A British businessman has purchased a discarded Russian rocket and installed it in his garden as decoration.
Almost 40ft long and weighing five tonne, the rocket was first flown in 1991 after being built by the Russians in collaboration with NASA at a cost $10 million. For ten years it held the record for the fastest ever made-made machine before it was jettisoned as archaic.
Somehow it ended up at a car auction at South Marston where it was spotted by Mr Sweet while checking out vintage motors. Mr Sweet, who runs the Cirencester-based computer company Zycko, said: “I saw it for sale at a car auction and decided to buy it, not really knowing what I was going to do with it.”
I am curious how the rocket had ended up being owned and offered for sale by a UK company that “specializes in car restorations.” I also wonder if this might be a major new profit center for the struggling Russian rocket industry.
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.