As the country's aircraft engine needs intensified during World War II, fundamental engine research took a back seat to trouble-shooting to solve the problems of engines in production. The wartime mission of the new engine laboratory was simple. It had to assist the engine companies to make their engines more powerful and reliable. General Arnold wanted engines that were comparable to the best European models. He ordered Pratt & Whitney and Wright Aeronautical to develop fuel injection systems within 12 months to make their engines comparable to the German BMW-801, at that point the world's best aircraft engine.1
Arnold blamed the engine companies for the country's dismal aircraft engine situation, but he expected the NACA to correct it. On October 14, 1942 he issued an official directive that the NACA must "do everything practicable to improve the performance of existing engines". The engine companies had failed to provide the nation with "small, light, high performance, highly supercharged engines" suitable for fighter airplanes. Their exclusive focus on large, heavy, air-cooled radial engines reflected their drive for profits at the cost of preparedness. "Our engines were nearly all built as all-purpose engines, with an eye on the world market, and not specifically for fighter aircraft".2 The United States could not enjoy the luxury of fundamental research until the problems of reciprocating engines then in production-the Wright 2600 and 3350, the Pratt & Whitney 1830 and 4360, and the Allison V-1710 had been resolved.
Arnold's directive that the NACA concentrate on improving existing engines was made in the context of his knowledge of a radically new propulsion technology: the development of the turbojet engine. Days before his letter to the NACA, Lawrence Bell's Airacomet (P-59A), powered by a turbojet developed by General Electric, had flown successfully for the first time over Muroc Dry Lake in California. Seasoned Langley veterans in charge of overseeing the design and construction of the new Cleveland laboratory had no inkling of the impending revolution in jet propulsion. They assumed that the improvement of the aircraft piston engine would continue to follow the evolutionary pattern of the past. They worked with energy and determination to build a laboratory to assist in winning the war.
The miles of 36-inch blueprint paper produced by Langley's design group began to take real form in the winter of 1941. In February Charles Herrmann, Chief Inspector, was transferred to Cleveland from Hampton, Va. He was accompanied by Helen G. Ford, a secretary from the NACA  Washington office. They immediately set about hiring inspectors to oversee local contractors. Braving their first Cleveland winter, they took up temporary quarters in the Radio House, a small building owned by the Cleveland airport. The Airport Commissioner allowed the NACA to store new equipment temporarily in the air races grandstands awaiting demolition. Ford attended to a myriad of pressing administrative details and threw coal into the furnace, while Herrmann super vised the building of the hangar and engine propeller research building by the laboratory's first contractor, the R. P. Carbone Construction Company.
The intense grind of daily routine was broken by occasional visits from officials from the Washington office and Langley staff who "spurred us on when we felt isolated and primitive and forgotten". Ford and Herrmann processed applications from the Cleveland community, and by July the staff had outgrown the two rooms of the Radio House. They moved to the Farm House, a white clapboard structure overlooking the Rocky River. "As the Langley Field people began to arrive they were squeezed in wherever we could find room," wrote the intrepid Ford to a friend at City Hall.3
From the time of the ground-breaking ceremony in January 1941 to the following winter, construction work proceeded at an agonizingly slow pace. It was difficult to obtain an adequate supply of labor because the fixed-price contract negotiated by the NACA with its original contractors did not allow overtime pay. Buildings could not be completed on schedule or within budget because of the extremely high labor costs in Cleveland and the rising costs of materials and construction. 4 To take firm control of construction, in August 1940 Lewis called Edward Raymond Sharp back to Langley from Ames to serve as Construction Administrator for the new engine laboratory.
After Pearl Harbor, the pace quickened. In mid-December Ray Sharp moved with Ernest Whitney and his design group from Langley to Cleveland. They occupied temporary offices in the Farm House and the recently completed hangar. Charles Stanley Moore took responsibility for the thousands of drawings for the Engine Research Building. In the hectic days when one decision after another had to be made, a Kipling verse posted in Moore's office seemed to express their sense of teamwork as they struggled to plan each building and to supervise contractors. No individual or army, but the "everlasting team work of every blooming soul" would allow them to accomplish the impossible. 5
Ray Sharp charted the course of the laboratory's construction. He reviewed contracts, established rapport with city officials, smoothed relations with the engine companies, and kept Wright Field and the NACA Washington office informed of progress. Named Manager of the laboratory in 1942 and Director in 1947, he remained at the helm of the Cleveland laboratory until his retirement in 1960.
Sharp had an amiable and gracious style of management that earned him the affection and loyalty of those who worked under him, but he was not an engineer. At Langley and Ames the laboratory head was the "engineer-in-charge". The Cleveland laboratory functioned differently. Sharp created an atmosphere that encouraged cooperation among the staff, but he wisely left the technical questions to the engineers. As one engineer explained, "Since he did not have any background in engineering, he left us alone. His idea was to provide us with the equipment, money, and the space and made it easier for us to work". 6
Born on a farm in Elizabeth City, Va., in 1894, Sharp had enlisted in the Navy in World War I. His connection with the NACA began when he was employed by the Army to assemble the Italian airship Roma, accepted as partial payment of the Italian war debt. In 1922, upon  completion of this work, which was carried out at Langley, Sharp seized the opportunity to join the fledgling NACA laboratory as Langley's 54th employee. In three years he rose from hangar boss to construction administrator. After earning a law degree from the College of William and Mary through a correspondence course, he became a member of the Virginia bar in 1924.
Sharp's first duty upon arrival in Cleveland was to use his legal skills to negotiate a contract with a different construction company, the Sam W. Emerson Company. This was the first cost plus fixed-fee contract for the NACA, authorized by an act of Congress on December 17, 1941. This type of contract, used extensively by the Army and Navy made it easier to get contractors to agree to undertake risky new ventures for the federal government. The government agreed to pay a fixed fee, or guaranteed profit, to the contractor and assumed all the costs of the project.
