One of the last few commercial launches for Russia’s Proton rocket has been delayed because the satellite “was not attached correctly to the upper stage.”
This is likely not as serious a blunder as the story makes it sounds. They had detected some “electromagnetic interference” in the upper stage’s control system during prechecks, which suggests a wire got crossed somewhere.
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.
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