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PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2015 10:10 am 

Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:05 am
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Location: Lancashire
One of the team of V-2 rocket engineers that accompanied Verner von Braun to America at the end of the Second World War was Oskar Holderer, who has passed away aged 95. He appears to have been the last known survivor of von Braun's original team of 120 engineers.
As a mechanical engineer and designer, Holderer designed, among other innovations, the rocket high-speed wind tunnel for developing the Saturn V, and a one-sixth gravity chair which is still in use at NASA.
Ed Buckbee described Holderer as "a very talented man, not only an aeroballistics expert but very accomplished in design and fabrication." Holderer's son Michael said "He was one of the more hands-on members of the team," and that "he had his own machine shop here in town as a hobby."
A few years after the war, investigators began to question the wartime activities of some of von Braun's team, with particular regard to slave labour in the V-2 factories.
The former chief engineer at the Peenemunde rocket site, Arthur Rudolph, who later worked for the Americans on the Pershing missile and had a key part in the Saturn V, had to renounce his American citizenship and return to Germany.
Oskar Holderer wasn't questioned about his wartime role. "He was just never at that level of supervision," Buckbee said.


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