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Lally, Vincent E.


Vincent Lally, a retiree of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), holds degrees in meteorology, electronic engineering, and engineering administration from the University of Chicago and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He first became involved with balloons as an Army Air Corps meteorologist and radar officer during World War II in Saipan, where he tracked radiosonde balloons to measure winds over the Pacific Ocean. He came to NCAR in 1961 at the invitation of the center's first director, Walter Orr Roberts, to establish a National Scientific Balloon Flight Facility. The first launch facility, located in Palestine, Texas, is still in business, although it is now operated by NASA.

Lally worked at NCAR as a manager and senior scientist until his retirement in 1991. He was involved in a program to develop long- duration superpressure balloons to make atmospheric measurements over the Southern Hemisphere. He helped launch the first balloon to circumnavigate the world in 1965, while simultaneously developing instruments to measure and transmit atmospheric data back to scientists on the ground.

Some of his other projects over the years included balloon-borne instruments for sampling the atmosphere, systems that use an inverted balloon to act as a ballast for a superpressure balloon, a shipboard launching system, a sounding system for wind data research, and coatings to shed water off the outside surface of balloons. He also promoted the use of Global Positioning System technology for superpressure balloons. Since his retirement, he has continued to provide NCAR with technical advice.

In 1990, the American Meteorological Society honored Lally with the Cleveland Abbe Award for distinguished service to the atmospheric sciences by an individual.
Author: UCAR Communications

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Atmospheric Technology Division (ATD) Records

Identifier:  - 04-03-ATD
Scope and Contents The collection includes records related to NCAR's Atmospheric Technology Division's facilities, projects, and field experiments as well as correspondence, project status reports, administrative records, strategic planning documents, and informational bulletins. Selections from this collection are available online in the NCAR Library's digital repository, OpenSky.