Page images

Mr. PATTEN. This may be out of your line, but how about when the Russians took their pictures in 1959, would it have been difficult for us to have tuned in and received the pictures?

Mr. KREUZER. I think-and this can only be an opinion from meit would have been essentially very difficult, or almost impossible. Mr. PATTEN. But on the Tiros, am I to believe that in many areas they are receiving these weather pictures and all, very cheaply, with an ordinary receiving set?

Mr. KREUZER. Beginning with Tiros 8, a new type of camera was placed on the craft-the automatic picture-taking camera, sometimes abbreviated as APT, and this is designed for ultimate use on the Nimbus spacecraft, and it can be programed and is programed to radiate pictures continuously for the benefit of anybody that has a relatively low priced ground station. It is really designed to bring this benefit, and it has been very useful around the world already.

Mr. KARTH. Mr. Kreuzer, I am sure that I cannot disagree with you with any degree of certainty, but it seemed to me when I talked to Dr. Goett at Goddard Space Flight Center about the Tiros, he did indicate that through the use of certain massage techniques they had had some trouble with the Tiros cameras on a couple of occasions and were able to reactivate the equipment. That discussion indicated to me that through the use of certain techniques they were able to bring it back to life.

Do I misunderstand Dr. Goett?

Mr. KREUZER. No, sir; and perhaps I misunderstood you before. From time to time, and particularly as the Tiros vehicle reaches far beyond its goal life, which has usually been 90 days, there has been deterioration in parts of the system, pictures that were missed, and it has been possible in some instances to overcome these problems from the ground, and extend the life of the satellite. Usually this has taken place later in life, many months after the expected lifetime of the satellite.

Mr. KARTH. You don't feel these techniques could be used to massage the Ranger system so as to provide an opportunity of bringing it back to life?

Mr. KREUZER. I think here I would have to say that the systems are sufficiently dissimilar. One of the features of the Tiros system is that it carries video tape recorders which store pictures taken at remote points to play them back later, so it isn't just a camera system, it has this other feature. It has a programer for these extended missions that it travels, and sometimes the difficulties have related to these items rather than the cameras.

Mr. KARTH. I understand that there are certainly differences in the systems, just as there are differences between two different launch vehicles; but certain principles must be pretty similar, if not identical, and I was wondering if in this instance, by using somewhat similar massage techniques there would not have been the possibility that, had they been employed, the Ranger would have given us some pictures.

Mr. KREUZER. I really think, Mr. Chairman, there isn't enough parallelism to say that techniques used on Tiros could have helped


Mr. KARTH. Are there any techniques that you know of, where, if in Ranger 7 we encounter some difficulties turning on the camera system, you can massage or exercise the system in one way or another so that you might cause it to be turned on? Is this such a system that we can't massage or exercise it in any way? Is this beyond our state of the art?

Mr. KREUZER. I think the two greatest contributions to improvement in Ranger 7 along these lines is the ability to keep it turned off until after we have passed the critical pressure area, and to be able to turn it off in its most simple form, if a turnoff is required, though, again, I think I would like to repeat, had the arcing on Ranger VI been something that we could have been aware of at this instant, it is still unlikely we could have saved the system. It is a very rapid effect.

Mr. KARTH. You said likely. Is there any possibility?

Mr. KREUZER. I am not sure I know. I think we always like to feel that there is some possibility of doing almost anything and making an improvement. No immediate way suggests itself to me.

Mr. KARTH. Do we have any knowledge, Mr. Kreuzer, on what component parts were destroyed?

Mr. KREUZER. No, because we really aren't certain it was destroyed, or, if it was, what parts were.

Mr. KARTH. You just have certain suspect areas.

Mr. KREUZER. I would expect the suspect area to be the parts connected with the high-voltage power supplies and the cameras; those parts where high voltage was present.

Mr. KARTH. Thank you. Proceed, please.

Mr. KREUZER. The results of the investigation indicate that the specific cause of the failure may never be clearly known. It does seem most likely that the TV subsystem was inadvertently turned on during a time when the spacecraft was still in an atmospheric environment, and that this permitted high-voltage electrical arcing which essentially destroyed the TV subsystem. Additional means have been adopted in Ranger 7 to prevent premature turn-on.

