[FPSPACE] Max Faget dies

Zeger Nuyens dokter.nuyens at pandora.be
Sun Oct 10 17:12:41 EDT 2004

> Glenn Mahone/Bob Jacobs
> Headquarters, Washington                    Oct. 10, 2004
> (Phone: 202/358-1898/1600)
> Eileen Hawley/Kyle Herring
> Johnson Space Center, Houston
> (Phone: 281/483-5111)
> RELEASE: 04-350
>      The man who designed the original spacecraft for Project
> Mercury and is credited with contributing to the designs of
> every U.S. human spacecraft from Mercury to the Space Shuttle
> has died. Dr. Maxime A. Faget, who in 1958 became part of the
> Space Task Group that would later evolve into the NASA
> Johnson Space Center, died Saturday at his home in Houston.
> He was 83 years old.
> "Without Max Faget's innovative designs and thoughtful
> approach to problem solving, America's space program would
> have had trouble getting off the ground," said NASA
> Administrator Sean O'Keefe. "He also was an aeronautics
> pioneer. In fact, it was his work on supersonic flight
> research that eventually led to his interest in space flight.
> The thoughts and prayers of the entire agency are with his
> family."
> Faget's career with NASA dates back to 1946, when he joined
> the staff of Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va., as a
> research scientist. He worked in the Pilotless Aircraft
> Research Division and later was named head of the Performance
> Aerodynamics Branch. He conceived and proposed the
> development of the one-man spacecraft used in Project
> Mercury.
> Faget was selected as one of the original 35 engineers as a
> nucleus of the Space Task Group to carry out the Mercury
> project. The group also devoted a lot of time to follow-on
> programs and Faget led the initial design and analysis teams
> that studied the feasibility of a flight to the Moon. As a
> result of his work and other NASA research, President John F.
> Kennedy was able to commit the U.S. to a lunar landing by the
> end of the 1960s.
> "Max was a genuine icon," said NASA's Associate Administrator
> for Space Operations William Readdy, "a down-to-earth Cajun
> with a very nuts-and-bolts approach to engineering. He
> contributed immeasurably to America's successes in human
> space flight. His genius allowed us to compete and win the
> space race to the Moon."
> "Max Faget was truly a legend of the manned space flight
> program," said Christopher C. Kraft, former Johnson Space
> Center director. "He was a true icon of the space program.
> There is no one in space flight history in this or any other
> country who has had a larger impact on man's quest in space
> exploration. He was a colleague and a friend I regarded with
> the highest esteem. History will remember him as one of the
> really great scientists of the 20th Century."
> Faget was part of the original feasibility study for the
> Space Shuttle.  His team then focused on Shuttle development.
> He retired from NASA in 1981 following the second shuttle
> mission (STS-2).  His government service career spanned four
> decades.
> After retiring from NASA, Faget was among the founders of one
> of the early private space companies, Space Industries Inc.,
> established in 1982.  One of its projects was the Wake Shield
> Facility, built for the University of Houston and flown twice
> aboard the Space Shuttle to demonstrate a technique for
> processing material in a near-perfect vacuum.
> Born on August 26, 1921, in Stann Creek, British Honduras,
> Faget graduated from Louisiana State University with a
> Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering in 1943.
> He joined the U.S. Navy where he saw considerable combat as
> an officer in the submarine service.
> Faget's numerous accomplishments include patents on the
> "Aerial Capsule Emergency Separation Device" (escape tower),
> the "Survival Couch," the "Mercury Capsule," and a "Mach
> Number Indicator."
> He received numerous honors and awards, including the Arthur
> S. Flemming Award, the NASA Medal for Outstanding Leadership,
> and honorary doctorate of engineering degrees from the
> University of Pittsburgh and Louisiana State University.  He
> was inducted into the National Space Hall of Fame in 1969 and
> the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2003.  Faget was the
> first recipient of the Rotary National Award for Space
> Achievement in 1987.
> Faget was preceded in death by his wife Nancy in 1994. He is
> survived by four children: Ann, Carol, Guy, and Nanette; a
> daughter in law, two sons in law and 10 grandchildren.
> Funeral arrangements are pending.
> For additional information about Faget and his contributions
> to human space flight, visit the Internet at:
> http://history.nasa.gov/SP-4223/ch14.htm
> http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/Apollo204/faget.htm
> l
> http://grin.hq.nasa.gov/ABSTRACTS/GPN-2002-000223.html
> http://www-
> pao.ksc.nasa.gov/kscpao/history/mercury/mercury.htm
> -end-


Zeger Nuyens
dokter.nuyens at pandora.be

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