FIRST AMONG EQUALS : THE NASA PROCESS FOR SELECTING SCIENTISTS

 
 
The Particles and Fields Subcommittee
 
 
All of the six scientific subcommittees were formed in the same way and had similar problems getting started. The early activity of the Fields and Particles Subcommittee is typical of the activity of the other subcommittees.
 
A Shaky Start
 
On April 1, 1960, the newly appointed chairman of the Fields and Particles Subcommittee sent a memo to Newell that outlined his plans for the Subcommittee. 155 He proposed that the responsibility of the Subcommittee be "the study of charged and neutral radiation of energy greater than thermal and the magnetic fields of the Sun, planets, and space," In addition, he proposed to formulate a long range program to obtain the necessary experimental data and theoretical work to describe, understand and predict the behavior of the particles and fields in space. Because the phenomena were linked to the eleven-year solar cycle and because the length of the missions required to obtain the data, he proposed to plan a program that extended over at least the next ten years. He stated that he planned to maintains continuing review of the progress of the program, the status of proposed experiments, and the amount of payload space available for experiments. He proposed that the Subcommittee review proposals and recommend experimenters and experiments to the Steering Committee. The Subcommittee was to consist of a chairman and an executive secretary from Headquarters, five scientists from NASA centers and five from universities. These scientists were to be a mixture of senior scientists and young scientists fresh out of graduate school. Three of the proposed academic scientists were members of the Space Science Board.
 
Newell approved the proposed membership and granted the chairman "hunting license" to operate in all the scientific areas that he had proposed. Some of the areas proposed for the Fields and Particles Subcommittee overlapped those of the Ionospheric Physics and the Planetary and Interplanetary subcommittees.
 
The Particles and Fields Subcommittee met for the first time on May 3, 1960 in the Dolley Madison House. 156 Newell attended and told the group to look for "weaknesses in subject matter, participation, instrumentation development, and supporting research." He requested a ten-year plan by June 15 in order to include it in the annual revision of NASA's ten-year plan scheduled to be printed on July 1. He asked the Subcommittee to provide a perspective of the particles and fields discipline within the NASA space science program. In addition, he urged the Subcommittee to develop good working relationships and sound communications with the scientific community.
 
The Subcommittee at this time consisted of the following members:
 
John E. Naugle, chairman, NASA Headquarters
Robert F. Fellows, secretary, NASA Headquarters
Michael Bader, Plasma Physics, Ames Research Center
Joseph C. Cain, physicist, Magnetic Fields, GSFC
Frank B. McDonald, cosmic-ray physicist, GSFC
William S. McDonald, cosmic-ray physicist, JPL
Marcia Neugebauer, plasma physicist, JPL
 
and liaison members:
 
J. W. Blue, reactor physicist, Lewis Research Center
Clinton E. Brown, Aerodynamics, Langley Research Center
R. D. Shelton, Nuclear Propulsion, MSFC
 
The first meeting of the Particles and Fields Subcommittee was singularly unimpressive. Only the chairman, the secretary, three of the five members, and one liaison member attended. After Newell left, the members held a short desultory discussion. They went over the qualifications of the university scientists under consideration for membership and proposed some additional names for consideration, reviewed the concept of the Eccentric Orbiting Geophysical Observatory (EGO), and agreed to prepare a tentative payload for the first EGO at their next meeting. They expanded their purview to include gamma-ray measurements reasoning that gamma rays and cosmic rays used similar instrumentation and that any gamma-ray data obtained would aid in understanding the origin and method of acceleration of cosmic rays. By including gamma rays in their purview, they now overlapped the work of the Astronomy Subcommittee.
 
An objective observer might have dismissed the whole business as a waste of time and a poor duplication of the work of Committee 8 of the Space Science Board-the Committee on the Physics of Fields and Particles in Space. The chairman had several worries and was unsure of his ability to act as a chairman. He feared his former colleagues at Goddard would be hostile to the concept of Headquarters selecting scientists and was not sure that they would be able to "find the time" to work on the Subcommittee. He feared that academic scientists would refuse to participate because the NASA subcommittee duplicated the Space Science Board's committee. Worst of all, if NASA Headquarters ignored the recommendations of the committee, the pain involved in giving up his personal research and all the time and energy to get the subcommittee started would be for naught.
 
