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The International Space Station: Building for the Future (Springer Praxis Books/Space Exploration) Paperback – 24 Jul 2008
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From the reviews:“This new volume picks up the story with the launch of STS-108 which delivered the Expedition 4 crew to the station in December 2001. … given readers a good, detailed account of the missions and the construction activity, and the various problems inevitably encountered, which the crews and their support teams on Earth overcame. There are a good number of photos from the missions … . Several appendices give a comprehensive list of acronyms used … . All in all, a useful book … .” (David Maclennan, Liftoff, Issue 260, November-December, 2010)
This book will cover in great detail the newest construction and uses of the International Space Station. The new volume will continue on from the end of Creating the International Space Station by David Harland and John Catchpole (published in January 2002 by Springer Praxis), providing flight by flight details and relevant political and 'behind the scenes' activities as are necessary to explain why certain decisions, including flight re-scheduling and crew-reassignment, are made. Part 1 will open with a chapter recounting the political history of the ISS, including how and why the program came into being. Chapter 2 will look at the four partners involved (USA, Russia, ESA, and Brazil), with a brief account of what each partner is bringing to the program. Chapter 3 will study the initial goals of the program, how they have changed and whether they have been met. Chapter 4 will summarize the program at the end of Creating the International Space Station.Part 2 will look at the findings and recommendations of the International Space Station Management and Cost Evaluation Task Force.Part 3 will examine the original flight coverage, including the beginning of the construction of the Integrated Truss Structure, and will cover the station's occupation from the start of Expedition 4, through to the end of Expedition 6. Part 4 will start with the loss of STS-107 - Columbia - and explain its effect on both the International Space Station and the American space effort in general. It will cover the Expedition 7 occupation through to the beginning of Expedition 13, concentrating on the work of the two-person 'Caretaker Crews'. Part 5 will study the recovery from the STS-107 tragedy and the re-commencement of the ISS construction, overcoming the grounding of the Space Shuttle fleet.It will cover the remainder of the Expedition 13 occupation, the return to three-person occupation, through to the end of Expedition 15 and the installation of Node-2, the final American module. Part 6 will briefly look forward to the installation of the International Partner's modules as well as the introduction of the European and Japanese robotic cargo vehicles.The book will end with a glance at plans for the Orion spacecraft and Ares-1 launch vehicle, and the delivery of Node-2, the final piece of American hardware. Three Appendices will up-date those published in Creating the International Space Station: Appendix A will list ISS hardware descriptions, Appendix B will be a complete ISS Flight Log and Appendix C will be a full ISS Extravehicular Activity Log. See all Product description
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I would consider this a reference book, for space buffs only, as it seems to be mostly a condensation of the flight logs. It is quite dry (so much so that the occasional expressed opinion is a bit jarring) but gives a good picture of the construction process. For me, this was exactly what I expected and looked for so I was satisfied with my purchase.
This is not a journalistic description of the construction of ISS in the style of the excellent Dragonfly: NASA And The Crisis Aboard Mir by Bryan Burrough or Leaving Earth by Robert Zimmerman. That sadly remains to be written.
If you have read "Creating the International Space Station" then you know exactly what to expect. If you haven't, then I suggest that you start with that.
On the first page I read this sentence: "It was not always so, the American-led effort to build a space station with its political allies in Europe and Japan began as an attempt to construct a station that would be better than the Soviet-launched Mir space station."
Not only is this a run-on sentence ("It was not always so" should be a separate sentence), the next subject ("effort") is in disagreement with "its political allies".This could have been corrected to read: "America's effort to build a space station with her political allies..."
Okay, I thought. I'm being picky.
Within a couple of pages I encounter: "When the first female American astronauts began training in Russia they were disrespected by their hosts, many Russians joked that Shannon Lucid was flying to Mir, because it was dirty and required cleaning."
Again this is a run-on sentence. The first sentence should end after hosts. There is no need for any comma in the second sentence that starts with Many Russians.
Finally, a page or so on I read: "The clash of cultures was perhaps felt most by the American astronauts, many of whom, on being removed from their families and relocated to Russia felt isolated."
This is missing the comma after Russia.
Nit picky? Well, if the writing is flawed, how can I trust the information? Doesn't a company like Springer have editors?
I did not buy this book.