More related to planetary science

‘Incoming Asteroid!’ is based on a project within ASTRA (the Association in Scotland to Research into Astronautics) to provide scientific answers to the question – what would we do if we knew there was going to be an asteroid impact in ten years’ time or less?
Clearly there are many things humanity can do nothing about, for example an unseen object traveling towards us so fast that we have no time to prepare, or an object so large it may be unstoppable. A realistic hazard model was decided upon, and the scenario developed from that: an incoming object about 1 kilometer in diameter, in an orbit ranging from the outer rim of the Asteroid Belt to within that of Earth’s.
Three basic possibilities are considered in this book. The first is the deflection of the asteroid, using remote probes along with a number of possible technologies to change the asteroid’s course. Second is the attempt of a manned mission, in order to plant a propulsion system on the asteroid to push it into a different orbit. Third is the nuclear option, a last-ditch attempt to break up and then disperse the asteroid using nuclear weapons. (A rather impractical combination of these second and third options were used as the plot of the popular 1998 Bruce Willis feature film, Armageddon.)
Although the cost of developing the technology needed to protect the Earth would be substantial, there would certainly be spin-off benefits. These could eventually result in practical small-scale atomic energy sources, new propulsion systems that could make extraterrestrial mining within the solar system a possibility, and other as-yet unforeseen benefits.

And finally, Incoming Asteroid! considers the political implications - how governments across the world should best react to the threat with a view to minimizing loss of life, and in the weeks running up to the possible impact, preventing panic in the population.

“Weird Worlds” is the third book in David Seargent’s “Weird” series. This book assumes a basic level of astronomical understanding and concentrates on the “odd and interesting” aspects of planetary bodies, including asteroids and moons. From our viewpoint here on Earth, this work features the most unusual features of these worlds and the ways in which they appear “weird” to us. Within our own Solar System, odd facts such as the apparent reversal of the Sun in the skies of Mercury, CO2-driven fountains of dust on Mars, possible liquid water (and perhaps primitive life!) deep within the dwarf planet Ceres, and a variety of odd facts about the planetary moons are all discussed. A special chapter is devoted to Saturn’s giant moon Titan, and its methane-based weather system and “hydrological” cycle. This chapter also includes recent speculation on the possibility of methane-based organisms and the form that these might take, if they really do exist. Beyond our Solar System, the book looks at the range of worlds discovered and hypothesized.

In “Weird Worlds,” the author discusses planets where temperatures are so high that it rains molten iron, and others so cold that liquid methane floods across plains of ice! Worlds are described where the lightest element acts like a metal and where winds blow at thousands of miles per hour – as well as possible planets whose orbits are essentially parabolic.

In keeping with previous titles in David Seargent’s “Weird” series, “Weird Worlds” contains several projects that astronomers of all levels can undertake.
Ever since the Montgolfier's hot air balloon carried a chicken, a goat, and a duck into the Parisian skies, scientists have dreamed of contraptions to explore the atmosphere. With the advent of the space age, new airborne inventions were needed. From the Soviet Venus balloons to advanced studies of blimps and airplanes for use in Mars' and Titan's atmospheres, Drifting on Alien Winds surveys the many creative and often wacky ideas astronautical engineers and space scientists have had for exploring alien skies. Through historical photographs and stunning original paintings by the author, readers also explore the weather on various planets and moons, from the simmering acid-laden winds of Venus to the liquid methane-soaked skies of Titan.

Louis Friedman of the Planetary Society and Jacques Blamont of CNES (both involved in Mars and Venus balloon projects) are both interviewed, along with Victor Kerzhanovich of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (planetary balloon systems), Julian Nott (balloonist adventurer and Titan balloon enthusiast), Ralph Lorenz (John Hopkins University's Applied Physics Lab, team member of the proposed Montgolfier balloon on NASA's flagship mission to Titan), Lockheed Martin's Ben Clark (early atmospheric probe designer), Joe Palaia (UAV tests to Devon Island, Canadian Arctic), Joel Levine, Langley Research Center's principal investigator for the Mars ARES (Aerial Regional Environmental Survey), and Andrew Ingersoll, planetary atmospheres expert at California Institute of Technology, among others.

