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STATEMENT OF DR. ALAN T. WATERMAN, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL
SCIENCE FOUNDATION, ACCOMPANIED BY WILLIAM HOFF, GENERAL COUNSEL, NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION
Senator ANDERSON. Our next witness is Dr. Alan T. Waterman, Director of the National Science Foundation.
Dr. Waterman, the committee is looking forward to your contribuI am inserting, at the request of the chairman, your biography, Dr. Waterman, into
our record, and we are ready for any statement you may wish to make to the committee.
(The biography referred to is as follows:)
BIOGRAPHY OF DR. ALAN T. WATERMAN, DIRECTOR, NationAL SCIENCE
FOUNDATION Dr. Waterman was born June 4, 1892, in Cornwall on the Hudson, N. Y. A graduate of Princeton University, bachelor of arts, 1913, he received the degree of doctor of philosophy in physics from Princeton in 1916. During the next year he was instructor in physics at the University of Cincinnati.
After 2 years military service (private to first lieutenant) with the Science and Research Division of the Army Signal Corps in World War I, he joined the faculty of Yale University and remained in the department of physics there until 1948, with leave of absence during 1927–28 on a national research fellowship to King's College, London; to Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1937, and to the Office of Scientific Research and Development from 1942 to 1946. Dr. Waterman holds several honorary degrees.
During World War II, Dr. Waterman served as Vice Chairman of Division D and as assistant to member, National Defense Research Committee. From 1943 to 1945, he was Deputy Chief and later Chief of the Office of Field Service, Office of Scientific Research and Development. From 1946 to 1951, Dr. Waterman was with the Office of Naval Research, Department of the Navy, in the position of Deputy to the Chief and Chief Scientist. Dr. Waterman was appointed Director of the National Science Foundation on April 6, 1951.
Dr. Waterman is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society, the American Association of Physics Teachers, and the New York Academy of Sciences. He is a member of the American Association of University Professors, the_Washington Academy of Sciences, the Washington Academy of Medicine, Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society of America, and the Washington Philosophical Society. He serves as a member of the Defense Science Board and the Advisory Panel on General Sciences of the Department of Defense, and of the Science Advisory Committee and the Committee on Specialized Personnel of the Office of Defense Mobilization. He is also a member of the President's Advisory Committee on Weather Control. Dr Waterman is a member of the board of directors of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, the board of trustees of Atoms for Peace Awards, and of the board of directors of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Dr. WATERMAN. Thank you, sir.
Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I am very happy to appear before you today to give my views on matters relating to the need for efforts to accelerate our progress in space research, technology, and exploration, and more particularly regarding proposed organizational arrangements within the Government for this purpose.
Our objectives in space research and exploration were clearly expressed by the President in his message to the Congress on this subject dated April 2 in which he listed the following four factors: (1) the compelling urge of man to explore the unknown; (2) the need to assure that full advantage is taken of the military potential of space; (3) the effect on national prestige of accomplishment in space science and exploration; and (4) the opportunities for scientific observation and experimentation which will add to our knowledge of the earth, the solar system, and the universe.
Being in full agreement with these objectives, at the outset let me state that I heartily endorse in general S. 3609, which I believe is
The establishment of a new civilian agency appears to me to be the best method of carrying out the objectives desired. This is particularly true since the new agency could retain the successful experience and excellent relationships of NACA. In this way the hard-won lessons of the past will assist us to make the most rapid possible progress in developing the means for exploration and of actual Aight in outer space. Furthermore, the vast new horizons that will be opened up by progress in this area of scientific activity are of concern to very many segments of the national community; they include, but stretch far beyond, purely military considerations. Finally, a civilian-led program would place this country in a position to cooperate with other nations with respect to conquering the problems of space exploration, and would better assure à cooperative world reaction than would an effort conducted by the military.
The impetus for a determined effort in the direction of space exploration was, as you know, provided by the International Geophysical Year. The Comité Special de l'Année Geophysique Internationale (CSAGI) passed a resolution in 1954 encouraging any nation if possible to put a satellite in orbit during the International Geophysical Year. As you know, this challenge was accepted by the United States and later by the U. S. S. R.; as a result both countries have succeeded in placing satellites with different characteristics in various orbits. the world appears clearly to recognize, we stand on the threshold of a truly impressive phase of exploration. For the first time man is able to reach beyond the confines of his own planet. As yet we can have no clear idea where this type of exploration may lead. However, the logical thing is to limit our declared goals to immediate exploration of the new region of space which is now available, to study it carefully and make a sound determination of the value and feasibility of further steps in exploration and travel.
It must be recognized at once that this is a large and complicated undertaking. In order to succeed we must carry on highly competent research and development in the perfection of various types of rockets and rocket systems, the vehicles to be transported, and maintain close observation and tracking of these vehicles. We must likewise continue to push forward research into the most effective means of communication with space vehicles and into their recovery or the recovery from them of packages of one sort or another. Scientific observations made from all types of space vehicles such as rockets, satellites of the type already launched, so-called space platforms, and so forth, will be of very great importance.