At RCA, we have handled the Ranger program from the start in accordance with our established project management philosophy, beginning with the organization of a program office similar to those we have maintained for the successful Tiros and Relay programs.

The project manager has the full responsibility for the conduct of the program and can draw upon all the resources not only of our space division, but of the entire RCA organization.

Mr. KARTH. Could I ask at this point what management system you use?

Do you use a matrix system, a project system, or a combination of the two, as I think now exists at JPL?

Mr. KREUZER. I think we are very close to a combination of the two systems in our program management.

Mr. KARTH. Thank you.

Mr. KREUZER. The actual engineering work was performed by our engineering department. All engineering and design decisions were closely analyzed and approved by senior technical staff personnel in independent design reviews. This procedure of checks and balances gives us assurance that we have evolved the best technical designs pos

sible within the limits set by the complete system and by the mission requirements.

All space programs involving new goals and new equipment are highly developmental in nature. Each new step in space confronts us with new problems resulting in part from our incomplete understanding of a hostile environment. Ranger is a pioneering spacecraft designed to perform a difficult mission. We are doing everything possible to make it successful.

Mr. HECHLER. Mr. Chairman, I was just going to observe whether Mr. Kreuzer, in view of the questioning by the committee, might delete the last two words of his statement, and I notice he did.

Mr. DOWNING. Which were "thank you."

Mr. KREUZER. I was waiting until you finish your questioning, and then I was going to say thank you.

Mr. PATTEN. It would seem that we have a "Sunday morning quarterback" with no 20/20 vision in this case.

Mr. KARTH. If you don't say thank you, Mr. Kreuzer, we will understand the reason why. [Laughter.]

I think I have one final question. You had an opportunity to deal with two laboratories in the development of TV subsystems for two different projects-Goddard Space Flight Center and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Are there any significant differences in the way JPL dealt with you, as opposed to the way Goddard Space Flight Center dealt with you?

Mr. KREUZER. The nature of the programs, as we have been describing them, have differed somewhat, so that I have to consider the question in all of its aspects. But on a very broad overall basis, I would say, "No, sir, as a subcontractor to JPL we felt the same relationship as when we have and continue to be a prime to Goddard."

Mr. KARTH. Do you say that when you deal with JPL you get a lesser or greater amount of technical assistance from NASA than you do when you deal with Goddard?

Mr. KREUZER. I think that we simply are dealing with two different organizations in the sense that JPL provides the technical assistance to us, acting like a center in the same way that Goddard does when we deal directly with them.

May I expand a bit on that?

Mr. KARTH. Please do.

Mr. KREUZER. I think that in our everyday existence we regard JPL as if it were another center, and NASA is to us, in this instance, headquarters in the same way that we think of headquarters at Goddard.

Mr. KARTH. Is there any difference in your relationship in these two instances in your dealings with the people who are directing the Office of Space Sciences and Applications, such as Dr. Newell and Mr. Cortright, for example?

Mr. KREUZER. I don't think there are any differences that I am aware of, sir.

Mr. KARTH. Thank you.

Mr. DOWNING. I have one question.

Mr. KARTH. Mr. Downing.

Mr. DOWNING. Mr. Kreuzer, this TV camera in Ranger-does it represent an advancement in the state of the art of television insofar as sensitivity and reproduction of pictures is concerned?

Mr. KREUZER. Mr. Downing, I would say its improvement lies more in the direction of high resolution, and, yes, its sensitivity is very high,


I think if I were to single out the one significant thing it would be high resolution.

Mr. DOWNING. What I am trying to determine is this, Mr. Kreuzer: Will this ultimately be of benefit to the commercial production of cameras?

Mr. KREUZER. I think indirectly, Mr. Downing, it may-not directly, because these are still single, discreet, photo-at-a-time-types of presentations, where commercial television is a motion picture type of presentation.

Mr. DOWNING. Thank you very much.

Mr. PATTEN. In this whole art, the fact that you are sending a picture from 275,000 miles away as compared to the Tiros, which is in near-earth orbit, does that make any significant difference, or does distance mean nothing?

