant, writer, and futurist specializing in studies of exotic physical phenomena and future space exploration with an emphasis on advanced space propulsion. Forward earned a B.S. in physics from the University of Maryland (1954), an M.S. in applied physics from the University of California, Los Angeles (1958), and a Ph.D. in gravitational physics from the University of Maryland (1965). He worked at the Hughes Aircraft Research Labs (1956-1987) before forming his own company, Forward Unlimited. From 1983 to the present, Forward has had a series of contracts from the Department of Defense and NASA to explore new energy sources and propulsion concepts that could produce breakthroughs in space power and propulsion. In 1994, he formed Tethers Unlimited with Robert P. Hoyt to develop and market a new multiline space tether.

Carolyn Collins Petersen

The International Planetarium Society (IPS) is the largest association of planetarium professionals in the world, uniting an extremely diverse population of more than 700 members across 50 countries. IPS members work at domed theater facilities in museums, public schools, science centers, colleges and universities, and public facilities of all sizes, as well as in associated industries supplying content, consultation services, technology and support. IPS members are educators, lecturers, content producers, equipment manufacturers, writers, artists, musicians, scientists, and others whose work contributes to the astronomy-related mission of today's facilities.

Black Holes And Galactic Travel

The time, energy and logistic limits posed by traveling in reasonable times to our closest stars (let alone to Galactic destinations) motivate the search for propulsion means alternative to what is based on current physics. This is a common goal among science fiction writers and scientists alike. The measurements taken from scientific satellites indicate the space-time continuum of the Theory of General Relativity is nearly flat if space-time could be ''warped'', that is, curved, the force and energy available from gravitation would be much larger than predicted by the simple Newton's Law. Then a new propulsion system would, in principle, be possible Alcubierre, 1994 Obousy and Cleaver, 2008 . Such a system has been proposed by Mills Mills, 1997 and is examined in Ford and Roman, 2000 Minami, 2008 . The conclusions regarding feasibility are for the moment rather speculative, also due to the mathematical complexity of tensor calculus required by General Relativity Maccone, 2008a , but...

Saturn and Its Rings and Moons

Everybody knows that Saturn is the planet with something truly extra a spectacular set of rings. Astronomy writers have frequently called Saturn the showpiece of the solar system. So anyone preparing for their first view of Saturn through the telescope has very high expectations. The amazing thing is that those expectations are almost always exceeded.

Contact beyond the Solar System

California, concerning one of the Mars Mariner missions, freelance writers Eric Burgess and Richard Hoagland approached Sagan with the idea that a message should be placed aboard the Pioneer 10 mission, which was slated for launch in March 1972. They reasoned that, once Pioneer's job taking readings from Jupiter was completed, it would continue out of the solar system, becoming the first Earth probe to venture beyond the known planets into the unknowns of deep space without a set trajectory. Pioneer 10 would continue to function for 20 or more years, since it was powered by radioisotope thermoelectric generators, or RTGs, which produce electricity from decaying plutonium. (RTGs are used when a spacecraft will be traveling too far from the Sun to warrant the use of solar power.) In other words, no one knew where it would end up no one knew how many eons it would continue to coast in space and no one knew what other beings it might meet out there if any.

Weak and strong versions of the AP

From the earliest AP discussions, it was recognized that there are both weak (WAP) and strong (SAP) formulations. The weak versions assert that, since there are observers in our universe, its characteristics, including the values of the fundamental constants and the initial conditions, must be consistent with the presence of such observers (see ref. 5 , p. 372). Thus the existence of observers acts a posteriori to select values of the fundamental constants and other important parameters. These versions of the AP just specify the conditions which have been fulfilled for complexity and life to arise - they do not explain how or why those conditions have been realized. In fact, some writers describe the WAP as just a selection effect.

Matterantimatter Engines

Neutron the antiparticle for the proton is the antiproton. Physicists and science-fiction writers alike call this stuff antimatter. Small amounts of antimatter have been isolated in laboratories. Antimatter does exactly what the science-fiction writers say it will when it combines with an equal amount of matter Both the matter and the antimatter are turned completely into energy. This happens so perfectly that it makes hydrogen fusion seem inefficient by comparison. Because of this fact, matter-antimatter reactors, should they ever be designed and put into production, will solve the world's energy problems. They will make it possible to build space ships that can accelerate to nearly the speed of light. They also will make it possible to build a bomb that can blow our whole planet to smithereens.