Business Picks Up
 
Business picked up at the second meeting. 157 Four of the five members attended, the chairman reviewed NASA's existing Particles and Fields Program, and the group discussed the merits of various magnetometers. The Subcommittee then tackled a thorny issue. Should NASA fly classified DOD experiments on its scientific missions? Scientists from Los Alamos had proposed flying some classified experiments to detect nuclear explosions on JPL's Ranger missions. The Subcommittee voted not to carry classified experiments on NASA vehicles and to evaluate unclassified DOD experiments on the basis of their scientific merit rather than their military significance. The Committee reasoned that experiments with high military significance should qualify for space on DOD missions and not take up precious space on NASA's limited number of scientific missions.
 
An Appendix, "The Present NASA Particles and Fields Program," was included with the minutes of the second meeting. It listed the complete program, gave the name of each mission, the NASA number(s), the launch vehicle, expected launch date, trajectory lifetime, project manager project scientist, the names of the scientists, and a description of their instruments and the institution with which they were affiliated. The list included the purpose of each experiment; the principal experimental parameters to be measured, such as the types of particles or fields to be detected, energy range, and types of detectors; a brief description of the experimental arrangement; and the volume, weight and power requirements. In addition to the list of space missions there was a list of planned balloon flights, sounding rockets, satellites, space probes, and planetary missions.
 
The Appendix was a useful compendium for scientists working in the field and made the members of the Subcommittee instant authorities on the NASA program. This enhanced their status among their colleagues and made membership on the Subcommittee more attractive. The Appendix was also a harbinger of the coming age of bureaucracy in the space science program. No longer would physicists be able to merely conceive of an experiment. In the future, they must specify precisely, and extend as far as possible, the operating range of their instruments. Otherwise, the Subcommittee might select a competitor simply because his or her instrument covered a slightly greater energy range. Such a decision by the Subcommittee would not necessarily be capricious; it might be the only rationale the Subcommittee could find for deciding between two highly competent scientists proposing nearly identical experiments.
 
The Subcommittee recommended a list of EGO experiments, satisfying the commitment it had made at the first meeting. It recognized a lack of polar satellites in the Particles and Fields Program and recommended a polar radiation satellite. The members discussed radiation damage to solar cells and the use of shielding to increase their lifetimes in the radiation belts.
 
Newell joined the group to discuss the list of potential university scientists to be added to the Subcommittee. As a result of the discussion, the members modified the list in order to involve more universities, provide better geographic coverage, and increase the number of theoretical physicists.
 
The minutes of this meeting provide a glimmer of hope that the Subcommittee would succeed and be useful. It gave solid recommendations to senior NASA management and provided clear communications between NASA management and its members. NASA accepted the Subcommittee's recommendations regarding the treatment of experiments proposed by DOD laboratories. 158 NASA did not fly the classified experiments on the Ranger missions, but because of schedule and weight problems, not because of the Subcommittee's recommendation. In the spring of 1960, subcommittee recommendations did not yet carry that much weight.
 
Background of the Members
 
On July 11, 1960, the Subcommittee finally assembled in its full glory for a third meeting, with all the NASA members (or their representatives) and four of the five consultants present. 159 By this time, the full membership of the Subcommittee consisted of the following:
 
Members
John E. Naugle, chairman, NASA Headquarters
Robert F. Fellows, secretary, NASA Headquarters
Michael Bader, Plasma Physics, Ames Research Center
Joseph C. Cain, physicist, Magnetic Fields, GSFC
Frank B. McDonald, cosmic-ray physicist, GSFC
William S. McDonald, cosmic-ray physicist, JPL
Marcia Neugebauer, plasma physicist, JPL
 
Consultants
Kinsey Anderson, magnetospheric physicist, Berkeley
Thomas Gold, astrophysicist, Cornell University
Eugene N. Parker, theoretical physicist, Chicago
Bruno Rossi, plasma physicist, MIT, Member SSB
James A. Van Allen, physicist, Iowa, Member SSB
John R. Winckler, physicist, Minnesota
 
Liaison Members
John W. Blue, reactor physicist, Lewis Research Center
Clinton E. Brown, Aerodynamics, Langley Research Center
Richard D. Shelton, Nuclear Propulsion, MSFC
 
The membership of the Particles and Fields Subcommittee was typical of the six subcommittees of the Space Science Steering Committee. The chairman and the secretary were permanent members of Newell's staff at NASA Headquarters; five scientists came from NASA flight centers and six from universities. Of the six universities represented, two were on the East Coast, one on the West Coast, and three from the Upper Midwest. There was a mixture of Young Turks and wise old heads; six of the scientists were just starting their careers, five were well established.
 