Among the fields of science which will profit tremendously by the use of space vehicles beyond our atmosphere are thorough observations
of the sun, which include analysis of the light, heat, radio waves, and X-rays from the sun, together with study of the various particles, electrified and otherwise, which we know are emitted from the sun. These are highly important in our analysis of conditions upon the earth, specifically since these observations and analyses are certain to have a profound effect upon such matters as our knowledge of weather and climate on the earth and their fluctuations and upon radio communication. More generally speaking, full. knowledge of what the sun sends to us will in time undoubtedly make possible advances in our fundamental knowledge of our earth and the history and future of our solar system. Similar observations which are essentially astronomical in nature will be highly significant in the study of the planets in our solar system and the stars in our galaxy and the other galaxies. In fact, undoubtedly the most important opportunity that astronomy has ever had will be the setting up of a fair-sized astronomical telescope on a space platform so as to observe the heavenly bodies for the first time clearly and without interference from our atmosphere, and to study their complete spectra and behavior. Other studies of great importance concern the detailed nature of the magnetic field of the earth and its variations, the existence and location of streams of electrified particles in our neighborhood, and the detailed study of the shape of the earth and the distribution of its mass, which comes from accurate tracking of satellites. Finally, observations of our planet itself from this distant vantage point will undoubtedly prove to be of great advantage to our fundamental theories concerning weather and climate. This comes from such observations as the extent of cloud cover over the entire earth and its variations, the location and behavior of storms, especially violent ones such as hurricanes and the like. Of great importance to space exploration will be the studies of the existence and behavior of clouds of cosmic dust, micrometeorites or other foreign bodies, and of course the study of cosmic rays and other effects which may be damaging to the contents of space vehicles, whether instrument or human. These latter observations, of course, have particular application to space exploration and travel.
Thus it is seen that space exploration will involve essentially two types of research which merge one into the other: First, research which is necessary to the accomplishment of space exploration; second, pure research employing space vehicles as observing stations. Both types are involved in the present IGY satellite program and in those which are planned for continuation. As you know, the National Science Foundation has had the responsibility on behalf of the United States Government for securing and administering the funds for the scientific programs in the International Geophysical Year, including the satellite program, and for the coordination of this scientific work by Government agencies, while the general planning of the United States IGY program has been in the hands of the United States National Committee for the IGY in the National Academy of SciencesNational Research Council, and the latter committee also provides coordination with other countries.
From what I have said, it will be noted that the opportunities provided by space exploration will be very strongly scientific in character and civilian rather than military, although, of course, military requirements form a part of any general program. For these reasons, may I repeat my strong conviction that the program, except for its military
portion, should be in the hands of a civilian organization such as proposed in the present bill. Because of its past responsibilities with respect to the scientific aspects of studies in outer space and because of its general responsibilities for basic research in the sciences, the National Science Foundation expects to cooperate in the planning and execution of basic scientific research which may be carried out by the use of space vehicles devised by the new agency. This would be in accord with Executive Order 10521 and is exactly what we understand the bill contemplates.
Senator ANDERSON. Dr. Waterman, the committee would like to have to include in the record of its hearings a history of the International Geophysical Year, giving the background of how the international and United States national programs were developed and financed. Would you mind furnishing that for our information?
Dr. WATERMAN. I will be glad to do that, Senator Anderson. (The material referred to is as follows:)
MATERIAL FOR THE RECORD IN RESPONSE TO REQUEST OF SENATE SPECIAL
COMMITTEE ON SPACE AND ASTRONAUTICS
1. HISTORICAL BACKGROUND AND INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION OF THE INTER
NATIONAL GEOPHYSICAL YEAR
The period July 1, 1957, through December 31, 1958, has been designated as the International Geophysical Year (IGY). It is a period of worldwide observations and studies of the sun, and of the earth and its physical environment, including its atmosphere and the space through which it travels. Sixty-six nations are taking an active part in the program (attachment A).
The IGY is actually the third such scientific undertaking. During 1882–83, the First Polar Year, 10 nations, including the United States, conducted simultaneous cooperative scientific observations in the Arctic. Fifty years later the Second Polar Year, 1932–33, was undertaken, in which 30 nations cooperated in observations primarily in the Arctic. Both of these periods contributed greatly to the store of basic knowledge in the geophysical sciences.
In April 1950 at an informal meeting of geophysicists in this country the suggestion was offered that, because of the tremendous advances in instrumentation that had taken place in the 1940's, consideration be given to holding a Third Polar Year 25 years after the second, which would place it in 1957-58, a period of maximum sunspot activity. The suggestion was received with enthusiasm, and in subsequent discussions scientists throughout the world recognized the benefits of extending the planned program to encompass the entire earth and renamed it the International Geophysical Year to reflect the increased scope in coverage.