ESAS report architecture comparison

The EOR-direct return mission mode was eliminated from further consideration primarily because in this mode the CEV must operate in, and transition among, 1g pre-launch and post-landing, hyper-gravity launch, zero-gravity orbital and cruise, powered planetary landing and ascent, and 1 g lunar surface environments. It was claimed that this added significant complexity to a vehicle that must already perform a diverse set of functions in a diverse number of acceleration environments. Another reason given was reduced commonality between the ISS and the lunar CEV. These arguments do not necessarily make sense to this writer. Yes, the CEV is more complex in this mode, but the overall mission, shorn of lunar orbit rendezvous, would appear to be simpler and safer. It appears to this writer as if the comparison of safety and life-cycle cost for various mission options provides very narrow differences between several architectural options. Considering the great uncertainties remaining in these...

T3 A Strategy For Industrial Diversification

Many writers have identified zero-mass products'' such as energy, to provide the lunar settlements with export earnings. The need for exports is indeed vital. As long as the settlement effort must still be subsidized from Earth, there will always be the risk of unrelated budgetary pressures on Earth fueling support for those who would pull the plug on lunar operations.

The Disappearance of H VIII44

On all the editions of the widely used Norton's Star Atlas up through the 17th one, you will find the open cluster H VIII-44 (NGC 2394) plotted near the bright star Procyon in Canis Minor. Sitting as it does right on top of the star n Canis Minoris - between Procyon and P Canis Minoris - its position is a snap to locate. Sir William described this object as a large poor cluster containing bright stars. Yet it is nowhere to be found The author has repeatedly looked for it using telescopes from 3- to 30-inches in aperture under all sorts of sky conditions without any success. The late Walter Scott Houston, one of the greatest visual observers ever and writer of Sky & Telescope's Deep-Sky Wonders column for nearly half a century, had a similar experience. He reported that The only problem is that the cluster is not there. I have searched for it several times with 4- to 16-inch telescopes. Since its cataloged position places it in the same low-power field as Eta, there is no question that...

Life in the rest of the Solar System

If the development of life on Earth did not require a special set of circumstances, then we expect life to have started elsewhere in the galaxy. It is therefore of interest to search for life elsewhere, and the obvious starting place is our Solar System. Finding even primitive life elsewhere in the Solar System would indicate that the Earth is not just one lucky case, and would give us hope of finding it widespread in the galaxy. Also, finding certain types of life elsewhere in the Solar System would give us insights into how life actually formed on the Earth. When we talk about searches for life, we generally mean life as we know it . That is, life based on carbon bearing (organic) molecules. (Science fiction writers have speculated on other forms of life, such as silicon based, but there is no current evidence to suggest that searching for such life forms would be fruitful.) Development of carbon based life generally requires water, so in choosing places to search for life, we would...

Hale Edward Everett 18221909

A prolific American writer, a contributing editor to The Atlantic Monthly, and almost certainly the only science fiction writer to serve as chaplain to the U.S. Senate he appears to have been the first to describe an artificial Earth satellite. His short story The Brick Moon (1869) and its sequel, Life on the Brick Moon, 140 both published in The Atlantic Monthly, tell of a 200-foot diameter sphere (built of bricks to stand fire very, very well ) that is due to be launched into an orbit 4,000 miles high. Since its purpose is to provide a longitude fix for navigators who will see it from the ground as a bright star, Hale reasons correctly that a polar orbit is needed. In effect, the Brick Moon will move around a giant Greenwich meridian in the sky, fulfilling the same role for the measurement of longitude that the Pole Star does for latitude. Two huge, spinning flywheels are set up to throw the artificial moon into its correct orbital path but something goes wrong. The brick sphere...

Real versus fake universes

This notion has been popularized in The Matrix series of science fiction movies. For any given 'real' world, there would be a vast, indeed infinite, number of possible virtual worlds. A randomly selected observer would then be overwhelmingly more likely to experience a virtual simulation than the real thing. Thus there is little reason to suppose that this world (the one you and I are observing now) is other than a simulated one 14,15 . But the denizens of a simulated virtual world stand in the same ontological relationship to the intelligent system that designed and created their world as human beings stand in relation to the traditional Designer Creator Deity (a fact not lost on science fiction writers from Olaf Stapledon onwards), but with God now in the guise - not of a Grand Architect - but of a Grand Software Engineer. The creator of the virtual worlds is a transcendent designer with the power to create or destroy simulated universes at will, alter the circumstances within them,...