If membership in the National Academy of Sciences is accepted as a measure of a scientist's ability, the Subcommittee was well qualified. Van Allen and Rossi already belonged to the Academy; Parker was elected in 1967, Gold in 1968, Anderson in 1980, and Frank McDonald in 1986. Van Allen and Rossi were also members of the Space Science Board.
 
Some of the members of the particles and Fields Subcommittee shared a unique background. Naugle, Frank McDonald, Anderson, and Winckler were either professors at or had received their Ph.D.s from the University of Minnesota and had conducted cosmic-ray research using balloons in projects funded by the Office of Naval Research (ONR); Anderson, Frank McDonald, and Van Allen had worked together at the University of Iowa using balloons and sounding rockets in projects sponsored by ONR; William McDonald worked at ONR prior to joining JPL. Six members, Naugle, Frank McDonald, Anderson, Winckler, Parker, and Van Allen, were members of the Midwest Cosmic Ray Conference that met in mid-winter in Minneapolis, Chicago, or Iowa City, presented informal papers, quarreled over results, and consumed a good deal of food and liquor. Although called a conference, it was actually a series of symposia in the classic Greek sense.
 
Clearly, most of the members of the Fields and Particles Subcommittee shared a common professional heritage and scientific philosophy. Prior to Sputnik they were watched over and supported by an enlightened and benevolent Office of Naval Research (ONR), which expected them to conduct original research in cosmic rays and publish their findings in reputable, refereed, scientific journals. When academic scientists visited ONR to discuss proposed cosmic-ray research projects, they expected to meet with an ONR employee, usually another scientist, who understood the objectives of the proposed research project and was sympathetic to the problems of conducting research in a university. After such a meeting, the scientists sent their proposals to ONR. ONR then sent them to other scientists working in the same field of research for review and comment. The scientists who administered the ONR programs used the comments they received from the reviewers and their own scientific judgment to decide whether to fund the proposed research. Academic scientists expected the scientists at ONR, and the proposal reviewers, to respect and protect their proprietary ideas and discoveries. The members of the Particles and Fields Subcommittee approached their work with this same professional philosophy.
 
No Substitutes, Please
 
Two of the absent members sent representatives to the third meeting. Their representatives were not allowed to participate in the meeting because they were there in direct violation of Newell's policy-the members and consultants were chosen on the basis of their scientific competence and not as representatives of their institutions. If a member of the Subcommittee could not attend, then his or her seat at the Subcommittee table was vacant. This policy provided an added incentive for the members and consultants to attend; if they failed to appear, their views and their area of research would not be represented.
 
By this time, membership on a subcommittee was becoming distinctly attractive to NASA and to academic scientists. Members of subcommittees became aware of the entire NASA program in their discipline. They influenced the NASA program and spoke with authority to their staff and colleagues. Other scientists not on the subcommittee called them to find out what new missions NASA was considering and to suggest actions that NASA should take. Their position on the subcommittee increased their prestige among their associates and added to the clout they had at their own institutions. Active participation in subcommittee activity became more attractive.
 
At this third meeting, the Subcommittee reviewed NASA's 10-Year Plan for Energetic Particles and Fields. Frank McDonald reviewed the status of the Orbiting Geophysical Observatories (OGOs), and the Energetic Particles Satellite, Explorer XII. Marcia Neugebauer reviewed the status of Rangers I and II.
 
The group held a long discussion about interplanetary plasma-the thin, highly ionized gas that pervades space-and decided that the lack of plasma data was one of the greatest stumbling blocks in the understanding of interplanetary space. It also concluded that one of the major difficulties in performing plasma measurements was the uncertainty over the electrostatic charge on the vehicle. Members recommended the formation of a group to study the problem and to recommend to the Subcommittee a satellite design that would minimize the effects of the vehicle charge on plasma measurements.
 