During the next 18 months the initial proposal was considered and supported by a number of international scientific groups, most of them members of the International Council of Scientific Unions (ICSU). The Mixed Commission on the Ionosphere endorsed it as did, also, in rapid succession, the International Scientific Radio Union, the International Astronomical Union, the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics, and finally the International Council of Scientific Unions itself.
In 1951 the executive board of ICSU appointed the Comité Spécial de l'Année Géophysique Internationale (CSAGI), composed of representatives of the various scientific unions involved and of the World Meteorological Organization and the International Consulative Committee for Radio Communications. A Bureau of CSAGI was appointed consisting of Prof. Sydney Chapman (Great Britain), President; Dr. Lloyd V. Berkner (United States), Vice President; and Prof. M. Nicolet (Belgium), General Secretary. Later (in June 1957) Prof. V. V. Beloussov (U. S. S. R.) and Prof. J. Coulomb (France) were added as members of the Bureau.
In late 1951 and early 1952 CSAGI invited member nations of ICSU to establish special national committees to take part in the planning and guidance of the IGY. As the concept of the program expanded, invitations to all countries of the world were issued to join in the enterprise.
Individual countries are responsible for organizing and supporting their own portions of the IGY program. In general, this means that each country provides the funds, equipment, and personnel for IGY activities that they undertake within their continental limits, possessions, or in areas where they have traditionally had an interest. The total cost to the countries participating in the IGY has been unofficially estimated in excess of $300 million.
A coordinated worldwide scientific program for the IGY was synthesized from various proposals submitted by individual nations and modified through periodic meetings of CSAGI (Brussels, 1953; Rome, 1954; Brussels, 1955; and Barcelona, 1956). A fifth meeting of CSAGI is scheduled to be held in Moscow in August of this year.
II. UNITED STATES PARTICIPATION IN THE INTERNATIONAL GEOPHYSICAL YEAR
United States National Committee for the IGY
The National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council, a nongovernmental organization, as the adhering body on behalf of American scientists to the International Council of Scientific Unions and most of its Unions, was the group in the United States that received the CSAGI invitation for this country to participate in the IGY. In response to this invitation, the Academy-Council established in February 1953 the United States National Committee for the International Geophysical Year 1957–58, under the chairmanship of Dr. Joseph Kaplan, professor of physics at the University
of California at Los Angeles. Dr. Alan H. Shapley of the National Bureau of Standards was named Vice Chairman, and Mr. 'Hugh Odishaw, formerly of the National Bureau of Standards, the Executive Director. The committee membership included appropriate representation from the various scientific disciplines involved; subcommittees were named to cover the regional programs planned (Arctic, Antarctic, Equatorial regions); and 13 technical panels were established to direct the program in the scientific disciplines of meteorology, geomagnetism, aurora and airglow, ionosphere, solar activity, cosmic rays, longitude and latitude, glaciology, oceanography, seismology, gravity, and in the programs of rocketry and communications. Role of the National Science Foundation in the IGY
The Academy-Council recognized the importance of Government cooperation and support to the success of the United States portion of the IGY program. On November 25, 1953, the Academy-Council transmitted to the National Science Foundation the recommendation of the United States National Committee for the IGY that the Foundation be asked to take responsibility for obtaining and administering Government funds required to carry out the program and to coordinate the interests of Government agencies involved.
After consideration of the recommendation and a study of the proposed program and budget, the National Science Board at its meeting of January 29, 1954, endorsed the program and the Foundation's participation in it.
After submission of the proposed program and budget for the IGY to the Bureau of the Budget, and the submission of letters of support for the program to the Bureau of the Budget from the Departments of State, Defense, and Commerce, the Atomic Energy Commission, and the Office of Defense Mobilization, the President approved the program and included the requested amount for the National Science Foundation in support of the International Geophysical Year in a supplemental appropriation request for fiscal year 1955. Action by the Congress was approval of an initial appropriation of $2 million for the IGY program (Supplemental Appropriation Act of 1955, 83d Cong., 2d sess.). Subsequent appropriations to the National Science Foundation for the program have been $10 million (Independent Offices Appropriation Act of 1956, 84th Cong., 1st sess.); $27 million (Second Supplemental Appropriation Act of 1956, 84th Cong., 2d sess.); $2 million (Second Supplemental Appropriation Act of 1958, 85th Cong., 2d sess.). The total amount, therefore, appropriated to date for the IGY program is $41 million.
Funding of the various projects in the United States IGY program has been administered through the regular grants procedure of the National Science Foundation, upon recommendations received from the United States National Committee for the IGY. Grants or transfers to 45 institutions or agencies have been made to March 31, 1958, totaling $34,871,678 (attachment B).
The National Science Foundation has, in order to assure coordination, worked closely with other Federal agencies having an active interest and role in the IGY These include the Department of Defense, Weather Bureau, National Bureau of Standards, Coast and Geodetic Survey, and Geological Survey.