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Spaceship Handbook

Rocket and Spacecraft Designs of the 20th Century

by Jack Hagerty and Jon Rogers


Spaceship Handbook

Chapters on 75 Theoretical, Fictional and Real (but cancelled) subjects

534 pages on 80# coated stock

8 1/2" x 11", w/durable Smyth-sewn hardcover binding

Plot/Mission summaries

Over 500 photographs and illustrations in color and B&W

Detailed data drawings

ISBN 978-0-9707604-0-1

No Longer Available from ARA Press. Used copies can be found at

cover art

AAS Logo    Nominated for the 2002 Eugene M. Emme Astronautical Literature Award!
Click here to read what people are saying on Essence's Model Rocektry Reviews (EMRR)    EMMR Logo
The authors were interviewed on the Science/Science Fiction show Hour 25 at the World Science Fiction Convention in September 2002.
Click here to see the introductory material (with a link to the audio lower on the page) or click here to go directly to the audio.
  Jack and Jon
Jack Hagerty was featured on the SETI Institute's radio program Are We Alone? on June 20, 2004, the day before SpaceshipOne's historic first flight. Jack's interview is the second half of this one-hour show. Click here to be taken to the general program site where all of the shows are archived (scroll down to the June 20 show), or click here to go directly to the program. The show is a 22MB mp3 file that will take about an hour to download with a 56K modem.   seti


Spaceship Handbook examines 75 influential Rocket and Spacecraft designs of the 20th Century, their designers and the stories surrounding their creation. These stories tell of the spaceship's birth in the work of theoretical geniuses, its struggle for acceptance in Entertainment, and the exciting prospects for real spaceships in the near future. Written by Jack Hagerty and Jon C. Rogers with a foreword by noted aerospace authority Frederick I. Ordway III, the book is large (12" x 9" x 1.5" thick) hardbound, and printed on 80 lb matte coated stock with Smyth-sewn binding. It is 534 pages including Introductions, Appendices, a 16-page index and has a beautiful oil painted cover. In addition to the 114 detailed Data Drawings sheets that are central to its documenting 20th Century spaceships, it contains 250 Color Pictures, 150 black and white pictures, and over 100 additional illustrations.

Spaceship Handbook is the standard reference for the "Concept Scale" competition event held by the National Association of Rocketry.


Entries on each of the following rockets include historical background information, plot summaries (for fictional subjects) or mission summaries (for theoretical and real subjects), plus a dimensioned and color-accented data drawing.

PART I: The Theoreticians

1900's -
Konstantin Tsiolkovsky
Rocket #2
1920's -
Hermann Oberth
Modell B
Modell E
1930's -
Eugen Sänger
Silver Bird
1940's -
Chesley Bonestell/Willy Ley Conquest of Space
Moon Rocket
Transcontinental Transport
1950's -
Von Braun/Collier's Magazine
Across The Space Frontier
Ferry Rocket
Space Station
Lunar Reconnaissance Ship
Conquest Of The Moon
Passenger Ship
Cargo Ship
The Explorations Of Mars
Baby Space Station/Artificial Satellite
Passenger Ship (two versions)
Cargo Ship/Landing Boat (two versions)
Von Braun/Disney
Man In Space
Ferry Rocket
Man And The Moon
Lunar Recon Ship RM-1
Space Station S1
Bottle Suit
Mars And Beyond
Umbrella Ship
Landing Craft
Von Braun/"This Week" Magazine
First Men to the Moon
Moon Rocket

PART II: The Entertainers

1920's -
Die Frau im Mond
1930's -
Flash Gordon/Buck Rogers
Spider Ship
Rocketship! (from Just Imagine)
1940's -
Rocketship XM: R-XM
1950's -
Conquest of Space Spin-offs
Bonestell's original Luna
Flight to Mars: M.A.R.S. 1
Abbot and Costello go to Mars: M1
It! The Terror From Beyond Space: Challenge 142
Missile to the Moon
Honorable Mention: Invaders from Mars
The Spaceship's Golden Era
Buck Rogers' Battle Cruiser
Captain Video: Galaxy II
Space Patrol: Terra V (three variations)
Space Cadet: Polaris
Rocky Jones: Orbit Jet
George Pal
Destination Moon: Luna
When Worlds Collide: Space Ark
Conquest of Space
Ferry Rocket (top stage only)
Space Station: "Wheel"
Mars Ship: "Spaceship"
Tintin Destination Moon
Moon Rocket
Juvenile Science Fiction
Robert Heinlein
Rocket Ship Galileo: Galileo
Harry Stine
Day the Rocket Blew Up: Athena
And a Star to Steer Her by: Fafnir
Starship through Space: Griffon
Contraband Rocket: Absyrtis
Disneyland: Moonliner
1960's -
First Spaceship on Venus: Cosmostrator
Gerry Anderson
2001: A Space Odyssey
Orion III
Space Station V
Aries 1B
Moon Bus
Maintenance Pods
1970's -
Josie and the Pussycats in Outer Space: Spaceship
1990's -
Wallace & Gromit A Grand Day Out: Rocketship
Myst (computer game): Myst Rocket

PART III: The Real Stuff

1950's -
1960's -
Project Pluto
1990's -
Back to the Future, the RLV Revolution
Lockheed-Martin VentureStar
Kistler K-1
Kelly Air Space Astroliner
Pioneer Rocketplane Pathfinder
Rotary Rocket Roton

Appendix A: A discussion of the "Atomic Rocket" Concept

Appendix B: Model Rocketry Section

G. Harry Stine Tribute
Plans for Luna from Destination Moon (courtesy of Jim Fackert)
Plans for Thunderbirds 1 & 3 (courtesy of Tom Beach)
Plans for X-20 Dyna Soar (courtesy of Rob Zingarelli)