17 June 2008
OBERTH, Hermann (1894-1989). Die Rakete zu den Planetenräumen. Munich and Berlin: R. Oldenbourg, 1923.
8o (251 x 175mm). Two folding plates and numerous diagrams in the text. Original printed wrappers (front cover detached, extremities chipped with loss); cloth folding box.
FIRST EDITION. The Rocket into Planetary Space was originally Oberth's doctoral dissertation, however it was rejected by the University of Heidelberg, and first published privately here. Oberth "demonstrated that a rocket can operate in a vacuum and that it can surpass the velocity of its own exhaust; he also pointed out the superiority of liquid fuels in producing maximum exhaust velocity. He described in detail the designs of a prototypical instrument-carrying rocket and of a theoretical spaceship, and developed the first sketchy model of a space station" (Norman 1604).
OBERTH, Hermann. Ways to Spaceflight. Washington: National Aeronautics and Space Administration, January 1972. 4o. Original orange printed wrappers (lightly soiled, spine faded, extremities rubbed). Provenance: Reader's initials front cover; Harry Joel (presentation inscription from the author). Second American edition. PRESENTATION COPY, inscribed by Oberth of the title-page: "Herrn Harry Joel mit frdl. grüss H. Oberth." Oberth's expansion of Die Rakete which remained for many years the "most authoritative theoretical work on rocketry" (Norman). First published in Munich and Berlin in 1929, and in this translation for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in 1970. (2)
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