With the country at war, the federal government moved unusually quickly. The cost of the remaining buildings was estimated on December 24; after Christmas, Sharp took on Emerson's lawyer, an experience that Sharp described as "fight all the way".7 He had a 47-page contract typed, and by the evening of December 31 the contract was signed. One week later the Emerson Company began construction on the Engine Research Building, planned to house a variety of laboratories to cover the gamut of authorized research projects: multi-cylinder and single-cylinder test facilities, supercharger rigs, and laboratories for research on exhaust turbines, heat transfer, carburetion, fuel injection, ignition, automatic controls, and materials. The building covered more than four acres of floor space, designed so that the areas were flexible enough to be converted to other uses as research needs changed. The Emerson Company also rapidly constructed the Administration Building, the Gatehouse, and the service and office buildings for the wind tunnel.
With a solid reputation in Cleveland, Sam W. Emerson was active in the Cleveland Chamber of Commerce. The Emerson Company specialized in industrial construction, but had also won bids for buildings at the Case School of Applied Science, where Emerson had studied engineering and served on the Board of Rustees. As the Cleveland Plain Dealer described Emerson, "Many of the substantial buildings he has erected in Cleveland seem to reflect his personality-unadorned, capacious, usable, plain and adequate".8 These were the very qualities reflected in the buildings Emerson constructed for the laboratory. Carefully set at intervals along the roads of the former air races parking area, their low-slung tan brick exteriors gave the laboratory a college campus atmosphere.
While construction proceeded, in May 1942, when the staff numbered 399, research was officially initiated in the recently completed Engine Propeller Research Building. The fruits of the cooperation between the NACA and the...
....city of Cleveland could be seen in the group of 'dignitaries who attended the formal ceremonies: George Lewis and John Victory from the NACA; Walter I. Beam, Executive Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce; Mayor Frank J. Lausche; Major John Berry, Commissioner of the Airport; and William A. Stinchcomb, Director of Civilian Defense for Cuyahoga County. Huddled in the control room, they waited in suspense until, with the push of a button, George Lewis set in motion the huge propeller of a 14-cylinder R-2600 Wright Cyclone engine mounted in a test cell. While it roared, a battery of instruments produced a graphic record of various research parameters needed to evaluate lubricating oils. This was an appropriate engine on which to direct the laboratory's most concerted effort, because it was plagued with undefined problems. Beneath the hearty congratulations offered on the occasion must have been the nagging question, could the laboratory find the flaws that eluded the manufacturer? Could they be fixed in time? The laboratory's first technical report on lubricants tests of the Wright R-2600 by members of the Fuels and Lubricants Division, Arnold Biermann, Walter Olson, and John Tousignant, showed the promise of the youthful staff. How government research could be transformed into concrete engine improvements remained to be demonstrated.9
 In January 1943, when Carlton Kemper arrived to take up the duties of Executive Engineer, it was not clear what his role in the new laboratory would be. Ten years as head of the Power Plants Division at Langley had not earned him the expected position of engineer-in-charge of the new laboratory. Why Sharp was chosen to take the helm of the Cleveland laboratory, rather than Kemper, is not clear. As the construction of the Cleveland laboratory went forward, Kemper stayed behind at Langley to contribute to the NACAs secret jet propulsion project-a project that failed to provide the country with a practical and timely jet propulsion system. Kemper, a 1923 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania in mechanical engineering, had joined a handful of power plants engineers at the NACA after two years with the Packard Motor Car Company. Four years later, when he took charge of the division, his staff numbered 20. After 1934, when a new power plants laboratory was built at Langley, his staff worked in cramped offices above the roar of engines being tested on the floor below.10 Kemper would never regain his role as a leader of power plants research. In 1945 the NACA sent him Europe to join the Alsos mission as its expert on aircraft engines. Addison Rothrock became Chief of Research, and it was he who would oversee the laboratory's difficult transition from the piston engine to jet propulsion.
In the research hierarchy at Langley, engine research occupied one of the lower rungs. Aerodynamics, experimentally studied in wind tunnels, expressed the research heart of the 1930s NACA. Even the famous NACA cowling that allowed airplanes to go faster and cool more efficiently had more to do with aerodynamics than power plants. The two major engine companies, Wright Aeronautical and Pratt & Whitney, were fiercely competitive and jealous of their proprietary rights. They did not welcome government interference. Through an agreement reached in 1916, the government left engine development to the engine manufacturers, although a limited amount of engine research was carried on by the National Bureau of Standards.
Technical judgment as well as the attitudes of the engine companies may have influenced the NACA Power Plants Division to focus on the diesel, or compression-ignition engine. Most power plants experts of the 1930s thought that aircraft engine advance would occur in the diesel engine, which did not have the problems that held back the development of the air-cooled engine: ignition, knock, and the metering of fuel into the carburetor. After the first flight of a Packard aircraft engine in 1928, the diesel seemed to be the aircraft engine to overcome the limitations of the...
....air-cooled piston engine. However, development of the diesel engine, because of its weight, proved to be a dead end.
Because of its decision to focus on the diesel engine, the NACA was left out of the dramatic development of the air-cooled spark-ignition engine in the 1930s. Its improvement came unexpectedly from fuels research by the petroleum industry on the branched paraffin, octane. This in crease in performance spurred super-charger development to keep engines from starving for air at high altitudes. However, the problems of knock and pre-ignition (faulty combustion within the engine's cylinders) remained. With increased supercharging, effective engine cooling was also a problem.
Gradually, in the late 1930s, research on the diesel engine declined, and the NACA began to be pulled into the mainstream of engine development. With the formation of a Subcommittee on Aircraft Fuels and Lubricants in 1935, research at Langley was initiated on the knocking characteristics of various fuels, although this research played only a peripheral role in the rapidly evolving understanding of hydrocarbons.
