‘Mining the Sky’ – John S. Lewis

March 22, 2013

This is the last of my seven posts about good textbooks or technical books about Earth impactors in English. Let me know about works I’ve overlooked!

Mining the Sky by Dr. John S. Lewis has 15 chapters about utilizing space resources. This is, in effect, a distillation of the OOP (Out-of-Print) 1993 Arizona Space Science Series textbook, “Resources of Near-Earth Space,” edited by Dr. Lewis, Mildred S. Mathews, and Mary L. Guerrieri.

Dr. Lewis became the Chief Scientist at one of the asteroid mining companies, Deep Space Industries (DSI) in 2013 after helping to define the industry two decades earlier with ‘Resources.’

275 pages, Helix Books, 1996, Mining the Sky by Dr. John S. Lewis, Paperback, U$13.64 from Amazon.

Errata: page 172, replace ‘William Burroughs’ with ‘Anthony Burgess’ as author of the nadsat language in ‘A Clockwork Orange.’

Resources of Near-Earth Space – John S. Lewis

March 17, 2013

Resources of Near-Earth Space edited by John S. Lewis, Mildred S. Mathews, and Mary L. Guerrieri.

The essential textbook of Space Resources, with 33 papers defining the field to the public. I hope Dr Lewis has colleagues working on the update/sequel now that two decades more data have been accumulated. Dr. Lewis joined Deep Space Industries in Feb. 2013.

  1. Introduction – 1 paper, Using Resources From Near-Earth Space by Lewis, McKay, and Clark
  2. The Moon – 15 papers including Refractory Material From Lunar Resources by Poisl and Carrier
  3. Near-Earth Objects – 7 papers including Volatile Products From Carbonaceous Asteroids by Nichols
  4. Mars and Beyond – 10 papers including A Chemical Approach to Carbon Dioxide Utilization on Mars by Hepp, Landis, and Kubiak

Arizona Space Science Series textbook, University of Arizona Press, 977 pages, 1993, Resources of Near-Earth Space is OOP (Out-Of-Print), but if you act fast, used copies are as low as U$112 at Amazon and U$119 on eBay. Very inexpensive if you want to make a good impression at your Deep Space Industries job interview by quoting from their Chief Scientist’s textbook during your answer to their question: what do you want to work on.  :)

Comet and Asteroid Impact Hazards – John S. Lewis

March 17, 2013

Comet and Asteroid Impact Hazards on a Populated Earth: Computer Modeling by John S. Lewis

This trade paperback was issued for those wanting to run computers simulations of impact frequencies and effects on Earth, encouraging them to modify Dr. Lewis’ program or to write their own. The heart of this 146 page technical monograph is the fifty-five pages of Chapters 2 through 5:

  1. Introduction
  2. The Impact Flux
  3. The Impactor
  4. The Impact Process
  5. The Target (emphasis mine)

Also, ponder his succinct and compelling conclusion:“Of all the natural hazards facing Earth, impacts are the most dangerous. Unlike native hazards of Earth’s surface, impacts know no size limit. Their effects can be devastating over the entire surface area of our planet. They are the only natural credible threat to human civilization. …” p.146.

200 pages, Academic Press, 2000, List price U$90, U$78 at Amazon.
Comet and Asteroid Impact Hazards on a Populated Earth: Computer Modeling by John S. Lewis

 

Rain of Iron and Ice – John S. Lewis

March 12, 2013

Rain of Iron and Ice by John S. Lewis is the first of four books written and/or edited by him about asteroids and comets – how to avoid their kinetic energy and extract their minerals. They have now become reference texts for anyone wanting to become an asteroid miner. At his website, Dr. Lewis announced in Feb 2013 that he is now Chief Scientist for Deep Space Industries (DSI), the second asteroid mining company formed in 2012.

Rain’s subtitle is “The Very Real Threat of Comet and Asteroid Bombardment.”  It has 15 thorough and detailed chapters about these celestial objects, and their specific encounters with Earth.  One of the most terrifying eyewitness arrivals was described in Dr. Lewis’s page one reconstruction of a bolide over the capital of an empire. “Occupants of offices and apartments rushed to their windows, searching the sky for the source of the brilliant flare … For a dozen heartbeats, the city was awestruck, numbed, and silent. Then, without warning, a tremendous blast smote the city, knocking pedestrians to the ground. Shuttered doors and windows blew out … ”  – Constantinople, 472 CE.

240 pages. Helix Books, Rain Of Iron And Ice, U$16, paperback at Amazon.


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