Picture this scary scenario: asteroid XYZ is racing toward the earth and threatens to wipe out all life. Only a few short weeks remain to divert disaster. At the last possible moment a team of astronomers manages to manipulate the course of the heavenly body with high-tech lasers and guide it past the earth. This might sound like the plot of a Hollywood movie but it is the subject of present-day studies. Astronomers are tirelessly working on new systems to protect the earth from asteroids and on such concepts like space vehicles that are powered with ion engines that will shuttle people to the moon and back. This book is a fascinating overview of the potential of technology and the state of knowledge of astronomy. Most of all, the book sheds light on the future of man.