Tag Archives: Department of Defense

The Cold War Origins of Space Access


It is almost a truism that the primary U.S. space launch capabilities were created only because of the challenge of an exceptionally desperate Cold War rivalry with the Soviet Union. Accordingly, the development and deployment of ballistic missiles, space-based intelligence-gathering … Continue reading

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The Apollo Program and the Idea of Progress


It is somewhat trite to suggest that America was founded on the idea of progress and that it remains both an amorphous concept and one central to American national identity. In the 1830s an astute French interpreter of United States … Continue reading

Posted in Apollo, History, Lunar Exploration, Personal, Politics, Space, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Announcing My New Study: “Historical Analogs for the Stimulation of Space Commerce”


I have just published as a part of the NASA History Series Historical Analogs for the Stimulation of Space Commerce.  The write-up for it reads: “With the rise of a range of private-sector entrepreneurial firms interested in pursuing space commerce, … Continue reading

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The Transit Program and the Origins of Nuclear Power Systems for Spaceflight


Since the dawn of the space age more than 50 years ago, the United States has pursued a variety of methods for delivering electrical power to spacecraft in flight. Nuclear power systems are the only ones that have been found … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “The New Space Race: China vs. the U.S.”


The New Space Race: China vs. the U.S. By Erik Seedhouse. Chichester, UK: Springer-Praxis, 2010. Acknowledgments, figures, tables, abbreviations, illustrations, appendices, index. 256 Pages. ISBN: 13-978-1441908797. Paperback, $34.95 USD. Springer-Praxis has been churning out these books on spaceflight for some … Continue reading

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Reflections on the Decision to Drop the Atomic Bomb


It comes up every year at the time of the anniversary. It is one of the most difficult and complex questions in American history. Why did the leadership of the United States choose to drop the atomic bomb on Japan … Continue reading

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Eisenhower Revisionism and Sputnik


At present Dwight D. Eisenhower enjoys a presidential stature that ranks just below the greatest of the American presidents, especially Washington, Lincoln, and Jefferson. This has not always been the case. For the last thirty years Eisenhower revisionism has been … Continue reading

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Early USAF Missile Evolution: Atlas, Thor, Titan, and Minuteman Launchers


During the early 1950s all the armed services of the United States worked toward the fielding of ballistic missiles that could deliver warheads to enemy targets, in some cases intercontinental targets half a world away. Competition was keen among the … Continue reading

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Proposed Syllabus for “Spaceflight and Society” Course, Fall 2013


I am the instructor for a course at Johns Hopkins University in the Fall 2013 semester with the title, “Spaceflight and Society.” I taught this class in the fall of 2011 as well and had a great time doing it, … Continue reading

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Announcement of Opportunity to Submit Input to Study on Human Spaceflight


Now is your chance to tell everyone what you think about the direction the United States should take in human spaceflight. The U.S. National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academies is currently conducting a congressionally‐requested study to examine the … Continue reading

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