Leaving Earth cover

In 2019 I obtained from my former publisher the last 30 copies of the now out-of-print hardback of Leaving Earth. I sold about half of these, and with only a handful left in stock I have raised the price. To get your own autographed copy of this rare collector's item please send a $75 check (includes $5 shipping) payable to Robert Zimmerman to
 

Behind The Black, c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652
 

I will likely raise the price again when only ten books are left, so buy them now at this price while you still can!

 
Also available as an inexpensive ebook!
 

Leaving Earth: Space Stations, Rival Superpowers, and the Quest for Interplanetary Travel, can be purchased as an ebook everywhere for only $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit.

 

Winner of the 2003 Eugene M. Emme Award of the American Astronautical Society.


"Leaving Earth is one of the best and certainly the most comprehensive summary of our drive into space that I have ever read. It will be invaluable to future scholars because it will tell them how the next chapter of human history opened." -- Arthur C. Clarke

First sunspot image from Inouye Solar Telescope

Sunspot image taken by Inouye Solar Telescope
Click for full image.

The science team for the new Inouye Solar Telescope, now in the final phase of construction, has released the telescope’s first high resolution sunspot image.

The image is to the right, reduced to post here, and was taken almost a year ago, on January 28, 2020.

“The sunspot image achieves a spatial resolution about 2.5 times higher than ever previously achieved, showing magnetic structures as small as 20 kilometers on the surface of the sun,” said [Dr. Thomas Rimmele, the associate director at NSF’s National Solar Observatory (NSO)].

The image reveals striking details of the sunspot’s structure as seen at the Sun’s surface. The streaky appearance of hot and cool gas spidering out from the darker center is the result of sculpting by a convergence of intense magnetic fields and hot gasses boiling up from below.

…This sunspot image, measuring about 10,000 miles across, is just a tiny part of the Sun. However, the sunspot is large enough that Earth could comfortably fit inside.

The start of official telescope operations is set to begin in ’21, and had been delayed because of the Wuhan flu panic. Construction had begun in ’13.

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.
 

3 comments

  • Breath-taking imagery.

    Remember reading a National Geographic about the Sun (want to say late 60’s; cursory search didn’t yield results) where I was first exposed the ‘granularity’ of the Sun’s, and presumably, other star’s, surfaces. For me, a revelation.

    Perhaps we will revert to the time of monks in (scientific) monasteries.

  • wayne

    This somehow feels appropriate for this post:

    “Dr. Alexander Fridman: My Dad, the Plasma Physicist”
    Lex Fridman Podcast #100
    June 3, 2020
    https://youtu.be/6JipQNWuYnA
    3:38:33

  • pzatchok

    Sauron is looking right at me.

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