Chasing New Horizons book cover

Chasing New Horizons Inside the Epic First Mission to Pluto

by Alan Stern and David Grinspoon · May 2018, Picador

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Commercial Astronaut Dr. Stern flew his first spaceflight in 2023 and was selected by NASA for a second set for 2024

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Dr. Alan Stern is a flown commercial astronaut, planetary scientist, space program executive, aerospace consultant, speaker, and author. He has explored the wreck of the RMS Titanic, and leads NASA’s $1B New Horizons mission that explored the Pluto system and is now exploring the Kuiper Belt—the farthest exploration in the history of humankind. He has twice been named to the Time 100.

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Published May 2018

Chasing New Horizons: Inside the Epic First Mission to Pluto (image of book cover)On July 14, 2015, something amazing happened. More than 3 billion miles from Earth, a small NASA spacecraft called New Horizons screamed past Pluto at more than 32,000 miles per hour, focusing its instruments on the long mysterious icy worlds of the Pluto system, and then, just as quickly, continued on its journey out into the beyond.

Chasing New Horizons is the story of the men and women behind this amazing mission: of their decades-long commitment and persistence; of the political fights within and outside of NASA; of the sheer human ingenuity it took to design, build, and fly the mission; and of the plans for New Horizons’ next encounter, 1 billion miles past Pluto in 2019. Told from the insider’s perspective of mission leader Dr. Alan Stern and others on New Horizons, Chasing New Horizons is a riveting story of scientific discovery, and of how much we humans can achieve when people focused on a dream work together toward their incredible goal.

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Alan Stern and David Grinspoon take the reader to Pluto on a historic odyssey from its inception to its conclusion.

Capt. James Lovell, commander, Apollo 13

Stern and Grinspoon show us what NASA can do when the United States brings its best. New Horizons is still flying, and for us Plutophiles it’s the adventure of a lifetime.

Bill Nye, science educator, CEO the Planetary Society

Thrilling… a future classic of popular science, full of twists and turns and unexpected heroes…with a dramatic and profound payoff.

Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

Chasing New Horizons is a cliff-hanger, a page-turner, a spine-tingler, and, ultimately, a reason to stand up and cheer.

Dava Sobel, New York Times bestselling author of Galileo’s Daughter and The Glass Universe

To Pluto and beyond! This is a thrilling and very human account of one of the greatest scientific adventures of our generation.

Brian May, astrophysicist and lead guitarist of Queen

A compelling account of one of the most ambitious space exploration missions ever conducted.

Capt. Mark Kelly, retired NASA space shuttle commander