"Research Alpha"
written with James H. Schmitz
Short Fiction 1965 21,700 words
  • According to a letter to Harlan Ellison on the subject of collaboration (included in Partners in Wonder, which contains the story "The Human Operators"), van Vogt mentioned that his wife Edna Mayne Hull had some input on "Research Alpha." Hull routinely did the retyping for van Vogt's stories and when she came to a certain scene in the original draft she objected to it so strongly that she refused to continue. Rather than having to retype the story themselves van Vogt and Schmitz acquiesced and allowed her to change it to her liking.

  • Nominated for the 1966 Nebula Award for Best Novelette.

  • Throughout the '70s van Vogt mentioned in various places that he was planning a third Dreegh story to follow "Asylum" and "The Proxy Intelligence" that was to be called "I.Q. 10,000." He never wrote it; instead he used this collaboration with Schmitz as the final part of this "trilogy" as it appeared in the form of a fix-up novel entitled Supermind. Schmitz received no credit for his contribution to that novel, however indirect it may have been. His name did not even appear on the copyright page.

  • Adapted as an episode of the Sci-Fi Channel series Welcome to Paradox that aired on August 24th, 1998. The screenplay was by Jeremy Lipp.



original version


adapted for fix-up novel


adapted for television
Included In
More Than Superhuman 1971
Supermind 1977
Worlds of If magazine
1965 July Galaxy Publishing
digest Vol 15, No 7 — Issue #92 132 pages $0.50

cover art by

First appearance

4 illustrations by
Jack Gaughan

Cover image: ISFDB
Illustration images: Lledó
Data: Walwyn
Welcome to Paradox television
1998 August Sci-Fi Channel
TV Episode #2 42 minutes

Adapted for television by Jeremy Lipp. Aired August 24th, 1998.

Cover image: Amazon Data: IMDB
Jim Baen's Universe magazine
2007 February Baen
ebook Vol 1, No 5 - $6.00

cover designer: unknown


This issue of Jim Baen's Universe also contains another piece by van Vogt, the second installment of their serialization of Slan Hunter.

2 illustrations by
David Maier

Cover image: other
Illustration images: other