Voices from New Mexico's Space History
Voices from New Mexico's Space History
Different quotations from New Mexico space pioneers appear on this page monthly. This is the December 2017 installment.
Different quotations from New Mexico space pioneers appear on this page monthly. This is the December 2017 installment.
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This excerpt from the 1971 report NASA Sounding Rockets, 1958-1968: A Historical Summary describes work with the V-2 rocket technology brought to the United States immediately after World War II and developed further at White Sands Proving Ground in southern New Mexico:

Almost half the V-2s launched from White Sands were officially classified as failures. Even though most rockets left the launch pad, many did not go far; some exploded; still others behaved so erratically that the scientific experiments were compromised. In fact, as the V-2 firing program drew to a close, it was generally felt among scientists that the rocket was too unreliable to warrant risking months of work in preparing an experiment. Nevertheless, the V-2s took the first solar ultraviolet spectrograms above the Earth's ozone layer. They captured spectacular photographs of Earth from high altitudes; they brought back air samples and cosmic-ray measurements. Although valuable atmospheric data were obtained, it is more honest to regard the series of flights as scientific test vehicles upon which new instrument and telemetering techniques were perfected. Experimenters learned how to build compact, rugged, reliable equipment, while rocket engineers found how to give the instruments a smooth, clean ride. Advances were also made in instrument pointing and recovery. This was technology rather than science, it is true, but experience with the V-2s provided just what American scientists and engineers needed to build sounding rockets tailored specifically to space research.




See previously featured quotes on the following pages:
Voices Archives for the current year
2016 Voices Archives
2015 Voices Archives
2014 Voices Archives
2013 Voices Archives
2012 Voices Archives
2011 Voices Archives


Photo Credits
Robert Goddard towing one of his rockets to the launch site near Roswell about 1931, courtesy of NASA.

WhiteKnightTwo carrying SpaceShipTwo at Spaceport America runway dedication flyover, photo by Loretta Hall.


Unless otherwise credited, all material on this site is © Loretta Hall 2010-2017.

This excerpt from the 1971 report NASA Sounding Rockets, 1958-1968: A Historical Summary describes work with the V-2 rocket technology brought to the United States immediately after World War II and developed further at White Sands Proving Ground in southern New Mexico:

Almost half the V-2s launched from White Sands were officially classified as failures. Even though most rockets left the launch pad, many did not go far; some exploded; still others behaved so erratically that the scientific experiments were compromised. In fact, as the V-2 firing program drew to a close, it was generally felt among scientists that the rocket was too unreliable to warrant risking months of work in preparing an experiment. Nevertheless, the V-2s took the first solar ultraviolet spectrograms above the Earth's ozone layer. They captured spectacular photographs of Earth from high altitudes; they brought back air samples and cosmic-ray measurements. Although valuable atmospheric data were obtained, it is more honest to regard the series of flights as scientific test vehicles upon which new instrument and telemetering techniques were perfected. Experimenters learned how to build compact, rugged, reliable equipment, while rocket engineers found how to give the instruments a smooth, clean ride. Advances were also made in instrument pointing and recovery. This was technology rather than science, it is true, but experience with the V-2s provided just what American scientists and engineers needed to build sounding rockets tailored specifically to space research.



See previously featured quotes on the following pages:
        Voices Archives for the current year
        2016 Voices Archives for quotes posted during 2016
        2015 Voices Archives for quotes posted during 2015
        2014 Voices Archives for quotes posted during 2014
        2013 Voices Archives for quotes posted during 2013
        2012 Voices Archives for quotes posted during 2012
        2011 Voices Archives for quotes posted during 2011


Photo Credits
Robert Goddard towing one of his rockets to the launch site near Roswell about 1931, courtesy of NASA.

WhiteKnightTwo carrying SpaceShipTwo at Spaceport America runway dedication flyover, photo by Loretta Hall.


Unless otherwise credited, all material on this site is
© Loretta Hall 2010-2017.

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For more information about New Mexico's contributions to space exploration, visit the New Mexico Museum of Space History.
Be notified of
page updates
it's private
powered by
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For more information about New Mexico's contributions to space exploration, visit the New Mexico Museum of Space History.