Aimed at both geography students and general readers, this reference to the history of exploration extends from its earliest beginnings to the sophisticated scientific expeditions of today. It traces the journeys of the great discoverers, recording their achievements and examining their motives: the desire for land, wealth and fame, missionary zeal, political and cultural empire-buiding, scientific enquiry or simple curiosity. Biographical details of many of the explorers, geographers and cartographers are included, with a time chart summarizing the history of exploration over the past 500 years.
This second edition looks beyond the confines of Earth to the universe and the exploration of space, describing the exploits of the first astronauts and the manned lunar landings, with details of unmanned missions to explore neighbouring planets in our Solar System. It also looks at stars and galaxies and discusses the secrets of black holes and other celestial phenomena.