On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.
"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs." --San Antonio Express-News
Capitalism in space: SpaceX engineers, having successfully completed its tank pressure tests of its fifth Starship prototype, are now preparing the ship for its first static fire engine test, to be followed very quickly thereafter by its first hop to 150 meters.
SN5 [the fifth prototype] is being prepped for a flight test right out of the gate. SpaceX does not plan to perform an extended ground test campaign with SN5 after beginning Raptor engine testing.
It is understood that one good static fire test could be enough to clear the way for a 150-meter hop test. Furthermore, only a few days may be required to prepare SN5 for the flight test following a successful static fire test. If a static fire occurs this weekend, this will put the earliest possible hop date in the first half of next week.
As always, this schedule could change during testing.
The article also describes the status of both the sixth prototype, as well as the eighth being assembled now, noting that “if the 150-meter flight of Starship SN5 is successful, SpaceX is expected to quickly move on to Starship SN8 for an upcoming higher altitude flight test – potentially skipping a flight test with the SN6 prototype.”
My July fund-raiser for Behind the Black is now over. The support from my readers was unprecedented, making this July campaign the best ever, twice over. What a marvelous way to celebrate the website's tenth anniversary!
Thank you! The number of donations in July, and continuing now at the beginning of August, is too many for me to thank you all personally. Please forgive me by accepting my thank you here, in public, on the website.
If you did not donate or subscribe in July and still wish to, note that the tip jar remains available year round.
Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:
If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
Cortaro, AZ 85652