A Guide to the Paul R. Hill Collection, 1936-1996 Hill, Paul R., Collection Ms2010-068

A Guide to the Paul R. Hill Collection, 1936-1996

A Collection in
Special Collections
Collection Number Ms2010-068


Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Special Collections, University Libraries (0434)
560 Drillfield Drive
Newman Library, Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
Phone: (540) 231-6308
Fax: (540) 231-3694
Email: specref@vt.edu
URL: http://spec.lib.vt.edu/

© 2010 By Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. All rights reserved.

Processed by: Kimberly Staub, Graduate Assistant, Special Collections

Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.
Collection Number
Paul R. Hill Collection, 1936-1996
Physical Characteristics
5.6 cu. ft. 6 boxes, 2 oversize folders
Hill, Paul R., 1909-1990
The Paul R. Hill Collection contains material relating to the NASA career of Paul R. Hill. Materials include books, papers, newspapers, lantern slides, NASA publications and memos, overhead sheets, and notes from presentations and talks.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish material from Paul R. Hill Collection must be obtained from Special Collections, Virginia Tech.

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: Paul R. Hill Collection, Ms2010-068, Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.

Acquisition Information

The Paul R. Hill Collection was donated to Special Collections in 2010 by Julie M. Hill of Norfolk, Virginia.

Processing Information

The processing, arrangement, and description of the Paul R. Hill Collection commenced in 2010 and was completed in January 2011.

Biographical Note

Paul R. Hill (1909-1990) was a renowned NASA engineer and UFO enthusiast. He received his B.S. in mechanical engineering from University of California, Berkeley in 1936. After teaching at the Polytechnic College of Engineering in Oakland, California, Hill began his career with the National Advisory Committee of Aeronautics (NACA) in 1939, which became the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1958. He worked at NASA until 1970, where he published numerous scientific and technical reports.

Hill was also an adamant UFO enthusiast. Based on his own personal sightings in in 1952, Mr. Hill tried to use his scientific and engineering knowledge to understand how UFOs worked and eventually built his own flying platform. His book on the topic, Unconventional Flying Objects: A Scientific Analysis, was published post-humously in 1995.

Mr. Hill was married to Frances Hoback Hill (d. 1999) and had one daughter, Julie M. Hill. Hill died in 1990 at the age of 81.

Scope and Content Note

The Paul R. Hill Collection contains material relating to the NACA/NASA/Langely career of Paul R. Hill from 1939-1970. Materials include books, papers, newspapers, lantern slides, NASA publications and memos, overhead sheets, and notes from presentations and talks.

Many photographs portray Hill's design for a personal flight device. Other drawings reflect planetary orbits or space station models. Presentation notes accompany a few slide folders.

The collection also consists of various publications and papers written by Hill and other authors. Many of these publications are declassified official NASA reports, and others are NASA publications from award ceremonies and department memorandums. Wherever possible, bibliographies at the folder-level are included in the "Contents List" below. Other publications include drafts of papers reviewed by Hill. A number of books were removed from the collection to be catalogued (see "Separated Materials" below).

Also included in this collection are personal papers of Paul R. Hill. Some of these items include his 1936 voter registration, work evaluations, and correspondence regarding his personal projects. Newspaper and magazine clippings kept by Hill are also included in the collection.


The collection is arranged in 5 series. In addition, there are two folders of magazine and newspaper clippings. Where possible, collection materials have been kept in original groupings. Other items, such as publications and clippings, have been grouped and arranged chronologically. Undated material is arranged alphabetically, where possible.

Series I: Paul R. Hill Materials Contains personal materials of Paul R. Hill, including correspondence, work evaluations, and his talks and lecture notes. It also contains papers written by Paul R. Hill.

Series II: Subject Files The files in this series have been kept in original groupings by Hill. Contains, papers, notes, correspondence.

Series III: NASA Reports and Publications This series contains official publications from NASA, memorandums and meeting agendas from Hill's time at NACA/NASA.

Series IV: Other Papers and Publications These files contain other publications that were part of the collection. Some of these publications were copies from other sources. Arranged chronologically.

Series V: Images This series contains slides, slide negatives, drawings, photographs, and photograph negatives.

