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Centers on National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) career but includes early life, professional training at Swarthmore College and University of Chicago; staff position at Yerkes Observatory, work and relations with William Morgan, and later the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL). Identifies development of astronomical interests at NASA, early advocates of space astronomy, and the evolution of the NASA astronomy programs and relationships with other space interests at Kitt Peak, National Science Foundation (NSF),and elsewhere.
This interview deals with the career of a prominent administrator of space science. After a brief discussion of his early life and education at Harvard University and the University of Wisconsin in the 1930s, Dr. Newell discusses the following: teaching cadets at University of Maryland; war work at the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL); reaction to news of the atomic bomb; development of early rocket-sonde program at the NRL, 1945-46; upper atmospheric research; establishment of V-2 Panel (later Rocket and Satellite Research Panel); impressions of early rocket researchers such as E. O.