Archive for the ‘space stations’ Category

‘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.¬† ūüôā

James E. Gunn – Station in Space and The Listeners

January 2, 2008

Gunn is clearly embracing the ebook age, making him only one of a dozen or so sf authors who are; 9 of his novels and his short story collection Future Imperfect are available as Kindle ebooks.¬† I mentioned his first story in Station in Space, “In the Cave of Night,”¬†as a memorable one for me in an earlier post.¬† The two novels by him that I recommend are:

Station in Space (Kindle ebook) surprised me as¬†a child in the 1950s¬†reading these stories.¬† These were not the altruistic heroes of my beloved boys-adventure series, but hard-bitten men, working in a dangerous, unforgiving environment, keeping secrets, waging bureaucratic battles, and far past the romance of it all, with —-ing language [censored then] to match.¬† Raw, brutal, real.

The Listeners (Kindle ebook),¬†on the other hand or grasper, is a slow patient tale of long range purpose by Earth’s cultures and the McDonald family,¬†trying to establish a lightspeed-limited radio dialogue with the alien Capellan culture lightyears away.¬† Like most of Gunn’s novels, the narrative¬†was originally published as magazine short stories.¬† Instead of distracting/detracting from the structure of the novel, this enhances the episodic nature of his story¬†as we meet five generations of McDonalds at pivot points in the tale,¬†while messages and responses crawl between stars at light’s limit.

Carl Sagan’s Contact¬†and Jack McDevitt’s original version of The Hercules Text (Ace Special, No 7) are two other good SETI novels.

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