The Magazine Clippings and Newspaper Clippings files contain clippings from various sources.

Separated Material

The following items have been removed and cataloged for the Special Collections Rare Book Collection:
A Class of Unified Explicit Methods for Steering Throttleable and Fixed-Thrust Rockets, 1964
A Course in Electrical Engineering/Vol II: Alternating Currents, 1934
A New Dimension: Wallops Island The First Fifteen Years, 1978
A Short Table of Integrals, 1956
A Superposition Principle for a System of Analytic Ordinary Differential Equations, 1963
A Trajectory Optimization Technique Based on the Theory of Second Variation, 1964
Accounting Principles, 1935
Analytical Mechanics for Engineers, 1933
Air-Age Education Series: Science of Pre-Flight Aeronautics, 1944
Airplane Dynamics, 1951
Airplane Structures, Volume I, 1938
Astronautics Magazine, September 1962
Bacteriology Illustrated, 1965
Bacteriology: Principles and Practice, 1962
Computation Curves for Compressible Fluid Problems, 1949
Design of Machine Elements, 1935
Development of Large Solid Propellant Boosters, 1962
Elementary Pile Theory, 1950
Elements of Chemistry, Volume II, 1853
Elements of the Differential and integral Calculus, 1929
Elements of Heat Power Engineering, 1915
Elements of Heat-Power Engineering, Part I: Thermodynamics and Prime Movers, 1926
Elements of Heat-Power Engineering, Part II: Steam-Generating Apparatus and Prime Movers, Fuels, Combustion, and Heat Transmission, 1933
Engineering Applications of Fluid Mechanics, 1947
Explosions and Combustion Processes in Gases, 1946
Gas Sterilants (Linde), n.d.
Geometry of Engineering Drawing, 1926
History of Wallops Station Part III Volume 1, 1971
History of Wallops Station Part III Volume 2, 1971
Hydraulics: A Text on Practical Fluid Mechanics, 1937
Internal-Combustion Engines, 1933
Kinetics of Machines, 1928
Lunar Flying Unit Status Review, 1968
Magnethydrodynamics, 1957
Mathematical Theory of Rocket Flight, 1947
Mechanical Engineers' Handbook, 1941
Millipore scopecontent, 1968
Modern Operational Mathematics in Engineering, 1944
NACA Reunion II, 1982
NASA Sounding Rockets, 1958-1968: A Historical Summary, 1971
On The Two Point Boundary Value Problem, with Application to Celestial Mechanics, 1964
Pocket companion: information and tables for engineers and designers and other data pertaining to structural steel, 1934
Practical Exporting, 1949
Principles and Practices of Electrical Engineering, 1933
Progressive Plane Geometry, 1935
Resistance of Materials, 1925
Reusable Orbital Transport, 1965
Sampling Microbiological Aerosols, 1959
Scientific Results of the Viking Project, 1977
Spaceflight Revolution: NASA Langley Research Center from Sputnik to Apollo, 1995
Steam, Air, and Gas Power, 1933
Sterilization with Ethylene Oxide Gas Mixtures, 1966
The Internal Combustion Engine, 1938
Technical Aerodynamics, 1935
Techniques for Microbiological Analysis, 1967
Theory of Modern Steel Structures, Volume I: Statically Determinate Structures, 1936
Threshhold Limit Values for 1967, 1967
Treatise on Hydraulics, 1934
Winds of Change: Expanding the Frontiers of Flight, 1992

Index Terms


  • United States. National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics
  • United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration
  • Local Subjects:

