Von Braun’s 50-Year-Old Secret:
The US Explorer I Discovery
that Could Have Saved
the World ….
By Richard C. Hoagland
© 2008 The Enterprise Mission
I, we described surprising -- and apparently
totally unrecognized, until now -- pivotal new details around
the seminal events which quietly unfolded the night of January 31, 1958
-- when the United States finally carried out its first successful launch
of an artificial Earth satellite, Explorer I.
How, Wernher von Braun -- "Operation
Paperclip" chief German rocket engineer, and head of the US Army
effort that actually launched Explorer I (using the Jupiter-C
rocket that von Braun and his German team had specifically designed) --
was, at first, intensely disappointed ... then, obviously surprised and
overjoyed ... and finally, completely baffled ....
By the totally unexpected orbital performance of "his"
first US satellite.
For -- mysteriously -- Explorer I had reached
an orbit of the Earth that night fully one third higher
than the one (green line - below) originally planned!
We also noted in Part I of this report the immediate --
and still continuing -- national security classification of these
amazing scientific findings, which have both prevented open civilian research
into the far-reaching implications of Explorer I's astonishing
"anti-gravity" behavior for these past fifty years ... as well
as any application of those findings to desperately-needed energy
or transportation problems here on Earth.
Yet, despite this "security lid," we
were able to document von Braun's surprising, clandestine, years-long
personal search -- following Explorer I -- for "answers"
to these inexplicable celestial-mechanics questions ... which eventually
set him on a remarkable one-man quest for "an entire alternative
physics" -- which could explain America's first satellite achieving
an orbit (yellow line - below) for which von Braun's own rocket was literally
incapable of reaching ... on its own.
But, even more remarkable ... Explorer I was
not alone in this achievement!
Review of the publicly-available
data revealed the equally-unexpected "over
performance" of two additional
Explorer satellites in von Braun's early Army program, as well
as similar "mysteriously enlarged orbits" of all three
successful US Navy Vanguard satellites ... to the point where
the latter have now become the
oldest man-made artifacts still orbiting the Earth!
And yet, as also noted in our first section -- even after
fifty years -- no one seems to have noticed or asked any in-depth
questions about this astonishing sequence of events: the repeated,
gross violations of both "Newton's Laws" and "Einstein's
Relativity" ... in the launching of America's first satellites!
To say nothing of the simultaneous appearance of enormous
quantities of literal "free energy" ... in each of
their much larger orbits--
All ... apparently from nowhere!
* * *
In this -- Part 2 of our continuing
investigation into von Braun's amazing "secret" -- we will now
lay out, based on our own ~ 20 years of "hyperdimensional
research and experimentation," just
how we "figured it out"; how we have been able to "back
engineer" what von Braun (and
JPL ...) themselves eventually had to have deciphered about
this startling phenomenon, and what it could mean even beyond "a
fundamental revolution in celestial mechanics ...."
Explorer I's radically "non-Newtonian"
orbital behavior (and that of the other US satellites' ...) must rank
as THE major scientific and political discovery of the early
space program ... if not the last fifty years of solar system exploration!
Regardless of the public secrecy and security classifications
that high-level governmental policy makers immediately placed around this
night, the question which MUST be asked now is: "were von Braun (and
his associates at JPL) eventually able to turn this revolutionary scientific
Into a workable technology?
A technology which ultimately could control even--
And if so, has this overwhelmingly important technical
and political development also been officially kept secret,
literally for decades ... from both the American taxpayer ... and the
As noted earlier, our own ~ 25 years of research may have
given us a technical advantage that von Braun (at least, initially ...)
did not possess: a working scientific theory (the Hyperdimensional
Model) -- which, from the beginning, has predicted distinct "non-Newtonian"
spacecraft motions and behavior ....
