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. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

December 15, 2020 Zimmerman Space Show podcast

The podcast for my 90-minute appearance with David Livington on The Space Show on December 15, 2020 is now available here.


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  • wayne

    Great show!

    tangentially, I’ll toss this in here…

    The American Rocketeer: Frank Malina
    JPL history documentary 2010

  • George C

    The show asked for a listener comment on green new deal rocketry. Spacex is well positioned. The propellant generation plan for Mars can work on Earth too. CO2 + H2O + Photon = CH4 + O2. If I may skip the balancing and the technical details which will be familiar to anyone who has studied the readily available web content; with much engineering to be worked out by Spacex.

  • Jay

    A question about what you guys talked about: a privately owned fifth space shuttle? I have read the paper for use of the shuttle’s external tank(s) to make into station, but never a private shuttle.
    I could not find anything on the search engines about this fifth shuttle. This really sounds interesting. Any names or dates would be appreciated.

  • Jay: I am working from memory, but I think Rockwell was the lead in proposing NASA build a private fifth shuttle for commercial purposes. I might have the company wrong, but no matter. The point is that NASA said no, unfortunately.

  • Jay

    Thanks Bob,
    I will look into that.

  • mkent

    Jay: It was even worse than that. Back before ULA there was another Boeing / Lockheed joint venture called United Space Alliance (USA) to process and maintain the Space Shuttle orbiters for NASA. One day the CEO of USA made the public comment that one day in the future they’d like to work out a deal with NASA where they could own the orbiters and sell NASA — and other customers — flights.

    The NASA administrator at the time (I think it was Goldin) was said to be so enraged at that idea that he called the CEOs of Boeing and Lockheed to have the USA CEO fired. He was.

    The Commercial Crew program really changed the culture of NASA.

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