Spacecraft Technology: The early years charts the fascinating story of the early Space Age, encompassing the launch of the first satellites and the landing of men on the Moon. While concentrating on the most significant technology developments, it places them in the context of historical events, specific missions and the individuals that made it all happen.
Following a chapter on the pre-history of space exploration and another on the development of rocketry, the book covers the early development of space science satellites, Earth observation satellites, communications satellites, lunar probes and manned space capsules.
Three chapters are dedicated to the hardware designed for the Apollo programme and its role in transporting men to the Moon, landing them there and transporting them across the lunar surface.
Spacecraft Technology: The early years is aimed at scientists and engineers with an interest in the history of space activity and the general reader who enjoys delving into the background of modern technology.
- Chapter 2: Highway to space - the development of the space launch vehicle
- Chapter 3: Looking at space - the development of the space science satellite
- Chapter 4: Looking at Earth - the development of the Earth observation satellite
- Chapter 5: Keeping in touch - the development of the communications satellite
- Chapter 6: Probing the Moon - the development of the lunar science spacecraft
- Chapter 7: Man in space - the development of the manned capsule
- Chapter 8: First and only moonship - the development of the Apollo Command and Service Module
- Chapter 9: Lunar lander - the development of the Apollo Lunar Module
- Chapter 10: Electric moon car - the development of the Apollo Lunar Roving Vehicle
- Chapter 11: An epilogue to the space race
Mark Williamson BSc, MInstP, MIET, FBIS is an independent Space Technology Consultant advising the space industry and the space insurance community. A Chartered Physicist and Chartered Engineer, he has more than 25 years' experience in satellite communications engineering, technical management and space consultancy.
As a technical author, he has written more than 350 articles on space technology and several dozen papers on subjects as diverse as space law, space education and space history. He has also served as the editor of three international space industry magazines.
His other books include The Cambridge Dictionary of Space Technology and a student text, The Communications Satellite.