There is, however, another school of thought vis a vis
"what did von Braun (and other Operation Paperclip Germans) really
know about Explorer I's 'non-Newtonian dynamics' ..?" --
an historical perspective extensively documented and discussed in
the works of our friend and colleague, Dr. Joseph Farrell:
In this discussion, there was the
definite possibility that von Braun (after all, once a Major
in Himmler's "SS" ...), in fact, was privy (along with other
key members of his own "Operation Paperclip" imported German
team ...) to a major, ultra-secret, Nazi black-ops SS
research and development program -- termed "the
Nazi Bell Experiment" (above and
below); an extraordinary experiment which (according to officially
declassified "intel" documents from Eastern Europe, made available
after the reunification of Germany ...) "manifested several, extremely
anomalous phenomenon .... "
Which would have been, of course, directly relevant
to Von Braun's own ability to instantly recognize the similar "non-Newtonian
behavior" of Explorer I!
After looking at this really hard, I happen not
to share this point of view ... and neither, by the way, does Dr. Farrell.
If von Braun had been knowledgeable about prior "...
Nazi inertia and gravity-control experiments" ala "the Bell,"
why did he then personally go "in hot persuit" of an alternative
physics theory to explain "the inexplicable" around
Explorer I?; in other words, why was he so obviously
Why, as part of his major effort to understand the startling
phenomenon that accompanied Explorer I's launch into orbit, did
he subsequently write to all those "alternative physicists"
around the world, seeking a new theoretical "non-Newtonian
solution" to "the Problem?"
Why not simply, quietly, consult with more knowledgable
members of his own German team ... in terms of details of the Bell Experiment
he might not have personally known?
In fact, von Braun's well-documented, "inquisitive
behavior" -- after the "shock" of Explorer I --
compellingly argues for a distinct lack of knowledge of the "Nazi
Bell" on his part ... and certainly, a total ignorance of the radical,
alternative physics that the Bell manifested to those directly interacting
with its technology ... to the point of actually killing some
of the scientists and technicians involved during the SS-run experiments!
However, there is one other possibility ....
That von Braun might have heard "just enough"
about the Bell (from "someone" that he trusted ...) to impel
him -- after his Explorer I experience -- to seek further information
... to find independent, contemporary confirmation of the existence
of such a "radical, alternative physics" ... on his own.
Whatever the facts around his "curious interest"
in such physics (and we may never know, for sure ...), unlike von Braun,
we at Enterprise, as previously noted, had the distinct
advantage of a remarkable, redundant, beautifully convergent series of
non-classified "anomalous gravity and inertia experiments"
to start out with -- when we began seriously to examine "the Explorer
In addition, also unlike von Braun (if you totally discount
the "he knew about the Bell" scenario ...), we had the distinct
advantage of a set of precise theoretical predictions from our
"Hyperdimensional Model" to go on ....
All of which formed an extremely solid foundation from
which Enterprise could attempt to "back engineer" the
ultimate process von Braun and JPL must have used in their years-long,
documentable efforts to "figure out the Problem."
* * *
It is at this point that we must introduce another remarkable
player in this "drama" -- the late "alternative physicist,"
Dr. Bruce DePalma (below).
DePalma (whose brother is the well-known Hollywood director,
Brian DePalma) started his career by graduating from MIT the very year
von Braun put Explorer I in orbit -- 1958. In graduate school,
he pursued electrical engineering -- both at MIT and Harvard.
After grad school, DePalma went to work for some of the
Nation's most prestigeous scientists and scientific institutions -- serving
as Lecturer at
MIT under Herold Edgerton; and Head of Photographic R&D for Dr. Edwin
Land -- at the famed Polaroid Corporation.
But after almost 20 years of watching the American Science
Establishment "up close" -- as it repeatedly ignored new experimental
evidence in favor of traditional theoretical "explanations"
-- DePalma one day got fed up, and decided to resign ... to create his
own independent research organization -- which he called "The Simularity
Based in part on his extensive lab experience with rotating
electrical equipment (motors, generators, etc.), DePalma initially became
fascinated by the electrical and inertial properties of "magnetized
gyroscopes ...."; after leaving MIT and extending this to gyroscope
dynamics in general, he investigated a wide-ranging series of "systems
in rotation" ....
