National Geographic : 1963 Nov
P. LAIH, NATIONAL stable aerial platform for our sensitive in struments. Below us lay 85 percent of the earth's atmosphere and nearly all of its water vapor-molecules that absorb and scatter sunlight, particularly the infrared. We hoped thus to observe certain solar phenomena more extensively than ever before. And at the least, flying above the weather would safeguard us from the frustrations that clouds have brought to many an expedition. This assurance of challenging and depend able viewing conditions had prompted our APEQS flight expedition. The project's name, pronounced "apex," had been coined to sig nify the general objective of the undertak ing: Aerial Photography of the Eclipse of the Quiet Sun-"quiet" because this year the sun is nearing the minimum in its 11-year cycle "T-minus-three!" Author Klemperer hears the countdown. An aeronauti cal engineer, he helped design Nation al Geographic-U. S. Army Air Corps stratosphere balloons in 1934-35. 787 AND H5 EKTACHNR N .G.5.