Martian Outpost provides a detailed insight into the various technologies, mission architectures, medical requirements, and training needed to send humans to Mars. It focuses on mission objectives and benefits, and the risks and complexities that are compounded when linked to an overall planet exploration program involving several expeditions and setting up a permanent presence on the surface.

The first section provides the background to sending a human mission to Mars. Analogies are made with early polar exploration and the expeditions of Shackleton, Amundsen, and Mawson. The interplanetary plans of the European Space Agency, NASA, and Russia are examined, including the possibility of one or more nations joining forces to send humans to Mars. Current mission architectures, such as NASA’s Constellation, ESA’s Aurora, and Ross Tierney’s DIRECT, are described and evaluated.

The next section looks at how humans will get to the Red Planet, beginning with the preparation of the crew. The author examines the various analogues to understand the problems Mars-bound astronauts will face. Additional chapters describe the transportation hardware necessary to launch 4-6 astronauts on an interplanetary trajectory to Mars, including the cutting edge engineering and design of life support systems required to protect crews for more than a year from the lethal radiation encountered in deep space. NASA’s current plan is to use standard chemical propulsion technology, but eventually Mars crews will take advantage of advanced propulsion concepts, such as the Variable Specific Impulse Magnetoplasma Rocket, ion drives and nuclear propulsion.

The interplanetary options for reaching Mars, as well as the major propulsive maneuvers required and the trajectories and energy requirements for manned and unmanned payloads, are reviewed . Another chapter addresses the daunting medical problems and available countermeasures for humans embarking on a mission to Mars: the insidious effects of radiation on the human body and the deleterious consequences of bone and muscle deconditioning. Crew selection will be considered, bearing in mind the strong possibility that they may not be able to return to Earth. Still another chapter describes the guidance, navigation, and control system architecture, as well as the lander design requirements and crew tasks and responsibilities required to touch down on the Red Planet.

Section 3 looks at the surface mission architectures. Seedhouse describes such problems as radiation, extreme temperatures, and construction challenges that will be encountered by colonists. He examines proposed concepts for transporting cargo and astronauts long distances across the Martian surface using magnetic levitation systems, permanent rail systems, and flying vehicles. In the penultimate chapter of the book, the author explains an adaptable and mobile exploration architecture that will enable long-term human exploration of Mars, perhaps making it the next space-based tourist location.

Oceans were long thought to exist in all corners of the Solar System, from carbonated seas percolating beneath the clouds of Venus to features on the Moon's surface given names such as "the Bay of Rainbows” and the "Ocean of Storms." With the advent of modern telescopes and spacecraft exploration these ancient concepts of planetary seas have, for the most part, evaporated. But they have been replaced by the reality of something even more exotic. For example, although it is still uncertain whether Mars ever had actual oceans, it now seems that a web of waterways did indeed at one time spread across its surface.

The "water" in many places in our Solar System is a poisoned brew mixed with ammonia or methane. Even that found on Jupiter's watery satellite Europa is believed similar to battery acid. Beyond the Galilean satellites may lie even more "alien oceans." Saturn's planet-sized moon Titan seems to be subject to methane or ethane rainfall. This creates methane pools that, in turn, become vast lakes and, perhaps, seasonal oceans. Titan has other seas in a sense, as large shifting areas of sand covering vast plains have been discovered. Mars also has these sand seas, and Venus may as well, along with oceans of frozen lava. Do super-chilled concoctions of ammonia, liquid nitrogen, and water percolate beneath the surfaces of Enceladus and Triton? For now we can only guess at the possibilities.

'Alien Seas' serves up part history, part current research, and part theory as it offers a rich buffet of "seas" on other worlds. It is organized by location and by the material of which various oceans consist, with guest authors penning specific chapters. Each chapter features new original art depicting alien seas, as well as the latest ground-based and spacecraft images. Original diagrams presents details of planetary oceans and related processes.
Titan is practically a planet in its own right, with a diameter similar to that of Mercury, methane rainstorms, organic soot and ethane seas. All of the most detailed knowledge on the moon's geology, volcanology, meteorology, marine sciences and chemistry are gathered together here to paint a factually accurate hypothetical future of early human colonization on this strange world.

