Professor Gerald Van Groves

Professor Gerald ‘Gerry’ Groves, edited Spaceflight for almost two decades between 1981 and 2000.
He joined the Society in 1950 and was elected a Fellow in the same year.

During the 1960s the Society had a particular interest in introducing astronautics into general education and enhancing its professional standing, both areas which particularly suited Gerry Groves’ academic background.

In 1967 and 1969 he managed to get funding from the NATO Advanced Study Institute for two Summer Schools held at Caius College, Cambridge — one on ‘Space Biology’ and the second on ‘Earth Observation Satellites’ — both of which were cutting edge topics at the time.

Later he would also edit Spaceflight for an extended period, after Ken Gatland retired from the post in 1981, working with a number of assistant editors until Clive Simpson took over in November 2000.

In the mid-1970s he also produced a BIS Study Course ‘for those who wish to apply or extend their scientific or technical training’, which was held at University College London where Professor Groves was a member of staff.

He was a valued member of Council from the 60s through to 2010 and served as President from 1970-1973 and 1977-1979. In 1996 he was awarded the Patrick Moore medal for his outstanding contributions to the Society.

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