Tag Archives: Apollo

Humanity and the Extreme Environment of Space


Although microbial life might survive the extreme conditions of space, for Homo sapien sapiens the space environment remains remarkably dangerous to life. One space life scientist, Vadim Rygalov, remarked that ensuring human life during spaceflight was largely about providing the … Continue reading

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Remembering a Great Adventure: The First Circumlunar Mission


After a piloted orbital mission to test the Apollo equipment in October 1968, on December 21, 1968, Apollo 8 took off atop a Saturn V booster from the Kennedy Space Center with three astronauts aboard—Frank Borman, James A. Lovell Jr., … Continue reading

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Recalling the First Rendezvous in Space


It seems hard to believe but 50 years ago the first rendezvous in space took place in December 1965 when Gemini VI and Gemini VII met in orbit. Those were heady times; the U.S. was on the way to the Moon and … Continue reading

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What Do You Do for an Encore after You’ve Been to the Moon?


As early as January 1964 NASA administrator, James E. Webb, had been asked by President Lyndon B. Johnson for a well-developed proposal of future space objectives after the Apollo Moon landings. Webb did not want to respond; instead he tried … Continue reading

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Wednesday’s Book Review: “The Interstellar Age”


The Interstellar Age: Inside the Forty-Year Voyager Mission. By Jim Bell. New York: Dutton Books, Published by the Penguin Group, 2015. xi + 321. Notes and further reading, acknowledgments, index. ISBN: 978-0-525-95432-3. Hardcover with dustjacket. $27.95 USD. Part memoir, part … Continue reading

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Parallels Between the Sputnik and 9/11 Crises


Is there a relationship between the so-called “Sputnik moment” in October 1957 and the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks? Yes, at several levels there are intriguing parallels between the Sputnik crisis of 1957-1958 that Eisenhower faced and the aftermath of the … Continue reading

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The World’s Spaceports


In the more than fifty years since the beginning of the space age, the most remarkable and visible installations created have been the launch facilities. These spaceports are not numerous, with only 24 active sites worldwide, but many of them are … Continue reading

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Visualizing Apollo’s Exploration and the Idea of Progress


For all but a handful of space travelers the voyages of exploration into space were events participated in vicariously by the  billions of humans living on Earth. It has brought a connectedness and reinforced a common set of values among … Continue reading

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The Thrill of Space Exploration


Several years ago I wrote the following essay on the meaning and excitement of spaceflight. I reprint it here for your enjoyment. It all began with dreams. Throughout human history we have been constantly fascinated with our natural universe, leading … Continue reading

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Perceptions of Belief in a Flat Earth


It’s a wonderful thing, the imagination of humankind. It has brought us the wonders of science and technology, the ideals of freedom and democracy, the inspiration to question, and the desire to help others, to name only a few positive … Continue reading

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