1950s: The Classified Years


It was a time of strength and prosperity in the United States. The nation had emerged from World War II as a world leader, and it had placed a war hero in the White House. Beneath it all, however, ran an undercurrent of tension. The Korean War ignited fears of a third world war, and the Cold War was just beginning.


Gyroscope research during the 1950's in CSL


In response, the U.S. raised its commitment to research and development. One result was the University of Illinois Control Systems Laboratory (CSL), which opened its doors in 1951 and initially focused on military research.

In CSL's first decade, the work was classified, the results dramatic.

In this Decade:

  • Giving New Meaning to 'CSL'
  • JSEP
  • Project Quick-Fix
  • Rockets and Radio
  • Roots of Reliability
  • The Secret Shack
  • The Super Compass