Mar 4 2009, 02:34 PM
The Lunar and Planetary Institute has made freely available for download in PDF format the book To a Rocky Moon
by lunar and planetary scientist Don Wilhelms (University of Arizona Press, 1993). It tells the story of scientific exploration of the Moon from space from the perspective of scientists rather than engineers, astronauts or mission operations.
Mar 4 2009, 05:09 PM
This is a great book, by the way, if you want the nitty-gritty details of the science behind Apollo. It's very opinionated, which makes for entertaining if not entirely objective reading.
Mar 4 2009, 06:19 PM
Yep -- it's one of my favorite science histories. If you add in Paul Spudis' book on lunar science, you have two volumes that cover pretty much everything you'd ever want to know about our ideas of the Moon before, during and after Apollo.
In fact, "To a Rocky Moon" was such a favorite, I re-read it often and managed to lose my copy a couple of years ago. So, thanks, Paolo -- now I can read it again!
-the other Doug
Mar 4 2009, 09:45 PM
Don wanted his book to be profusely illustrated, especially with site selection material. But the publisher wouldn't allow it. So he collected all his site selection materials and put them in big binders which he donated to the history collection at USGS Flagstaff (he used to work at USGS Menlo Park). I made extensive use of them in my book, and in some ways his text and my illustrations work together. For instance - see what he has to say about the Apollo 12 backup landing site. It was his verbal description that sent me looking for the sites he mentions.
Mar 9 2009, 05:34 PM
Both are great books indeed
the other Phill
Mar 12 2009, 08:46 AM
QUOTE (Paolo Amoroso @ Mar 5 2009, 12:04 AM)
To a Rocky Moon Paolo Amoroso
Thanks for the link. I've downloaded it all and have started the 'Quiet Prelude'. Looks like Don W is a vivid writer and a strong character.
As old as Voyager
Aug 8 2010, 02:24 PM
To a Rocky Moon is a fantastic book, my signed copy is currently listed on a well known auction site to raise some funds- I'll be sorry to see it go. If someone here could give it a good home that'd be brilliant
Sep 12 2010, 08:42 AM
I loved the book too. I was one of those kids who stayed glued to the TV during the Apollo missions. I was especially fascinated with the A15, A15, and A17 missions (after most people had gotten bored with just another "moonshot"). I loved the science, and Wilhelms' book gave me a glimpse of what was going on in the backroom during those heady days. He is one of the reasons I became a geologist.
P.S. Wilhelms' excellent and comprehensive book, The Geologic History of the Moon,
is also free to download at ASU website:http://ser.sese.asu.edu/GHM/
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