Years ago, Burt Rutan told a reporter for Popular Mechanics, “If we make a courageous decision like the goal and program we kicked off for Apollo in 1961, we will see our children or grandchildren in outposts on other planets.” Legendary science-fiction writer Arthur C. Clark would later recall Rutan’s quote in a piece he wrote about SpaceShipOne and comment, “Fortunately, we need not rely solely on governments for expanding humanity’s presence beyond the Earth.”
Burt Rutan’s Race to Space showcases Rutan’s herculean efforts to do just that. Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum displays his most celebrated achievements, including SpaceShipOne, which won the coveted $10 million Ansari X Prize for private spaceflight; Voyager, which hangs with SpaceShipOne in the Milestones of Flight gallery; the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer; and the VariEze. His many aerospace innovations preceding his most recently conceived designs, SpaceShipTwo and WhiteKnightTwo, chronicle a progressive, step-by-step attempt to break barriers with engineering know-how and a wondrous imagination, all the while remaining on the forefront of the burgeoning private spaceflight industry. Rutan’s X Prize triumph and subsequent spacecraft designs are not a beginning, nor an end, but are steps in Burt Rutan’s continuing adventure to expand humanity’s presence beyond the Earth and into space.
In 2004, Dan Linehan attended the launch of SpaceShipOne when it captured the Ansari X Prize. He has a background in physics and engineering and has written numerous articles about aviation and space. During 2006 and 2007, he spent two months studying wildlife and environmental concerns in Antarctica and its surrounds. Dan lives in Monterey, California.
In 2004, former engineer Dan Linehan attended the launch of SpaceShipOne when it captured the Ansari X Prize. His first book was SpaceShipOne: An Illustrated History, the authoritative account of this private spaceflight milestone. His job as a freelance writer takes him around the world and allows him to explore. His publications range from poems about fishermen in local newspapers to articles about superconductors in scientific journals. In addition, Dan has consulted as a senior science editor for educational publishing companies since 2003. He has a strong interest in environmental issues and enjoys many forms of writing. Dan lives in Monterey, California.