White Sands Missile Range Hall of Fame

Gabriel Galos
Chief of Optics in Instrumentation
Served 1952 – 1977
Inducted 1985

Gabriel E. Galos was born February 11, 1915. He is a 1933 graduate of Maryhurst Normal High School in Kirkwood, Missouri. In 1937 he obtained a bachelor’s degree in math and physics from St. Mary’s University in San Antonio, Texas. He earned a master’s degree in biophysics from St. Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri, in 1941.

In 1952 Galos came to White Sands Proving Ground as an electronics scientist for the newly organized Flight Determination Laboratory. During his tenure in FDL, he directed activities to ensure data reduction equipment and procedures were modernized in step with developments in data collection.

Galos was among the first to realize the vulnerability and sensitivity of guided missile weapon systems to electro-magnetic radiation effects. Because of Galos’ work in this area, WSMR was named the official Army test agency for Electro-Magnetic Radiation Effects investigations.

Galos pioneered the development of testing techniques and instrumentation to acquire and track missiles in flight. His efforts in this area resulted in the development of the Remote Control Telescope. Because of the telescope, new missile programs brought to WSMR could be tested without being hazardous to telescope operators.

The Laser Ranging and Tracking System was developed and tested under Galos’ direction in 1973. This system is one of the earliest examples of a tracking system that is under the complete control of a mini-computer. The system provided the technology to acquire and track a class of small, fast missiles which conventional optical and radar systems could not support.

Galos served as Chief of the Optics Division of the Instrumentation Directorate from 1975 until his retirement in 1977. He now lives in Las Cruces, New Mexico.