Genesis of the "AFO"
 
During a lengthy discussion of NASA's communications with the scientific community, the academic scientists raised a question: how did NASA plan to inform academic scientists of available payload space on NASA missions and the schedule for allocating it? Scientists needed this information to plan their own research programs and to decide the NASA missions for which they would go to the effort required to prepare proposals. The Subcommittee recommended that NASA announce its plans for new missions in scientific journals and magazines and give the name and address of the person at NASA who was in charge of a mission. The Subcommittee also recommended that NASA publish pertinent details of missions in a document and send it to all scientists with NASA contracts and to all other scientists interested in space science. The document would specify the number of copies of proposals required and the date they should reach NASA to be considered for a particular mission, and the scientists would be asked to respond with formal proposals with funding requirements and sufficient data to enable the Subcommittees to evaluate their scientific merit. The Subcommittee also recommended that the proposals contain sufficient information on the weight, volume, power, and special structural requirements to enable the field center responsible for the mission to determine if the experiment was compatible with the spacecraft. 160
 
Here was a significant set of recommendations. Not only should payload space on NASA vehicles be available to all scientists but every effort should be made to ensure that every scientist, whether at a university or a NASA center, would have equal access to the information about a mission and an equal chance in the competition. Ultimately, this recommendation made its way into later versions of TMI 37-1-1 and NASA began to issue "Announcement of Flight Opportunities" or in the jargon of the space scientist, "AFO's."
 
The Selection Process Bypasses the Subcommittee
 
It was the fall of 1961 before the Subcommittee participated in the selection process. The fields and particles experiments selected for the JPL Ranger missions were not reviewed by the Particles and Fields Subcommittee. The Lunar and Planetary Program Office in NASA Headquarters selected the scientists and sent their names to the Space Science Steering Committee, which reviewed them and forwarded them to Silverstein for his approval. It still behooved aspiring space scientists to maintain good relations with the project scientists at Goddard and JPL as well as with the program scientists at NASA Headquarters if they wanted to fly. (Not until June 1962, at its tenth meeting, did the Particles and Fields Subcommittee review and evaluate a set of competing proposals for a specific mission.)
 
The Particles and Fields Subcommittee met in May 1961 at JPL, where the members listened to the results of Explorer X, a short-lived, battery-powered spacecraft, instrumented with a magnetometer and plasma probe, that had been launched March 25, 1961, to study the magnetosphere. It also reviewed the status of Ranger 1, which was at the Cape awaiting launch, and the Eccentric Orbiting Geophysical Observatory, whose proposed payload was 150 pounds overweight. In addition, the Subcommittee reviewed, but took no action with respect to, the scientists and experiments selected for Mariner A, the mission scheduled to fly by Venus in 1962; endorsed two new missions, S-64 and S-64a, designed to be flown in geostationary orbits to study the magnetosphere; reiterated the need for a small polar-orbiting radiation satellite; and strongly endorsed another flight of either Explorer XII, or P- 14, with several additional experiments to study cosmic rays and the magnetosphere. It also went over the experiments proposed for EGO and made comments with the understanding that it would review the payload before NASA Headquarters made a final selection in the fall. 161
 
The next meeting, in Boulder, Colorado, in October combined a meeting of the Particles and Fields Subcommittee with a symposium on solar flares. Sponsoring a symposium or scheduling Subcommittee meetings in conjunction with professional society meetings proved to be good devices to get members to attend.
 
By setting priorities for the experiments for the Interplanetary Monitoring Probe (IMP) at this meeting, the Subcommittee began to participate more directly in the evaluation and selection procedure. In August 1961, shortly before the Subcommittee meeting, Dr. Leslie W. Meredith and Dr. Frank B. McDonald of Goddard proposed a new mission directly to the Space Sciences Steering Committee. This new mission, the IMP was designed to place a spacecraft in a highly eccentric orbit traveling from below the radiation belts through the magnetosphere and into interplanetary space. Its objectives were consistent with earlier recommendations of the Space Science Board and the Fields and Particles Subcommittee. It was also needed to monitor the radiation environment in space during the Apollo missions. McDonald's and Meredith's proposal included a group of scientists, selected by McDonald, whose combined experiments were likely to exceed the weight capability of the launch vehicle. The Subcommittee reviewed the payload and by secret ballot ranked the ten proposed experiments in order of their scientific merit.
 
Mcdonald, the IMP project scientist, had selected a logical group of scientists for the mission. The members of the Subcommittee had no quarrel with his selection, even though he had included his own experiment in his recommendation. There had been, however, no official notice to any scientist, including those proposed by McDonald, of the IMP mission and no opportunity for scientists other than those selected by McDonald to participate in the IMP mission. Launched November 27, 1963, IMP-I, or Explorer XVIII, became a spectacular success and the spacecraft series created by McDonald became the workhorse of fields and particles research for the next decade. 162
 
The Subcommittee Begins to Evaluate Proposals
 
The first IMP payload was the last payload selected by a project scientist at Goddard or JPL. After this first IMP, NASA Headquarters advertised each new mission and provided adequate information well in advance of the selection date, so that any scientist, whether in a university or in a NASA center, could compete on an equal footing for a place for his or her experiment.
 
