Image of the day

Captured by
Michael Scherman

The Moon and Some Sagittarius goodies

My Account

New to Astromart?

Register an account...

Need Help?

65 Years of NASA – An Astrophysicist Reflects on the Agency’s Legacy

Posted by Guy Pirro 10/17/2023 06:36PM

65 Years of NASA – An Astrophysicist Reflects on the Agency’s Legacy

Sixty-five years ago, in 1958, several government programs in the US that had been pursuing spaceflight combined to form NASA. At the time, Stephen G. Alexander, now Associate Professor of Physics at Miami University in Ohio was only 3 years old. As a professor for nearly 30 years, he now realizes that, like countless others who came of age in the 1960s and 1970s, NASA’s missions have had a profound impact on his life and career path. From John Glenn’s first flight into orbit to the Hubble telescope, the agency’s legacy has inspired generations of scientists. This is his reflection on NASA's legacy.


I was looking for Stephen G Alexanders commentary within the body of text on the loss of Gus Grissom, Roger Chaffee, and Ed White but that appears to be an error of omission...

I remember the moment I heard about the fire on the launch pad like it was yesterday. As a 12 year old who was enthralled by anything related to NASA and the astronauts, I was watching TV on our old Zenith black and white set when the program was interrupted by a cryptic news bulletin about a fire at Cape Kennedy. Then it quickly returned to the regularly scheduled program. I didn't think much of it, but soon the program was interrupted again and the world got the sad news.

For me, this Apollo tragedy is engraved in my mind just like the Challenger and Columbia disasters that followed.

Of the original Mercury 7 astronauts, Gus Grissom was my favorite.