Stung by the pioneering space successes of the Soviet Union - in particular, Gagarin being the first man in space, the United States gathered the best of its engineers and set itself the goal of reaching the Moon within a decade. In an expanding 2nd edition of How Apollo Flew to the Moon, David Woods tells the exciting story of how the resulting Apollo flights were conducted by following a virtual flight to the Moon and its exploration of the surface. From launch to splashdown, he hitches a ride in the incredible spaceships that took men to another world, exploring each step of the journey and detailing the enormous range of disciplines, techniques, and procedures the Apollo crews had to master. While describing the tremendous technological accomplishment involved, he adds the human dimension by calling on the testimony of the people who were there at the time. He provides a wealth of fascinating and accessible material: the role of the powerful Saturn V, the reasoning behind trajectories, the day-to-day concerns of human and spacecraft health between two worlds, the exploration of the lunar surface and the sheer daring involved in traveling to the Moon and the mid-twentieth century. Given the tremendous success of the original edition of How Apollo Flew to the Moon, the second edition will have a new chapter on surface activities, inspired by reader's comment on Amazon.com. There will also be additional detail in the existing chapters to incorporate all the feedback from the original edition, and will include larger illustrations.
David Woods studies and writes about the nuts and bolts of the Apollo programme, the United States' highly successful project to land men on the Moon. His interest stemmed from being lucky enough to witness the Apollo missions on TV as a child and the enchantment of those missions never really left.
He created the "Apollo Flight Journal"; an annotated transcript of the missions that owes much to the tremendous Apollo Lunar Surface Journal. This project let him develop an extensive knowledge of how the missions were run from the point of view of the crews. It also gave expression to his ability to explain complex technical systems and concepts in a easy-going, approachable style.
His first book, 'How Apollo Flew to the Moon' (HAFTTM), is now in its second edition and is a good all-round book on Apollo technology that will appeal to anyone who is interested in the subject at any level.
The 'Lunar Rover Owners' Workshop Manual', co-written with Chris Riley and Phil Dolling, mixes the story of this extraordinary vehicle's history and development with fascinating tales of its technology and its time on the Moon. The 'Gemini Owners' Workshop Manual', co-written with David Harland, is to be published in early 2015.
David talks about HAFTTM and tells stories from its pages in two audio podcasts recorded for Omegataupodcast.net; numbers 83 and 97, which together comprise over 4 hours of conversation on Apollo.