Syllabus and Weekly Reading Assignments for

From the Earth to the Moon

Princeton University Freshman Seminar
FRS 148, Spring 2019

Robert Stengel

Dreams, History, Business, and Policy

  1. Early History & Fiction
  2. Early History & Fiction
  3. Precursors to Space Flight
  4. Early Space Age
  5. Antecedents to the Apollo Program
  6. Apollo & the Space Race
  7. Early Apollo
  8. Countdown to Landing
  9. Stages to Saturn
  10. Chariots for Apollo
  11. Robotic Spacecraft
  12. The Future of Space Flight

Engineering, Science, and Mathematics

  1. Introductory Concepts
  2. Orbital Motion
  3. Orbital Motion
  4. Launch Vehicle Flight Dynamics
  5. Rocket Propulsion and Staging
  6. Interplanetary Travel
  7. Lunar Transfer
  8. Spacecraft Attitude Dynamics and Control
  9. Launch Vehicle Design
  10. Spacecraft Design
  11. Spacecraft Guidance
  12. Telemetry, Communications & Tracking


  1. J. Sellers, Understanding Space: An Introduction to Astronautics, McGraw-Hill, 2005.
  2. M. Kaplan, Modern Spacecraft Dynamics and Control, J. Wiley & Sons, 1976.
  3. W. Ley, Rockets, Missiles, and Men in Space, Viking Press, 1968.
  4. Cyrano de Bergerac, A Voyage to the Moon, 1687.
  5. Jules Verne, From the Earth to the Moon, 1865, and Round the Moon, 1870.
  6. W. McDougall, ...The Heavens and the Earth, Basic Books, 1985.
  7. A. Chaikin, A Man on the Moon, Penguin Books, 1994.
  8. C. Brooks, J. Grimwood, L. Swenson, Jr., Chariots for Apollo, NASA-SP-4205, 1979.
  9. R. Bilstein, Stages to Saturn, NASA-SP-4206, 1980.
  10. R. C. Hall, Lunar Impact: A History of Project Ranger, NASA-SP-4210, 1977.
  11. E. Kolman, Unmanned Space Craft Management: Surveyor and Lunar Orbiter, NASA-SP-4901, 1972.
  12. V. Pisacane, Fundamentals of Space Systems, Oxford, 2005.
  13. --, GOES N Series Data Book, Rev. D, 2009.
  14. N. Augustine, Augustine's Laws, Viking Press, 1986.
  15. G. Dillingham, Commercial Space Transportation: Industry Trends, Government Challenges, and International Competitiveness Issues, GAO 12-836T, 2013.
  16. A. Carnesale, ch., NASA's Strategic Direction and the Need for a National Consensus, National Research Council, 2012.
  17. M. Daniels, Jr., and J. Lunine, co-ch., Pathways to Exploration: Rationales and Approaches for a U. S. Program of Human Space Exploration, National Research Council, 2014.

FRS 148, From the Earth to the Moon
last updated April 14, 2019,
Copyright 2019 by Robert F. Stengel. All rights reserved.