2012 marks the first year in three decades that the U.S. is not launching its own publicly funded manned space vehicle, and it could also be China's year to shine, on Earth and in space. It’s a transition period for American space exploration, but even amid all this change there’s something greater, yet less tangible, that’s lacking: As a country, we need a clear mission. America’s unofficial space spokesman, Neil deGrasse Tyson, has something to say about that.
Tyson, a science crusader and regular guest on “The Daily Show” and other outlets, has a brand-new book out that tackles some of America’s profound space questions. "Space Chronicles: Facing the Ultimate Frontier" is a collection of essays, a few of which have already appeared in other publications.