RAE Farnborough – Space Department: A History
This book is a comprehensive history of the Space Department at the RAE Farnborough written by the scientists and engineers who actually worked in it. As such it provides a unique first-hand account of the pioneering work of the Department and the vagaries of the political decisions that affected its activities from its formation in 1962 through to 2001 when the Establishment, after several changes in title, was privatised as Qinetiq.
In its heyday in the 1960’s and 70’s the Department had hundreds of workers employed on a wide range of satellite technologies and programmes as well as rockets, launch vehicles and orbital mechanics. The RAE Space Department was highly influential in the development of space technology in the UK and Europe with many of its staff moving to senior positions in what became the European Space Agency. With its technical and organisational content, leavened by anecdotes, this book fills a major gap in the UK history of UK space exploration. It is essential reading for any serious space enthusiast.