Rocketing Into the Future
The History and Technology of Rocket Planes
This book describes the history, technology, and future of rocket planes. Michel van Pelt takes us on a journey into this fascinating world, examining the unusual concepts and actual flying machines that have been devised over the last hundred years. He recounts stories from the early pioneers who attached simple rockets to their wooden glider airplanes as well as tales of modern high-tech research craft. The author visits museums where rare examples of early rocket planes are kept and modern laboratories where future spaceplanes are being developed. He explains the technology in an easily understandable way, describing the various types of rocket airplanes, including the most important specifications.
Before coming to conclusions in the final chapter, Michel van Pelt evaluates the designs of future spaceplanes, reviewing various concepts and where they are in their development. He describes the cutting edge research via demonstrator vehicles and operational use of these vehicles. He also discusses the replacement of the Space Shuttle with a seemingly old-fashioned capsule system, the parallel developments in suborbital spaceplanes such as SpaceShipOne and SpaceShipTwo, the issue of piloted versus automatic flight, and related developments in the airline industry and military aircraft.
377 pages; ISBN 9781461432005
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Title: Rocketing Into the Future
Author: Michel van Pelt