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Monday, December 16, 2013

Beijing has successfully carried out the first lunar touchdown in almost four decades, taking it a step closer to its goal of putting a man on the Moon


ON MAY 19, 1945, JUST TWELVE DAYS AFTER GERMANY’S unconditional surrender, Herbert Wagner, creator of the first Nazi guided missile used in combat, landed in Washington, D.C., in a U.S. military aircraft with blacked- out windows.

Wagner was the first of a stream of Nazi scientists, technicians, and others to arrive in the United States in a program that came to be known asProject Paperclip. It began as Operation Overcast, a program authorized by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to exploit the knowledge of Nazi scientists. (Overcast was mentioned but not clearly explained in the 2006 film The Good German starring George Clooney.)

This operation was renamed Paperclip and formally authorized in August 1945 by President Harry Truman, who was assured that no one with “Nazi or militaristic records” would be involved.

By mid-November, more Nazi scientists, engineers, and technicians were arriving in America, including Wernher von Braun and more than seven hundred other Nazi rocket scientists.

By 1955, nearly a thousand German scientists had been granted citizenship in the United States and given prominent positions in the American scientific community. Many had been longtime members of the Nazi Party and the Gestapo, had conducted experiments on humans at concentration camps, used slave labor, and committed other war crimes.

Von Braun, who in later years became the head of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), is one of the more recognizable names of the Paperclip scientists.  >>more<<

Every year since 1963, the Space Medicine Association has given out the Hubertus Strughold Award to a top scientist or clinician for outstanding work in aviation medicine.
Dr. Hubertus Strughold, dubbed the 'Father of Space Medicine,' in an early chamber designed to simulate the conditions in space. Some scientists want his name removed from a medical prize. Luis Marden/National Geographic Stock
The prestigious 50-year-old prize is named in honor of the man known as the "Father of Space Medicine," revered for his contributions to America's early space program. The German émigré, who made Texas his home after World War II, is credited with work that helped American astronauts walk on the moon.
But it is what he allegedly did during the war that has fueled a bitter controversy.
Nearly 70 years after the end of World War II, the scientific community is still fractured over the legacy of Nazi science—a conflict underscored by the clash over the Strughold prize.
Dr. Strughold, a former scientist for the Third Reich, was listed as one of 13 "persons, firms or organizations implicated" in some notorious Dachau concentration camp experiments, according to a 1946 memo by the staff of the Nuremberg Trials. The document referenced the infamous hypothermia, or "cold experiments," in which inmates were used, and typically died, as subjects exposed to freezing conditions.
For years, former colleagues and disciples have defended him, saying there was no evidence to conclude he engaged in atrocities. Other space scientists have argued that his involvement in Hitler's war machine should prevent any honors, including the eponymous prize, from being named for him.
He was never tried at Nuremberg. In America, the U.S. Justice Department investigated him at several junctures but never found sufficient grounds for prosecution.  >>more<<

China became the first country to “soft-land” on the Moon in nearly four decades on Saturday, taking the Asian super-power one step closer to putting a man on the lunar surface.The unmanned Chang'e-3 spacecraft successfully landed at just before 9.15pm Beijing time, according to Chinese state media.
“It landed on the Moon,” state media announced in a live broadcast on Saturday night. "Chang'e has landed."
Yang Yuguang, an expert from the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, said: “Soft-landing technology is a critical technology necessary for the future manned lunar missions and in the far future we should establish [lunar] bases and utilise resources on the Moon,” he said.
The spacecraft will deploy a six-wheeled, solar-powered moon rover called “Yutu” or “Jade Rabbit”.
The Jade Rabbit robot will photograph and study the Moon’s surface using four cameras and two mechanical legs for digging while the stationary “lander” will conduct studies of its own.
“The lander will work for a year while the rover is expected to function for 3 months,” CCTV announced.
Ouyang Ziyuan, the project’s leader, said China’s next step would be to launch a mission capable of returning samples of the Moon to the earth.
“I believe that within two or three years we will be able to carry out very systematic and accurate research with the samples.”
China, India and the US have fired or crash-landed probes on the Moon’s surface in recent years but this was the first soft - or controlled - landing since 1976, when the former Soviet Union’s Luna-24 landed there.  >more<   

 thank you Josh

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