Murray died at his home in Oceanside at
Murray founded the space advocacy group in 1980 with the late astronomer
"Bruce was an extremely strong personality, but brilliant," Anderson said.
Murray took over JPL in 1976 when the Viking program was putting landers on Mars, Voyager was touring the solar system and the Apollo program was winding down.
According to JPL, Murray disagreed with
Before becoming director, Murray took a sabbatical from the
Murray ran into a lot of internal opposition because of that thinking, Casani said.
In fact, Stevenson said, Murray was named Caltech's first planetary science professor in 1963.
Murray stepped down as director in 1982, returning to the department he started at Caltech.
JPL said Murray was able to salvage the Galileo mission to Jupiter, but lost the American half of the two-satellite
Murray was able to obtain the American portion of the joint U.S.-
Casani, who worked with Murray on the Mariner missions to Mars in the 1960s, said Murray was somewhat confrontational, but "never argumentative and never hostile."
"People at JPL either loved or hated him. He was always shaking cages," he said.
At Caltech, Murray would throw out a challenge and students would attack or defend it. But the give-and-take needed for that kind of relationship didn't work that well at JPL, Casani said.
"He would throw out a crazy idea just to get reaction that never happened," he said. "The next Tuesday, there would be 30 people working on that crazy idea."
Murray earned his Ph.D. at the
He supported equipping spacecraft with cameras to take dazzling pictures of other worlds — a view that other scientists rejected as a stunt. These days, camera-toting spacecraft are routine.
"I lost a very good friend today," said Urrie van der Woude, who was the image coordinator at JPL.
He said he met Murray in 1963 and they became the best of friends.
"When you do things for the first time in the history of our species, you can't describe it. Bruce was the driving force behind our group,"
Shortly after he got to JPL, Murray set up an advisory council for women because there were hardly any women engineers, Casani said. He chose a group of 12 women to help him get the word out and recruit, changing the women on the board each year.
More women today are employed at JPL, in all positions, than any other
Murray is survived by his wife, Suzanne, and five children.
He was also very close to his cousin, former House Speaker
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