Quest is a fascinating quarterly magazine, it has been around since 1992 and continues to expand our knowledge about the history of spaceflight. If you are looking for glossy full color photos of the shuttle, forget it, if you are interested in truly interesting and well researched stories and fascinating interviews this is the magazine for you. At 64 pages per issue and a news stand price of $7.50 it may at fist sight seem on the high side. Well there is almost no advertising, and every page is crammed with interesting information.

The latest copy (Volume 14 Issue 2) contains some great articles. Konstantin Lantratov talks about the Russian attempt in the 1980’s to create their own version of ‘Star Wars’. This effort was an attempt to counter the US Regan driven SDI initiative. While Russia was publicly denouncing space based weapons they were privately attempting to create them. Included in the article are some great archival photographs, there is a very rare shot of the Energiya-Buran combination being transported to a launch facility. For those of you not familiar with this beast, it was the Russian version of the space shuttle. And to my untrained eye looks almost identical.

This is a very technical article and I found myself frequently referring to the very useful glossary of terms included. This was an alphabet soup of acronyms. All in all though it was well worth the effort. In fact it was a news release concerning this particular article that made me decide to take Quest out for a test drive.

There is also a great article about Apollo XII and the quest to perfect the ability to perform a pin point landing on the moon. Apollo XI while being one of the most significant events of the 20th century, in fact landed more than 3 miles from the planned location. Bill Tindall a senior engineer with NASA was tasked with rectifying the problems. Because of time constraints there was no opportunity to ‘invent’ new control and guidance systems, his job was to reinvent the existing methodology. Again, a fascinating peek inside a side of NASA that the general public does not see.

Equally interesting is an interview with Joe Allen, he was one of the first astronauts to be recruited from the scientific rather that test pilot world. This is a truly fascinating look at this mans career.

I really enjoyed Quest, and will be looking out for future issues. You can obtain more information and subscriptions from

Simon Barrett   

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