The views from Titan’s Mayda Outpost are spectacular, but all is not well at the moon's remote science base. On the shore of a methane sea beneath glowering skies, atmospherics researcher Abigail Marco finds herself in the middle of murder, piracy and colleagues who seem to be seeing sea monsters and dead people from the past. On the Shores of Titan’s Farthest Sea provides thrills, excitement and mystery – couched in the latest science – on one of the Solar System’s most bizarre worlds, Saturn’s huge moon Titan.

"This riveting story, set against a plausibly well integrated interplanetary space, carries us along with its bright and interesting characters. We feel absolutely transported to a hauntingly beautiful and alien Titan through Carroll's masterful weaving of art and science." – Jani Radebaugh, Professor of Planetary Sciences, Titan dune expert, BYU

"It's a fun read! Really makes Titan come alive, literally..." – Astrophysicist and author Ralph Lorenz

"Michael Carroll's new novel "On the Shores of Titan's Farthest Sea" (Springer) is a gripping, good-vs-evil tale that sparkles with imagination. It's set on the shores of Kraken Mare, the vast methane sea found high in the northern latitudes of Saturn's moon, Titan, in a future when humanity has spread throughout the solar system. The villains are wicked, the heroes are scientists (Thanks, Mike!), the story is convincing, the dialogue snappy, and the scenery is right out of our catalog of findings on this cold, hazy and alien world.

If you fancy skipping forward 250 years and checking out how humankind might be navigating the very geography and landforms we have uncovered in our years touring Saturn, this book is for you!" --Carolyn Porco, leader of the Cassini Imaging Science team and the Director of the Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for Operations (CICLOPS) at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colorado


Comet nuclei are the most primitive bodies in the solar system. They have been created far away from the early Sun and it is supposed that their material has been altered the least since their formation. The workshop was bringing together representatives of several scientific communities in the fields of interstellar clouds, star-forming regions, the solar nebula, and comets. The intent was to formulate the current understanding and interconnectivity of the various source regions of comet nuclei and their associated compositions and orbital characteristics.

The goal was to better understand the survival of cometary materials (grains, molecules, free radicals, and atoms) from extrasolar sources (circumstellar shells and molecular clouds), their modifications in the solar nebula, and the effects of their properties on the formation and early physical and thermal evolution of the macroscopic bodies, the comet nuclei, in the various subnebulae. Closely associated is their transport into the outer solar system, the Kuiper belt and Oort cloud. The distinction between direct measurements, in situ or by remote sensing, of cometary material properties and properties derived from indirect means, deduced from laboratory studies and theoretical deductions, was emphasized with the aim to guide future investigations. The book is intended to serve as guide for researchers and graduate students working in the field of planetology and solar system exploration. It should also help to influence the planning of scientific strategies for the encounter of the Rosetta spacecraft with Comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

David Harland opens with a review of the robotic probes, namely the Rangers which returned television before crashing into the Moon, the Surveyors which 'soft landed' in order to investigate the nature of the surface, and the Lunar Orbiters which mapped prospective Apollo landing sites. He then outlines the historic landing by Apollo 11 in terms of what was discovered, and how over the next several missions the program was progressively geared up to enable the final three missions each to spend three days on comprehensive geological investigations. He concludes with a review of the robotic spacecraft that made remote-sensing observations of the Moon. Although aimed at the enthusiast, and can be read as an adventure in exploration, the book develops the scientific theme of lunar geology, and therefore will be of use as background reading for undergraduate students of planetary sciences. In addition, with the prospect of a resumption of human missions, it will help journalists understand what Apollo achieved after the 'flags and footprints' of the Apollo 11 landing in July1969 and will commemorate the fortieth anniversary of that momentous event.

