Donna Shirley's 35-year career as an aerospace engineer reached a jubilant pinnacle in July 1997 when Sojourner--the solar-powered, self-guided, microwave-oven-sized rover--was seen exploring the Martian landscape in Pathfinder's spectacular images from the surface of the red planet. The event marked a milestone in space, but for Donna Shirley, the leader of the mostly male team that designed and built Sojourner--and the first woman ever to manage a NASA program--it marked a triumph of another kind. Managing Martiansis Shirley's captivating memoir of a life and career spent reaching for the stars. From her seemingly outlandish aspiration at age ten to build aircraft, to abandoning high school Home Ec in favor of mechanical drawing, and, at sixteen, becoming a licensed pilot, Shirley defied expectations from the beginning. In a vivid narrative, rich with anecdotes and thrilling turning points, Shirley recounts the intense battles she waged to defend her vision and the ingenuity and resourcefulness of her committed team. Her moment-by-cliffhanging-moment account of Pathfinder's landing and Sojourner's first tentative foray across the sands of Mars brilliantly captures the fulfillment of a lifelong dream as it heralds a brave new era of space exploration.
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MANAGING MARTIANSUser Review - Kirkus
To paraphrase the old soap opera: Can a rich girl from a small Oklahoma town find success and happiness married to her job as first woman manager of a NASA space program? The answer is a resounding ... Read full review
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aerobraking aerogel airbags APXS atmosphere Bill Layman bogie Brian Wilcox budget build camera Charlie cost Dave Dave Miller demo Earth engineers exploration flight hardware front Glenn going guys Henry Stone hour Howard Eisen idea images instruments JPL's knew lander landing launch Little Blue Lonne looked manager Mariner Mars Global Surveyor Mars Observer Mars's Martian Mercury million mission mobility modems moon mother motors MRSR NASA needed never Oklahoma operations orbit Pathfinder team Pathfinder's Pauls Valley petals planet problem radio ramp review board robot rocket rocks Rocky Rocky's rover team sample return sandbox Sands of Mars schedule scientists seismometer signal soil Sojourner Sojourner Truth solar panels spacecraft spectrometer surface of Mars Surveyor tether things thought tiny tion told Tony Spear took trajectory trying turn vehicle Viking wanted wheels Wynnewood