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Author Topic:   Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum
Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-24-2007 08:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From CBS 3 KYW: Space History Discovered In Bucks County

A piece of space history has been discovered in Bucks County. And what is inside the building used to be very valuable to NASA and famous astronauts in training.

When Sam Cravero inquired about buying the building, he discovered a whole lot more.

"I was pretty surprised, we were looking for just office space," Cravero said.

The link includes video of the former Johnsville Naval Air Development Center.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-24-2007 10:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Further reading about the Johnsville centrifuge from Air & Space magazine:
John Glenn called it a "dreaded" and "sadistic" part of astronaut training. Apollo 11's Michael Collins called it "diabolical." Time magazine referred to it as "a monstrous apparatus," a "gruesome merry-go-round," and, less originally, a "torture chamber."

The Johnsville human centrifuge -- the machine everyone loved to hate -- was operated by the Navy at its Naval Air Development Center (later the Naval Air Warfare Center) in Warminster, Pennsylvania, just outside Philadelphia. For almost 50 years -- it ceased government operation in 1996 -- the centrifuge was the world's most powerful and versatile tool for studying the G forces that are an inescapable part of flight.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 07-25-2009 06:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum is now open for tours every Sunday from 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. "in order to raise money to develop the museum and its learning programs."

Donations are also being accepted:

The Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum
780 Falcon Circle
Suite 201
Warminster, PA 18974

kr4mula
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Posts: 599
From: Cinci, OH
Registered: Mar 2006

posted 07-27-2009 10:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for kr4mula   Click Here to Email kr4mula     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Anyone have any idea if they have an archives or where material from Johnsville maybe be archived?

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 05-02-2011 08:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the Johnsville centrifuge's original gondola, replaced in 1964, has been found and will be returned to the site on May 5, 2011, the 50th anniversary of Alan Shepard's Mercury-Redstone 3 launch.
Thursday is the 50th anniversary of another centrifuge alumnus' achievement: Alan Shepard's becoming the first American in space. In commemoration, Johnsville Centrifuge & Science Museum Inc. has made arrangements to transport to Warminster that day the centrifuge's original gondola, replaced in 1964 by the one still attached. The museum group found it at a Smithsonian warehouse in Maryland two years ago.

It is the gondola in which [John] Glenn suffered EIEOs and barely endured 16 g's.

"You had to strain every muscle to keep enough blood in your head to keep from passing out," Glenn said in a phone interview last week from his office at Ohio State University, where he heads the advisory board to the John Glenn School of Public Affairs. "It wasn't a pleasure trip."

Capable of reaching speeds of 178 m.p.h. in less than seven seconds and generating up to 40 g's, Johnsville's was one of the world's largest human centrifuges.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 05-06-2011 08:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Photo courtesy the Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum via TwitPic:

garymilgrom
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Posts: 1571
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 05-06-2011 10:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
With their logo on the item it appears Comcast has helped finance this. If that's true it's a good use for all the fees I've paid them over the years!

nadcmuseum
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Posts: 2
From: Warminster, PA
Registered: May 2011

posted 05-07-2011 07:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for nadcmuseum   Click Here to Email nadcmuseum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Comcast partnered with History Channel to underwrite the cost of trucking the gondola from the National Air and Space Museum to Bucks County. A nice report with video of the Welcome Home is at Warminster Patch.

It includes a few words with Art Guntner who was a Aerospace Medical Tech at the centrifuge from 1961-64. Art rode over 350 simulations in the centrifuge and helped train the Mercury 7.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 12-27-2011 12:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Johnsville Centrifuge, re-dubbed "The Fuge," now has a new mission as a party and event space.
The Fuge, a former astronaut training facility converted into a party and event space, is likely the only ballroom in the world visited by every man who walked on the moon.

The biggest centrifuge ever made spun the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo astronauts at speeds designed to simulate the high gravitational force encountered in space flight. The machine was housed in an enormous round room with high ceilings.

The 12,000-square-foot facility comes with a bar in the old motor room, a stage on top of that, two 40-foot movie screens, a lighting system and a historic Space Age vibe, according to owner Sam Cravero.

"It has a cool factor to it," he says. "There are a lot of places in the area that are basically square buildings with low ceilings. We can't even compare ourselves to something like that."

The circular room can seat 800 for dinner or accommodate a bigger crowd for concerts. The motor room, with its bar and stage, is in the center. The walls that support the 24-foot ceilings are draped in curtain material that can be illuminated in any color.

The Fuge has been open about six months. Its first big event is Greater Philadelphia Media's bridal expo scheduled for Feb. 12.

nadcmuseum
New Member

Posts: 2
From: Warminster, PA
Registered: May 2011

posted 02-21-2012 08:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for nadcmuseum   Click Here to Email nadcmuseum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As a note of update and clarification on a few items referenced in this thread; the Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization staffed by a crew of dedicated volunteers who preserve the history of the machine and the affiliated naval research laboratories.

Until very recently the museum conducted tours of the building as a means of fundraising. The museum no longer maintains offices in the building at 780 Falcon Circle and is not affiliated with The Fuge, which is a for-profit enterprise run by the building owner (Mr. Sam Cravero) and his business associates.

Any correspondence or donations to the Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum should be directed to:

Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum
P.O. Box 2014
Warminster, PA 18974
By way of updating readers of this board, the museum has recently acquired, on loan from the Pax River Museum, R. Flanagan Gray’s Iron Maiden; a unique full body submersion apparatus that was used to set the standing record for the highest sustained G load of 31.25 Gs for 5 seconds in 1958. Information about the Iron Maiden can be found on the museum's blog.

Additionally, the museum is currently raising funds to begin the preservation work needed on the original centrifuge gondola which was acquired by the museum from the Smithsonian Institution and is pictured above in this thread. This is the gondola that was used to train the Mercury 7 and in which the heart arrhythmia that sidelined Deke Slayton was detected.

The Johnsville Centrifuge and Science Museum continues to be dedicated to preserving the unique and important legacy of innovation that came out of the Johnsville Naval Air Development Center (NADC) and to use that legacy as a springboard to inspire today’s youth to explore science and technology careers and to reach for the stars in all they do.

More information can be found at nadcmuseum.org or on Facebook.

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