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.
 

More Martian pimples

More pimples on Mars
Click for full image.

In a captioned image release last week from the science team of the high resolution camera on Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), planetary scientist Alfred McEwen describes a string of mounds aligned and deformed by a fissue.

The image, cropped and reduced to post here, is to the right. As McEwen notes,

A possible geologic interpretation is that as the rift began to open, subsurface material (perhaps mud) erupted to create the mounds, which were then deformed as the rift continued to spread.

Located in Chryse Planitia, the region of the northern lowland plains just north of the outlet from Valles Marineris, these mounds and their probable geological origin seem very similar to the pimple mounds I highlighted in a cool image only last week. The only difference is that the earlier posted pimples were not aligned with any obvious fissure or rift.

Readers! My Quick November Fund-Raiser for Behind the Black is now over
 

I cannot thank the numerous people who so generously donated or subscribed to Behind the Black during this fund drive. The response was remarkable, and reflected the steady growth and popularity of the work I have been doing here for the past ten-plus years.


Thank you again!


Though the find-raising campaign is officially over, and I am no longer plastering the main page with requests for help, if you like what you have read you can still contribute, by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below. Your support will allow me to continue covering science and culture as I have for the past twenty years, independent and free from any outside influence.


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