Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.

Australian government to create space agency

The new colonial movement: A news report in Australia today revealed that the Australian government plans to include $50 million in its next budget to create that country’s first space agency.

Next Tuesday, the Government will unveil “seed funding” to finally establish a dedicated Australian space agency to coordinate existing efforts in the aeronautical industry, with the aim of generating thousands of future jobs. Most developed nations, including New Zealand, already have a space agency and there are concerns Australia may be not be capitalising on a global industry believed to be worth $420 billion a year.

The Turnbull Government is yet to decide where the new space agency will be located, but the ABC understands Western Australia, South Australia, the Northern Territory and the ACT have all expressed interest in hosting the headquarters.

A senior Coalition source said the Government expected the private sector would contribute “the lion’s share” of funding for Australia’s space industry.

This desire of governments to create their own NASAs is not really the best way to garner new space business. All it really does is create bureaucracy and pork for politicians. Better they liberalize their laws and regulatory systems, as Luxembourg is doing, to encourage companies to come and establish their operations there.

What Australia plans to do, however, is somewhat unclear. The article suggests that they want to minimize government spending and leave most of the cost for their government space agency to the private sector. How they will do that I have no idea.

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