Highlighted as a "Commemorative Edition" on the cover, this second edition will have a new Foreword by one of the original astronauts and a short extra section at the end previewing the prospect of a renewal of human exploration of the Moon. It will include new extra high quality graphics which are only now available and 32 pages of colour illustrations.

Two important factors have given rise to mankind’s successful evolution into space: the first is that the possibilities are bounded only by our imaginations – if we can conceive it, historically it has been proved that we can do it, and in a predetermined timescale. The second factor is recognition of the evolving civilizations on the Moon and Mars as separate entities from Earth.

Space, whether we or our children live in it or on the Moon or Mars, will be important to all of us, not only to aerospace engineers and cosmologists, because of the new opportunities for freedom and limitless growth it offers. Our continued prosperity and survival as a species will in part depend upon space exploration and the resources it provides for our industrial societies and for the markets it will create. The expansion of Earth’s success in science and culture to the Moon, then Mars, and eventually the Solar System, can only strengthen mankind’s core positive achievements: democracy, individual rights and equal opportunities for all. The significant topic of returning to the Moon, this time to stay, is a central part of space exploration.

Concepts for lunar base structures have been proposed since long before the dawn of the space age. Suggestions made during the last 25 years are likely to form the pool from which eventual lunar base designs will evolve. Studies have intensified, both within NASA and outside national governments in industry and academe, since the days of the Apollo program, when it appeared likely that the Moon would become a second home to humans. Since then, science on the Moon, the economics of lunar development, and human physiology in space and on planetary bodies, as well as related policy issues have been studied as they are all needed to plant Man on the Moon in a sustainable and viable way.

Economics and politics will play a heavy if not deciding role in space and lunar settlement. The issues of pollution and related environmental matters, the question of ownership, and how these affect the investor communities, including governments, will be considered. Human exploration and colonization of the Moon and the planets appears far off but it is important to discuss the safeguarding of the integrity of these planetary bodies in advance of the economic development that will be explosive once it begins. For purposes of discussion, it will be assumed that by the year 2050 there will be a well-developed human colony of many hundreds of people on the Moon, created by several democratic Earth governments in partnership with numerous industrial concerns. Its purpose will be to learn survival on a non-terrestrial body naturally hostile to human life and to explore and use the resources of the Moon, leading eventually to self-sufficient large lunar cities that will survive economically by exporting lunar minerals and finished products to Earth, and by servicing transportation, both commercial and military, between Earth and emerging settlements on Mars, its moons, as well as early mining activity on the asteroids and the moons of the gas giants of the outer solar system.

A Close Look at Europa . . .

And How Big Science Gets Done . . .

The second-outward of Jupiter's four major moons, Europa is covered with ice, as confirmed in views from modern telescopes and the thousands of images returned by NASA's Voyager and Galileo missions. But these higher-resolution views also showed that the ice is anything but smooth. In fact, Europa's surface is covered with vast criss-crossing systems of mountain-sized ridges, jumbled regions of seemingly chaotic terrain, and patches that suggest upwellings of new surface materials from below. How scientists think about the underlying forces that shaped this incredibly complex, bizarre, and beautiful surface is the subject of this book.

In Unmasking Europa, Richard Greenberg tells the story of how he and his team of researchers came to believe that the surface of Europa is in fact a crust so thin that it can barely hide an ocean of liquid water below. He shows how the ocean is warmed by the friction of tidal movements in this small moon as it orbits around immense Jupiter. The implications of this interpretation- which includes the idea that there are active intermittent openings from the liquid ocean to the frozen surface- are immense. The warmth, the chemistry, and the connections from ocean to surface provide the conditions necessary for the existence of life, even at this relatively remote locale in our solar system, far beyond what's normally thought of as its 'habitable zone.'

Unmasking Europa describes in clear but technically sophisticated terms- and with extensive illustrations (including more than 100 NASA images)- the remarkable history of research on Europa over the last four decades. The book also provides unique insights into how "big science" gets done today, and it is not always a pretty picture. From his perspective as professor of Planetary Science at the University of Arizona, and a quarter century-long membership on the Imaging Team for NASA's Galileo mission, Greenberg describes how personal agendas (including his own) and political maneuvering (in which he received an education by fire) determined a lot about the funding, staffing, and even the direction of the research about Europa.

