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  Dressing for Altitude: U.S. Aviation Pressure Suits, Wiley Post to Space Shuttle (Jenkins)

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Author Topic:   Dressing for Altitude: U.S. Aviation Pressure Suits, Wiley Post to Space Shuttle (Jenkins)
Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-05-2012 01:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA release
New NASA book reveals pressure suits are height of fashion

NASA has published a colorful, picture-filled book that details the development and use of the protective clothing worn by test pilots, astronauts and others as they soar high above Earth.

"Dressing for Altitude: U.S. Aviation Pressure Suits — Wiley Post to Space Shuttle" provides a 526-page survey of the partial- and full-pressure suits designed to keep humans alive at the edge of space since their first use during the years before World War II. Pressure suits are not the spacesuits worn by spacewalking astronauts.

The book explores the challenges the clothiers-turned-engineers faced in designing a garment that could be relatively lightweight, flexible, inflatable, and still keep an ejecting pilot safe at high altitude and in the water.

"This work is designed to provide the history of the technology and explore the lessons learned through the years of research in creating, testing, and utilizing today's high-altitude suits," said Tony Springer of NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate at the agency's headquarters in Washington.

Dennis R. Jenkins, a writer, engineer and manager with 30 years of experience working on NASA programs, including the space shuttle, wrote the book and assembled its photographs and illustrations. Jenkins said he became interested in the topic especially after studying the work and dedication of Goodrich and David Clark Company, the two major companies responsible for most of the pressure suit's development through the years.

"I knew little about pressure suits going into the book, so the entire process was a learning exercise to me," Jenkins said.

To order printed copies of the coffee-table-style book from NASA's Information Center, see here. To download an e-book version of the book in PDF format at no charge, see here.

Jay Chladek
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Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 09-05-2012 04:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Guys, if you are into shuttles, download the PDF as at the very least it is loaded with some nice data about the suits used in shuttle. It covers the S-1030 Air Force suits, the STS-1 through 4 EES suits, the LEH "clamshell" helmets used to STS-51L as well as the LES and ACES suits. There is no coverage of Felix Baumgartner's suit that I can see, but considering that suit seems to be very heavily based on the S-1030 series, a lot of information could be guessed at about it.

I plan to get a hard copy of this book myself, although the PDF will tie me over nicely until then.

albatron
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Posts: 2103
From: Stuart, Florida, USA
Registered: Jun 2000

posted 09-05-2012 06:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for albatron   Click Here to Email albatron     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dennis, a good friend, has hit another home run.

He (along with Tony Landis) wrote the definitive book on the X-15 program - "Hypersonic". He followed it up with another book more technically oriented as well.

But those are not his only books. Dennis is a fine author of aerospace related books.

This can only be another one of the greats, and like his X-15 "Bible" a must have for anyone interested in the history of space suits.

Kudos and a tip of the mad props beanie Dennis!

apolloprojeckt
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Posts: 756
From: arnhem netherlands
Registered: Feb 2009

posted 09-06-2012 12:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for apolloprojeckt   Click Here to Email apolloprojeckt     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Is this book not for sale in a book store? It has an ISBN number?

Jay Chladek
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Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 09-06-2012 07:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It will probably be available from some booksellers when the time comes. The "Wings Into Orbit" book was available through Barnes and Noble books in the states when it came out (I picked up mine from a shop locally) and hopefully this one might get picked up for sale as well. But that will entirely depend on the size of the print run.

cspg
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Posts: 4046
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 09-06-2012 02:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by apolloprojeckt:
Is this book not for sale in a book store? It has an ISBN number?
Sure, here it is. A-hem, $145 for overseas orders.

cspg
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Posts: 4046
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 09-11-2012 01:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Not cheaper at amazon.com and out of stock...

albatron
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Posts: 2103
From: Stuart, Florida, USA
Registered: Jun 2000

posted 09-11-2012 02:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for albatron   Click Here to Email albatron     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Received my copy yesterday and all I can say is "WOW"!

As typical of Dennis, it will not leave you wanting more detailed info.

astroborg
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Posts: 170
From: Woodbridge, VA, USA
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 09-20-2012 07:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for astroborg   Click Here to Email astroborg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Try the NASA HQ Information Center - they have it priced at $75. This might be US price only though...

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 09-20-2012 11:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I saw the hard copy for sale today in Dryden Flight Research Center's store (I didn't note the price). They don't have a website (yet) but take phone orders.

Jay Chladek
Member

Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 09-20-2012 11:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If it is like the "Wings Into Orbit" book, there will likely be both a hardcover (typically expensive) and a soft cover. My softcover for "Wings" was priced at $50, but one has to figure it had a larger print run than this book would since shuttle was a pretty hot topic at the time. So $150 for a hardcover and $75 for a soft cover makes sense to me.

cspg
Member

Posts: 4046
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 10-03-2012 06:21 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Got my hardcopy today. Not published by NASA's History Office, which may explain why this one almost went under the radar (I really don't know how they do it over there) but the Aeronautics Mission Directorate.

Since NASA's tightening budget also applies to publication, they definitely should focus on publishing such high-quality books. This one is really, really neat (I love glossy paper).

tspringer
New Member

Posts: 3
From: washington dc usa
Registered: Oct 2012

posted 10-04-2012 09:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for tspringer   Click Here to Email tspringer     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Copies are available from the NASA HQ info center and the DFRC exchange. GPO did ride the print run. I do not know when GPO copies will be available or at what price. The NASA HQ info center is selling copies for $75. Only one version of the book is being distributed or offered in these venues for sale. All Copies are Hard Cover with dust jacket. No soft cover copies of this book were printed. Electronic versions in both ebook and pdf formats are available for free from the NASA website as previously posted and listed in the press release. We try to either do a national or local press release for each volume. A web story went live earlier this week on the book. Email me if you have questions.

The next book in the NASA aeronautics series is scheduled to be released in late Oct. "Coming Home" was written by Dennis Jenkins and Roger Launius and covers reentry technologies. It is the same format as the previous book in the series "Breaking the Chain." Sorry no glossy paper and color photos.

cspg
Member

Posts: 4046
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 10-04-2012 01:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by tspringer:
I do not know when GPO copies will be available or at what price.
Bought my copy from GPO on September 7th for $104, plus postage.

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