Adolf Thiel

Academic

1915 – 2001

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Who was Adolf Thiel?

Adolf Thiel was an Austrian-born German expert in guided missiles during World War II, and later worked for the United States Army and TRW.

Thiel had been an associate professor of engineering at the Institute of Technology in Darmstadt before joining Wernher von Braun's team at the Army Research Center Peenemünde, where he was involved in developing the V-2 rocket. By the end of the war, he was transferred to the United States by the US Army where he resumed his work with von Braun's group in Fort Bliss, Texas. During the nine years Thiel worked for the U.S. Army, he held positions at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico and at Huntsville, Alabama. He primarily supervised preliminary design of the Redstone missile and other short- and intermediate-range ballistic missile systems.

Thiel left the Army in 1955 to join Space Technology Laboratories, which later became TRW. During the late 1950s, he was program manager for the Thor ballistic missile, which became a first-stage launch for the Explorer spacecraft. He was director of space projects for TRW when it developed Explorer VI and Pioneer V, two of the earliest US craft to explore interplanetary space. He oversaw all of TRW's space programs during the 1970s.

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Born
1915
Employment
  • Technische Universität Darmstadt
Died
Jun 2, 2001
Los Angeles

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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