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Live TV: From the Moon (Apogee Books Space Series) [Paperback]

Dwight Steven-Boniecki
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Apogee Books; Pap/DVD edition (1 Aug 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1926592166
  • ISBN-13: 978-1926592169
  • Product Dimensions: 25.1 x 17.5 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,342,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Offers coverage ranging from the earliest known proposals of lunar TV coverage, and on through the political battles that ultimately led to the TV system which flew on the Apollo missions.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating subject 2 Oct 2010
It is amazing to think that in 40 years, despite the multitude of books that have been written about the early space programs and Apollo in particular, no-one has actually devoted a book to the development of the TV systems that allowed the world to participate vicariously in mankind's greatest exploration. From the grainy, low-res images first beamed down from Apollo 7 in Earth orbit, through to Apollo 8's first live telecast of the Earth from deep space, up to the fantastic colour TV that showed us the last men working on the Moon, this was television literally as no-one had seen it before. The technological developments required were perhaps just as challenging as those needed to create any part of the missions, and the managerial fights to actually get TV included were in themselves quite spectacular. And yet, no-one had previously considered this chapter of space exploration worth writing about.

Dwight Steven-Boniecki has redressed the balance with this volume. It is written in a very accessible style, never getting too bogged down in the technical jargon. It tells a story previously only glossed over in other books about Apollo, and tells it well. It is neatly divided into chapters, many of which cover a single Apollo flight. This highlights the differences and continuing technological progress of the TV system from flight to flight. It also makes quite clear just how important TV was to the continued success of NASA, and just how long it took many within NASA to appreciate the fact. It is a fascinating book and the fact that it covers a little-known area of the history of space flight gives it an edge many other books lack as they try to find new ways to present the same basic story.
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of a kind 28 July 2010
By Mr Colin A Mackellar - Published on Amazon.com
Anyone who lived through the Apollo years, and who had an interest in spaceflight, will remember the wonder of seeing live television from space - and from the surface of the Moon. The Apollo 7 roadshow from Earth orbit, the Apollo 8 Christmas Eve telecast from lunar orbit and Apollo 11's first steps on the Moon captivated millions of people. The TV spectaculars continued until the last lunar landing in 1972, and for the last three missions, remotely controlled cameras made viewers feel that they were there.

Few science fiction writers had imagined Earthlings would be able to watch the initial manned exploration of the Moon as it happened. It seemed inconceivable, yet it was done. But how?

The late Stan Lebar (Program Manager for the Westinghouse Apollo Lunar TV Camera) wrote in the foreword of this book: "Mr. Steven-Boniecki has done what no one else has attempted".

"Live TV from the Moon" is the the first book to tell the story of Apollo television. It recounts the technical challenges that had to be overcome and gives some insight into the battles within NASA to get carried TV at all. It also contains detailed descriptions of the television from each Apollo mission.

While the inside margins on the book could have been wider, anyone with an interest in Apollo television will find this book fascinating.

(Disclaimer: Dwight very kindly gave me a copy of his book, though not in exchange for a review. I would happily have bought my own.)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating! 10 July 2010
By Klexa - Published on Amazon.com
This book is a true gem! An easy to read and fascinating story of probably the most famous TV pictures in the world. Pictures, which we take for granted today. It's great to have the DVD attached with the book too. It allows you to quickly satisfy the curiosity awakened by various chapters. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the history of human achievements.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The definitive resource for Apollo TV 16 Oct 2010
By Obviousman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
When I first started reading this book, I thought it went into too much technical detail regarding the Apollo television cameras and television systems. Don't get me wrong - I wanted to know all the details and author Dwight provides - but I thought it was too much for the layman reader. As I read further, though, I came to realise that he had managed to weave a reasonable compromise for those who want to know the nuts and bolts, and those who just have a general interest. The text was skilfully arranged such that if you didn't want to know the in-depth details you could easily skip a paragraph and yet still understand the amazing story that led to the various television broadcasts.

A must-have resource for the Apollo enthusiast and a great read for those who want to know more about the fantastic achievement that was Apollo.
5.0 out of 5 stars NASA Live! 31 July 2010
By Cheryl - Published on Amazon.com
Not only was the Space Program about rockets and spacecraft but also things we just take for granted. Not told until now, Dwight Stephen-Boniecki's book documents the history and development of the television cameras used by NASA during the sixties and early seventies. Beginning in the early sixties with the start of the Apollo space program, he ably enlightens us on the efforts of various contractors seeking a solution to the problem ' who can provide a lightweight, capable and durable TV camera that can withstand takeoff, the extreme changes in temperature on the moon, be able to transmit its data, and still be practical for the astronauts to use?
Surprisingly, NASA at first wasn't that enthusiastic broadcasting over television, and would need to see clear cut benefits to the missions from the technology if it was to be used. By the time of Apollo 8 and 9, it was provided in the grandeur moving live images taken of earth and the moon.
This book answers many questions, like ' how do you fit a television camera aboard a spaceship where every gram of weight is precious and must have a purpose critical to the mission? Why were there colour broadcasts of Apollo 10, but not of the first moon landing? Why did part of the solution in broadcasting the missions come from fifties technology developed but never implemented, and resurrected in the late sixties? You'll find out how the television signal was transmitted from the earth to different locations around the world, and how signal limitations demanded ground breaking innovations from manufacturers. You'll learn too about the history of the space program itself, especially Apollo, and experience the momentum of the first steps by man on another world. Filled with many black and white photos and diagrams, this book belongs on any bookshelf and a welcome addition to the history of spaceflight and technology.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, hope to see more from this author! 17 Sep 2010
By LunarOrbit - Published on Amazon.com
"Live TV From the Moon" is a great book, which I highly recommend to anyone interested in the early years of human space exploration, or the history of television technology.

I was born in 1975, so I missed out on all of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs. Because of this I think I just assumed that certain technology, like that used to broadcast live TV, existed prior to Apollo. It didn't really occur to me that NASA was directly responsible for the advancement of smaller television cameras or video recording devices. I was stunned to learn that NASA almost decided to not broadcast live video from the Moon, and that many people (including some astronauts) considered it a waste of time.

I'm grateful for the work the author put into this book, and I hope to see more from him in the future. It's important that stories like these get told while the people originally involved are still here to tell them.
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