The Columbia tragedy of 2003 left the United States questioning its actions in space. Have we financially starved the program into an inability to act? Have we chosen the best course of action for our money? Even deeper questions remain: What should our goals be in space? How critical is space to our future? What role should the government play? How much are we willing to spend? From historical context to the Columbia accident and recommendations, from possible destinations to methods and policies for getting there, with stops at space advocacy and the new directions for NASA, Tom Hill takes the reader through many facets and viewpoints in space. Insightful, well-researched, and at times funny, Space: What Now? is for anyone who wants to talk intelligently about humankind's future beyond the atmosphere.
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In Space: What Now?, Author Tom Hill takes us on a bold, jargonless, insight-filled journey through the past, present, and future of activities in space. We are briefly introduced to the various players - space agencies from around the world, as well as public, non-profit outreach groups and private entities working on access-to-space issues. Opinions are stated as opinions, and facts are stated as facts. The book really shines in the middle chapters, where Mr. Hill uses a unique writing viewpoint and his extensive background in both military and civilian space operations to skillfully dissect some of the myths holding us back in space. He proposes several practical solutions to the most difficult issues. My two favorites are separation of human/cargo launches and creation of orbital fuel depots, but read the book to understand the proper context and limitations of these concepts and many more. Finally, the latter chapters will make a convincing case for what we should be doing in space, Moon/Mars, and how we should be going about it. You won't agree with every opinion in this book, most likely, but you will certainly come away with new perspectives, thoughts, and ideas.