These publications are available from the publisher listed or may be ordered through local bookstores.
Managing Martians: The Extraordinary Story of a Woman's Lifelong Quest to "Get to Mars" and of the Team Behind the Space Robot That Has Captured the Imagination of the World
by Donna Shirley
Broadway Books, 1998
Donna Shirley's engaging memoir recounts her experiences breaking into the male-dominated world of aerospace engineering to spearhead the Pathfinder rover project as manager of the Mars Exploration Program at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Built on a "shoestring" budget of $25 million, the tiny rover known as Sojourner Truth became a symbol for the possibilities of imaginative aerospace engineering and design.
Managing Martians, which has enjoyed national media exposure and a first printing of 50,000, revisits the Pathfinder project from an insider's perspective, as Shirley wages political and personal battles to defend the vision of the rover project once seen as "at best a toy and at worst a joke."
The most compelling part of Shirley's book comes in her panged remembrances of an awkward adolescence spent reading science-fiction novels and daydreaming about airplanes and the possibilities of flight. Shirley triumphed over the many barriers facing any gifted and intelligent girl in the 1950s, only to face similar challenges as a woman in the burgeoning robotics-engineering program. Perhaps it took a young girl's imagination, as embodied in the determination and will of a grown woman, to lead the team that made an unlikely success out of the dark-horse robot known as Sojourner Truth. At any rate, Shirley's account presents one valuable angle in the story of humanity's triumphant return to the Red Planet, and her book reminds the reader that space exploration has implications for humanity beyond the realms of engineering and science.
(Brian Anderson is the editor of the Lunar and Planetary Information Bulletin.)
. This book offers practical exercises and advice for the amateur astronomer looking to move beyond the basics of backyard stargazing and into the world of data gathering. Includes advice on such topics as telescope hardware, astrophotography and electronic imaging, determining latitudes and longitudes, and measuring the brightness of celestial bodies.
- Advanced Amateur Astronomy by Gerald North, Cambridge University Press, 1997, Hardcover $69.95, Softcover $24.95
Based on the proceedings of the Second Lunar Analytical Laboratory Workshop in Dijon, France, this book addresses the problems and challenges facing the establishment of a lunar laboratory for chemical, biological, and physical analysis. Articles in the book tackle such topics as lunar resource utilization, the effects of microgravity, operational and medical support, and environmental toxicology.
- A Lunar-Based Analytical Laboratory: Cyril Ponnamperuma Memorial Volume, Edited by C. W. Gehrke et al., A. Deepak Publishing, 1997.
- NASA has released the third volume in its series Exploring the Unknown: Selected Documents in the History of the U.S. Civil Space Program. Titled Using Space, the new volume is edited by John M. Logsdon, with Roger D. Launius, David H. Onkst, and Steven J. Garber.
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