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SpaceX’s Grasshopper rocket has made its highest leap yet, almost 20 feet.

SpaceX’s Grasshopper rocket has made its highest leap yet, almost 20 feet.

This is only a test vehicle for developing the engineering of a reusable rocket that can land vertically.


Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!


From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.


“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.


All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.


  • Steve C

    This is duplicating the work of the DC-X. Is it really worth sacrificing payload for the landing fuel needed as opposed to using a parachute? Considering the price per pound of orbited mass, is the upper stage worth the fuel costs to recover it?

  • wade

    this is cool, but Nova is on with a segment on the planet Mars, and i planned an evening alone with the 1955 movie “Conquest of Space”. wow, the rockets in this movie Operate just like ….wait a minute! 1955 ?

  • geoffc

    DC-X and Grasshopper are in no way analougous. Grasshopper is using a Merlin 1D a 145,000 lb thrust engine, on a full size (but not fully fueled) first stage, 150 feet or so tall.

    DC-X was a 39 foot tall 13,000 lb thrust (I recall it having 4 RL-10’s so the Wikipedia entry may really mean 13K X 4).

    These are NOT the same thing.

    This is a literal first stage of a production rocket, testing out how it would behave for vertical powered landing.

    DC-X was nice, but in a different order of magnitude smaller world. Things do not scale linearly in this space.

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