Chien, Philip

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Chien, Philip

PERSONAL:

Male.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Merritt Island, FL. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Journalist. Cable News Network (CNN), Atlanta, GA, correspondent.

WRITINGS:

Columbia: The Final Voyage, Springer (New York, NY), 2005.

SIDELIGHTS:

Philip Chien is a science journalist whose primary subject is the U.S. space program. He has been present at many launches and has interviewed astronauts over a period of more than twenty years. He was also a witness to the loss of the Columbia space shuttle in February of 2003. On that date the space shuttle burned up on re-entry, the result of damage caused by a piece of foam that came loose at launch and pierced the heat resistant shield. Chien tells the story of this tragedy and profiles each of the seven crew members who were lost in Columbia: The Final Voyage.

The volume is divided into three parts. The first focuses on the crew and other people involved in the mission. Next is a description of the events leading to the launch. The final section details each day of the mission and the accident. Space Review contributor Jeff Foust commented: "In terms of explaining the mission itself, Columbia: The Final Voyage is unparalleled, and unlikely to be equaled given the sheer amount of information Chien has compiled." Writing for Universe Today, Mark Mortimer stated: "Chien's overall objective is to establish a synopsis of Columbia's mission, and he succeeds. His is a fair and honest book about the people and the mission…. His own involvement with the shuttle operations comes through as he provides information regarding systems, structures and procedures, though not so much as to overload the reader. In total, he's produced a warm memorial both for the people and the mission."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

ONLINE

Astronomical Society of the Pacific Web site,http://www.astrosociety.org/ (July 14, 2007), review of Columbia: The Final Voyage.

Columbia-Final Voyage,http://www.sts107.info (July 14, 2007).

Midwest Book Review,http://www.midwestbookreview.com/ (July 14, 2007), Gary Roen, review of Columbia.

Space Review,http://www.thespacereview.com/ (February 20, 2006), Jeff Foust, review of Columbia.

Universe Today,http://www.universetoday.com/ (April 3, 2006), Mark Mortimer, review of Columbia.