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China's Space Program - From Conception to Manned Spaceflight (Springer Praxis Books / Space Exploration) Paperback – August 27, 2004

ISBN-13: 978-1852335663 ISBN-10: 1852335661 Edition: 2004th

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Product Details

  • Series: Springer Praxis Books / Space Exploration
  • Paperback: 350 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 2004 edition (August 27, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852335661
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852335663
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,065,643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

From the reviews:

"...China's Space Program is perhaps the best single-volume summary of Chinese space efforts, at least among those written in English."

--Jeff Foust, THE SPACE REVIEW

Astronomy (February 2005)

Review by James Oberg, Former NASA Mission Controller

"… Harvey’s book gives any space-flight enthusiast a thorough overview of China’s space activities while comparing them to other nations’ efforts. What’s more, Harvey has succeeded in an even greater challenge: collecting disorganized and unrelated information and formulating it into coherent chapters that address themes, activities, and intentions in a lucid, logical sequence. This book goes well beyond cataloging what it covers. It has good stories, too. Harvey’s description of the early years of the Chinese program, when it was bedeviled by material shortages and political interference, is as dramatic as any other space-development saga in the world. He also makes excellent use of new biographical material about the father of the Chinese space program, Tsien Hsue Shen. … Harvey achieves a good blend of engineering descriptions and human-interest stories. Equally important, he gives the reader helpful guidance regarding reliability by describing how information on the Chinese program comes to light while other material concerning it remains buried in secrecy. Finally, Harvey uses obscure Chinese reports and speeches to map out the future options for this nation, now a major player in outer space. … China may well come to dominate some phases of human space exploration in the years ahead. If that comes to pass, this book will have told you how it happened."

"A super book by any measure. Anyone with an interest in rockets will find it a treat and similar in lay out and text as Patrick Moore’s Yearbook. 10 out of 10." (Tony O’ Connell, Astronomy & Space, May, 2005)

"An important book and essential reading for those interested in space history, the history of technology, and the current state of military and civilian space technologies. Summing Up: Highly recommended. General readers; lower-division undergraduates through professionals." (A.M. Strauss, CHOICE, Vol. 42 (5), January, 2005)

"Harvey’s book gives any space-flight enthusiast a thorough overview of China’s space activities while comparing them to other nation’s efforts. What’s more, Harvey has succeeded in an even greater challenge: collecting disorganized and unrelated information and formulating it into coherent chapters that address themes, activities, and intentions in a lucid, logical sequence. This book goes well beyond cataloging what it covers. It has good stories, too. … Harvey achieves a good blend of engineering descriptions … . Equally important, he gives the reader helpful guidance … ." (James Oberg, Astronomy, October, 2003)

"This is an expanded and revised version of a book first published in 1998 … . It is a well-written, detailed and impressive tale … ." (Paul Murdin, Times Higher Education Supplement, March, 2005)

"The original edition of this book was published in 1998 under a slightly different title … . Each chapter concludes with a summary and suggested further reading. There is also a listing of Chinese satellite launches, a chronology of significant events, a glossary, and a bibliography. All in all, this is probably the best one-stop source of information on the Chinese space programme to appear to date." (Liftoff, Issue 229, September/October, 2005)

From the Back Cover

The Chinese space program has sometimes been called the last of the secret

space programs. Although it is far less secretive now than formerly,

fascinating revelations are still being made.

This book is the history of the Chinese space program from its earliest

times to the historic breakthrough of manned flight. Significant events

include

EUR Middle Ages: the inventon of the rocket

EUR 1956: the establishment of the space program

EUR 1970: the launch of its first Earth satellite

EUR 1975: the launch into orbit and recovery of a satellite

EUR 1984: the first communications satellite is put into 24hr orbit

EUR 2003: China's first yuhangyuan, Yang Liwei, orbits the Earth

EUR 2007 (planned): first probe to the Moon

China¹s Space Program gives China the prominence it deserves as Asia¹s

leading spacefaring nation.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Freddy Ho on March 9, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is one of those rare books that provides credible information about Chinese aerospace technology, particularly in rocketry. The book is very easy to read and is divided in sub sections that makes it more organized. However, this book does not provide all or fully details information about the Chinese technology in rocketry. I dont blame them since the Chinese rocketry industry is still clouded with secrecy and most information are still classified. Despite this, this book provides the best and most detail information I have read so far.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Y. Juhani Westman on January 9, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
China is clearly one of the space players in this century. Her resources are ample, both regarding technical knowhow and intellectual power, there is an unfailing sense of the ultimate goal - manned presence outside the Earth, and the intermediate goals - using the space for earthly purposes, are well understood. The Chinese space programme dates from the fifties, when the US, to their ultimate regret, evicted one of the fine minds who, at that time, was busy pioneering American astronautics. Political unrest - to say the least - on and off threatened to derail the development of missile technology, launchers and satellite technology. The space leaders come through as steadfast in the turmoil of the times, and as the political leadership in China moved from revolutionary fervour onto controlled economic evolution, so the space programme has moved more steadily tovards orderly development. All this and more are presented in this book, which bears the Harvey hallmark of being well researched, lucidly expositioned and showing deep insight in the subject at hand. I read it as one reads a novel of suspence and mystery, it now occupies a honored place along my other reference litterature on space.

When, during the coming years, we await new Chinese exploits in space, we need the understanding put forth in this book on the Chinese approach to development. Harvey illustrates how, in face of adversities, the Chinese space leaders, like the proverbial turtle, contrive to move slowly but inexorably towards their goals, when the hares in and of the United States fritters away resources by jumping hither and yon. It may well be that the tortoise yet overtakes the hare, if not in a race to the surface of the Moon, then to the sands of Mars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By W Boudville HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
China is still a developing country. But it has the distinction of being only the third country to launch a human into space, after Russia and the US. Harvey tells of the arduous path that China took. There have been the driving forces of international prestige and the building of a credible nuclear deterrent. The latter has required the ability to launch missiles into space in a controlled manner.

Harvey has conducted impressive research into a subject still heavily shrouded in secrecy. He describes many successes made by the Chinese. But also failures. Though the reader should remember that Russia and America have had their share of disasters, including the loss of lives.

The text also shows that in recent years, the Chinese space program has increasingly turned to commercial applications. Notably satellite imaging of the earth and communications. This reflects China's massive growth, with the increased need for such tasks as better analysis of weather patterns for agriculture. Also, the space program has started to perform more scientific research. All of this is a good sign for the future, both for China and the rest of the world.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Jack Kennedy Jr. on December 31, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For those in the West with little overall knowlwdge of the Chinese space effort, this is the primer. The book provides a fun read through the preperations and efforts to launch the first Chinese human to space orbit. Brian Harvey provides very useful insight to those who are looking globally in the human quest for space access. The book provides hope that the third nation to launch humans to space will mature and take serious the rhetoric of building a space station, or better yet, a Chinese program to put humans on the Moon. Harvey's book would have been made better with utilization of color photos splashed about the book.
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