At its tenth meeting, June 1962, the Particles and Fields Subcommittee settled into the evaluation procedure that it used to review proposals, a procedure it followed until January 1970, when the Subcommittee was abolished. During this meeting the Subcommittee evaluated twenty-six proposals for the first Polar Orbiting Geophysical Observatory (POGO). The chairman grouped proposals with similar scientific objectives together, such as those that measured magnetic fields and before the meeting asked a Subcommittee member who was familiar with a particular area of research to read all the proposals in his or her area. At the Subcommittee meeting, this member presented a personal assessment of the relative scientific and technical merits of the proposals reviewed. All the members of Subcommittee then discussed the merits of all the proposals and placed each of them in one of four categories:
 

Scientific Value

Technical Status

Category I

Excellent

Excellent

Category II

Good, but old

Excellent

Category IIIa

Excellent

Uncertain

Category IIIb

Good

Uncertain

Category IV

Not suitable for this mission

 
All the members and consultants reviewed and summarized proposals and voted on the category in which an experiment was to be placed. There were two exceptions: No member was asked to review and summarize his or her, or a competitor's, proposal, and each member left the room when his or her own proposals were discussed and categorized. In its work the Subcommittee made no distinction between scientists from NASA centers, from universities, or from other government or industrial laboratories. With the exception of the chairman and secretary, who were from NASA Headquarters, all the members and consultants were scientists actively engaged in space research. They were familiar with the objectives of the experiment, the competence of the scientist, the nature of the instruments proposed and the ability of the scientific team to build them. In the case of the Polar Orbiting Geophysical Observatory (POGO), the Subcommittee placed ten experiments in Category I, one in Category II, one in Category IIIa and fourteen in Category IV. 163
 
At the next meeting, on September 6, 1962, at the request of the Lunar and Planetary Program Office, the Subcommittee evaluated eleven proposals for a lunar orbiter. It placed four experiments in Category I, three in IIIA, and the rest in IV. IT also evaluated three experiments for a Goddard satellite to be placed in geostationary orbit, placing one experiment in Category I, one in IIIA, and one in IV. 164
 
The Roles of the Subcommittees and the Program Offices
 
The members of all the subcommittees expected a Headquarters program office to use only Category I experiments to make up a payload and to select a Category II experiment only if no Category experiment had been proposed. They also expected the program offices to provide funds to scientists whose experiments were placed in Category IIIA so that they could continue to develop their instruments to the point where they could make it into Category I during future evaluations. The subcommittees placed experiments in Category IV either because they were poor experiments or because they were "unsuitable" for the mission under consideration. An experiment might be unsuitable for a variety of reasons. It might weigh too much, require too much telemetry or a different orbit, or it might just be an inferior or shoddy experiment. The official minutes of subcommittee meetings almost always used the word "unsuitable," rather than "shoddy," when placing an experiment in Category IV in order to protect the reputations of scientists at their home institutions.
 
The members of the subcommittees jealously guarded their roles in the selection of experiments and were very careful in their evaluation and categorization of a scientist's proposal. They recognized that they were not selecting the scientists; they were only choosing the group of scientists from which the program office would select the scientists to participate in the mission. As long as a program office selected only those scientists placed in Category I, the subcommittees had no justification to complain about a selection. The subcommittees recognized that the program office had to take into account the recommendations of other subcommittees as well as the payload space and funding available for instruments.
 
