Spacewalking is a physically exhausting, mentally rigorous endeavor. It is so difficult, only three Canadians have ever succeeded: Chris Hadfield, Steve MacLean, and Dave Williams. Hadfield completed the first Canadian spacewalk and installed the Canadarm 2 on the International Space Station, while Williams holds the record for the longest spacewalk by a Canadian. And Steve MacLean, former head of the Canadian Space Agency, was one of Canada’s original six astronauts.
But what is it really like to leap out into space with only the thin fabric of your suit between you and the universe? In Canadian Spacewalkers, author Bob McDonald compiles each of the spacewalkers’ perspectives and presents an extensive, one-on-one interview with spacewalkers who tell tales of training underwater in the world’s largest swimming pool describe the moment when they first stepped outside. Science journalist McDonald also shares his own experiences with astronaut training: the almost-reality of simulators, the sensory deprivation of the spacesuit, and even a zero-g airplane ride.
Lushly illustrated with stunning NASA photos, Canadian Spacewalkers inspires, astounds, and surprises. This is the gripping first-hand story of unique adventurers in their own words.
Bob McDonald has been the host of CBC Radio’s Quirks and Quarks since 1992. He is a regular science commentator on CBC News Network and science correspondent for CBC TV’s The National.
His book Measuring the Earth with a Stick: Science as I’ve Seen It was shortlisted for the Canadian Science Writers Association Book Award. He has been honoured with the 2001 Michael Smith Award for Science Promotion from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada; the 2002 Sandford Fleming Medal from The Royal Canadian Institute; and the 2005 McNeil Medal for the Public Awareness of Science from the Royal Society of Canada. In November 2011 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. He lives in Victoria, BC.