Which is how our totally independent research paths eventually
In 1989, as Erol Torun and I were just beginning to grapple
with some of the higher-level
implications of our brand-new "Hyperdimensional (HD) Physics
Model," paraphrasing the old joke about "the most important
things to remember about business real estate ..." I paraphrased
a (somewhat flip ...) response to a similar question about our work--
"What are the three most important things to
remember about 'Hyperdimensional Physics?'; rotation ... rotation
... rotation ...."
Later, when I went looking for a serious "alternative
physicist" (meaning, someone who was open to the "unexpected"
...) to run some of our HD ideas past, a major figure in the "free
energy" community, Don Reed, strongly recommended that I talk to
It was probably one of the most important recommendations
I've ever received ....
As noted above, DePalma -- since the 1970's -- had been
carrying out perhaps the most exhaustive laboratory studies of "bodies
in rotation" -- including MASSIVE objects (~ 30 pounds ...), spinning
at very high velocities (~ 7600 revolutions per minute ...) -- that I
had ever seen (below); he had, thereby, accumulated an extensive experimental
database on a subject not normally dealt with in mainstream physics or
Matching our theoretical predictions of "the HD Model"
against Bruce's extensive experimental lab results in rotation, became
one of the true joys of our initial professional collaboration.
For instance, early on Bruce introduced me to the simplest
-- yet, probably, the most profound -- of all his many rotational experiments.
He just called it (fittingly ...) "the
Conceptually, the experiment could not
have been much cheaper, or easier to carry out:
Two 1-inch steel balls (like those found
in every pinball machine in America ...) were positioned at the business
end of an ordinary power drill; one ball was in a cup attached to the
drill's motor shaft, so it spun -- at a very high rate of speed; the other
ball was in an identical cup, attached by a bracket to the stationary
drill casing, adjusted so that it was level with the first ball.
The experiment consisted of positioning
the drill vertically, cups "up," and pressing the drill switch
on the motor.
The drill motor (and its associated cup,
containing one of the steel balls) rapidly spun up to approximately 27,000
RPM. The cup attached to the side of the drill (with the second steel
ball inside it ...) was not rotating ....
When the drill motor had attained its
maximum speed, DePalma (or, more often, Ed Delvers, his assistant ...)
would shove the drill into the air with a fast, upward motion -- suddenly
stopping the drill it in mid-flight. This would, of course, cause both
1-inch pinballs to fly out of their retaining cups in the same upward
direction -- the "spinning ball" (hence the name ...) and the
non-spinning ball, right beside it.
DePalma, from his years spent working
Herald Edgerton at MIT -- the famed inventor of "stroboscopic
photography" -- was an expert in such stop-motion photography as
well. By positioning Delvers against a gridded black background, in a
darkened laboratory (below), and then illluminating the two upward-flying
steel balls with a powerful strobe light, DePalma was able to
take time-exposure photographs with the camera's shutter open, the "pinballs"
only illuminated (at 60 times per second) by the strobe's periodic flash
The result was a striking "stroboscopic,
time-lapse photograph" of the parabolic arc of both steel balls --
flying upward and then downward under Earth's gravitational acceleration
Looked at even casually, one can instantly see in the
resulting time-lapse image (above) that the two pinballs did NOT fly along
identical parabolic arcs (as they should have); unmistakably,
the steel ball that was rotating (at ~27,000 rpm) flew higher
... and fell faster ... than the companion ball that was not
An experimental result in direct violation of everything
physicists have thought they've known about both Newton's Laws and Einstein's
Relativity ... for almost (in the case of Newton ...) three full centuries!
The above ~ 34-year-old image is a recent scan of one
of the original "spinning ball photographs" from DePalma's own
~30-year-old files, contrast-adjusted in PhotoShop (with text and grid
added), to bring out the data in the faded original. Nothing else has
been added or altered.
