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Very little of the thousands of hours of Mission Control audio on the website has been heard or documented. As you find moments of interest, post them here for discussion.

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Messages - Naraht

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Apollo 13 Moments of Interest / -06:49:22 FIDO makes a bad joke
« on: March 30, 2021, 11:27:23 AM »

Nearly seven hours before launch, you can probably forgive Jay Greene for kidding around a little. But this falls firmly into "dad joke" territory.

"Yeah, I'm on the console."
"Okay, get off it and get on a chair."
"Do what??"
"I would get on the chair instead of the console."

No appreciation whatsoever from the other guy.

In case anyone is interested I think he appears first here:

And goes off here to speak to MPAD and is not heard from again, at least within the next 45 minutes:

Nice find! Yes that's definitely him.

I'd previously hopped around the recordings a bit to see if he was on console at all (he's one of my favorite controllers), but hadn't found this, so I appreciate it very much. I'll have a listen to the FIDO loop to see how long he was around.

He's also on duty from roughly 095 to 096 hours, if anyone is interested.

Per his oral history: "I was supposed to be the descent FIDO for 13, and then other things happened that they said, 'We don’t need you this flight.' ... I was sort of assisting one of the guys for various reasons and participated in a couple of meetings here and there and had some spiffy suggestions, if I remember, but I was not a major Apollo 13 guy." 


FIDO Jay Greene messes something up but it turns out correct anyway. Not sure of the fine points. Anyway, as he triumphantly concludes, "I was right."


Someone tries to give Steve Bales a metric figure. He indignantly rejects this: "by the way, we ain't Germans down here... or whoever uses centimeters per second."

General Discussion / Re: Apollo 11 Guidance loop very low
« on: February 21, 2021, 03:00:28 PM »
No news at all. JSC has been in lockdown for 9 months. Even if there was funding, digitization wouldn't be happening--and there's still no word on funding.

Alas, no news is not good news. But thank you for the update. I'll keep my fingers and toes all crossed!

General Discussion / Re: Apollo 11 Guidance loop very low
« on: February 21, 2021, 05:11:42 AM »
It's in work. I just got word that the National Science Foundation has awarded a grant to the researchers who did 11 and 13 audio to do the rest of the Apollo missions (160,000 hours). It will take many years, but it's happening.

I'm wondering whether you have any further news about this? Obviously I'm not expecting any outputs from the work for quite some time, but I haven't even seen a public announcement about it. Is there anywhere that I could keep an eye on to find out more as the process unfolds?


Retro Chuck Deiterich tells Flight Director Glynn Lunney, apparently out of the blue: "Flight, I once got a ticket for doing that at a police boat out on Lake Houston, so you don't bother me!" The room explodes in laughter.

Anyone have any guesses??



With the Flintlock closed, everyone is wondering where the good splashdown parties are going to be, and for some reason they think FIDO Jay Greene might know. But he hasn't heard any inside information: all he knows is that there's a sign on the Nassau Bay Hotel across the street for 5pm.

It sounds like that's where they ended up, if you read the oral histories. It also sounds like they had a bit too much fun.

Thomas Sanzone: "The Nassau Bay Resort Motor Inn—a hotel on NASA Road 1—actually had an NBC news studio on the very top floor, so they could shoot across [the street] to show the Manned Spacecraft Center. I remember that the grand piano at the Nassau Bay Resort Motor Inn ended up in the swimming pool on the night of Apollo 11."

Jay Greene: "Apollo 11 was the big blowout with the fabled piano in the swimming pool. I wouldn’t know. I think I passed out before we got that far."

And you can find a picture of the place here:

General Discussion / Re: Apollo 11 Guidance loop very low
« on: July 23, 2020, 10:57:17 AM »
Thank you so much for sharing this news. I have literally spent time lying awake in bed – intermittently over the past twenty years or so – worrying that these priceless historical sources wouldn't be preserved. This is wonderful news and I'll wait as patiently as I can. :)

General Discussion / Re: Apollo 11 Guidance loop very low
« on: July 23, 2020, 01:45:56 AM »
Oh well, thanks for letting me know! I can't complain... too busy hoping that they'll be digitizing other Apollo missions next.

Per Murray and Cox, Apollo: the Race to the Moon:

"During critical portions of the mission, Guidance had a second controller, "Yaw," so named because his function was to monitor the yawing movements of the spacecraft."

You can find a manning list for Mercury through Skylab from page 198 here:

However it has to be taken with a truly massive pinch of salt as shift patterns were really not always regular - and indeed on these tapes you can often hear the controllers themselves asking who's on shift when. So it takes a lot of listening and a lot of being able to recognize voices! I've started recording some of this for my own reference but it's too big a task for one person.

She's not a flight controller and she's talking to FIDO on the phone rather than over the loop. My guess is that it's Liz Pieberhofer, who was the secretary for the Flight Dynamics Branch, but that's just a guess.

If you're interested in women in mission control, you can occasionally hear Poppy Northcutt, who worked in the backroom as Retro Support. You can hear her talking to Retro Chuck Deiterich here, for example:

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