To advance the NACAs research on combustion, Cearcy D. Miller invented a high-speed camera that could take pictures of the combustion process within the cylinder of an engine at the rate of 40,000 frames per second, With this new high-speed photography, the exact point at which the engine began to knock could be determined for the first time. It was an exciting breakthrough.11
Miller's work is an example of what the NACA meant by fundamental research. He took a problem common to all air-cooled radial engines and invented a method to analyze it. Publication of Miller's reports put this new knowledge in the hands of industry designers-the point of all NACA research. The Army's fuels agenda for the Cleveland laboratory included study of the fuel additives xylidine and triptane to increase the performance of combat aircraft. The laboratory tackled the problem of replacement cylinders worn down by sand from unimproved airstrips in Africa. Oil foaming, which drained the engine's oil during flight, also received attention.12
In 1940 the NACA was pushed back into supercharger development, a field in which it had pioneered in the late 1920s. A supercharger section, with Oscar Schey as its head, launched a new program with strong backing from the Army and direction by the Power Plants Committee. Well known for his early work on the Roots supercharger, Schey had made outstanding contributions to power plants engineering throughout his career, beginning at Langley in 1923 after graduation with a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Minnesota. His advocacy of valve overlap and fuel injection in the piston engine resulted in lower supercharger requirements, and  his study of the finding of engine cylinders contributed to better cooling.13 While American manufacturers were slow to take up Schey's suggestions, the Germans successfully used the large valve overlap idea, and especially fuel injection. Shortly before the war, when George Lewis visited Germany, he was surprised to see Schey's reports on the desks of his German counterparts at the Deutsche Versuchsanstalt fur Luftfahrt (DVL).14 During the war Schey advocated abandoning the NACA Roots-type supercharger, which he believed would not be as effective at high altitudes as the turbo supercharger designed by Sanford A. Moss at General Electric.15 He was correct.
Schey's group was the last of the four sections of the Langley Power Plants Division to transfer to Cleveland, in July 1943. Interviewed at that time by the laboratory's newspaper, Wing Tips, Schey declared unequivocally that the supercharger was so essential that his division was looking forward to a not distant future when they will be asking you not What kind of supercharger have you g to on your engine, but what kind of engine have you got on your supercharger?'"16
Ben Pinkel, one of the NACA's leading propulsion experts, directed the NACA's research on the exhaust gas turbine, another name for the turbo supercharger. Pinkel had come to the NACA in 1931 from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in electrical engineering. In 1938, when Pinkel was appointed head of the Engine Analysis Section, it had a staff of three. By 1942, Pinkel's division had expanded to over 150 people. Although facilities were lacking at Langley, as soon as the Cleveland Laboratory was ready, Pinkel's Thermodynamics Division launched a strong program to improve exhaust gas turbines. In a talk to the staff, all of whom, he humorously remarked, demonstrated the principle of "heat in motion," Pinkel illuminated the importance of their work to the war effort. Adding a turbo supercharger to the engine of the B-17 "Flying Fortress," once thought obsolete, had made it a high-speed, high-altitude airplane. "This caused considerable excitement at the time because there wasn't a pursuit ship in the air force that could keep up with it."17 Testing in 1939 by Ben Pinkel, Richard L. Turner, and Fred Voss confirmed the predictions of a German, Hermann Oestrich, who suggested that the horsepower of an engine could be increased by the redesign of the nozzles of the airplane's tailpipes. The Power Plants Division became an advocate of "exhaust stacks" added to the tailpipes of aircraft. Once they were adopted by the aircraft manufacturers, they led to dramatic increases in performance fighter planes, including the North American P-51 and the British Spitfire.18
Laboratory staff was less enthusiastic about its work on the Allison liquid-cooled engine. Although many of their research programs were simply a carryover of work begun at Langley,...
...Army Research Authorization E-1 to improve the power output of the Allison-1710 engine was different. Issued in October 1942, it was the laboratory's first new research project.19 Hap Arnold, Chief of the Army Air Forces, counted on the Cleveland laboratory to assist in the redesign of the Allison supercharger and intercooler. 20 Three engines were sent to the laboratory. Schey's division investigated the supercharger to give it better performance. Rothrock's division explored its limitations in terms of knock; Pinkel's division took on the problem of cooling. Moore's Engine Components Division improved the distribution of fuel and air in the carburetor.
The Allison engine, however, never met the expectations of the Army Air Forces. The Cleveland Laboratory's work on the Allison engine increased its horsepower through the use of water injection and supercharging. However, from Ben Pinkel's point of view, this work....
 ....was a "tremendous waste of effort" because of the basic flaws in the engine's design. 21 Only after the Army substituted the British Merlin engine, in the P-51 Mustang did the United States finally have a fighter for high-altitude flight.22
As the Altitude Wind Tunnel neared completion in October 1943, Abe Silverstein transferred to take over as the head of the new Engine Installation Division. Of those who made the trek from Langley during World War II, it was Silverstein, the aerodynamicist, not a member of the original Power Plants Division, who would leave an indelible mark on the technical history of the laboratory. A native of Terre Haute, Ind., Silverstein had graduated from Rose Polytechnic Institute in 1929 with a degree in mechanical engineering. When the NACA hired him, he was assigned to work on the design for the full-scale tunnel. Silverstein quickly immersed himself in the project that launched his career. With the tunnel completed, Silverstein landed the job as head of the tunnel's research program, largely devoted to measuring the drag and performance characteristics of specific airplanes. His first paper, published in 1935, tackled the problem of wind tunnel interference with reference to wing placement and downwash at the tail.23
Hap Arnold wanted the new Altitude Wind Tunnel pressed into service at the earliest possible moment.24 Had better German facilities for altitude research contributed to their engine superiority during the early years of the war? Wright Aeronautical and Pratt & Whitney were developing increasingly powerful engines, but the achievement of adequate engine cooling eluded the efforts of the overburdened engine companies. Only through full-scale testing in the new wind tunnel could these problems be analyzed and solved. With the amount of electricity required to operate the tunnel for a single test equivalent to the daily needs of a small city, no single engine company could have afforded to build and operate it, Yet full-scale engine testing thrust the NACA squarely into development, heretofore the bailywick of industry. With such a large and expensive facility would the NACA be able to return to fundamental research at the end of World War II?
While the aerodynamics of the tunnel were worked out at Ames, A. W. Young and L. L. Monroe took charge of overall design and construction, an undertaking that presented unusual engineering challenges.25 Steel shortages delayed the fabrication of the nickel-steel shell of the tunnel. Even after a review of the original plans by Beverly G. Gulick reduced the structural steel requirements by 250 tons, it was difficult to pry steel loose from the federal procurement system until the tunnel's rating was changed to priority. One of the fruits of the cordial relations that Ray Sharp had established with the Chamber of Commerce was the temporary assignment to the NACA of Clifford Gildersleeve. When procurement reached a crisis in April 1942, Gildersleeve was able to expedite delivery, and construction was begun in July 1942 by the Pittsburgh-Des Moines Steel Company,
Part of the expense and complexity of the tunnel resulted from its requirement for an extensive refrigeration system to serve both the Altitude Wind Tunnel and a smaller Icing Research Tunnel, added to the plan during construction. Although the NACA excelled in wind tunnel design, the refrigerating equipment and heat exchanger for the tunnel were beyond its technical expertise. More comfortable approaching the problem from the point of view of aerodynamics rather than heat transfer, NACA engineers originally proposed a scheme of cooling coils consisting of streamlined tubes. When progress on the design faltered, the NACA turned to the Carrier Corporation and its founder Willis H. Carrier. Carrier, the "father of air conditioning," was at first....
