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.
 

ULA reduces workforce at Vandenberg

Capitalism in space: In an effort to save costs ULA is reducing its workforce at Vandenberg by 48.

The company has been aggressively trying to streamline its operations to better compete against SpaceX. This reduction was expected, and based upon what I saw when I toured Vandenberg a few years ago, entirely justified. While SpaceX’s operations then looked lean and simple, ULA’s set up appeared a bit inefficient.

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6 comments

  • LocalFluff

    Concerning Capitalism In Space, I saw you’ve got “mail” yesterday with an op-ed in Space News by Scott Pace who is some guy with a title larger than a visit card. He’s critical, very selectively critical. Remarkably strange claims are being made about economics. That demand for space flight won’t increase until launch costs come under $400 per kilogram, for example. Among standard claims that you made unspecified factual errors and did not realize that SLS/Orion compensates its cost by being safer than any commercial alternative (when you see someone eating his hat, it’s because they made such claims).

    That article is like a decapitated hen running around, just a bit more agitated than the same creature was before it lost its cranial appendix. Hundreds of readers’ comments overwhelmingly seem to disagree with Mr. Pace.

    http://spacenews.com/op-ed-wishful-thinking-collides-with-policy-economic-realities-in-capitalism-in-space/

  • wayne

    LocalFluff–

    Good stuff.
    — Mr. (they hate it when one doesn’t use their appointed Title!) Pace hasn’t held a real job, in his entire life. He’s one of those Expert-Mastermind’s who knows everything about the Theory of Space and how everyone else should be forced to do it.

    -The Usual Gang of Crony Suspects:
    https://spi.elliott.gwu.edu/supporters

  • LocalFluff

    Mr. Pace’s title doesn’t say much. He’s a director of an institute at a school of a university, dealing with international affairs (which doesn’t sound relevant to his topic). No academic title, but he’s employed by those who have such. I think that this topic is better understood by people working in the space industry than by any academics or their administrative staff.

  • Tom Billings

    “I think that this topic is better understood by people working in the space industry than by any academics or their administrative staff.”

    That, sir, is the basest form of heresy against the never-to-be-questioned right of academia to be an ever-expanding guide for all society. It reasons as though academicians are not unbiased and above us mortal creatures. Here in the Portland metro area that would get street riots as a reply!

    Oh Well, ….

  • LocalFluff

    Tim,
    One of the reasons why I love, and trust, astronomy, is that it isn’t corrupt, like economics is, which I unfortunately have wasted a couple of university courses at. An astronomer could make anything up, what ordinary person could check it? And some UFO people do make anything up, but they are easy to distinguish. So astronomers make absurd claims and refer to quagmire math, which even if you sift through it and nod that you couldn’t find any errors there, still doesn’t tell you much about anything. But they have this water proof alibi:
    You couldn’t make it up!
    Today’s cosmology is waaay too weird to be a fantasy, it’s beyond the capability of any human mind to make this up, it has to have been discovered.

  • Alex

    Look at the list of sponsoring partners that says all.

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