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1929 Chronology

1929 - .
  • Hermann Oberth published Wege zur Raumschiffahrt (Path to Space Travel) - . Nation: Austria. Related Persons: Oberth.

    Hermann Oberth published Wege zur Raumschiffahrt, in which he greatly elaborated on ideas presented in his 1923 book. Oberth here presented several specific designs for orbital space stations, ranging from spherical living quarters for the crew to large reflective mirrors fabricated in orbit. Among several innovations were methods for fabrication in orbit, propulsion by particle emission, and small ferry vehicles to permit travel in the vicinity of the station. Such stations could be used for a variety of purposes, ranging from scientific observation sites to military installations.


1929 - .
  • Tsiolkovskiy's Rocket Space Trains - . Nation: Russia. Related Persons: Tsiolkovskiy. In this work he suggested a method of reaching of escape velocity using a multistage booster..

1929 January 21 - .
  • Birth of Dr Robert Ward Philips - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Phillips, Robert. American physician payload specialist astronaut, 1984-1991..

1929 March 23 - .
  • Birth of Albert Hanlin Jr Crews - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Crews. American pilot astronaut, 1965-1969..

1929 April 14 - .
  • Birth of Dr William Edgar 'Bill' Thornton - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Thornton, Bill. American physician mission specialist astronaut. Flew on STS-8, STS-51-B..

1929 June 10 - .
  • Birth of James Alton 'Jim' McDivitt - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: McDivitt. American test pilot astronaut. Flew on Gemini 4, Apollo 9..

1929 July - September - .
  • Noordung orbiting space observatory - . Nation: Germany. Related Persons: Noordung, Oberth. Spacecraft: Noordung.

    Hermann Noordung (pseudonym for Capt. Potocnik of the Austrian Imperial Army) expanded the ideas of Hermann Oberth on space flight in a detailed description of an orbiting space observatory. The problems of weightlessness, space communications, maintaining a livable environment for the crew, and extravehicular activity were considered. Among the uses of such an observatory were chemical and physical experiments in a vacuum, telescopes of great size and efficiency, detailed mapping of the earth's surface, weather observation, surveillance of shipping routes, and military reconnaissance.


1929 July 17 - . Launch Site: Auburn. LV Family: Goddard. Launch Vehicle: Goddard 3.
  • Fourth flight of a Goddard liquid rocket; first with instruments. - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Goddard. Apogee: 0.0270 km (0.0168 mi). Range: 0.0520 km (0.0323 mi).

    Started to lift at 13 sec; rose at 14 1/2 sec; reached top of flight (90 ft) at 17 sec; hit ground at 18 1/2 sec; landed 171 ft from tower. The rocket carried a small camera, thermometer, and a barometer which were recovered intact after the flight. Flight was bright and noisy, attracted public attention. The result was a great deal of "moon rocket" publicity. This resulted in prohibition of further test flights from Aunt Effie's Farm by the local fire marshall. Length 11 ft 6 in.; maximum diameter 26 in.; weight 32 lb; gasoline 14 lb; liquid oxygen 11 lb; total loaded weight 57 lb. Up to that time Goddard had achieved numerous proving-stand tests of liquid rockets, and 10 attempts at flight tests, of which four achieved flight.


1929 August 1 - .
  • First JATO takeoff. - . Nation: Germany. Use of a battery of solid-propellant rockets on Junkers-33 seaplane, the first recorded jet-assisted take-off of an airplane, made in tests near Dessau, Germany..

1929 September 5 - .
  • Birth of Andrian Grigoryevich Nikolayev - . Nation: Russia. Related Persons: Nikolayev. Chuvash-Russian pilot cosmonaut. Flew on Vostok 3, Soyuz 9. First person to fly more than one day in space. Married Valentina Tereshkova, and fathered first child born to parents that had both flown in space..

1929 September 30 - . LV Family: German Rocketplanes. Launch Vehicle: Me-163.
  • Opel Sander Rak 1 flies. - . Crew: Opel. Nation: Germany. Related Persons: Lippisch, Opel.

    Opel sponsored resumption of tests of rocket-boosted gliders near Frankfurt-am-Main, Germany. These involved a design by Lippisch, boosted by 16 powder rockets of 23 kgf each. With Opel at the controls, the glider successfully launched itself from a 20-m long rail launcher, and he flew the aircraft for ten minutes. However the landing went badly - the design had a landing speed of 160 kph, and with a total weight of 270 kg, a high wing loading. Opel survived but the glider had to be written off. This was Opel's last involvement with rocketry. General Motors, the majority owner of the Opel company, prohibited further rocketry work after the stock market crash. Fritz von Opel left the country and moved to Switzerland.


1929 October 5 - .
  • Birth of Richard Francis Jr 'Dick' Gordon - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Gordon. American test pilot astronaut. Flew on Gemini 11, Apollo 12..

1929 October 15 - . LV Family: V-2. Launch Vehicle: Oberth sounding rocket.
  • Frau im Mond (The Girl in the Moon) premieres in Berlin. - . Nation: Germany. Related Persons: Nebel, Oberth.

    The film, directed by Fritz Lang, with Hermann Oberth as technical consultant, provided a realistic portrayal of the rollout and launch of a liquid-propellant booster sending a manned expedition to the moon. Lang provided Oberth with funds to build and launch a liquid-propellant rocket to publicise the film. Oberth's rocket, using a conical combustion chamber to mix liquid oxygen and gasoline, was 1.8 m tall and was to have been launched to an altitude of 64 km over the Baltic Sea from Greifswalder Oie. One of the assistants hired by Oberth to fabricate the rocket was Rudolph Nebel, a World War I fighter pilot with (unfortunately) little actual engineering experience. Oberth also had no practical engineering or organizational ability, and was unable to produce the liquid rocket in the four months allotted. He then turned to an 11-m tall hybrid rocket that was to burn a to-be-determined carbon compound with liquid oxygen. This also proved impossible, and Oberth simply gave up and left town - returning, however, for the film's premiere. Ufa studios took ownership of the unfinished rockets.


1929 November 18 - .
  • Birth of William Joseph 'Pete' Knight - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Knight. American test pilot astronaut. Flew on X-15 Flight 190..

December 1929 - . LV Family: V-2. Launch Vehicle: Mirak.
  • VfR regroups - . Nation: Germany. Related Persons: Ley, Nebel, Oberth, Riedel, Klaus, Winkler.

    Winkler had resigned as president. Oberth is back in Berlin, and a meeting is held, with Nebel, Wurm, Oberth, Klaus Riedel, Winkler, and Willy Ley in attendance. It was decided to try and get the Oberth rocket materials back from Ufa and press on to demonstrate flight of a liquid propellant rocket. For this purpose the Oberth rocket was much too ambitious and probably wouldn't work anyway. Nebel proposes building a new 'Minimum Rakete' or 'Mirak' to demonstrate that it could be done. Work begins to obtain funds to ground test and perfect Oberth's 'Kegelduese' conical rocket motor.


1929 December 3 - 1930 June 30 - . LV Family: Goddard. Launch Vehicle: Goddard 4.
  • Goddard rockets tests at Camp Devens - . Nation: USA. Related Persons: Goddard.

    Goddard conducts tests at the artillery range at Camp Devens, 25 miles from Worcester, for the improvement of liquid-fuel rocket-motor efficiency, particularly the 'curtain cooling.' Sixteen proving-stand tests were made; there were no flight tests. A few special tests were made with rocket-operated propellers.



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