Interservice Rivalry and the Creation of the ARPA

In the military's post-Sputnik program, the Army Ballistic Missile Agency launched Explorer I America's first satellite on 31 January 1958. As the post-Sputnik clamor grew for an American satellite and it was clear that the Naval Research Laboratory's Vanguard program could not easily be accelerated, Eisenhower told the DOD on 8 October to do what is necessary to have the Redstone ready as a backup.120 In response the secretary of defense authorized the Army on 8 November 1957 to configure a...

Division of Labor

The division of labor process started on 2 April 1958, the same day Eisenhower submitted his version of the Space Act to Congress. He wrote the SECDEF and the NACA chairman to explain his philosophy concerning which organization would do what under the new legislation It is appropriate that a civilian agency of the Government take the lead in those activities related to space which extend beyond the responsibilities customarily considered to be those of a military organization. Eisenhower said...

No Race for Prestige

The other major objective of Eisenhower's space policy, during the period after Sputnik I and leading up to the creation of NASA, was his desire to avoid a crash speculative program in a race for prestige. Hagerty, Eisenhower's press secretary, emphasized this point when he briefed the press the day after Sputnik, saying that I would also like to make it quite clear that the Soviet launching did not come as any surprise and that we have never thought of our program as one which was in a race...

The Air Force Reacted

The tension between top-level Air Force leadership and Mc-Namara's OSD grew quickly to a high level. After White retired as CSAF in June 1961, he could honestly express himself I am profoundly apprehensive of the pipe-smoking, tree-full-of-owls type of so-called professional 'defense intellectuals' who have been brought into this nation's capital. I don't believe a lot of these overconfident, sometimes arrogant professors, mathematicians, and other theorists have sufficient worldliness or...

Space for Peace

The interrelated complex of reconnaissance satellites, freedom of space, and space for peace set the tenor not only for international cooperation in space as well as the overall Eisenhower space policy but also set the stage for the NASA-DOD institutional relationship. Historians must be clear as to the central importance of reconnaissance satellites and the asso ciated idea of freedom of space which, when combined with space for scientific research, formed the space-for-peace policy outlined...

The Concept of the AAP

There are a number of allusions above to NASA's Apollo Application Program. The discussion now turns to a brief survey of its origins and early evolution. This treatment need not be as comprehensive as that of the MOL for two reasons. First, the AAP's ultimate programmatic execution came in the 1970s, primarily with the three Skylab missions and is, therefore, outside the scope of this study. Second, this author is convinced that the role played by the perceived duplication with the AAP in the...

Use Apollo Saturn Hardware for the MOL or Vice Versa

A closely related question asked why the DOD could not use NASA's preexisting Apollo-Saturn hardware for its MOL. Or, conversely, why could not NASA use the hardware that DOD was developing with the Gemini B-MOL-Titan III combination to conduct the experiments it wanted to do in the AAP This question differs from the duplication question in that the duplication issue focused on whether or not one entire system should be merged with the other. The hardware question presumed both systems would...

The Aeronautics and Astronautics Coordinating Board

Therefore, the only result of consequence from the attempt to revise the Space Act throughout late 1959 and 1960 was the AACB. The AACB would function throughout the 1960s with a higher degree of importance than the CMLC. It and its six panels met regularly not to engage in the policy-making function but to ensure proper coordination between NASA and the DOD efforts in certain space technology fields.136 Any decisions concerning improving coordination or reducing duplication were usually...

Eisenhower Attempts to Calm the Nation

In a conference with his advisors on 8 October 1957, President Eisenhower set the tone saying, His intent was not to belittle the Russian accomplishment. He would like, however, to allay histeria sic and alarm, and to bring out that the Russian action is simply proof of a thrust mechanism of a certain power, accuracy and reliability.5 NSC's OCB issued guidance that same day instructing agencies of the government to play down competitive aspects and implication of a 'race.'. . . Keep the...

Webb McNamara and Space Stations

One bone of contention resulting from the NASA-DOD Gemini agreement of January 1963 was at exactly what point in NASA's exploratory space-station studies was NASA required to obtain mutual agreement with the DOD that it was not initiat ing major new programs or projects in the field of manned space flight aimed chiefly at the attainment of experimental or other capabilities in near-earth orbit 91 McNamara took a restrictive view of this clause, believing that DOD should be involved in NASA...

The Final Product

Eisenhower signed the National Aeronautics and Space Act of 1958, Public Law (PL) 85-568, on 29 July 1958. Its tasking lan guage still contained the House's R& D proviso but was, overall, a victory for the Senate's interpretation. NASA then and now exercises control over, has responsibility for, and directs US aeronautical and space activities, except that activities peculiar to or primarily associated with the development of weapons systems, military operations, or the defense of the United...

DOD Experiments on Gemini

By the spring of 1964, NASA and the DOD had jointly selected a total of 23 experiments for the Gemini flights, 10 of which were reserved for the DOD. NASA was very careful in its description of some of the more sensitive DOD experiments. For instance, one was titled Visual Definition of Objects that NASA defined as the exploration of the technical problem areas associated with man's use of visual and optical equipment during spaceflight. Commercially available photo optical equipment will be...

The AAPs Origins and Early Evolution through Late 1965

The ambiguity surrounding NASA's future plans meant that the AAP got off to a rocky start and had significant difficulty being defined. NASA Associate Administrator for Space Science and Applications Homer Newell wrote, During the muddy period of planning for an Apollo Applications Program that was not going to sell, Webb often stated to his colleagues in NASA that he did not sense on the Hill or in the administration the support that would be needed to undertake another large space project. He...

NASAs Predecessor Organization and the DOD

Between 1908 and 1913, the United States spent only 435,000 on aviation development, less than nations such as Japan, China, Bulgaria, Greece, and Brazil. As a result, when World War I began in 1914, the United States had only 23 military aircraft, all technologically obsolete, when compared to France with 1,400, Germany with 1,000, Russia with 800, and England with 400.74 In the wartime environment, most European governments encouraged their scientists, engineers, and governments to further...

Prepresidential Attitudes and Statements

In an address to the District Democratic Meeting in Topeka, Kansas, 7 November 1957, a month after Sputnik, Kennedy said the United States was losing the satellite-missile race with the USSR because of complacent miscalculations, penny-pinching, budget cutbacks, incredibly confused mismanagements and wasteful rivalries and jealousies. Kennedy called for Eisenhower to tell us exactly where we stand today and where we go from here. The people of America are no longer willing to be lulled by...

Info

Finney, Air Force Seeks Top Role in Space, 11 December 1960, 68. 14. Seamans, Aiming at Targets, 97. 15. BeLieu to Johnson, memorandum, 17 December 1960, 2-3. 16. Garlock to DDR amp E Herbert York, letter, 12 January 1961, 1. 17. Air Force, NASA-USAF Cooperation, 1 February 1961, 1. 18. Robert Seamans, interview by the author, 5 July 1996. See also Seamans, series of oral history interviews, 2 November 1987. 19. Webb, oral history interview, 11 April 1974, 42-43. 20. White to Webb, letter,...