An interstellar ship ignites its nuclear pulse rocket engine over the farside of the moon. The 10-kilometer-long vessel consists mostly of fuel and other consumables. After 10 years, it will have achieved 10 percent the speed of light, making possible a voyage to the nearest star, Alpha Centauri, in 50 years, when some of the original voyagers might still be alive.
Don Dixon is a Fellow and co-founder of the International Association of Astronomical Artists (IAAA). His artwork has been featured on the covers of Scientific American, Astronomy, Sky and Telescope, Bild der Wissenschaft, and dozens of books, ranging from physics compendiums to science fiction novels.His painting Red Mars, cover painting for the first book in Kim Stanley Robinson's award winning trilogy, rode the Phoenix spacecraft to a successful landing in the arctic region of the Red Planet in 2008 as part of a digital "Martian Library." Since 1991 he has served as Art Director at Griffith Observatory, high atop Mount Hollywood, where he directed and co-authored the acclaimed full-dome animated film Centered in the Universe. He has...
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