Mr. KREUZER. Distance means the requirement for higher power to transmit the signal this longer distance, and this craft did contribute to the advance in the state of the art in the direction of high power.

Mr. KARTH. Mr. Kreuzer, NASA has certain quality control assurance standards. Could you tell the subcommittee whether or not there is any difference in the Goddard surveillance of quality control procedures that you are required to adhere to, and those quality control procedures employed by JPL?

Mr. KREUZER. Mr. Chairman, there are differences, but no more than the kinds of differences that we experience between our various customers, certainly not differences that would reflect negatively on either one or the other.

Mr. KARTH. Yes; but these are supposed to be standard quality control assurance practices. Are there any deviations in this area?

Mr. KREUZER. I believe I have to point out that the standards have been a growing situation, and when this program started some of them were not in existence.

Mr. KARTH. The quality control standards employed by these two laboratories are different, is that correct?

Mr. KREUZER. Today I think they are very closely alike.

Mr. KARTH. Prior to Ranger VI, were they different, quite dif


Mr. KREUZER. I certainly would not say quite different, Mr. Chairman-only in the sense of evolutionary procedure. We were all growing during this period of time.

Mr. KARTH. But both laboratories should have been operating under the same quality control assurance standards ever since they have been issued, and I don't have the paper in front of me, but it is dated, I am sure. There apparently have been different quality control practices between these two laboratries, is that correct?

Mr. KREUZER. I think that since the date of the issuance of the standards of procedure there have been essentially no differences, but I must point out that as in our own case it is very difficult to retroactively apply a quality control procedure to something that may have been built a year previous.

This does not suggest that the item built a year previously was not carefully built, and under adequate quality control.

Mr. PATTEN. The Jet Propulsion Lab is connected with Cal Tech. You are near the Princeton campus. Do you have any relationship with Princeton, either direct or indirect? I know it is not corporate, but you are right in the vicinity. Is there a tie-in, or do you ever call on the university?

Mr. KREUZER. Mr. Patten, there is no tie-in. Its proximity is helpful, of course, to our students pursuing graduate work, and it does offer us a faculty with whose members we occasionally consult, but there is no tie-in.

Mr. KARTH. Are there any further questions? If not, Mr. Kreuzer, we want to thank you very much for appearing before the committee. We will review your testimony, and if we feel there may be further questions we would like to ask, we hope that you will bear with us and indulge our request.

Mr. KREUZER. If I can be of further help, I certainly would be glad to do so, and now I will add those further two words and say thank you.

Mr. KARTH. The next witness is the senior vice president of Northrop Corp., Mr. Richard E. Horner. We remember when Mr. Horner was the associate administrator of NASA.

Mr. Horner, we are very happy that you would be with us today. You have a prepared statement, and I would ask you to proceed at this point, but before we do, I would like to recognize Mr. Bell for one commercial.

Mr. BELL. I won't give the same commercial I gave the other day, Mr. Chairman.

I would like to welcome you, Mr. Horner, on behalf of the subcommittee. Coming from the same State, and I think in fact you are in my district, we are happy to hear from you and I am certain you will give us a very good review of the Ranger program. I might add that I admire your courage for attacking the weather here.


Mr. HORNER. Thank you, Mr. Bell. Mr. Chairman and gentlemen of the subcommittee, I am very conscious of the importance of these hearings which you have scheduled for the review of the Ranger project and am privileged to have this opportunity to discuss with you the participation of the Northrop Corp. It is my intent to be as responsive as possible to the questions in which you have indicated interest. And, of course, I will be happy to extend the remarks of this statement in response to your further questions.

The earliest involvement of Northrop with the Ranger project occurred in June of 1960 with a contractual commitment to supply electro-optical sensors which were to be integrated into the spacecraft attitude control system and establish the line of sight between the spacecraft and the earth during the time period of its flight to the lunar vicinity. In the succeeding months, additional contracts were negotiated with the Jet Propulsion Laboratory for fabrication of additional elements of the attitude control system and very substantial

« PreviousContinue »