Copyright 1995 by Ralph Nansen, reproduced with permission
Table of Contents
In the years that have passed as this book was being written and rewritten there have been many who contributed ideas, support, encouragement, editing, and proofreading. First and foremost is my wife Phyllis, who gave me the encouragement to start and then lived through the agony of producing the first unsuccessful version in the early 1980s. She was there again in the 1990s when it was apparent the world was in trouble, and she convinced me I must try again. She struggled through draft after draft to correct my bad grammar and redundant statements. Her ideas and guidance are a big part of this book.
It was my editor and graphics designer, Lynn Dale, who gave it polish and brought it to a quality level that I could never have achieved.
The world must thank Dr. Peter Glaser for bringing the concept of solar power satellites into existence, and William Brown for making it practical to transmit energy without wires. They have been very helpful in the support and technical information they have given me. I’m also grateful to Chris Kraft, a supportive friend and self-proclaimed solar power satellite zealot, and to the late Jack Webb, who asked Chris and Ito help him produce a “science fact” movie about solar power satellites that he didn’t live to complete.
I wish to thank all of my colleagues at Boeing who worked to develop solar power satellites during the intense studies of the 1970s. They were a magnificent team. There were too many to list here, but a few that represent the others are Gordon Woodcock, study manager for the DOE/NASA contracts; Dan Gregory, conceptual designer; Jack Olson, engineer, inventive genius, and artist extraordinaire; Vince Caluori, team leader and friend who tried to keep me on the straight and narrow path; Jim Jenkins, a young tiger who didn’t think anything was impossible; and Dr. Joe Gauger, physicist, economist, and friend. And especially Orlando Johnson, economist, who first identified the dramatic cost benefits of solar power satellites.
Claude McIntire spent many hours trying to keep me out of trouble and finally gave up and joined in the fun. Bill Rice pushed me into TV and radio stations and helped bring the news media to believe energy from space was possible. Tom Brownell helped open doors in Washington DC.
I am very grateful to those who have helped through the years to produce this book. Arthur Orrmont, my first literary agent, worked hard to find a publisher willing to gamble on a new author. Victoria Sanders, who recognized this book as a “call to arms.” Natasha Kern, who forced me to become a writer and then worked diligently to stir an unresponsive publishing industry to publish my book. Alice Price-Knight taught me what editing was all about and gave me excellent advice. My son David, confidant and engineer, who kept pushing me to keep going, and his wife Sheri, my most critical proofreader. My colleagues from around the world who have kept the concept of solar power satellites alive through the years: Fred Koomanoff, Gregg Maryniak, Brian Erb, Ray Leonard, Lucien Deschamps, Alan Ladwig, D. Patton, Frank Little, Bruce Middleton, and Nobuyuki Kaya. Special thanks also to Brian Pankhurst, a cruising friend from England, for his enthusiastic encouragement after reading an early draft; Patrick Moser, curmudgeon and writer; Wanda Gould, classmate, school teacher, and environmentalist. Mark Dale, Hugh Davis, Denton Hanford, Bill Jury, Dick Hardy, Don Jacobs, Ed Gastineau, Joe Allen, Gerry Siebert, Frank Westgate, Winnie Lee, Dr. John Hogness, Bob and Martha Cram, and many more who have given me words of encouragement when it seemed the task would never end. Thank you all.
May 15, 1995