What this photograph reveals is truly remarkable ... for,
in direct violation of both Newton and Einstein, it SHOUTS that
"inertial mass" and "gravitational mass" are NOT equivalent--
Thus violating the foundation of all modern physics
in one elegantly simple experiment -- which anyone can safely
repeat ... even at home!!
* * *
When I first saw the orbit of Explorer
I (below, right - outer blue line) -- compared to the intended
orbit (below, right - inner red line) -- my thoughts instantly flashed
to the DePalma's remarkable (and highly controversial) "spinning
ball experiment" (below - left)--
The physics of each was identical
-- a "mass" thrust vertically against the pull of Earth's gravity
by an "outside" force; in Depalma's case, literally the hand
of the experimeter -- throwing the two pinballs simultaneously into the
air at the same speed; in the Explorer I example, von Braun's
Jupiter-C rocket supplying the "outside force" -- accelerating
the satellite into a trajectory fast enough and high enough to eventually
"fall around the Earth" without hitting it ... the quintessential
definition of a satellite orbit.
Was it possible that von Braun had -- inadvertantly
--somehow duplicated some aspect of Depalma's elegantly simple
"spinning ball experiment" that night in January, 1958 ... some
~ 20 years before DePalma would, in fact, carry it out?!
Was THAT why Explorer I had been
boosted so much higher than originally planned that night ...?
Could it be as simple as ... that!?
Of course, this didn't explain anything about
why the DePalma Spinning Ball Experiment works the way it does
... the underlying physics that (somehow!) changes a spinning
object's inertia against "an outside force," compared to one
that's NOT spinning ....
But, it was a start!
Now, as I've often noted "science is
nothing ... if it's not prediction."
For this comparison between Explorer
I and DePalma's elegent experiment to physically hold true, for it
to be real science -- there HAD TO BE some aspect of von Braun's
Jupiter-C rocket that was spinning ... during and after launch,
as Explorer I was injected into orbit.
Here is George Ludwig's (Van Allen's assistent
on the Explorer I electronics)
official description of von Braun's modifications of the "Jupiter-C"
-- before the effort to launch Explorer I:
" ... as the building of the Army’s
Redstone rocket was nearing completion, the ABMA group undertook
the development of the Jupiter rocket, a much longer-range Intermediate
Range Ballistic Missile. As a part of that program, in order to
test nosecones for reentry through the atmosphere, they developed
a special test vehicle to achieve the necessary high velocity. Since
it was part of the Jupiter program, it was called the Jupiter C
(Jupiter Composite). It consisted of a Redstone first stage, topped
by clusters of small solid propellant rockets forming an additional
two stages. It was consciously designed from the beginning so that
an additional stage could be added in place of the test
nosecone to make the vehicle orbit-capable.
"... sixty miles up, 156 seconds
after takeoff, the first stage [would burn] itself out. The three
upper stages with the satellite payload [would then separate] from
the booster and zoom upward, spinning in their tub-shaped assembly
in free-coasting, unpropelled flight, toward the apex ... at which
instant the remaining three rocket stages had to be fired.
"... a radio signal [would then
be sent] to the speeding missile to fire the second stage. Off [would
go] the first cluster of scaled Sergeants, which quickly [would
boost] the speed [of the entire, still spinning "tub"]
by thousands of miles per hour. Seconds later, the next cluster
of rockets [would ignite], pushing the final-stage rocket, with
its satellite, ever closer to that critical orbital velocity. Then
the single rocket in the final stage [would be triggered]. Its thrust
[would drive] the 18.13-pound payload over the 18,000 mile per hour
mark [emphasis added] ...."
And here (below), is a modified NASA-Marshall
Space Flight Center cut-away of the basic solid-fueled upper stages of
the Jupiter-C IRBM configuration. The diagram shows how the third stage
fit neatly inside the second stage (like a set of nested decanter glasses
...), and the entire upper-stage configuration was then rapidly ROTATED
in flight ... as each subsequent stage separated and ignited.
