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Powell's Books Presents Terry Virts in Conversation With Katie Mack
A wildly entertaining account of the rules, lessons, procedures, and experiences of space travel, HOW TO ASTRONAUT (Workman) is a book that will appeal to anyone with even a passing interest in space. Written by Col. Terry Virts, a former NASA astronaut, space shuttle pilot, and International Space Station commander who spent 200 consecutive days in space, it answers all of our curious questions and much more: Here's how to survive that first brush with weightlessness (in the so-called vomit comet); the nearly indescribable thrill of a first blastoff; managing the daily tasks — eating, bathing, doing chores, going to the bathroom — that are anything but ordinary when you're orbiting the earth at 17,000 miles per hour; how to don your space suit and head out to work on a spacewalk ("alone in the vacuum"); how to prepare for emergencies of all kinds, from managing "space brain" to dealing with a dead crew member; and what it's like to return to Earth, including something as seemingly simple as walking after spending six months in zero-G. A born storyteller, Virts reveals the often-untold side of space travel in 51 short chapters filled with a mix of you-are-there detail, a dose of science made simple, and the inherent drama of describing something few will ever know firsthand. Virts will be joined in conversation by theoretical astrophysicist Dr. Katie Mack.

Oct 9, 2020 06:00 PM in Pacific Time (US and Canada)

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Speakers

Terry Virts
Colonel Terry Virts earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from the United States Air Force Academy in 1989, and a master of aeronautical science degree in aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Selected by NASA in 2000, he was the pilot of STS-130 mission aboard Space Shuttle Endeavour. In March 2015, Virts assumed command of the International Space Station, and spent over 200 days on it. Virts is one of the stars (and photographers) of the IMAX film, A Beautiful Planet, released in April 2016. He is also the author of View from Above (National Geographic, 2017). He lives near Houston.
Katie Mack
Dr. Katie Mack is a theoretical astrophysicist, exploring a range of questions in cosmology, the study of the universe from beginning to end. She is currently an assistant professor of physics at North Carolina State University, where she is also a member of the Leadership in Public Science Cluster. She has been published in a number of popular publications, such as Scientific American, Slate, Sky & Telescope, Time, and Cosmos magazine, where she is a columnist. She can be found on Twitter as @AstroKatie.