Rocket man, I think it's going to be a long, long time.
When Princeton physicist Gerard K.
O'Neill published the first edition of High Frontier back in the mid 1970s (just four years after "Rocket Man," to be exact), he just assumed that some of us would be living in orbit by now.
Or as the Space Studies Institute's George Friedman puts it in a new essay for this third edition of O'Neill's pioneering work, the L5 society's slogan "L5 in '95!" certainly wasn't referring to 2095.
In High Frontier, O'Neill had mapped out a straightforward, manifestly doable path to putting humans into space permanently and sustainably, using 1970s materiel and current-day Zubrin-style know-how.
But O'Neill died in 1992 seeing humanity no closer to fulfilling his bold vision.
Freeman Dyson points out in a new introduction to this edition that in many ways we've actually backslided, that the International Space Station (and the current role of NASA) is "not a step forward on the road to the High Frontier.
For more information about the title The High Frontier: Human Colonies in Space: Apogee Books Space Series 12 (Apogee Books Space Series), read the full description at Amazon.com, or see the following related books:
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