While he is satisfied that his team's work is now, finally, receiving fair consideration and even respect, Greenberg comes away from his experience feeling that something is fundamentally wrong with the scientific enterprise as a whole because it routinely punishes innovation, risk-taking thought, and willingness to simply let the evidence lead where it may. In today's scientific environment with its careerist pressures and peer-reviewed propriety, Greenberg believes, astute scientists (and sadly many of our youngest and brightest) quickly realize that it is more rewarding in very practical ways to stay within the mainstream- a tendency that by its very nature is at odds with the ideals of scientific research and thought.

This book is one of two volumes meant to capture, to the extent practical, the scienti?c legacy of the Cassini-Huygens prime mission, a landmark in the history of planetary exploration. As the most ambitious and interdisciplinary planetary exploration mission ?own to date, it has extended our knowledge of the Saturn system to levels of detail at least an order of magnitude beyond that gained from all previous missions to Saturn. Nestled in the brilliant light of the new and deep understanding of the Saturn planetary system is the shiny nugget that is the spectacularly successful collaboration of individuals, - ganizations and governments in the achievement of Cassini-Huygens. In some ways the pa- nershipsformedandlessonslearnedmaybethemost enduringlegacyofCassini-Huygens.The broad, international coalition that is Cassini-Huygens is now conducting the Cassini Equinox Mission and planning the Cassini Solstice Mission, and in a major expansion of those fruitful efforts, has extended the collaboration to the study of new ?agship missions to both Jupiter and Saturn. Such ventures have and will continue to enrich us all, and evoke a very optimistic vision of the future of international collaboration in planetary exploration. The two volumes in the series Saturn from Cassini-Huygens and Titan from Cassini- Huygens are the direct products of the efforts of over 200 authors and co-authors. Though each book has a different set of three editors, the group of six editors for the two volumes has worked together through every step of the process to ensure that these two volumes are a set.
In the 25th Century, the effects of overpopulation and global warming on Earth have led to the formation of human colonies on the Moon, Mars and elsewhere in the Solar System, yet the limited number of viable places forces humanity to look to the stars. A crash program has been developed to send Protos 1, a giant multigenerational star ship, to a newly discovered Earth-like planet orbiting a nearby star. The plan is for awake crewmembers to run the ship and for people in suspended animation to be roused before planet fall to use their skills in exploration and colony formation. To fulfill the goals of the mission and ensure that the in-flight population does not deplete the limited resources, the Protos Mandate is set up to govern a tightly controlled social system for the duration of the journey, which will take several generations. But problems threaten to sabotage the mission during its launch and transit and what finally awaits the crewmembers shocks them in an unpredictable way. This novel chronicles the trials and tribulations of this epic first interstellar mission.The scientific appendix at the end of the book discusses the challenges of such an interstellar mission based on an extensive literature review and it links these challenges to specific episodes in the novel. Issues that are considered include interstellar propulsion systems, economic considerations of interstellar flight, psychological and sociological factors inherent in a multigenerational space mission, problems with suspended animation, current knowledge of exoplanets and issues related to colonizing a distant planet and the possible discovery of extraterrestrial life. A history of interstellar missions in science fiction is also reviewed.Nick Kanas is an Emeritus Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, where he directed the group therapy training program. For over 20 years he conducted research on group therapy, and for nearly 20 years after that he was the Principal Investigator of NASA-funded research on astronauts and cosmonauts. He is the co-author of Space Psychology and Psychiatry, which won the 2004 International Academy of Astronautics Life Science Book Award, and the author of Humans in Space: The Psychological Hurdles, which won the 2016 International Academy of Astronautics Life Science Book Award.

