Encyclopedia Astronautica
1959.06.25 - Space stations second priority to a lunar landing mission.


Laurence K. Loftin, Jr., of Langley Research Center, presented to the Research Steering Committee on Manned Space Flight a report on a projected manned space station. During subsequent discussion, Committee Chairman Harry J. Goett stated that considerations of space stations and orbiting laboratories should be an integral part of coordinated planning for a lunar landing mission.

George M. Low of NASA Hq warned that care must be exercised that each successive step in space be taken with an eye toward the principal objective (i.e., lunar landing) because the number of steps that realistically could be funded and attempted was extremely limited. (Subsequently, Low s thinking and the recommendations of the Research Steering Committee were influential in shifting the planning focus of NASA's manned space program away from ideas of large space stations and laboratories and toward lunar flight and the Apollo program.

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