Naval Academy opens exhibit on space exploration

US Naval Research Laboratory and the US Naval Academy Museum have announced they have combined resources to recount how the Navy ushered our nation into space, the USNA said.

The USNA exhibit Sea, Sun and Space displays, through visual artifacts and curated narrative, the pioneering role NRL and its collaborators and sponsors played in the future of space exploration.

Artifacts and images on display chart the emergence of the Office of Naval Research, Advanced Research Projects Agency (now referred to as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Space Test Program, Missile Defense Agency and other contributors to the US space program.

After American forces entered Germany in 1945, they captured the huge underground factory for V-2 rocket production at Nordhausen. Seeing opportunities for upper atmosphere research and improved missile design the Army Ordnance Corps invited NRL, universities and industry to coordinate experiments on captured V-2s.

Building on this concept, NRL developed a robust base of space science and engineering, becoming the home of the first US scientific satellite program, Project Vanguard.

NRL is a scientific and engineering command dedicated to research that drives innovative advances for the Navy and Marine Corps from the seafloor to space and in the information domain.