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A. N. Burns
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An Ocean of Air: A Natural History of the Atmosphere
An Ocean of Air: A Natural History of the Atmosphere
by Gabrielle Walker
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.40

5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Air - thoroughly recommended, 13 Feb 2012
This is a most interesting book about the History of Air - not at all the dull subject you might imagine but a fascinating story of how the unique and varied contents of our atmosphere were discovered by many famous scientists, sometimes against all the odds. and how important those discoveries were. Hydrogen the very first element in the periodfic table, Oxygen which we beathe every day and depend on, Ozone which protects us from damaging radiation from outer space and many others. Thoroughly enjoyed reading the book


Failure Is Not an Option: Mission Control from Mercury to Apollo 13 and Beyond
Failure Is Not an Option: Mission Control from Mercury to Apollo 13 and Beyond
by Gene Kranz
Edition: Paperback

0 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hoax is still a possibility, 13 Feb 2012
I bought the book because I wanted to read the memoirs of someone so closely involved with the Apollo Moon landings.
I found the book most interesting and well written. It showed that Mr Kranz was highly dedicated to his job and convinced that he contributed in a major way to Moon missions. He describes how he and the other Flight Controllers spent days and weeks training on their computer consoles using simulations set up by NASA to train them to do so. They became expert at dealing with all manner of problems that might arise on the simulators.

The Americans were absolutely committed to carrying out President Kennedy's 1961 challenge to put a man on the Moon before the end of the decade. When in 1967 they had the shattering setback when the three-man crew of Apollo 1 were tragically killed in a cabin fire it took them a year and $75m to redesign the cockpit. Mr Kranz describes in vivid detail the anguish at the time and all of the Mission Control team would have done anything to achieve that goal. That left them less than two years to complete the Apollo mission to get the first men to the Moon by 1969.

The TV viewing public in USA had seen on live television the early Mercury projects where Alan Shepard went into space for the first time. I think it is perfectly possible that NASA used the training simulation for the Moon Landings as the real thing on television and were amazed that it was accepted so easily.
Many other books I have read claim that the Apollo Moon landings were a Hoax with NASA using the simulations already carefully prepared to show the American public in place of the real thing. I could find nothing in Mr Kranz's book which disputes that possibility.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 16, 2012 11:28 PM GMT


The Fruit Expert (Expert Series)
The Fruit Expert (Expert Series)
by Dr. D.G. Hessayon
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.59

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The real expert, 20 April 2009
This book is the acknowledged authority on the subject and as expected gives all the information needed in a clear and confident way. Excellent purchase.


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