Dr. Kanas has presented talks on space psychology and on celestial mapping at several regional and Worldcon science fiction conventions. A Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society (London), he has been an amateur astronomer for over 50 years and is an avid reader of science fiction. He is also the author of two non-fiction books (Star Maps: History, Artistry, and Cartography and Solar System Maps: From Antiquity to the Space Age) and two science fiction novels (The New Martians andThe Protos Mandate), all published by Springer.

It has been nearly 100 years since the Apollo moon landings, when Jack and Vladimir, two astronauts on a mission to Venus, discover a mysterious void related to indigenous life on the planet. Subsequently more voids are detected on Earth, Mars, Titan, and, quite ominously, inside a planetoid emerging from the Kuiper belt.

Jack is sent to investigate the voids in the Solar System and intercept the planetoid - which, as becomes increasingly clear, is inhabited by alien life forms. Jack and his crew will have little time to understand their alien biochemistry, abilities, behavior patterns, resilience, and technology, but also how these life forms relate to the voids.

Humankind's first encounter with these exotic life forms couldn't be more fateful, becoming a race against time to save life on Earth and to reveal the true nature of the voids, which seem to be intrinsically related to life and the universe itself. In this novel, the author combines many topics related to state-of-the-art research in the field of astrobiology with fictional elements to produce a thrilling page turner.

This new version significantly develops the astrobiological denouement of the plot and features an extensive non-technical appendix where the underlying science is presented and discussed.

From the reviews of the first edition (Voids of Eternity: Alien Encounter)

Here's a thrilling yarn in the best "hard SF" tradition of Asimov, James Hogan, and Ben Bova, written by a scientist who knows all about the possibilities of life in the solar system and beyond. Dirk Schulze-Makuch weaves into his book all the astrobiological themes he's worked on in recent years -- speculation about creatures in the atmosphere of Venus and on and under the surface of Mars and Titan -- together with some well-informed Eastern philosophy and a cracking good space battle. A great first novel from a rising talent. Highly recommended. David Darling, on amazon.com, 2009

The research interests of Dr. Schulze-Makuch, currently a professor at Washington State University, focus on evolutionary adaptation strategies of organisms in their natural environment, particularly extreme environments such as found on other planetary bodies. Dirk Schulze-Makuch is best known for his publications on extraterrestrial life, being coauthor of three books on the topic: We Are Not Alone: Why We Have Already Found Extraterrestrial Life (2010), Cosmic Biology: How Life could Evolve on Other Worlds (2010), and Life in the Universe: Expectations and Constraints (2004). In 2011 he published with Paul Davies A One Way Mission to Mars: Colonizing the Red Planet and in 2012 with David Darling Megacatastrophes! Nine Strange Ways the World Could End.
Knowledge about the outer heliosphere and the interstellar medium, which were long treated as two separate fields, has improved dramatically over the past 25 years as a consequence of recent developments: The discovery of interstellar pickup ions and neutral helium inside the heliosphere, the determination of the interstellar hydrogen distribution in the heliosphere obtained using backscattered solar Lyman-alpha radiation, the prediction and subsequent detection of the hydrogen wall just outside of the heliopause, the development of detailed global models for the interaction of solar wind plasma with the interstellar medium, and most recently, direct in-situ plasma and field measurements inside of the heliosheath. At the same time, our understanding of the nearby galactic environment, including the composition and dynamics of the warm gas clouds and hot gas in the local bubble, has benefited greatly from absorption-line spectroscopy using nearby stars as background sources and dynamic modeling. The present volume provides a synopsis of these developments organised into seven sections: Dominant physical processes in the termination shock and heliosheath, three-dimensional shape and structure of the dynamic heliosphere, relation of the plasmas and dust inside and outside of the heliosphere, origin and properties of the very local interstellar medium, energy and pressure equilibria in the local bubble, physical processes in the multiphase interstellar medium inside of the local bubble, and the roles that magnetic fields play in the outer heliosphere and the local bubble. The last theme is probably the most basic of all as magnetic fields play important roles in most of the phenomena discussed here. The volume concludes with four papers providing the "big picture" by looking at the time evolution of both the heliosphere and the local bubble, looking beyond the local bubble, and finally addressing the challenges in modeling the interface between the two media.
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