Orbital Planes: A Personal Vision of the Space Shuttle is Roland Miller’s intimate photographic view of the Space Shuttle Program. A unique collection of imagery, the book explores the Space Shuttle orbiters-both inside and out-along with related facilities including rocket engine test sites, Solid Rocket Booster and External Tank manufacturing facilities, orbiter manufacturing and maintenance facilities, launch sites, and more. Miller photographed the Space Shuttle starting in 1988. He began his focused work for Orbital Planes in 2008 and continued for the duration of the Space Shuttle Program through the decommissioning of the orbiters.
Orbital Planes is part artistic invention, part space archaeology, and part historic documentation. Through a combination of documentary and abstract photographs made around the United States, Orbital Planes tells an expansive story of the Space Shuttle Program in a visually arresting style. Detailed imagery describes the distinctive design and engineering of these spacecraft and the facilities where they were maintained and launched. The drama and danger of spaceflight are seen in the wear and tear visible on the Space Shuttle orbiters. The book also chronicles the story of Miller’s interactions with Space Shuttle workers and the impacts of the Challenger and Columbia accidents.