....reluctant to let his already overburdened company undertake yet another war-related task, but he finally agreed. When the job was finished, he had no regrets. He viewed the NACA project as his life's greatest engineering achievement. Not only did it break new ground in terms of a large-scale engineering feat, but it enabled Carrier to put his skills to work for his country. He proudly wrote that "because of its success, high officials in the Air Force told me that World War II was shortened by many months".26
Carrier urged the NACA to abandon streamlined tubes and to accept his proposal to use "jackknifed" sections of coils, "folding them down like a collapsed accordion until the coils fitted into the tunnel."27 Turning vanes were added on the downstream surface to straighten the flow. To get the NACA to accept his design for the heat exchanger, Carrier went straight to Vannevar Bush, who was then Director of the Office of Scientific Research and Development (OSRD), a special agency created by President Roosevelt to tap the scientific talent of the country. Bush called a luncheon with Jerome Hunsaker, the new NACA Chairman, and Lewis. Carrier revealed a low opinion of the NACAs initial design:
So unusual was the NACA project that the Carrier Corporation had to use many entirely original components, which they built and tested themselves. Although Carrier gave little credit to the NACA, the sometimes heated give-and-take that occurred between the NACA staff and the representatives of the Carrier Corporation contributed to the design of the remarkable heat exchanger and compressor. Carrier decided to use freon-12 as a refrigerant and redesigned the famous Carrier centrifugal compressor to be used with it. Carrier realized that, although the wind tunnel was a one of-a-kind installation, the new compressor might have commercial applications after the war. In fact, it later became one of the company's standard products. Moreover, Carrier recognized that gains in terms of prestige in the engineering community more than made up for 29 the headaches. Postwar Carrier publicity featured the tunnel. 29
While construction slowly proceeded, problems with the Wright R-3350 Duplex Cyclone became critical. Development of the R-3350 had been troublesome from the start. Its powerful supercharger, an indication of Wright Aeronautical's advanced work in this area, caused the carburetor to malfunction. The attempt to switch to fuel injection in 1941 did nothing to solve the carburetor problems. The engine's ignition was faulty; oil leaked excessively; cylinder heads blew almost as soon as the engine turned over. Worst of all, the engine overheated and caught fire in flight.
Arnold was counting on the B-29 Superfortress, powered by the Wright R-3350, for the strategic bombing of Japan from the China mainland. When the engine caused the crash of a prototype in February 1943, it placed Arnold's plans in jeopardy. In October, with the problems not yet solved, Arnold informed President Roosevelt that the bomber would not be ready to be sent to China until March or April of the next year because of a "holdup in production of engines".30 Roosevelt was furious. He wrote to General George Marshall that this was the "last straw".31 The engine situation was now at the point of crisis. Still the Altitude Wind Tunnel was not ready for full-scale testing of the Wright R-3350.
Engineers at the Cleveland laboratory knew only that the perplexing problems of this complex engine had to be untangled. The group under Stan Moore discovered that, with a new spray bar, fuel and air mixed more efficiently in the carburetor, and cooling improved. However, there was no time to redesign components for engines in production. The Engine Research Division, supervised by John Collins, studied the valves of the engine and discovered that an extension of....
....the cylinder head by the addition of a small amount of metal avoided the excessive heat that sometimes caused the valve to collapse. This was a "fix" that parts manufacturers like Thompson Products, which supplied Wright Aeronautical, could implement immediately.32
As tunnel construction slowly inched forward, engine technology was about to be transformed by a new propulsion system, ironically, when the elaborate Altitude Wind Tunnel was at last ready for its first test run in February 1944, the I-16, a turbojet secretly developed by the General Electric Company, took priority over the Wright R-3350. The entire fuselage of the Bell Aircraft P-59A, with its wings sawed off into Stubbs, was squeezed into the tunnel's cavernous space.33 This secret test of the 1-16 foreshadowed the laboratory's radical transition to jet propulsion after World War II.
Technicians prepared the Wright R-3350 for the tunnel's first official tests in May. Testing solved many of the engine's problems. Abe Silverstein's group, in charge of engine installation and testing, found that when they adjusted the cowling of the engine and extended the baffles that  directed the air around each cylinder, they detected a dramatic increase in the engine's ability to cool effectively. One enthusiastic Carrier employee claimed that the tunnel was so effective that in ten days of testing "the entire cost of the tunnel was recaptured during this brief period of its operation".34
By spring 1943, it was apparent that the program laid out by the Army for the Cleveland laboratory was "calculated to solve detailed difficulties rather than furnish foundations for new progress". At least one member of the Power Plants Committee bemoaned this exclusive concentration on "trouble shooting". He urged the NACA to develop "a program promising new progress rather than mopping up ground already covered."35 The laboratory did find the "quick fixes" needed to keep engine production moving, but it is one of history's ironies that jet propulsion would render obsolete most of the facilities so carefully planned by George Mead's special committee. It is symbolic that America's first turbojet, rather than a piston engine, had the honor of the first test in the Altitude Wind Tunnel. In 1944, with victory in sight, the limited focus of NACA wartime engine work was clear. George Mead, with perhaps a twinge of remorse, wrote to Sam Heron: "This war has certainly been a vindication of the two-row, air-cooled radial engine and of the two-speed, two-stage supercharger, so that I feel the work done here was not in vain".36 Yet, the facilities they designed were obsolete by the end of the war.
Almost without exception, the staff of the new laboratory came from outside Cleveland. Addison Rothrock and Ben Pinkel took advantage of their long and lonely evenings in a new city to expose new personnel to the nature of engineering research-not only the specific' urgent problems that they would be required to solve during the war, but also the nature of fundamental engineering research in the NACA tradition just as the NACA had created an aeronautical research community at Langley in the years between World Wars I and II, they hoped to see a new propulsion community put down roots in this Midwestern industrial city.
