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Most Americans equate space exploration with NASA, but the general public is largely unaware that hundreds of passionate individuals and private organizations are working to allow ordinary people the opportunity to tour near space and to create permanent human settlements on Mars and other celestial bodies. Through a series of fascinating interviews, this book introduces the scientists, astronauts, engineers, and entrepreneurs behind the private space movement and offers a clear-eyed assessment of their prospects for success. The legal, ethical, and political challenges facing the exploitation of space resources are also explored, and issues such as environmental responsibility, safety, law enforcement, property rights, patents, and government policy are discussed.

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