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Breaking the Chains of Gravity: The Story of Spaceflight before NASA (Hardback)
  • Breaking the Chains of Gravity: The Story of Spaceflight before NASA (Hardback)
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Breaking the Chains of Gravity: The Story of Spaceflight before NASA (Hardback)

(author)
£16.99
Hardback 304 Pages / Published: 22/10/2015
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The incredible story of spaceflight before the establishment of NASA. NASA's history is a familiar story, one that typically peaks with Neil Armstrong taking his small step on the Moon in 1969. But America's space agency wasn't created in a vacuum. It was assembled from pre-existing parts, drawing together some of the best minds the non-Soviet world had to offer. In the 1930s, rockets were all the rage in Germany, the focus both of scientists hoping to fly into space and of the German armed forces, looking to circumvent the restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles. One of the key figures in this period was Wernher von Braun, an engineer who designed the rockets that became the devastating V-2. As the war came to its chaotic conclusion, von Braun escaped from the ruins of Nazi Germany, and was taken to America where he began developing missiles for the US Army. Meanwhile, the US Air Force was looking ahead to a time when men would fly in space, and test pilots like Neil Armstrong were flying cutting-edge, rocket-powered aircraft in the thin upper atmosphere. Breaking the Chains of Gravity tells the story of America's nascent space program, its scientific advances, its personalities and the rivalries it caused between the various arms of the US military. At this point getting a man in space became a national imperative, leading to the creation of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, otherwise known as NASA.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
ISBN: 9781472911179
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 463 g
Dimensions: 216 x 135 x 30 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
Teitel explores the fascinating history of one of the most crucial space flight innovations that made the Apollo moon landings possible. * How it Works *
Teitel ... illuminates the foundations of American spaceflight with this exceptional and detailed `prehistory' of the field ... fascinating new territory, filled with a galaxy of lively characters. * Publishers Weekly *
Breaking the Chains of Gravity tells the story of how we began to explore the cosmos - the lessons we had to learn the hard way - and shows why space exploration even today remains anything but routine. -- Bobak Ferdowsi, Flight Director, Mars Science Laboratory
The Space Race wasn't all about tall, silvery rockets and moon landings. Before America and Russia squared off in an expensive race for glory, a number of quirky, inventive personalities pursued their own goals, with little support. Often facing ridicule for ideas that seemed outlandish to most, they nevertheless laid the foundations for humanity's greatest achievements. Amy Shira Teitel ably chronicles these early efforts to reach beyond our home planet. -- Francis French, author of In the Shadow of the Moon
Teitel delivers on detail, such as the exploits of supersonic-flight pioneer Chuck Yeager. * Nature *
A really compulsive story, excellently and engagingly told, effortlessly carries the burden of fact and detail with as much deceptive ease as a Redstone Rocket. * Adventures in Historyland (blog) *

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