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Out Now! Mutiny near Earth: spaceship Shoemaker with ion drives, arriving at a dark asteroid

My name is Corinne Hansen, and Iím an engineer. If you live on Earth, you think that's a desk job, designing things with computers for a robot to build, a thousand miles away. But I live in space. We do design things, but then we build them ourselves. When they break, we fix them. The things we make arenít meant to be pretty, or to make money. If I make something wrong, a pipe or a valve, a ship or a station, it can kill me. Kill everyone I love. So Iím careful. But if I make everything right, and weíre lucky, we travel to a place nobody has ever been before. And we make a new life together. Weíre going to live on the moons of Mars. Our kids will go to the asteroid belt. Humanity will go to the stars.

This is the story of the first crewed ship to mine an asteroid. If you live in space or on the Moon, you know the story already, but Iíll tell how it felt for me, a new graduate in 2035, giving up a comfortable buggy business on the Moon to go out on a ship with eighty people Iíd never met. Most of those people, the bosses at least, were from Earth, had never lived in space. We didnít always agree on how things should be done, and it was an open question whether Iíd even get to go. Our motto, then as now, is ďif you canít fix it, donít take it.Ē Just about everything we took did break, from design faults, wear and tear, or later from enemy action. This is the story of how we fixed it, and where it took us.

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