While rocket science is notoriously tough to understand, a new book by an aerospace engineer shows it can be explained in a simple way. The book, "Rocket Science," discusses orbits and physics for readers as young as 6, and features eye-catching illustrations that people of all ages can appreciate.
The project has raised more than $35,000 on Kickstarter to print copies of the book, nearly doubling the $19,183 goal originally set, and there's still over two weeks to go, with contributions closing Dec. 6.
"'Rocket Science' is a tour of the latest in spacecraft technology and planetary exploration by real-life aerospace engineer Andrew Rader and illustrator Galen Frazer. Explaining the physics of space travel in a way that's easy to understand, the book is accessible to anyone. It's sure to ignite the imagination of kids of all ages, and even curious adults," the Kickstarter page says. [The Best Space Books for Kids!]
"Why do rockets use staging? What's an orbit? Is there gravity in space? How did we get to the moon? How would we get to Mars? How do we travel into deep space? Could we get to another star? These are just a few of the questions answered in 'Rocket Science,'" the Kickstarter description adds.
The book contains 42 illustrations and is targeted at children ages 6 to 10. It represents the third book collaboration between Rader and Frazer; the other two were titled "Epic Space Adventure" and "Mars Rover Rescue," and both were aimed at a young audience.
Some of the awards for supporting the Kickstarter campaign include an 18 x 24 illustrated poster of the entire solar system, a set of autographed books, a mission patch, a planet and moon sticker pack, an e-book and even a "secret bonus." Classrooms can contribute $275 or more to get a "bundle pack" that includes 30 copies of the book and a 20-minute space exploration Skype Q&A with Rader.
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Elizabeth Howell (she/her), Ph.D., is a staff writer in the spaceflight channel since 2022 covering diversity, education and gaming as well. She was contributing writer for Space.com for 10 years before joining full-time. Elizabeth's reporting includes multiple exclusives with the White House and Office of the Vice-President of the United States, an exclusive conversation with aspiring space tourist (and NSYNC bassist) Lance Bass, speaking several times with the International Space Station, witnessing five human spaceflight launches on two continents, flying parabolic, working inside a spacesuit, and participating in a simulated Mars mission. Her latest book, "Why Am I Taller?", is co-written with astronaut Dave Williams. Elizabeth holds a Ph.D. and M.Sc. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, a Bachelor of Journalism from Canada's Carleton University and a Bachelor of History from Canada's Athabasca University. Elizabeth is also a post-secondary instructor in communications and science at several institutions since 2015; her experience includes developing and teaching an astronomy course at Canada's Algonquin College (with Indigenous content as well) to more than 1,000 students since 2020. Elizabeth first got interested in space after watching the movie Apollo 13 in 1996, and still wants to be an astronaut someday. Mastodon: https://qoto.org/@howellspace