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A Brief History
 
The NASA John H. Glenn Research Center at Lewis Field originated in 1941 as the Aircraft Engine Research Laboratory of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). It was later renamed the Lewis Research Center in honor of the late George Lewis, NACA's Director of Aeronautical Research. The name was changed to its present form in 1999 in honor of Ohio Senator John H. Glenn, the first American to orbit Earth.

The laboratory was conceived as a national resource capable of providing innovations in aircraft engine technology and transitioning these innovations to U.S. industry for use in future propulsion system designs for commercial and military applications. In the early 1960s, Glenn pioneered the use of liquid hydrogen for rocket and aircraft propulsion, allowing the United States to win the race to the moon. wind tunnel The Altitude Wind Tunnel was built in 1944. Credit: NASA


Over the past 60 plus years, our scientists and engineers have made major technology contributions that have expanded horizons and opened frontiers for both aviation and space exploration. These innovations have enabled U. S. industry to assume a leadership position in the world aerospace marketplace and have contributed to the nation's safety and security.

More Information:
>Engines and Innovation: Lewis Laboratory and American Propulsion Technology →
> NASA Glenn Historical Timeline
> Who We Are, What We Do