Communities in Space - Research Article from Macmillan Science Library: Space Sciences

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Communities in Space

In 1929 Hermann Noording developed the idea of a large wheel-shaped satellite reminiscent of the space station in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey(1968). In the 1950s Wernher von Braun developed a similar plan for a refueling stop on the way to the Moon. But it was Princeton physicist Gerard K. O'Neill who saw huge orbiting communities as a means of salvation for Earth. Overcoming initial skepticism, he gained support from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), organized a series of breakthrough workshops, and set forth detailed plans in his 1976 book The High Frontier. Although everyone at that time talked in terms of "space colonies," "colonies," and "colonists," these words evoke images of harsh and repressive governments. For this reason, the terms "settlements" and "settlers" are preferred instead.

Solving Earth's Problems in Outer Space

Like most proponents of large-scale emigration to space, O'Neill believed that...

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This section contains 1,107 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Communities in Space Encyclopedia Article
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Macmillan Science Library: Space Sciences
Communities in Space from Macmillan Science Library: Space Sciences. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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