Publication of my Edited Work: “Exploring the Solar System: The History and Science of Planetary Exploration”


Exploring the Solar SystemI am pleased to note that this week Palgrave Macmillan released my edited work, Exploring the Solar System: The History and Science of Planetary Exploration. This book has been years in the making, and includes essays on a broad selection of topics by a diverse set of authors. It was only possible because of a generous grant from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Science Mission Directorate. My thanks to all those who helped to make this work a reality. I hope you will find it useful. It is available at the Palgrave Macmillan website for $85.00 hardcover.

Here is the table of contents for this book:

Part I: Managing Planetary Science

Chapter 1: Homer Newell and the Origins of Planetary Science in the United States, John D. Ruley

Chapter 2: The Survival Crisis of the US Solar System Exploration Program in the 1980s, John M. Logsdon

Chapter 3: Faster, Better, Cheaper: A Sociotechnical Perspective on Programmatic Choice, Success, and Failure in NASA’s Solar System Exploration Program, Amy Paige Kaminski

Part II: Developing New Approaches to Planetary Exploration

Chapter 4: Redefining Celestial Mechanics in the Space Age: Astrodynamics, Deep-Space Navigation, and the Pursuit of Accuracy, Andrew J. Butrica

Chapter 5: Big Science in Space: Viking, Cassini, and the Hubble Space Telescope, W. Henry Lambright

Chapter 6: Visual Imagery in Solar System Exploration, Peter J. Westwick

Chapter 7: Returning Scientific Data to Earth: The Parallel but Unequal Careers of Genesis and Stardust and the Problem of Sample Return to Earth, Roger D. Launius

Part III: Exploring the Terrestrial Planets

Chapter 8: Planetary Science and the “Discovery” of Global Warming, Erik M. Conway

Chapter 9: Exploring Planet Earth: The Development of Satellite Remote Sensing for Earth Science, Andrew K. Johnston

Chapter 10: Venus-Earth-Mars: Comparative Climatology and the Search for Life in the Solar System, Roger D. Launius

Chapter 11: Missions to Mars: Reimagining the Red Planet in the Age of Spaceflight, Robert Markley

Part IV: Unveiling the Outer Solar System

Chapter 12: Parachuting onto Another World: The European Space Agency’s Huygens Mission to Titan, Arturo Russo

Chapter 13: Pluto: The Problem Planet and its Scientists, David H. DeVorkin

Chapter 14: Transcendence and Meaning in Solar System Exploration, William E. Burrows

The advertising blurb for this book states: “From the beginning of the Space Age the United States, followed soon by other nations, began an impressive effort to learn about the planets of the solar system. The data collected and analyzed by scientists has revolutionized understanding of our neighbors. These efforts also captured the imagination of people from all backgrounds like nothing else except the Apollo lunar missions. Through a succession of analytical essays on major aspects of the history of robotic planetary exploration, this book opens new vistas in the understanding of the development of planetary science in the Space Age.”

Copies of the book are available at Palgrave Macmillan and other on-line book sellers.

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