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Ernst August Wilhelm Steinhoff (February 11, 1908 – December 2, 1987)[1] was a rocket scientist and member of the "von Braun rocket group", at the Peenemünde Army Research Center (1939-1945). Ernst Steinhoff saw National Socialist doctrines as "ideals" and became a member of the NSDAP in May 1937.[2] He was a glider pilot, holding distance records, and had the honorary Luftwaffe rank of "Flight Captain".

Ernst Steinhoff
Born February 11, 1908
Treysa Germany
Died December 2, 1987(1987-12-02) (aged 79)
Alamogordo, New Mexico
Nationality Germany German, United States United States of America
Alma mater Darmstadt University of Technology
Scientific career
Fields Aeronautics, Meteorology, Engineering
Institutions Peenemünde Army Research Center
Fort Bliss
Holloman Air Force Base
Kurt Lindner (no article)Wilhelm Jungert (no article)Kurt H. DebusEduard Fischel (no article)Hans Gruene (no article)Willi Mrazek (no article)Helmut Schlitt (no article)Herbert Axster (no article)Theodor Vowe (no article)Rudolf Beichel (no article)Bruno Helm (no article)Oscar HoldererRudolf Minning (no article)Hans Friedrich (no article)Guenther Haukohl (no article)Friedrich Dhom (no article)Bernhard TessmannKarl Heimburg (no article)Ernst GeisslerFriedrich Duerr (no article)Hans Milde (no article)Hannes Lührsen (no article)Kurt Patt (no article)Otto Eisenhardt (no article)Johann Tschinkel (no article)Gerhard Drawe (no article)Gerhard Heller (no article)Josef Maria Boehm (no article)Joachim Mühlner (no article)Arthur RudolphWilhelm Angele (no article)Erich Ball (no article)Bruno Heusinger (no article)Max Nowak (no article)Fritz MuellerAlfred Finzel (no article)Herbert Fuhrmann (no article)Ernst StuhlingerHerbert Guendel (no article)Hans FichtnerKarl Hager (no article)Werner Kuers (no article)Hans Maus (no article)Herbert Bergeler (no article)Walter Hans Schwidetzky (no article)Rudolf Hoelker (no article)Erich Kaschig (no article)Werner Rosinski (no article)Heinz Schnarowski (no article)Fritz Vandersee (no article)Arthur Urbanski (no article)Werner Tiller (no article)Hugo Woerdemann (no article)Martin Schilling (no article)Albert Schuler (no article)Hans Lindenmayer (no article)Helmut Zolke (no article)Hans Paul (no article)Heinrich Rothe (no article)Ludwig RothErnst SteinhoffGerhard Reisig (no article)Ernst Klaus (no article)Hermann Weidner (no article)Hermann Lange (no article)Robert Paetz (no article)Helmut Merk (no article)Walter JacobiDieter GrauFriedrich Schwarz (no article)Wernher von BraunAlbin Wittmann (no article)Otto Hoberg (no article)Wilhelm Schulze (no article)Adolf ThielWalter Wiesemann (no article)Theodor Buchhold (no article)Eberhard ReesOtto Heinrich Hirschler (no article)Theodor Poppel (no article)Werner Voss (no article)Gustav Kroll (no article)Anton Beier (no article)Albert Zeiler (no article)Rudolf Schlidt (no article)Wolfgang Steurer (no article)Gerd De Beek (no article)Heinz Millinger (no article)Konrad DannenbergHans Palaoro (no article)Erich Neubert (no article)Werner Sieber (no article)Emil Hellebrandt (no article)Hans Henning Hosenthien (no article)Oscar Bauschinger (no article)Joseph Michel (no article)Klaus Scheufelen (no article)Walter Burose (no article)Karl Fleischer (no article)Werner Gengelbach (no article)Hermann Beduerftig (no article)Guenther Hintze (no article)
Project Paperclip Team at Fort Bliss, Texas, August 1946. Ernst Steinhoff is in the first row. (pointing the mouse will show the name)

Ernst Steinhoff earned his PhD at the Darmstadt University of Technology in 1940 with a dissertation on aviation instruments.

His younger brother Friedrich Steinhoff assisted rocket experiments while commanding U-511 in 1942.[3] Ernst was among the scientists to surrender and travel to the United States to provide rocketry expertise via Operation Paperclip. Friedrich was captured aboard U-873 and committed suicide in a Boston jail[3] before Ernst came to the United States on the first boat, November 16, 1945.[4] with Operation Paperclip and Fort Bliss, Texas (1945-1949). He then moved to Holloman Air Force Base where he also worked closely with White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. He focused on guidance, control, and range instrumentation throughout his career.[1][5] He was awarded the Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service in 1958 for his contributions to the US rocket program.[6] In 1979 he was inducted into the New Mexico International Space Hall of Fame.[1]

Steinhoff is being credited as one of the first pioneers to popularize the concept of space resource utilization for Mars exploration.[7] He became the first chairman of Working Group on Extraterrestrial Resources (WGER).


  1. ^ a b c "ERNST A. STEINHOFF". International Space Hall of Fame. New Mexico Museum of Space History. Retrieved December 14, 2010. 
  2. ^ Michael Neufeld: The Rocket and the Reich: Peenemünde and the Coming of the Ballistic Missile Era, Harvard University Press, 1996, ISBN 067477650X
  3. ^ a b "Friedrich Steinhoff". Guðmundur Helgason. Retrieved 2012-10-05. 
  4. ^ "Steinhoff, Ernst". Astronautix. Retrieved December 14, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Dr. Ernst Steinhoff". White Sands Missile Range Hall of Fame. White Sands Missile Range Museum. Retrieved December 14, 2010. 
  6. ^ Stuhlinger, E., Ordway, F.I., McCall, J.C., and Bucher, G.C. (1963) Aeronautical Engineering and Science, McGraw-Hill.
  7. ^ " "A Forgotten Pioneer of Mars Resource Utilization (1962-1963)". [permanent dead link]