On Wednesdays at 5:00 sharp, the research staff met to hear lectures on various aspects of engine research. New staff members were expected to take an active part in the discussions that followed each formal presentation. One of Rothrock's first lectures illuminated the purpose of the laboratory. He defined the common values shared by members of the government research community and what distinguished the NACA engineer, who identified with the engine community as a whole, from the more narrow loyalty to his company of an engineer employed in industry.
He pointed out that, in terms of equipment for engine research, the laboratory was probably superior to any found in the world; but, he warned, no matter how good the facilities, it was the quality of the staff that counted. No amount of investment in facilities could make up for mediocrity. He advised the "fresh outs" who far outnumbered experienced engineers, that the way to get ahead was to become an authority on one aspect of an aeronautical problem "so that when anyone thinks of this particular phase of the field of aeronautics, he thinks of your name". Teamwork was more important than the genius of one particular individual- "no one of us, or any group of us, has any comer on the brains of this organization". Honest technical disagreements were inevitable and usually demonstrated a lack of data, not a lack of expertise.
Rothrock advised the young engineers to respect the technicians who worked for them. "Let them know that you want your job accomplished, but don't try and bulldoze them into doing it".  People in engineering support services had the uncanny ability to bring an engineer's rough sketch on the back of an envelope to life.
Rothrock stressed that what he looked for in an engineer was the ability to think logically and to plan step-by-step tests to yield accurate and concise data joined to the ability to conceive a test was the need to analyze the data. Anyone could report data, but few could take the new information and draw broad conclusions to show the way "this small group of pieces fits into the main picture". Finally, the new knowledge had to be published in a report that could be understood and used by industry.37
Because knowledge is the end product of a research laboratory, the preparation of the research report received special emphasis in the orientation of new engineers. Pearl Young described the role of the Editorial Office in assisting engineering authors to present their data "tactfully, strategically, and with telling force".38 These were the words of an editor who knew that the readership for the NACA report was the aircraft industry. Unless the report was accurate and well organized, innovations carefully proposed by the government researcher after laborious testing would go no farther than the bookshelf. Young had high editorial standards. She brought the traditions of the Langley Editorial Office to Cleveland and trained its new staff-among them Margaret Appleby, a woman of grace and efficiency, who later headed the office from 1951 until her retirement in 1987.
The preparation of a NACA report was a long process-so long that some industry representatives complained that they did not always receive them in time to be useful. First, a report was reviewed carefully by a committee composed of the writer's engineering peers. After revision, authors were assigned to an editorial clerk, responsible for reading rough drafts and checking accuracy. Young described the painstaking labor of preparing a report, which was "checked and rechecked for consistency, logical analysis, and absolute accuracy". 39 The point of publishing reports was to communicate new knowledge to industry to be used to improve engine designs. However, the shop tricks, instruments, or techniques developed to analyze a problem were not to be shared with industry. "Antonio Stradivari," George Lewis warned, "made a success by making the world's finest violins and not by writing articles on how others could construct such instruments".40 The NACA made its music by honing and keeping the unique knowledge of instrument specialists like Robert Tozier and Isidore Warshawsky within its walls. Later, when the NACA became part of NASA, this in-house philosophy would change.
Although the shaping of the professional staff had the highest priority careful attention was also given to the training of the support personnel by Ray Sharp himself. To recruit alert and able young men from Cleveland area technical high schools, he created an "Apprenticeship School" modeled on the one he had started at Langley. Apprenticeship offered an avenue to learn a trade, such as carpentry, forging, casting, and other skills necessary in a laboratory. The apprentices developed their own esprit de corps. In addition to on-the-job training, some 80 youths were given formal courses in physics and mathematics, and careful records of each apprentice's progress were kept. Apprenticeship was "the process of passing manual skills and necessary related knowledge from one person to another". This continuity guaranteed that this proud NACA shop tradition transmitted from Langley through James Hawkins, and later carried on by people like William Harrison, would continue. However, the apprenticeship program could not prevent a serious wartime shortage of skilled machinists and toolmakers because NACA employees could  not be protected from the draft until 1944, when new legislation changed the selective service policy. NACA employees were then inducted into the Air Corps Enlisted Reserve and placed on inactive status.
As Cleveland's industrial plants expanded, the NACA had to compete for personnel with companies such as Thompson Products, Eaton Industries, and Cleveland Pneumatic. A new plant to be operated by the Fisher Body Division of General Motors near the airport created an additional need for no fewer than 25,000 skilled workers. As the draft claimed 80 of 85 original apprentices in the program, the head of Technical Services summed up the laboratory's problem when he wrote plaintively in the laboratory newspaper that "idle equipment pleads for men".41
So acute was the shortage of skilled machine operators, electricians, metal workers, and instrument technicians that the laboratory made a strong effort to hire women for jobs normally taken by men. However, women generally worked in a support capacity, not one of direct engineering responsibility. A few women with college degrees in physics and chemistry managed to enter the professional ranks, but at a time when technical schools were producing few women graduates, women with degrees in mechanical engineering were extremely rare. With a shortage of engineers to solve pressing technical problems in aircraft propulsion, women were viewed as useful for relieving the engineer of his more repetitive tasks. "Behind the research engineers who are working on these problems must be ready hands-women's hands," a press release stated.
The laboratory offered a one-year training program for women with "mechanical aptitude" with starting salaries of $1752 per year. This was the same salary paid to junior aviators" boys under 18 who built model airplanes for the NACA. Although the machine shop was staffed largely by men, about 25 women were employed to work the lathes and drills.
