Part II : 1950 -1957

5. NACA Research on High-Energy Propellants



NACA Rocket Subcommittee


[77] NACA officials were pleased with the outcome of the May 1950 meeting of rocket experts and the following January established the Special Subcommittee on Rocket Engines under the Power Plants Committee. The chairman was Professor Maurice J. [78] Zucrow of Purdue University, a well known and respected authority on jet propulsion.*


Establishment of the rocket subcommittee represented a significant milestone in NACA recognition of the importance of rocket research. In addition to its great value for coordinating and exchanging information on rocket research and development, the subcommittee was a political force for assuring a fair share of attention to rocket propulsion. Although the number of research personnel assigned to rocket research at the NACA Lewis laboratory was still small-less than 3 percent-the group had the strong support of both Silverstein, an associate director of the laboratory, and a body of national experts on rockets whose advice and recommendations would carry weight.


* Other members: Richard B. Canright, JPL-CIT; Comdr. K.C. Childers, USN, Bureau of Aeronautics; R. Bruce Foster, Bell Aircraft; Stanley l. Gendler, Rand Corp.; Joseph L. Gray, Office of Chief of Army Ordnance: Paul R. Hill, NACA-Langley: G.E. Moore, General Electric: Thomas E. Meyers, North American Aviation: C.W. Schnare, Wright Air Development Center: Jack H. Sheets, Curtiss-Wright: Capt. Levering Smith, USN, Naval Ordnance Test Station: R.J. Thompson. Jr., M. W. Kellog: paul Winternitz, Reaction Motors: David A. Young, Aerojet: the author: and Henry E. Alquist, NACA, secretary. The next year, Lt. Col. Langdon Ayers, USAF, replaced Schnare: Eugene Miller of Redstone Arsenal replaced Gray; and benson E. Gammon, NACA, replaced Alquist.