Newton Astrotheology and Galaxies

Political thinkers now had confidence that they could determine the natural laws governing human association, and the American and French revolutions followed. Albeit more a disciple of Descartes than of Newton, Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, a French philosopher and writer, initiated attempts to apply the spirit of scientific inquiry to the study of man in society. In his 1748 De l'esprit des lois (The Spirit of Laws), Montesquieu Newton's influence also pressed directly on early American statesmen, without the mediation of French political writers. Jefferson, who owned a portrait of Newton and a copy of his death mask, one of fewer than ten made, invoked Laws of Nature in the American Declaration of Independence. It was Jefferson's opinion that we might as well say that the Newtonian system of philosophy is a part of the common law, as that the Christian religion is (Feingold, Newtonian Moment, 160). On completing his second term as president of the United States...

The Satellites Of Mars Predictions of Martian Moons

The idea that Mars might have two satellites was introduced by the British writer Jonathan Swift in his famous satirical work Gulliver's Travels, published in 1726. There is no doubt, from internal evidence, that Swift was familiar with Kepler's third law relating the period of a satellite to the dimensions of its orbit. Consequently, it is probable that he also knew of the prediction concerning the moons of Mars and adopted it in his description of Lemuel Gulliver's visit to the flying island of Laputa. The inhabitants of Laputa, wrote Swift, have . . . discovered two lesser stars, or satellites, which revolve about Mars. The idea that Mars has two moons was also mentioned by Voltaire, apparently under the influence of Swift, in his novel Microm gas, published in 1750.

The Pioneer 1011 And Voyager 12 Message Plaques

In an effort to deflect some of the criticism of the Pioneer message plaque, the Voyager message committee consisted of many scientists, science fiction writers and cultural experts. Still, it is possible to find fault with the message content. Why, for example, is the only example of mid-20th century western popular music the rock music of Chuck Berry And why was a portion of Beethoven's 5th Symphony included over the last movement of the 9th Symphony

The Rocky Mountain Eclipse of 1878

French Superstitions

Indeed many then, as now, regarded the splendor of the skies as being manifestations of their religious beliefs. As one writer put it Science and general education have banished all the dread these events inspired. Announced with exhaustive accuracy before their coming, fear has given way to admiration at the fixed laws, the order, the harmony of God's workings, where once ignorance anticipated accident, the coming of disasters, and tokens of the anger and wrath of the Creator.

Greater than the Whole

On his return he documented his voyage in Peritou Okeanou (On the Ocean), which was lost. Fortunately, other writers drew upon it and we know Pytheas estimated the coastline of Britain to be 45,000 stades. Using the best guess we have about the length of a stade Pytheas made Britain's coastline 4,800 miles as against our figure of 4,710 miles.

Rocket History And Theory

With the military application of rockets throughout Europe well established before the nineteenth century, it is surprising that early science fiction writers such as H. G. Wells resorted to exotic devices such as 'space guns' instead of interplanetary rockets in their classic tales of interplanetary exploration and warfare. The first serious attempts to develop the rocket principle for space application awaited early 20th century pioneers such as Konstantin Tsiolkovsky in Russia, Herman Oberth in Germany and Robert Goddard in the USA.

The Names and Lore of Spica

In medieval times, one of the names that the Arabs applied to Spica was Sunbulah. The nineteenth-century deep-sky writer Admiral Smyth states that, before his time, there was an attempt to rename the star Newton, after the great scientist. But perhaps the most enduring alternate name of Spica is Azimech. That name comes from the medieval Arabic title Al Simak al A'zal, which means the Unarmed Simak. Arcturus was the other Simak, the Armed one, Al Simak al Ramih. R. H. Allen speculated that simak was from a root that meant to raise on high. But our contemporary star-name expert Paul Kunitzsch states he feels that the meaning of simak is uncertain. We do know that the part of the two stars' titles about being armed or unarmed is probably a reference to the fact Arcturus has some modestly bright naked-eye stars near it and Spica doesn't. Eta Bootis (Muphrid) and a few other stars might be the weapon of Arcturus, a lance that made it the lance-bearer.

Prehistory To Medieval Europe

By the fourteenth century, gunpowder-rocket technology had dispersed throughout Western Europe, where engineers attempted to develop its role in warfare. During the fourteenth century, French writer Jean Froissart proposed the use of tubes to launch rockets on more accurate trajectories. His idea was the forerunner of the modern bazooka. In 1420, an Italian engineer, Joanes de Fontana, wrote Book of War Machines, in which he suggested a rocket-propelled battering ram and a torpedo delivered to its target by a rocket. Throughout the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, European armies utilized rockets, but the military emphasized the increasingly accurate cannon.