The staff had strong reservations about the long-term benefits of employing female workers, who were expected to- return to homemaking after the war. One employee commented in the laboratory's newspaper that the trouble with the female worker was that she lacked "aptitude, ambition and perseverance" and changed jobs "with no consideration of the valuable time skilled journeymen spent in training her". Men, he argued, chose non-repetitive work because it "feeds the ambition," while women preferred "repetitive piecework" to spare themselves mental effort.42
The utilization of women in their supporting role was carefully documented. In 1943 there were 232 women employees at the Engine Laboratory; in 1944 their number had increased to 412, "indicative of the desire of the management to replace men with women where they can be used at their highest skill". The laboratory made an effort to recruit women chemists, engineers, and mathematicians, but few professional women were attracted to the laboratory during the war years. However, there was a place for women without special training to relieve engineers of "routine, detailed work". The engineer did the brainwork: he planned his tests and made the preliminary designs for his test equipment. Once he had broken down the job into a logical series of small steps, women could take over. This was particularly true in the Computing Section, which employed about 100 women. Women were used during wind tunnel testing as "data takers". Probes affixed to the object under test to measure pressures provided data recorded in mercury-filled glass manometer tubes mounted on a wall near the tunnel. During the test a tube-pinching technique trapped the mercury in the manometer tubes when the desired operating point was reached. Another method to garner test data was to photograph the manometer board. Female "computers" then plotted the data on graphs for analysis by the engineer. The NACA  preferred single women because they had fewer family demands, and they were less likely to object to working at night, when many of the tests were run. 43 The gender-based division of labor during World War II set the pattern for the future. With few exceptions, women remained "computers" or secretaries until the 1960s, when the demand for skills in computer science made salaries more competitive, and men were hired in this area for the first time. It is no coincidence that Margaret Yohner, the first female division chief, came not from the traditional male divisions but from the ranks of the "computers".
The newspaper Wing Tips bound the laboratory community together, Engineer and apprentice, women and men, new arrivals and old hands from Langley, all eagerly awaited this lively amateur production. The first issue, distributed in October 1942, was turned out on a mimeograph machine by employees with a sense of mission as well as humor. It was used to acquaint new employees with the rich tradition inherited from Langley. Pearl Young wrote a series of articles devoted to "The Place of NACA in American Aviation". She pointed out that in five years the staff had grown from 400 to 4000. She explained that, while the NACA was well known in aeronautical circles, it was nearly unknown to the general public. This was by choice. "A research organization not in business to make money, gains nothing by blowing its own horn, and the results of a slow accumulation of fundamental knowledge does not often produce spectacular results". Nevertheless, the NACA cowling and the family of low-drag airfoils developed by Eastman N. Jacobs were impressive contributions to aeronautics. Young spurred the new recruits to identify with this tradition as they were assimilated into the organization. "There are just as many aeronautical research problems for you to solve by the application of brains and hard work as there were on the day Orville Wright piloted the first airplane at Kitty Hawk in 1903."44 This remark was....
....prophetic of the engineering challenges of jet propulsion that awaited these young engineers after the war.
Wing Tips combined employee education with interesting quasi-gossip in the form of "Lobby Lines," by Mary Lou Gosney. Her central post as receptionist in the lobby of the Administration Building made her an information crossroad. In addition to devoting space to articles on administrative changes, specific research projects, and social and sporting events, the newspaper portrayed the colorful Langley personalities as they assumed leadership after the "trek" from Langley. The pages of Wing Tips reflected a "do-it-yourself" attitude when materials were scarce and the hours long. Enthusiasm for hard work and cooperation overcame the problems of a critical housing shortage, rationing, and forced car-pooling.
Because of the youth of the staff, most of whom came to the laboratory unmarried, after hours socials and sports clubs were important in creating an esprit de corps. There were enough displaced New Yorkers from the City College of New York to support an alumni group. Not surprisingly, the laboratory celebrated a large number of marriages among employees in its early years, NACA, a volunteer group elected by the staff, put on dances and parties. The staff marked the completion of each new building with a social event. When the Machine Shop was ready, it was transformed for one evening into a roller rink. The laboratory provided plots for Victory Gardens and organized enormously successful War Bond and Red Cross fund drives.
Although the Langley contingent shaped the engineering culture of the new engine laboratory, their NACA traditions took root in urban soil. Unlike the contempt of native Hamptonians for Langley's "NACA nuts," Clevelanders regarded the new federal facility as a feather in the city's cap. The staff participated in community activities from leadership of Boy Scout troops to variety show benefits. The cordiality of the city-laboratory relationship was due in no small measure to the efforts of Ray Sharp, who promoted the involvement of local, state, and federal officials in the well-being of the laboratory-a vital link sorely missed in the 1970s, when the laboratory could no longer take Congressional support for granted.
 Many of these officials formed their first impression of the new Aircraft Engine Research Laboratory on May 20, 1943. Despite threatening weather and a "mud soup" surrounding the new buildings, the whole laboratory turned out for the outdoor dedication. They were regaled by speeches by NACA and military representatives on the laboratory's future role in advancing aviation. Mayor Frank J. Lausche hoped that the laboratory would be a boon to Cleveland's industries. "We were the cradle of the auto industry, but we lost it," he lamented. "We don't intend to have the same thing happen again". At the climax of the ceremony William T. Holliday, head of Standard Oil, solemnly presented the American flag to John Victory on behalf of the Cleveland Chamber of Commerce. Victory laid it in the hands of Ray Sharp. As a recording of the Star Spangled Banner was played, the flag was solemnly raised. Orville Wright, who attended the ceremony with other members of the Main Committee, wryly commented to the Cleveland Press that some 40 years ago he and his brother had worked in a "mite smaller lab".45
The enduring legacy of the war years was the creation of a new propulsion research community that cut its teeth on the piston engine, and through its participation in solving wartime engine problems, absorbed NACA traditions that would continue their hold on the laboratory well into the space age. The piston engine provided a solid apprenticeship. Combustion, heat transfer, and the perplexing aerodynamic problems of the supercharger offered a strong foundation on which to tackle future problems of jet propulsion. A young and eager staff, led by a few seasoned Langley hands, stood poised on the edge of a new era.
1. H. H. Arnold to Mr. Lovett, "Fuel Injector Directive," 3 November 1941, H. H. Arnold Papers, 42/80, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress. For a guide to the H. H. Arnold Papers, see Marvin W. McFarland, "The H. H. Arnold Collection," LC Quarterly journal of Current Acquisitions, IX (4):171-18 1. At the time of the Lindbergh interview, Arnold was Assistant Chief of the Army Air Corps. He succeeded Westover as Chief of the Army Corps in September 1939. He was named Chief of the Army Air Forces in 1941, Commanding General in 1942, and Full General in 1943.
