Posts tagged ‘space’

New Government Report: Future of NASA

Future of NASA: Space Policy Issues Facing Congress
by Daniel Morgan
Paperback, 36 pages, 2010, $25.00
ISBN: 143792817x

“Contents: (1) Intro. and Legislative Context; (2) What is NASA for?; (3) What Should NASA Do?: Human Spaceflight: The Vision for Space Exploration; Current Program to Implement the Vision; Cost and Schedule; Why the Moon?; “The Gap” and Utilization of the Space Station; Human Spaceflight: The Augustine Comm.; Balancing Competing Priorities; (4) Space Shuttle Program: Why the Shuttle Program is Ending; Possible Extension of the Shuttle Program; (5) International Space Station; (6) Future Access to Space: Orion and Ares; (7) Destinations for Human Exploration; (8) Alternatives to Human Exploration; Robotic Exploration; (9) Other Space Policy Issues; The U.S. Commercial Space Industry; (10) Legislation in the 111th Congress. Charts and tables.”

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September 21, 2010 at 10:20 am Leave a comment

The Long Route to the Invention of the Telescope (American Philosophical Society Transaction 98-5, ISBN: 9781606189856)

The Long Route to the Invention of the Telescope
(American Philosophical Society Transaction 98-5, ISBN: 9781606189856)
by Rolf Willach (Paperback, 116 pages, 2008, $35.00)

Telescope CoverAfter the telescope became known in 1608-1609, a number of people in widely separate locations claimed that they had such a device long before the announcement came from The Hague.

In the summer of 1608, no one had a telescope, in the summer of 1609, everyone had one. How was this possible?

Author Rolf Willach has quietly tested early spectacle lenses in museums and private collections, and now he reports on this study, which gives an entirely new explanation of the invention of the telescope and solves the conundrum mentioned above.

Willach is an optical engineer and independent scholar who worked for several years in the Department of Physics at the Institute of Astronomy in Bern. He has written extensively on the history of the development of optics and the telescope. Illustrations.

“[Willach] has developed the most exciting thesis on the development of the telescope to appear in decades, and he deserves much credit for his bold and carefully proposed and illustrated conjectures,” writes Dr. Marvin Bolt, of Chicago’s Adler Planetarium, in the Journal for the History of Astronomy (February 2010).

“His resulting account is also an excellent example of how to use easily understood and compelling visual evidence without resorting to technological overkill and unnecessary detail.

“With this assemblage and sequence of a wide range of evidence over many centuries, Willach’s volume will inform any serious early telescope scholarship for the foreseeable future, and should be read by anyone interested in the origins of the telescope.”

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July 7, 2010 at 12:29 pm Leave a comment


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