Ignition!: An Informal History Of Liquid Rocket Propellants
ISBN: 0813595835
EAN13: 9780813595832
Language: English
Pages: 302
Dimensions: 1" H x 8" L x 8" W
Weight: 1.11 lbs.
Format: Paperback

Ignition!: An Informal History Of Liquid Rocket Propellants

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Book Overview

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This newly reissued debut book in the Rutgers University Press Classics Imprint is the story of the search for a rocket propellant which could be trusted to take man into space. This search was a hazardous enterprise carried out by rival labs who worked against the known laws of nature, with no guarantee of success or safety. Acclaimed scientist and sci-fi author John Drury Clark writes with irreverent and eyewitness immediacy about the development of the explosive fuels strong enough to negate the relentless restraints of gravity. The resulting volume is as much a memoir as a work of history, sharing a behind-the-scenes view of an enterprise which eventually took men to the moon, missiles to the planets, and satellites to outer space. A classic work in the history of science, and described as a good book on rocket stuff.that's a really fun one by SpaceX founder Elon Musk, readers will want to get their hands on this influential classic, available for the first time in decades.

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Book Reviews (8)

4
  |   8  reviews
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4
   Great book, meh digital version
I was a little disappointed at the quality of the digital book, the text was very small, that is why it was snatched a star. ''
 
1
   BUYER BEWARE: The kindle edition of this book is ...
BUYER BEWARE The Shoddy edition of this book is nothing more than a kindle PDF available free of charge in many places. It is impossible to read on a Type device due to the fact that the PDF is only a photocopy of the original and each page is simply presented as a picture. The text cannot be resized and the massive spacemargin is white and off-center. I had much higher expectations for a $30 digital edition of a book long out of print.
 
2
   Too technical for Even an avid Science/history buff.
I got this based book because I am both a history and space buff and this was recommended as a classic of both genres, full of ancedotes from those who were there. Given that I found this book very technical due to its extremely disappointing nature, I found it very disappointing. This book has full pages filled with chemical formulas for the fuels being tried and once the author is also prone to using obscure abbreviations for technical institutes and labs many of which no longer exist. Here is a sample of 2 sentences of alcohol, ammonia, and JP-4 or RP-1. The fuels were usually burned with LOX, but virtually every other inflammable had been tried. For example, RMI tried cyclopropane, ethylene, methyl-acetlylene and methyl amine, but none of these was as hypergolic as hoped. Um.. yeah I own several books by Stephen Hawking, Richard Feynman.. etc But you need an advanced degree for this.
 
5
   Kindle version OK
I purchased the Kindle issue in February 2020 and the formatting is fine and reads well. It is not the poorly scanned pdf that some One-Star reviewers are complaining about. These issues were probably corrected sometime between then and now, and as far as the text was found the book to be fascinating. While it is fairly advanced in spots, it does not require particularly technical chemical knowledge to understand.
 
5
   Rocket Fuel - who knew this would be interesting to a non-chemist?
It captures a short window in time where basic research and applied engineering combined to set the course for decades of spaceflight. The writer has a very light touch and provides a number of non-technical anecdotes and story veils to lighten the detailed chemistry discussion. At times, there is a bit too much technobabble for a layperson, but even the smallest sections usually pay with some insight into what went catastrophically wrong or opened doors to new avenues of research. I learned a lot about the practical side of rocketry from this book I never knew before and consider it a valuable read for anyone interested in rockets, space travel, NASA in the 1960s, the cold war or hard science.
 
5
   Great book. I'm very glad it's back in print
Book is great! I'm very happy that it is back in print form. If you are interested in science in general or chemistry or rocketry or the Space Program in particular, this is an informative read and also very funny, but I would say more than for almost any other book I have seen, DON 'T TRY THIS AT HOME. It seems that people are not too happy with hardcover and typele editions, FYI.
 
5
   Great book, stupid they delayed the republishing 2 months ...
Great book, stupid they delayed the reprinting for 2 months just to put a crappy Elon musk quote on the front cover.
 
2
   Kind of feel like a sucker for getting the hardcover...
I bought the hard cover edition thinking that for close to 100 dollars this will be a substantial book that can be prominently displayed on my bookshelf. I'm sure the content is excellent, but boy was I wrong. The book is 5x8.5, honestly about the size of a paperback. The font is super tiny and I think that many readers will not have a pleasant time reading this, seriously. If you want to charge A HUNDRED DOLLARS, at least make an attempt to make the book a little larger and more attractive.
 
1