By the end of the war, the performance of Pratt & Whitney's R-2800 was equal to that of the BMW-801, but not before six complete engine failures and 26 partial failures had caused P-47 fighters to crash. Arnold urged that "drastic measures be taken to remedy such a terrible situation." General Arnold to General Echols, "Engine Failures of P-47's," 17 April 1943, H. H. Arnold Papers, 42/76, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, See also Robert Schlaifer, The Development of Aircraft Engines (Boston: Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University 1950), p. 230; note 21, p. 523.
2. Arnold to Hunsaker, 14 October 1942, National Archives, Record Group 255, 62-A-411. Copy in NASA History Office Archives. Debate over the engine situation in the Power Plants Committee resulted in a stinging response to Arnold's charges by Arthur Nutt of Wright Aeronautical and Leonard S. Hobbs of Pratt & Whitney. Hobbs went so far as to insist that a long rebuttal be inserted in the revised minutes of the meeting. The Army Air Forces, he argued, had demanded speed "to the exclusion of other qualities, and as far as he knew, they had obtained it" He felt that there was a basic fallacy in Arnold's assessment of the nation's engine needs. Small engines would never be superior to large ones, and he believed that reliance on "small engines to eventually get the initiative and step above the Germans was simply the continuation of a basic error which could not be corrected by any kind or amount of concentrated laboratory work Minutes of the Power Plants Committee, 11 December 1942, National Archives, Record Group 255, Power Plants Committee Files. For an example of prewar NACA fundamental engine research, see Oscar W. Schey, Benjamin Pinkel, and Herman H. Ellerbrock, Jr., "Correction of Temperatures of Air-Cooled Engine Cylinders for Variation in Engine and Cooling Conditions," NACA Technical Report 645, 1939.
3. Helen Ford, "From Historical Viewpoint." Letter to Miss Scott, 23 December 1942, in History looseleaf, NASA Lewis Records.
4. Rudolph. Gagg, "State of the Work on the Aircraft Engine Research Laboratory of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics," 11 February 1941, NASA Lewis Records, 34/110.
5. Interview with the author and notes courtesy of Charles Stanley Moore, 9 August 1984.
6. Transcript of interview with Ben Pinkel, 4 August 1985, p. 4.
7. Letter from Ray Sharp to Vera Sharp, 28 December 1941, Private Papers of Mrs. Edward R. Sharp. Biographical information on Sharp from Roland, Model Research, p. 175; Cleveland Press, 23 September 1942; miscellaneous clippings and press releases from Sharp biography file, NASA History Office; Robert Graham, "Four Giants of the Lewis Research Center," NASA TM-83642. On the cost-plus-a-fixed-fee, see Richard Polenberg, War and Society Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott, 1972), p. 12-13.
8. Boys Grown Tall, A Story of American Initiative, a book privately published by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, 1944, p. 41-42. Case Western Reserve University Archives.
9. The Wright R-2600 engine was produced at the company's new Lockland plant near Cincinnati, Ohio. Problems may have been caused by supercharger development begun in 1937 after the engine was in production, In addition, Wright had to switch to the Holley carburetor around 1941 because of cooling problems. See Schlaifer, The Development of Aircraft Engines, p. 525, note 23. However, its problems appear ultimately to be traceable to production, not design. An investigation, carried out 5 April 1943 by R. A. Lovett, Assistant Secretary of War, concluded that management was not competent, especially in the lower echelons; defective materials caused corrosion and rust of cylinders; and inspections were faulty. A second investigation carried out by Senator Harry Truman resulted in a shift in production at the Lockland plant from the R-2600 to the R-3350 on 26 February 1944. Documents can be found in the ASC History Office, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio.
10. Biographical information on Carlton Kemper from Wing Tips, 8 January 1942, NASA Lewis Technical Library.
11. Gray, Frontiers of Flight (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1948), p. 241. The Miller camera was also used in the study of the aerodynamics of the centrifugal compressor. See also A. M. Rothrock, R. C. Spencer, and Cearcy D. Miller, "A High-Speed Motion Picture Study of Normal Combustion, Knock and Preignition in a Spark-Ignition Engine," NACA Report 704, 1941; and Cearcy D. Miller, "A Study by High-speed Photography of Combustion and Knock in a Spark-Ignition Engine," NACA Report 727, 1942. Miller changed his name to Carl David Miller in the late 1940s.) The best discussion of the NACA's focus on the diesel is Ira H. Abbott, "A Review and Commentary of a Thesis by Arthur L. Levine Entitled "United States Aeronautical Research Policy, 1915-1958: A Study of the Major Policy Decisions of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics: dated 1963," NASA History Office HHN-35, 1964, p. 129-133. A review of introductions to Annual Reports of the NACA, (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office) from 1936 to 1940 revealed that by 1935 the NACA was no longer concentrating exclusively on the diesel but did not give it up entirely until 1940. It was noted by C. S. Moore that NACA research on fuel sprays and combustion chambers has been incorporated into diesel engines built today. 1930s NACA fuel-spray technology can be found in the combustors of current turbojet engines. See also Hartley A. Soulé, "Synopsis of the History of the Langley Research Center 11915-1939)," typescript, Langley Research Center Archives, p. 74; S. D. Heron, Development of Aviation Fuels (Boston: Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University 1950), p, 555-558, 618. In 1937 the NACA, the Army Air Corps, and the Navy Bureau of Aeronautics supported the creation of a petroleum laboratory at the National Bureau of Standards at which paraffin hydrocarbons were studied intensively.
12. George Gray, Frontiers of Flight, p. 244-252; interview by author with Edmund Bisson, 22 March 1985. Interview with Irving Pinkel by Walter Bonney, 22 September 1973, p. 4, NASA History Office Archives, Washington, D.C.
13. Wing Tips, 16 July 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library.
14. Interview by author with John C. Sanders, 7 April 1986. Sanders may have mistakenly recalled that Schey had gone to Germany. Other conversations have led me to conclude that it was on Lewis's 1936 trip that he saw the Schey reports.