Von Braun and JPL (which designed this rotating,
solid-propellant upper stage configuration ...), as Ludwig wrote, simply
modified their existing IRBM version a bit more, adding a fourth
solid-rocket upper stage (attached directly to Explorer I) --
which then became von Braun's "Jupiter-C satellite launcher."
There -- plain as day! -- was the simple
fact these upper stages (called collectively "the tub") were
all deliberately set spinning just before launch ... to provide
(according to the JPL engineers ...) "gyroscopic stability against
uneven burn of the Sergeant solid rockets in each stage, during their
subsequent ignition phases."
The added color inset (above - left) is a
frame from a 1958 US Army PR film -- showing a top-down view of a one-third
scale model of a "nuclear reentry vehicle" for a forthcoming
IRBM test, carefully mounted on "the tub"; with the cover not
yet in place, you can also see clearly the placement of the 11 second-stage
JPL "Sergeant" rockets, mounted in their circular (waiting to
be spun up ... ) configuration.
The dummy warhead is the purplish "cone"
on top of the (hidden) third stage.
As Ludwig noted, this one-third scale warhead
model was simply replaced in the "satellite Jupiter-C configuration,"
by that additional fourth stage solid-fuel rocket -- atop which was literally
bolted the Explorer I satellite itself (below).
Here (below), JPL engineers work on a full-size
mock-up of this "spinning tub" assembly, with a separate mock-up
of the fourth stage and Explorer I on top -- the full "satellite
version" of the Jupiter-C.
And here (below), is the three-stage "rotating
tub's" operational configuration -- complete with the real Explorer
I -- all mounted atop the conical "instrument section"
and (below that), the liquid-fuel main stage of the Jupiter-C booster
The vertical black stripe painted on the
side of the "tub" is to allow blockhouse engineers to optically
monitor the rate of spin of the three nested upper stages on
the pad, as they were coming "up to speed" (between
450 and 750 rpm ...) just before launch.
So, precisely as predicted by the
HD model (and DePalma!) -- a key section of von Braun's rocket,
in fact, did rotate that night ... as it placed Explorer
I into space!
Mystery of "the unexplained higher orbit"
... finally ... solved.
Well ... not quite, of course.
For, this "confirmation" only deepened
the real mystery:
Why does "spinning" a
steel pinball, or ... rotating a one-ton, high-tech "tub"
-- containing 15 solid rockets -- allow both to climb SIGNIFICANTLY
HIGHER against gravity ... than if they were NOT spinning!?
One of the first reactions I had to this
fascinating confirmation -- that portions of von Braun's rocket HAD to
spin, inevitably (from DePalma's experiment ...) resulting in the higher
orbit for Explorer I -- was a feeling of intense gratification
for Bruce; for, this simple engineering detail proved that Bruce
DePalma has been absolutely right all along ... for over 34 years
... in insisting that "spinning a mass" also creates "some
kind of anti-gravitational, anti-intertial field
..." which allows the object to fly higher against gravity
than if it was NOT spinning!
Von Braun -- decades before Bruce DePalma
ever conceived of his elegant little "spinning ball experiment"
-- had already PROVED Depalma right ... with easily the most
expensive "spinning ball" demonstration one could possibly imagine
(Explorer I cost the American taxpayer approximately
20 million dollars, in 1958; today, allowing
for inflation, that would be something like "half a billion
Further, it was now obvious that this
is why von Braun also missed the Moon ... by those "pesky
~37,000 miles" with Pioneer 4.
Again he was using, in his Juno-2 "moonrocket"
(a further modification of the Jupiter-C ...), EXACTLY the same "spinning
tub" arrangement for the four solid-rocket upper stages that he'd
used in the previous Earth-orbiting Explorer launches; and (from
what we now know ...), the "DePalma Effect" struck again ...
neatly over-accelerating the Pioneer 4 spacecraft to a slightly
higher velocity than JPL