The book of human history includes countless instances of trials and tribulations. Year and after year, evolution and learning have shaped these written chapters and continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Humankind is indeed a species of ambition. Driven by exploring the unknown, humans have traveled through land, sea, and air. More than half a century after reaching the dark side of the Moon in a crewed mission, novel solutions are constantly crafted for further exploration of our solar system and beyond.
Despite human imagination and willpower, knowledge acquisition does not happen overnight. As data points portray patterns and subsequently lead to information, bodies of knowledge are gradually formed. Therefore, contrary to the belief that the Age of Enlightenment in the 17th and 18th centuries was the only period in human history when intellectual and philosophical movements bloomed, we have arrived at this point through continuous human enlightenment. Yet, this is an intricate matter, since the infinite nature of knowledge makes enlightenment a perpetual process. In the same vein, an essential element of this pattern builds on information exposure. Distilled through filters to eliminate biases, jargon, and complexities – which increases the probability for information distortion – relevant, accurate, and reliable information is of the essence.
Space Times aims to serve as a source of high-quality information with a deliberate goal of maintaining the technical level of all of its published articles with the general public in mind. As the voice of the American Astronautical Society, Space Times is published to inform public opinion and raise awareness regarding space-related topics. Some of the technical subject areas discussed in this magazine are more thoroughly examined in The Journal of the Astronautical Sciences, published quarterly since 1954 by the American Astronautical Society.
2022 was a year of challenges and opportunities. On one hand, the claws of the pandemic provided unprecedented hurdles for the aerospace sector. On the other hand, however, the resilience to overcome these challenges led to many successful projects and a remarkable year for space tourism and new planetary exploration. 2023 marks a new beginning for Space Times. By bringing many of the activities related to astronautics to light and sharing them with the readership, this year our goal is to entice and enthrall those interested in space and astronautical activities. Welcome onboard our exploratory vessel, headed into the future.
Dr. Amir S. Gohardani