15. Wing Tips, 16 July 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library. Why the NACA neglected to focus on supercharger development, a field in which it had pioneered, in the 1930s is a question to which no one has given a definitive answer. However, it is possible that the NACA thought that the supercharger served merely to give better fuel distribution, rather than to squeeze greater performance out of the engine at high altitudes. By default, it appears that the geared centrifugal supercharger, originally developed in Great Britain at the Royal Aircraft Establishment and manufactured in the United States by General Electric, had become standard on most aircraft engines. However, the NACA was not alone in its neglect of research on the supercharger. Robert Schlaifer, The Development of Aircraft Engines, p. 501-502, attributes the relatively late development of the supercharger to a general failure on the part of the engine community to "realize what was to be gained by it, and this in turn was due to a rather astonishing lack of detailed information about what existing superchargers were actually doing". He credits Wright Aeronautical with recognizing that improvement of the supercharger depended on a more thorough understanding of fluid mechanics.
16. Wing Tips, 9 July 1943. NASA Lewis Technical Library.
17. Ben Pinkel, "Smoker Talk," Thermodynamics Division, 24 May 1944, History looseleaf, NASA Lewis Records.
18. Ibid. Also Gray, Frontiers of Flight, p. 268.
19. A complete list of Research Authorizations through 2 April 1945 can be found in 34/376, NASA Lewis Records.
20. On the checkered history of the Allison V-1710 see Major J. H. Doolittle to H. H. Arnold, "Allison Engines," 19 January 1941, H. H. Arnold Papers, 42/76, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress. See also "Case History of the V-16501" W-61348, History Office, Aeronautical Systems Division, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio; and Alexander De Seversky, Victory through Air Power (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1942), p. 235.
21. Interview with Ben Pinkel by the author, 2 August 1985.
22. See discussion by Robert Schlaifer, The Development of Aircraft Engines, comparing the Allison V-1710 and the Merlin, p. 309-313.
23. For biographical background on Abe Silverstein, see transcript of interview by Eugene Emme, 14 May 1974, and transcript of interview by Walter Bonney, 21 October 1973. Biography file, NASA History Office, Washington, D.C. See also his Wright Brothers lecture, "Research on Aircraft Propulsion Systems," journal of the Aeronautical Sciences 16:197-226. Silverstein also gave the 49th Wilbur Wright Memorial Lecture, "Researches in space flight technology," journal of the Royal Aeronautical Society 65:779-795.
24. H. H. Arnold to J. C. Hunsaker, 2 December 1941, H. H. Arnold Papers, 44/123, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress.
25. Ernest Whitney speech in History looseleaf, NASA Lewis Records. See also. A. W. Young and L. L. Monroe, "Design and Performance Specifications for Altitude Wind Tunnel": revised ed., 15 June 1943.
26. Margaret Ingels, Father of Air Conditioning: Willis Haviland Carrier (New York: Arno Press, 1972, reprint of Doubleday, 1952 ed.), p. 97. For further information on Willis Carrier, see Robert Friedman, "The Air-Conditioned Century," American Heritage, August-September 1984, p. 20-33; Cloud Wampler, Dr. Willis H. Carrier, Father of Air Conditioning (New York: The Newcomen Society of England American Branch, 1949). 1 am also indebted to Mr. E. P, Palmatier, former employee of the Carrier Corporation, for his letter of 29 May 1987, which describes Carrier's achievement in detail.
27. Ingels, Father of Air Conditioning, p. 99. See also memo by L. L. Lewis, 26 September 1956, "Carrier in World War II Wind Tunnel Air Conditioning," United Technologies Archives, East Hartford, Conn.
28. Ibid, p. 98.
29. Memo by L. L. Lewis, "Carrier in World War II Wind Tunnel Air Conditioning," United Technologies Archives.
30. Thomas M. Coffey, Hap (New York: The Viking Press, 1982), p. 334. See also Steve Birdsall, Saga of the Superfortress (Garden City: Doubleday, 1980).
31. Michael S. Sherry, The Rise of American Air Power: The Creation of Armageddon (New Haven: Yale University Press, 19871, p. 160.
32. Gray, Frontiers of Flight, p. 251-253. Also interviews with John C. Sanders, 6 April 1986, and Charles Stanley Moore, telephone interview, March 1985. On Wright R-3350 engine problems, see Schlaifer, Development of Aircraft Engines, p. 503-504, 525-526, and 539.
33. The fact that the Bell P-59A (G.E.I-161 and not the Wright R-3350 for the B-29 was the first engine tested in the Altitude Wind Tunnel appears to have been kept secret even from the Carrier employees who worked on the tunnel project. It has been documented by consulting the first volume of the original AWT log and confirmed by Ronald J. Blaha, "Completed Schedules of NASA Lewis Wind Tunnels, Facilities and Aircraft; 1944-1986" (February 1987). See also G. Merritt Preston, Fred 0. Black, Jr., and James M. Jagger, "Altitude-Wind-Tunnel Tests of Power-Plant Installation in jet Propelled Fighter," NACA Wartime Report, MR ESL 17, February 1946. NASA Lewis Technical Library.
34. Memo by L. L. Lewis, "Carrier in World War II Wind Tunnel Air Conditioning": United Technologies Archives.
35. H. C. Dickinson, National Bureau of Standards, to George Lewis, 12 March 1943, 34/376, NASA Lewis Records.
36. Mead to Heron, 21 December 1944, quoted in Cary Hoge Mead, Wings Over the World (Wauwatosa, Wisc.: Swannet Press, 1971), p. 275.
37. Addison M. Rothrock, "Address Made to Research Staff at AERL," 30 December 1942. History looseleaf, NASA Lewis Records.
38. Wing Tips, 3 September 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library.
40. George Lewis to Cleveland, "Reports on Instruments and Subjects for Bulletins," 4 October 1944, 34/317.7, NASA Lewis Records.
41. Wing Tips, 2 April 1943; 24 December 1942; 22 January 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library. See also "NACA Apprenticeship Manual," 1 October 1954, NASA Lewis Photo Lab Collection.
42. Wing Tips, 12 February 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library.
43. "The Utilization of Women at the Aircraft Engine Research Laboratory," June 1944, History looseleaf, NASA Lewis Records.
44. Wing Tips, 14 May 1943 and 28 May 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library. Also, memos from Langley Archives, courtesy of James Hansen. See also Hansen's discussion of women at Langley, particularly Pearl Young, in Engineer in Charge NASA SP-4305 (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1987), p. 206-207.
45. Cleveland Press, 20 May 1943 and 21 May 1943; Wing Tips, 21 May 1943, NASA Lewis Technical Library.