  • Archives of American Aerospace Exploration (AAAE)
  • Science and Technology

Contents List

Series I: Paul R. Hill Materials, 1936-1995, n.d.
  • Manuscripts and Publications, 1944-1970, n.d.
    • Box-folder 1-1
      The Effect of Operational Parameters of Speed, Power, and Altitude on the Range of a Heavy Bomber, 1944.
    • Box-folder 1-2
      Cost Optimization of Multistage Rockets, 1967.
    • Box-folder 1-3
      Appraisal of Studies in the Area of Design Integration, 1970.
    • Box-folder 1-4
      High Speed Vector Physics, 1983.
    • Box-folder 1-5
      A Criticism of the Special Theory of Relativity, n.d.
    • Box-folder 1-6
      The Optimization of Multistage Rockets with Respect to Cost, n.d.
    • Box-folder 1-7
      A Simulator Study of the Control of Lunar Flyers by Pilot Body Motions, n.d.
    • Box-folder 1-8
      The Time Required for Interstellar Travel, n.d.
    • Box-folder 1-9
      Vector Relativity, n.d.
  • Box-folder 1-10
    Paul R. Hill Correspondence, 1936-1992.
  • Box-folder 1-11
    Other Correspondence,1955-1995.
  • Box-folder 1-12
    Talks and Speeches, 1962, n.d.
  • Box-folder 1-13
    "Cowling and Cooling" Lecture Notes, 1942.
  • Box-folder 1-14
    Notification of Personnel Actions and Efficiency Ratings, 1944-1970.
  • Box-folder 1-15
    Authorizations for Travel, 1947-1970.
  • Box-folder 1-16
    Ephemera Personal Items, 1938-1964, n.d.
  • Box-folder 1-17
    Ephemera Notes, Figures, and Calculations, n.d.
Series II: Subject Files, 1953-1970, n.d.
  • Box-folder 2-1
    Helicopter WT Breakdown, 1953-1954.
  • Box-folder 2-2
    Nelson Engine Information, 1954.
  • Box-folder 2-3
    Spin Stabalization, 1958-1966.
  • Box-folder 2-4
    Partial Record MORL Technology Steering Committee, 1964.
  • Box-folder 2-5
    Peter Payne Materials, 1966-1968.
  • Box-folder 2-6
    SS History Talk and Figures for June 1, 1967, 1967.
  • Box-folder 2-7
    Preparations for Second Subcommittee Meeting, 1967-1968.
  • Box-folder 2-8
    Lunar Jet Transport, 1968.
  • Box-folder 2-9
    Space Station Review Group Correspondence, 1969-1970.
  • Box-folder 2-10
    Meteor Reentry Life Support, n.d.
  • Box-folder 2-11
    Shockwave Pattern in 3-Dimensional Nozzles, n.d.
  • Box-folder 2-12
    Space Station Information, n.d.
  • Box-folder 2-13
    Space Station Information II, n.d.
Series III: NASA Reports and Publications, 1941-1972
  • Official Publications, 1941-1970
    • Box-folder 3-1
      Publications, 1941-1948.
      The Effect of External Shape Upon the Drag of a Scoop, 1941
      Generalized Selection Charts for Bombers with Four 2000-Horsepower Engines, 1942
      Effect of Airplane Design Efficiency and Engine Economy on Range, 1942
      Parameters Determining Performance of Supersonic Pilotless Airplanes Powered by Ram-Compression Power Plants, 1946
      An Analysis of Ducted-Airfoil Ram Jets for Supersonic Aircraft, 1948
    • Box-folder 3-2
      Publications, 1953-1962.
      Equations, Tables, and Charts for Compressible Flow, 1953
      Preliminary Experimental Investigation of the Flight of a Person Supported by a Jet Thrust Device Attached to his Feet, 1953
      Flight Tests of Man Standing on a Platform Supported by a Teetering Rotor, 1954
      Flight Investigation at Mach Numbers from 0.8 to 1.5 to Determine the Effects of Nose Bluntness on the Total Drag of Two Fin-Stabilized Bodies of Revolution, 1955
      High Temperature Oxidation and Ignition of Metals, 1956
      A Method of Computing the Transient Temperature of Thick Walls from Arbitrary Variation of Adiabatic-Wall Temperature and Heat-Transfer Coefficient, 1957
      An Analysis of Ablation-Shield Requirements for Manned Reentry Vehicles, 1960
      NASA Reports - A Discussion for Prospective Authors, 1962
      Perigee Propulsion for Orbital Launch of Nuclear Rockets, 1962
    • Box-folder 3-3
      Publications, 1963-1968.
      Open House Instructions for Self-Guided Tour, 1963
      The International System of Units, 1964
      The Needs and Requirements for a Manned Space Station Volume I, 1966