Statistics and Classification of the Names

A quickly increasing group is given by the amateur astronomers as well as famous scientists outside of the field of astronomy. Distinguished musicians, painters, and writers constitute a substantial group of names. Dramatists and novelists are still prevailing in the group of intellectuals, but musicians and composers are coming up rapidly. One can also try to find out if a particular discoverer tends towards names in particular categories. One can see personal preferences very clearly, but trends common to many discoverers only rarely. Today, plants and animals are seldomly chosen, whereas acronyms and abbreviations are in fashion. Somewhat to our regret, there are not many entries in the category of curiosities. This is a wide field for imaginative discoverers.

Variations on the Einstein Theme

The operational nature of Einstein's discussion of inertial coordinate systems, and the issue of distant simultaneity in particular, has been hugely influential. In physics, it was consciously emulated by the founder of the matrix mechanics approach to quantum mechanics recall Heisenberg's dismay in finding that Einstein of all people did not embrace his operationalist stance in the late 1920s. In philosophy, it was influential in the emergence ofthe doctrine ofoperationalism and played a significant role in the development of logical positivism. But after the pendulum swung back and operationalism (or rather its radical version due to such writers as Percy Bridgeman) got such a bad name in philosophy, it has been fashionable for some time in the philosophical literature to discuss space-time structure without any reference at all to such base elements as rods and clocks. This has been unfortunate. It has tended to prevent philosophers from asking the important question as to why real...

Louise Harra and Keith Mason

Space research is one of the most evocative and challenging fields of human endeavour. In the half-century that has elapsed since the beginning of the space age, we have been exposed to wonders beyond the imagination of even the most visionary of science fiction writers. We have peered deep into the Universe and studied physics that we can never duplicate on the Earth. We have begun to understand our own Sun, and the flow of energy outward through the Solar System that is fundamental to our existence. Robotic agents have explored the planets in the Solar System and the environment of our own planet, the Earth. Human beings have trodden on the surface of the Moon, and now have a constant presence in near-Earth orbit. We are also advancing on that most fundamental of questions whether life has ever evolved elsewhere in the Solar System or elsewhere in the Universe.

Lowells Calculations And My Search

It has been stated by some writers of the Pluto story that Percival Lowell's calculations greatly aided my finding Pluto. Quite to the contrary, when I found out in the latter part of 1929 how Lowell had drastically changed his predicted position of Planet X from Libra to Gemini, this indicated to me that considerable uncertainty was involved, and I could not take the prediction seriously.

Chirality Basic Concepts

Two equal and similar right hands are homochirally similar. Equal and similar right and left hands are heterochirally similar or allochi-rally similar (but heterochirally is better). These are also called enan-tiomorphs , after a usage introduced, I believe, by German writers .

Book stores online with astronauticsspace volumes for purchase Astrobookscom

Extraterrestrials Contact Cultures of the Imagination, an interdisciplinary forum of scientists, writers, and artists exploring the problems and possibilities for human future. Holds annual conference, produces role-playing simulations, and a newsletter ( or tel. 1-650 941-4027). Also SETIInstitute, sponsors projects that search for extraterrestrial intelligence publishes newsletter sponsors lectures and events (

Reeducation of humanity

Today earthkind is still terrestrially oriented, and only a minority of the world's population comprehend why and where we should be going beyond this planet. Gaining national and international consensus to support such space visions and ventures as pictured above is a cultural problem. Implementing plans for the purpose implies innovative approaches to space management, such as discussed here. Why we are so timid in carrying out the Commission's bold recommendations has been well expressed by Washington Post writer, Charles Krauthammer (April 9, 1995) For existing space organizations, whether global space agencies, their aerospace partners, or space activists, the mass re-education of humanity about offworld exploration and development is essential, particularly by use of modern media. But their own personnel also have to be prepared for the challenges inherent in space management in general, and macromanagement in particular. Whether for oldtimers or newcomers in space enterprises,...

Everything Rocket Propelled

Max Valier

Max Valier was probably the greatest promoter of rocket flight and space travel of the first three decades of the twentieth century. He was a tireless lecturer and writer whose articles were translated and reprinted all over the world. But some of his methods for promoting rockets did not sit well with his colleagues. They considered some of his experiments to be little more than publicity stunts. Nebel's immediate team included Reidel and von Braun. A separate group of buildings was run by Winkler and his assistant, Rolf Engel. Willy Ley, vice president of the VfR, used his skills as a writer to record and publicize the work. Good press was important because the experimenters had much more enthusiasm than money. They depended a great deal on Nebel's ability to talk just about anyone into giving them materials and services. The nearly

Looking for a New Home

Both men find the thrill of spotting new planets more important than any award, however. Geoff Marcy's wife, chemist Susan Kegley, told writer William Speed Weed in 1999 that Marcy has kept that childlike wonder of his science the curiosity that put him on the roof at the age of 14 with his little telescope, and the same is surely true of Paul Butler.