In 1963, however, despite the existence of a Category I experiment with similar objectives, a program office proposed a payload to the Steering Committee that included an experiment that had been placed in Category III by the subcommittee that had reviewed the proposals. Not only did the program office select a Category III experiment, but it passed over a competing Category I experiment. The chairman of the subcommittee that had reviewed the proposals protested, and in one of the few cases (perhaps the only one) the Steering Committee reversed a recommendation of the program office and recommended the selection of the scientist whose proposal had been placed in Category I. This row effectively settled the roles of the subcommittees and the program offices in the selection of scientists: The program offices would select the scientists for a mission but they had to respect the recommendations of the subcommittee. There were no more instances where a program office selected a scientist whose experiment had been placed in Category II or III if there was another scientist whose experiment had been placed in Category I. 165
 
Conflict of Interest in the Subcommittees
 
From the beginning, Newell and his staff worried about the conflict of interest in using scientists to evaluate their competitors' proposals. NASA created the Steering Committee and its subcommittees at a time when competition for payload space for some disciplines was already fierce. Earlier, the Space Science Board and the President's Science Advisory Committee had severely criticized NASA's selection procedures. 166, 167, 168 In view of these concerns, Newell and the members of the Space Science Steering Committee concluded that they needed to persuade the most competent and knowledgeable scientists in the field to serve as members of the subcommittees. Such scientists were essential to ensure that only scientists with the best proposals were selected. Competent scientists, however, were usually those participating in the program and regularly submitting proposals of their own for flight, and therefore likely to have a conflict of interest. Nevertheless, Newell concluded that the need to select the best experiments far outweighed the need to avoid the conflict of interest and directed the chairmen to seek the most competent scientists to serve on the subcommittees, regardless of potential conflicts of interest. In order to reduce the adverse effects (real or imagined) of the conflict of interest, Newell required that a subcommittee member whose proposal was under review leave the meeting while his or her experiment was discussed and voted on.
 
As soon as the subcommittees began evaluating proposals, a new problem arose: How to provide the subcommittee members with adequate information about the scientists and their proposed experiments. Young and inexperienced scientists were entering the field, often with new and untried instruments. Subcommittee members, uncomfortable using only the written proposals in their evaluation, requested their chairmen to invite scientists to come before the subcommittee and argue the merits of their proposals. There was a precedent for this; the chairman of the Working Group on Internal Instrumentation, the group that evaluated the proposals for the Vanguard satellites, had invited anyone proposing an experiment to come before the Group and explain his or her experiment. In this way, scientists could present more detail than they could in their written proposals, answer questions of subcommittee members, and by their presentation and response to questions, give the members some insight into the competence of the scientists themselves.
 
Newell agreed to allow subcommittee chairmen to invite scientists to present their proposals, provided all the scientists with similar or competitive proposals were also invited to discuss their proposals with the subcommittees during the same meeting. In cases where the competition was high and subcommittee members had difficulty deciding between rival proposals, a chairman might invite the proponents of competing proposals to come back into the meeting two or three times during the discussion to clear up some misunderstanding about the capability or status of the proposed instrumentation. Thus, in the early 1960s, Newell and his staff made every effort to use the most competent people to evaluate proposals and provide them with the information they needed to make their evaluations, even though this sometimes created a legal or scientific conflict of interest.
 
The intense competition among scientists and the concern about conflict of interest placed tremendous pressure on the members of the subcommittees to assign only superior experiments to Category I and to understand and be able to justify the subcommittee's decisions. Although scientists at NASA Headquarters made the final selection and subcommittee members were requested to refer all inquiries and complaints about a selection to NASA Headquarters, this still did not protect subcommittee members from questions about or criticism of their actions on the subcommittee. The names of the members of the subcommittees were well known; a colleague who was not selected could corner a member at a scientific meeting or elsewhere and demand to know why his or her proposal was placed in slow category. The member knew that there had better be a logical rationale for the subcommittee's decision. If the rationale was not logical, one's colleague was likely to consider the member stupid or a liar. If the member used the wrong rationale or tried to blame other members of the committee for the decision, he or she would be in hot water with the other members of the subcommittee and NASA Headquarters.
 
Subcommittee meetings were often acrimonious. Moreover, program chiefs in NASA Headquarters fought one another over the allocation of payload space for their respective disciplines; academic and government scientists complained they were not getting a fair shake; lawyers and procurement specialists worried about the informality of the procedure and legal conflicts of interest; and disputes sometimes erupted in the Steering Committee. Nevertheless, beginning in 1962, the selection process began to work. The program offices at NASA Headquarters issued AFOs and selected the scientists. NASA's space flight centers awarded contracts, integrated experiments into the spacecraft, and flew the missions. The scientists prepared proposals, built instruments, analyzed data, published papers, and grudgingly accepted the procedures laid down in TMI 37-1-1. Once the Steering Committee reviewed a proposed payload, and the associate administrator for the Office of Space Science approved its recommendation, no disgruntled scientist overturned a selection during the years the subcommittees operated.


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