Artificial satellites, Astronautics, History

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SOMETHING NEW UNDER THE SUN, Satellites and the Beginning of the Space Age
Copyright for the book, including research notes, Copernicus/Springer Verlag (New York)

History of artificial satellites
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p237

gress reference TL 789.8.R9H21) intended to give the U.S. technical world information about Soviet activities, Korolev is listed in a publication from HRB-Singer only as someone interested in liquid-fueled rocket engines.

Grigory Tokady, a defector, first disclosed that Korolev was the chief designer for the Soviet space program during a meeting of the British interplanetary Society in 1961. His revelation was not widely reported.

One of the best accounts of Sergei Korolev's early life is by Yaroslav Golovanov, Sergei Korolev: The Apprenticeship of a Space Pioneer (Novosti, 1976). The book gives a brief account of the launch of Sputnik, but otherwise is devoted entirely to Korolev's youth; his early poetic efforts; and his relationships with his mother, grandmother, and stepfather (pages 15 and 16). It is the only book I found that explores the events and relationships that shaped the man. Clearly, the author has interviewed many people who knew Korolev and has tried to evaluate some of the folklore that has grown up around him, in particular, Korolev's purported meeting with Tsiolkovsky. Irritatingly, Golovanov's account stops before Korolev was arrested by Stalin's secret police. The author is reported to have completed a full biography, written in Russian, and to be in search of a publisher.

Details of Korolev's state of mind in prison in Moscow, his activities there, and the impact that his incarceration in Kolyma had on him appear in Georgii Oserov's book, published in Paris, En Prison avec Tupolev (A. Michel, 1973). Oserov was in prison with Korolev and the elite of national aeronautics.

Walter McDougall's book ...the Heavens and the Earth: A Political History of the Space Age chronicles the USSR's fascination from Lenin's time with technology and the country's national goal of achieving technical supremacy. This goal led to internal tensions and confrontations between the government and the intelligentsia.

McDougall describes how Marshal Tukhachevsky became a victim of Stalin's purges and how in 1938 the rocketeers, including Korolev, joined Stalin's earlier victims, the aircraft designers, in the Gulag's prison camps.

McDougall reports that Korolev's failures in early 1957 encouraged his rival Chalomei to attempt to have him dismissed.


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