Edwardians In Space September

NASA might have shelved its Moon plans, hut this spring BBC Four is launching an expedition Lhere, Lo be mounted in fine retro style. Instead of a gleaming spacecraft there's an Edwardian diving bell it's such a charming idea that two Britons got to the Moon 60-odd years before anyone else says Mark Gatiss, a founding member of The League of Gentlemen as well as the only Doctor Who writer to have doubled as a Who monster. Gatiss is adapting and starring in HG Wells's The First Men In The Moon.

Spherical Aberration And

Everyone who has experience with evaluating images knows that these writers couldn't have derived that 30 number from experience. Differences between optical images are subtle, and this number is too precise. There are many ways to compute this quantity, such as specifying the amount of energy in the central disk. For our purpose here, we calculate the energies contained inside the diffraction spot of an unobstructed aperture with 1 4 wavelength of spherical aberration and several obstructed apertures that are otherwise perfect. We choose the obstruction that most closely matches the

Wormholes as Time Machines

Some of the mathematical formulas associated with the theory of wormholes suggest that if one end of a hole is fixed and the other end is moving, each will end in a different time frame. In this excerpt from The Physics of Star Trek, physicist Lawrence M. Krauss tells how writers for Star Trek Voyager correctly depicted this phenomenon. Wormholes, as glorious as they would be for tunneling through vast distances in space, have an even more remarkable potential, glimpsed most recently in the Voyager episode Eye of the Needle. In this episode, the Voyager crew discovered a small wormhole leading back to their own alpha quadrant of the galaxy. After communicating through it, they found to their horror that it led not to the alpha quadrant they knew and loved but to the alpha quadrant of a generation earlier. The two ends of the wormhole connected space at two different times Well, this is another one of those instances in which the Voyager writers got it right. If wormholes exist, they...


Named for the heroine of the early 19th century novel Undine by the German romantic writer F. H. K. de la Motte Fouque (1777-1843) who wrote many chivalric romances, tales and plays based on Norse mythology. Undine is one of a group of female water spirits. When an Undine married a mortal and born a child she received a soul. If, however, her lover proved to be unfaithful, she would be forced to return to the sea. (LDS)

The metaldad rocket

Writers have fantasized about journeys beyond Earth since classical times, but the industrial revolution of the 19th century, coupled with advances in scientific knowledge, gave rise to a wave of speculative fiction that would inspire later generations to make space travel a reality. The Roman poet and satirist Lucian of Samosata is widely acknowledged as the world's first science-fiction writer. His True History, written around ad 150, is a tale of travellers carried into space and eventually to the Moon on a giant water spout. Lucian, however, was principally writing a fantasy, at a time when the rigours of space travel were purely matters of guesswork. Later literature throws up similar tales, such as the proposal by the 17th-century English bishop Francis Godwin for a lunar expedition in a carriage pulled by geese a more thoughtful fantasy comes from no less an authority than Johannes Kepler, the astronomer who finally worked out the laws of planetary orbital motion and clinched...

Going Places

Science-fiction writers get round the problem of communicating with aliens by dispatching their intrepid astronauts on space voyages to the distant stars. In the real world, this raises a problem that is as yet unsolved. Modern science accepts that the fastest anything can travel is the speed of light in practice, the highest speed our current space probes can achieve is far below this limit. Outer space is huge. Consequently, once outside the solar system it takes a very long time for you to get anywhere. With the kind of technology currently feasible, it would take over 100,000 years to reach the nearest star. Science-fiction writers get round this in various ways. One is to accept this estimate, and to dispatch a huge spaceship which acts as a kind of substitute Earth, with generations of inhabitants living and dying before their destination is reached. Alternatively, the astronauts are somehow put into a state of suspended animation throughout the whole period until they near...


Marcel G. J. Min-naert 1893-1970 , who was Director of the Utrecht Observatory from 1937 until 1963. He made major contributions to solar research and prepared (with Mulders and Houtgast) the Photometric Atlas of the Solar Spectrum. He was an extraordinarily effective lecturer and writer in the popularization of astronomy. (M 3185)

What It Can Show

Writers claim that the changes occur in near real-time, which means that if you stare at the image continuously you will not notice any changes. However, once I was able to see prominences changing shape, even using the entry-level PST. I knew the effect was real because the rest of the solar disc was not shimmering, as it can do under poor viewing conditions. I would be cautious in