October 1, 1983
By the President of the United States of America
America is justifiably proud of its accomplishments in aeronautics and in space research. In the 25 years since the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) was created by an Act of Congress, our country and the world have witnessed an unsurpassed record of scientific and technical achievements which has established the United States as the world leader in aerospace research and development.
In aeronautics, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration has conducted an effective and productive research and technology program that continues to contribute materially to the enduring preeminence of United States civil and military aviation. Two-thirds of the world's commercial aircraft fleet is American designed and built, accounting for some $10 billion in positive trade balance in 1982. NASA's wind tunnels, laboratories, and such experimental aircraft as the X - 15 provide the solid essential research base for technology advancement and leadership.
In space, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration has conducted one of the most dramatic of all human endeavors: the Apollo Project which, 14 years ago, landed men on the Moon for the first time and returned them safely 240,000 miles to Earth. In addition, remotely controlled spacecraft have been dispatched on missions extending from near Earth orbit to the far reaches of the solar system. Through the Viking mission, the winds of Mars have been measured; through the Voyager mission, volcanoes on a moon of Jupiter have been observed and the rings of Saturn have been counted. More information has been gathered about the cosmos in 25 years than had been gleaned in all the preceding centuries. In the Space Shuttle, first launched in 1981, America now has a sophisticated new system for space research -- a machine that delivers payloads routinely to orbit; allows humans to work in space; returns crew, experiments, and unrepairable spacecraft to Earth; and is reconditioned within a short period for its next launch. The Shuttle is booked through 1988, an indication of how utilitarian space has become. The government uses it to preserve the national security; the private sector uses it for commercial advantage; NASA uses it in a search for knowledge, not just of the beyond, but applied knowledge which will shed light on conditions and circumstances critical to the Earth and its inhabitants.
Significant benefits have already been derived from space research. For example, communications satellites now provide worldwide communications to well over 100 countries. Communications satellites have profoundly changed modern life, making events immediate, impacts instantaneous, and instruction possible almost anywhere. Future benefits will be even more impressive. The future looks bright, and NASA will be an important part of it.
The government-industry-university partnership, pioneered by NASA, has worked exceedingly well in aerospace research, providing a model to others on how the different sectors of American society can work together. This effort reflects America at its best: peacefully seeking knowledge and enlightenment, advancing technology for mankind's benefit, and organizing resources to accomplish great missions.
In order to recognize the enormous achievements by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Congress has, by House Joint Resolution 284, authorized and requested the President to proclaim October 1, 1983, as the ``Twenty-fifth Anniversary of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.''
Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim October 1, 1983, as the ``Twenty-fifth Anniversary of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.'' I call upon the people of the United States to observe that occasion with appropriate ceremonies and activities.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of October, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and eighth.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:15 a.m., October 3, 1983]