From Mars to the Stars
Far from diminishing our future in space, Human Spaceflight lays out a provocative future for human space travel. The noted aerospace engineer and scientist says that human space exploration will continue well into the future, but space travel by humans will stop at Mars. Instead, nanotechnology, space sails, robotics, biomolecular engineering, and artificial intelligence will provide the vehicles of the future for an exciting evolution not just of space travel but of humankind.
Friedman has worked with agencies around the globe on space exploration projects to extend human presence beyond Mars and beyond the solar system. He writes that once we accept Mars as the only viable destination for humans, our space program on planet Earth can become more exciting and more relevant. Mars, he writes, will take hundreds, even thousands, of years to settle. During that time, humans and all our supporting technologies will evolve, allowing our minds to be present throughout the universe while our bodies stay home on Earth and Mars.
“Open the pages of this exciting book and meet Lou Friedman, engineer and explorer, who’s been exploring space for half a century. He wants people on Mars to stay, a challenging but rewarding endeavor that guarantees our nation’s vigor and promises humanity centuries of adventure and discovery. For Lou, Mars is just a beginning—our intelligence and machines are bound for the stars!”—Tom Jones, author of Sky Walking: An Astronaut's Memoir
“While much has been written about the human exploration of Mars and other inner solar system destinations, there has been very little about what the future of human exploration is beyond Mars. Friedman’s book offers a chance to articulate what is possible—and what isn’t.”—Jeff Foust, publisher and editor of The Space Review
“Dr. Friedman makes a passionate case for targeting Mars as the end point for human solar-system exploration. Beyond Mars, he argues for humanity to utilize solar sail–propelled small-robot spacecraft to provide us earthlings with virtual human presence beyond our solar system. These views come from a person who has had a long and distinguished career dedicated to space exploration. A very interesting read of a different vision.”—Daniel S. Goldin, former Administrator of NASA