From Library Journal
As a scientific discipline, planetary astronomy has had a mixed career. Beginning with ancient Babylonian recorded observations of Venus and continuing through the early triumphs of Galileo and Copernicus and ensuing discoveries and observations of new planets, planetary studies for many years held a fascination for the public. However, by the 20th century the subject had fallen into disfavor. This all changed with the rise of the U.S. space program. Seemingly overnight, planetary astronomy regained its former prestigious status, bright young scientists saw it as a promising career, and?perhaps most importantly?big money began flowing in to support it. Schorn, a professor of physics and former chief planetary researcher at NASA, effectively chronicles this transition. He devotes most of his account to the past half-century, reviewing developments in the field's rebirth and, not surprisingly, placing a heavy emphasis on NASA programs. This fine scholarly but readable historical review of a fascinating subject should be in all astronomy collections. (Illustrations not seen.)?Donald J. Marion, Univ. of Minnesota Science & Engineering Lib., Minneapolis
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
“Some of the finest and most engaging portions of the book are his descriptions of astronomical techniques . . . He presents these so well that . . . [a reader] would have the sense of looking over an astronomer’s shoulder . . .”--Joseph N. Tatarewicz, author of Space Technology and Planetary Astronomy
(Joseph N. Tatarewicz, author of Space Technology and Planetary Astronomy)