George W. Brady, 82, an aeronautical engineer who helped design the configuration of the space shuttle for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and reverse pitch propellers to assist airplanes in stopping after landing, died Feb. 10 at Georgetown University Hospital after a stroke.
Mr. Brady retired last week after almost 30 years as an aeronautical engineer in Washington. He came here in 1958 after the launching of the Soviet satellite, Sputnik, to participate in technical planning of the U.S. space program and was working as a consultant to the Institute for Defense Analyses when he retired. Among his assignments were work with launch vehicles and communications satellites and, during the 1960s, man-in-space analyses.
A native of Muncie, Ind., Mr. Brady was a graduate of Yale University. He earned a master's degree in aeronautical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
During World War II he was chief engineer of the propeller division of Curtiss-Wright aircraft in New Jersey. It was there that he helped design the reverse pitch propeller, thus enabling airplanes to stop sooner after landing and on shorter runways.
After World War II, Mr. Brady, while still with Curtiss-Wright, worked with Dr. Robert Goddard in developing the liquid rocket concept for application to military aircraft and missiles.
A resident of Washington, Mr. Brady was a former president of the D.C. Federation of Citizens Association and of the Spring Valley-Wesley Heights Citizens Association. In 1972 he received The Evening Star Award for outstanding public service. During the late 1960s and early 1970s he was active in opposing the construction of freeways in Washington.
He was a member of the Cosmos Club and the Bethesda Country Club. He was a fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the American Astronautical Society.
Survivors include his wife, the former Esther Wood Brady of Washington; two daughters, Caroline Brady of New York City and Barbara Beeker of Kensington, and one grandson.