JAMES VAN ALLEN SIGNED PHOTO, "J. A. Van Allen", 3.5 x 5, b/w, portrait, by space scientist of first space-age scientific discovery: the Van Allen Belts. In fine condition.
HE DEVELOPED THE FIELD OF SPACE SCIENCE
James Alfred Van Allen (September 7, 1914 – August 9, 2006) was an American space scientist at the University of Iowa. He was instrumental in establishing the field of magnetospheric research in space.
The Van Allen radiation belts were named after him, following their discovery by his Geiger–Müller tube instruments on the 1958 satellites: (Explorer 1, Explorer 3, and Pioneer 3) which provided data and information that regions of intense radiation surround the Earth. The discovery marked the birth of the research field of magnetospheric physics. At the National Defense Research Committee (NDRC) in Washington, D.C. he worked on the development of photoelectric and radio proximity fuzes. NDRC's most important project eventually became the Manhattan Project in 1941. In 1951 Van Allen accepted the position as head of the physics department at the University of Iowa. Before long, he was enlisting students in his efforts to discover the secrets of and inventing ways to carry instruments higher into the atmosphere than ever before. His 1953 space experiments first detected the first hint of radiation belts surrounding earth. Data from Explorer 1 and Explorer 3 (launched March 26, 1958) were used by the Iowa group to make "the first space-age scientific discovery": "the existence of a doughnut-shaped region of charged particle radiation trapped by the Earth’s magnetic field". In all, Van Allen was the principal investigator for scientific investigations on 24 Earth satellites and planetary missions. In 1987, President Ronald Reagan presented the National Medal of Science, the U.S.'s highest honor for scientific achievement, to James Van Allen at White House ceremonies. In 1989, he received the Crafoord Prize, awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Stockholm and presented by the King of Sweden. The Crafoord Prize is the highest award the Academy can bestow for research in a number of scientific fields and, for space exploration, is the equivalent of the Nobel Prize.