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

SpaceX launches Turkish communication satellite

SpaceX today successfully completed the first launch of 2021, placing a communications satellite built by Airbus for Turkey.

The first stage successfully completed its fourth flight. Both fairings were also used, having flown previously.

At the moment, SpaceX is the only one to launch in 2021, so it leads the world at the moment.

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.


  • Mitch S.

    I figure 10 years ago a Turkish sat built by Airbus would have been a lock to launch on a European rocket (Ariane) .
    Things have changed.
    Musk is just declared world’s wealthiest man, ArianeSpace seems to be launching more Soyuz rockets than their own, and NASA mutters maybe they can launch SLS by the end of the year, or maybe not.

    PS: Bob, several weeks ago my kid got a cold – sore throat, sniffles, headache. She was fine in a couple of days.
    Then I got the same but after a few days the sore throat got better but I felt achy and tired – got tested, Covid detected.
    I’m fine now (it was like a moderate flu) but I also suggest you get tested. Also recommend Vitamin D3 if you’re not getting a lot of sunshine (really should have your blood level checked).


  • geoffc

    And the next flight, Transporter-1 is due to launch Jan 14 (before any delays) will be using core B1051 on its 8th flight! First booster to 8. (I checked – about 90 days since last flight, so no turn around record).

    8 is NOT enough.

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