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Where No Man Has Gone Before

Where No Man Has Gone Before

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Published by Bob Andrepont
NASA book on the Apollo moon landings.
NASA book on the Apollo moon landings.

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Published by: Bob Andrepont on Nov 27, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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NASASP-4214
HERENOMANHASGONEBEFORE
AHistoryfApolloLunarExplorationissions
WilliamDavidComptonTheNASAHistorySeries
_I__ANationalAeronauticsandSpaceAdministrationfficeofManagementScientificandTechnicalInformationDivisionWashington,DCt989
 
Libraryof
Congress
Cataloging-in-PublicationDataCompton,WilliamDavid.Wherenomanhasgonebefore.
(The
NASAhistoricalseries)
(NASA
SP;4214)Supt.ofDocs.no.:NAS1.21:42141.ProjectApollo
(U.S.)--History.
I.UnitedStates.NationalAeronauticsandSpaceAdministration.ScientificandTechnicalInformationDivision.II.Title.IlLSeries.IV.Series:NASASP;4214.TL789.8.U6A5281989919.9'10488-600242ForsalebytheSuperintendentofDocuments,U.S.Government
Printing
Office,Washington,DC20402
 
PREFACE
Thepurposeofthisbookisonlypartlyto
record
theengineeringandscientificaccomplishmentsofthemenandwomenwhomadeitpossibleforahumantostepawayfromhishomeplanetforthefirsttime.Itisprimarilyanattempttoshowhowscientistsinterestedinthemoonandengineersinterestedinlandingpeopleonthemoonworkedouttheirdifferencesandconductedapro-gramthatwasamajorcontributiontoscienceaswellasastunningengineeringaccomplishment.Whenscientificrequirementsbegantobeimposedonmannedspaceflightoperations,hardlyanyaspectwasunaffected.Thechoiceoflandingsites,theamountofscientificequipmentthatcouldbecarried,andtheweightoflunarmaterialthatcouldbebroughtbackalldependedon
the
capabilitiesofthespace-craftandmissionoperations.Theseconsiderationslimitedtheearliestmissionsandconstituted
the
challengeofthelaterones.
President
JohnF.Kennedy'sdecisiontobuildtheUnitedStates'spacepro-gramaroundamannedlunarlandingowednothingtoanyscientificinterestinthemoon.
The
primarydividendwastobenationalprestige,whichhadsufferedfromtheSovietUnion'searlyaccomplishmentsinspace.Asecond,equallyimpor-tant
result
ofamannedlunarlandingwouldbethecreationofanationalcapabil-itytooperate
in
spaceforpurposesthatmightnotbeforeseeable.Finally,Kennedyfelttheneedforthecountrytosetaside
"business
asusual"andcommititselfwithdedicationanddisciplinetoagoalthatwasbothdifficultandworthwhile.Kennedyhadtheassuranceofthose
in
thebestpositiontoknowthatitwastechnologicallypossibletoputahumanonthemoonwithinthedecade.
His
polit-icaladvisers,whilestressingthemanybenefits
(including
science)thatwould
accrue
fromastrongspaceprogram,recognizedatoncethathumanswerethekey.IftheSovietssentmenandwomentothemoon,noAmericanrobot,how-eversophisticatedorimportant,wouldproduceanequalimpacton
the
world'sconsciousness.
Hence
America'sleadershipinspacewouldbeassertedbyland-inghumanson
the
moon.Thislineofreasoningwasconvincingenoughformostcongressionalleaders,whowouldhavetoprovidethemoney,andwasacceptedbya
majority
ofAmeri-cans.ButApollowasconceivedanddevelopedinanerawhenthescientificcom-munitywasemergingasapoliticalforceinthecountry.Scientificresearchwasbecomingabigbusinessinthelate1950sandearly1960s,sustainedbyunprecedentedfinancialsupportfrom
thefederal
government.Sciencehadcon-stitutedthemajorportionofNASA'searlyspaceprogramandwastherationaleforthespaceprogramin
the
firstplace;hencescientistsconsideredspacetobetheirprovince.
The
investigationsofthepioneerspacescientistsdidnotrequireahuman'spresence;hencemanhad,intheirview,noimportantroleinspace.SinceApollowasnotascientificproject,itwasunnecessary;becauseitwouldbeexpensive,itprobablywouldbedetrimental
to
thelegitimatespaceprogramalreadyunderway.
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