Friday, March 25, 2016

Rockets and Missiles (1970)

This is somewhere between a book and a piece of ephemera.  Something (more) popular in Britain was "trainspotting" books. These are books that listed categories of technical objects that young people could look though endlessly to learn what vehicles were (think of it as a book of pictures of space trucks). In addition to the pictures the technical information on weight, size, etc. were an important part.

This one was a 3 " x 5 1/4" booklet that folded out into a  5 1/4"" x 31" double sided sheet of pictures.

Rockets and Missiles. (Original Publisher: [London?] : Shelley Graphics (U.K.)), 1970. "Flipout Books" Published in the U.S. by the Educational Reading Service (Mahwah, New Jersey), a publisher of school materials.
What I enjoy is the detailed space paintings in this totally ephemeral piece of literature.  Some artist had to execute some very nice paintings.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Do You Know About Spaceflight? (1962) Part 2

To continue with this book.

Allward, Maurice. Illustrated by Teece, I. Do You Know about Space Flight. London : WM Collins Sons and Co. (48 p.) 25 cm.
The second half of the book rapidly takes us into the future of spaceflight. I find these painting especially interesting for their simplistic style while still showing technical details.
This is one of my favorite Dyna-soar illustrations and makes me sad we are not streaking about in these sleek beauties.

The british publications seemed to highlight both the Prospector "Wheelbarrow" and the possible "Nova" series of rockets. The Nova always looks like a bundle of rockets that were taped together, more thrust but terrible aerodynamics.

This is a very different vision of the "Moonship Apollo." I imagine landing this would be like balancing a broomstick on the tip of your finger.

I like this streamlined mooncar (with speed lines!) as it crosses the landscape.
The book finishes with a very nice painting of the first landing on Mars.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Do You Know About Spaceflight? (1962) Part 1

Paperback cover

The British series called "Do You Know About." were very colorful. Also known as the "Collins Pageant of Knowledge Series" they seem equivalent to the the American How & Why series, covering all sorts of scientific topics.

Allward, Maurice. Illustrated by Teece, I. Do You Know about Space Flight. London : WM Collins Sons and Co. (48 p.) 25 cm.

A basic book about space flight covering the history of rockets, rocket theory, how satellites work, current manned missions, and future expeditions. It has paintings of  satellites, the Dyna-Soar glider in space, a manned landing on the Moon, a Moon rover and a manned landing on  Mars. Also found in softcover. "Pageant of Knowledge" series.

Because so many of the paintings are worth sharing I will break this post up into two parts.

 A two page lesson in space history up to that point.

 A nice series of pictures about the Discoverer 13 spy satellite.
 One of the biggest hopes of astronomers was an orbiting space telescope.

An interesting prototype of a space station (still not sure why it was planned for Mars instead of Earth).  Check out next week's part two with some great full color paintings from this book.

Friday, March 4, 2016

The Story of Communications Satellites (1967)

A minor book but pretty sure I haven't shared this one before. I continue to find books used in school to teach about spaceflight. Overall they are about as colorful and gripping as you would expect a school text to be. I enjoy finding more pieces of the aerospace education initiatives.

Downing, J. G. Illustrated by Puig, Anthony. The Story of Communications Satellites. Exeter, England: Wheaton. (48 p.) 22 cm. Softcover.

Discusses satellites and includes a short history of space flight.  From a series of books used in British schools about the history of communications.

 Perhaps a little ironic to have Von Braun depicted next to a buzzbomb over London.

England's space efforts in the 1960s ended up being confined to spy and weather satellites.