      A Technical Assessment of Manned Orbiting Laboratories, 1964
      Sterilization and Decontamination Techniques for Space Vehicles, 1967
      Planetary Quarantine, 1967
    • Box-folder 3-4
      Publications, 1970.
      AMPD Program Summary, 1970
      A Simulator Study of the Control of Lunar Flying Platforms by Pilot Body Motions, 1970
      Lunar Flying Platform Simulator, 1970
  • Box-folder 3-5
    Box-folder 3-6
    Notes on Space Technology, 1958.
  • Box-folder 4-1
    Air Scoop and Langley Researcher Publications, 1952-1970.
  • Box-folder 4-2
    Assorted Meeting Agendas, 1951-1968.
  • Box-folder 4-3
    Department Memorandums, 1949-1970.
  • Box-folder 4-4
    Other Publications, 1963-1972.
    Echo I, 1961
    Honor Awards Ceremony, 1963
    Honor Awards Program, 1966
    Honor Awards Program, 1970
    Space Station Index, 1970
    Honor Awards Program, 1972
    "Tips to NASA Travelers on How to Survive When Trapped in a Multistory Building Fire", n.d.
    The National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, n.d.
  • Box-folder 4-5
    Ephemera, 1950-1969, n.d.
Series IV: Other Papers and Publications, 1952-1988
  • Box-folder 4-6
    Papers and Publications, 1952-1963.
    Molds and Men, 1952
    The Origin of Life, 1954
    Relativistic Treatment of Rocket Kinematics and Propulsion, 1958
    Steering an Ascent Rocket for Maximum Cutoff Velocity, 1958
    A Simple Passive Method for Predicting the Path of a Space Ship with Respect to a Planet Which Is Approaching, 1958
    Techniques for Departure and Return in Interplanetary Flight, 1958
    A Note on the Application of Hill's Method to Low Conductivity Materials, 1958
    Computing Notes on Hill’s Method, 1958
    About the Final Velocity of Rockets, 1959
    The Third Symposium on Advanced Propulsion Concepts, 1962
    Development of a Method for Microbial Sampling of Surfaces with Special Reference to Reliability, 1963
  • Box-folder 4-7
    Papers and Publications, 1964-1988.
    The Application of Modern Dynamic Optimization Techniques to Fundamental Problems Encountered in Space Programs, 1964
    The Black Death, 1964
    Tangent Steering, 1965
    Sterilizing Space Probes, 1966
    On Finding the Optimum: A New Location Technique, 1969
    Public Service Company of Colorado Shareholder's Quarterly, 1988
  • Box-folder 5-1
    Papers and Publications, n.d.
    Conventionality and Mach's Principle in Relativity, n.d.
    A Comparison of Two Methods for Calculating Transient Temperaturs Through Thick Walls, n.d.
    Exact Methods in the Dynamics of Structures, n.d.
    The Fundamentals of Flight-Induced and Forced Cooling, n.d.
    Methods and Techniques Used by the Pilotless Aircraft Research Division in Free Flight Tests, n.d.
    Notes on Quantum Theory, n.d.
    Notes on Vibration Theory, n.d.
    Numerical Solution for the Temperature Distribution in Some Structural Components Heated at a Constant Rate, n.d.
    Objectives and a Comparison of Approaches for a Manned Orbital Laboratory, n.d.
    Optimization of Satellite Boost Trajectories, n.d.
    Significant Contributions of OMSF Flight Programs, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-2
    Paper, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-3
    Copies and Printouts from Other Sources, 1954-1968, n.d.
Series V: Images, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-4
    Life Systems Briefing Negatives, 1962.
  • Box-folder 5-5
    Space Conference Negatives, 1962.
  • Box-folder 5-6
    Interstellar Flight Figure Originals, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-7
    Long Term Flight Panel Negatives, n.d.
  • Box 6
    Lantern Slides, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-8
    Slide Negatives, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-9
    Photograph Negatives, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-9
    Box-folder 5-10
    Photographs, 1981, n.d.
  • Box-folder 5-11
    Photographs, n.d.
  • Oversize Folder 1
    Drawings and Figures, n.d.
Box-folder 5-12
Magazine Clippings, 1954-1969, n.d.
Oversize Folder 2
Newspaper Clippings, 1955-1996, n.d.