Monday, July 29, 2013

Creation of NASA: Message to Employees of NACA from T. Keith Glennan 1958 NASA



"Thomas Keith Glennan (September 8, 1905 -- April 11, 1995) was the first Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, serving from August 19, 1958 to January 20, 1961. Glennan presided over the organization which had absorbed NACA. In this video, Dr. T. Keith Glennan, addresses his employees about the future of NASA." Glennan is introduced by NACA director Hugh Dryden; late in the pep talk he quotes Senator Lyndon B. Johnson.

Public domain film from NASA, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and mild video noise reduction applied.
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization, noise reduction, clipping reduction, and/or equalization (the resulting sound, though not perfect, is far less noisy than the original).

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/b...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_crea...

As a result of the space race between USA and the Soviet Union in the 1950s, NASA was created in 1958 from NACA (National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, formed 1915) and other related organizations.

Background

From 1946, the NACA had been experimenting with rocket planes such as the supersonic Bell X-1. In the early 1950s, there was challenge to launch an artificial satellite for the International Geophysical Year (1957--58). An effort for this was the American Project Vanguard. After the Soviet space program's launch of the world's first artificial satellite (Sputnik 1) on October 4, 1957, the attention of the United States turned toward its own fledgling space efforts. The U.S. Congress, alarmed by the perceived threat to national security and technological leadership (known as the "Sputnik crisis"), urged immediate and swift action; President Dwight D. Eisenhower and his advisers counseled more deliberate measures. This led to an agreement that a new federal agency mainly based on NACA was needed to conduct all non-military activity in space. The Advanced Research Projects Agency was also created at this time to develop space technology for military application.

Transition of NACA to NASA

From late 1957 to early 1958, the already existing National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) began studying what a new non-military space agency would entail, as well as what its role might be, and assigned several committees to review the concept. On January 12, 1958, NACA organized a "Special Committee on Space Technology", headed by Guyford Stever. Stever's committee included consultation from the Army Ballistic Missile Agency's large booster program, referred to as the Working Group on Vehicular Program, headed by Wernher von Braun, a German scientist who became a naturalized US citizen after World War II.

On January 14, 1958, NACA Director Hugh Dryden published "A National Research Program for Space Technology..."

Launched on January 31, 1958, Explorer 1, officially Satellite 1958 Alpha, became the U.S.'s first earth satellite...

On March 5, President's Science Advisory Committee (PSAC) Chairman James Killian wrote a memorandum to President Dwight D. Eisenhower, entitled "Organization for Civil Space Programs", encouraging the creation of a civil space program based upon a "strengthened and redesignated" NACA...

In April 1958, Eisenhower delivered to the U.S. Congress an executive address favoring a national civilian space agency and submitted a bill to create a "National Aeronautical and Space Agency." NACA's former role of research alone would change to include large-scale development, management, and operations. The U.S. Congress passed the bill, somewhat reworded, as the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, on July 16...

On July 29, 1958, Eisenhower signed the National Aeronautics and Space Act, establishing NASA. When it began operations on October 1, 1958, NASA absorbed the 46-year-old NACA intact; its 8,000 employees, an annual budget of US$100 million, three major research laboratories (Langley Aeronautical Laboratory, Ames Aeronautical Laboratory, and Lewis Flight Propulsion Laboratory) and two small test facilities.

Elements of the Army Ballistic Missile Agency, of which von Braun's team was a part, and the Naval Research Laboratory were incorporated into NASA. A significant contributor to NASA's entry into the Space Race with the Soviet Union was the technology from the German rocket program (led by von Braun) which in turn incorporated the technology of Robert Goddard's earlier works. Earlier research efforts within the U.S. Air Force and many of ARPA's early space programs were also transferred to NASA. In December 1958, NASA gained control of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a contractor facility operated by the California Institute of Technology...


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