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Guest: Charles Fishman; Topics:" Mr. Fishman's new book, "One Giant Leap: The Impossible Mission That Flew Us To The Moon," unique Apollo stories, key people that made Apollo happen and more.
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We welcomed Charles Fishman to this one segment 72 minute discussion regarding Apollo 11, the early space program and our effort to go to the Moon and more. Mr. Fishman has written an excellent book on the subject, "One Giant Leap: The Impossible Mission That Flew Us To The Moon" which formed the basis of our discussion. As you will hear during our discussion, the author talked about special or little known aspects of the Apollo program and the people behind making Apollo successful, not just the people we read about all time. For example, our guest talked about the JFK speech to Congress that almost did not happen with the consequence of maybe our not going to the Moon. We also talked about the Soviet Union effort to do a lunar sample return mission a few days before the landing of Apollo 11 until a mountain got in its way. Ushering in the digital age was a big part of our discussion as was the behind the scenes quantity of labor needed for each one hour of spaceflight. Don't overlook this this fact. We found out about GM engineers, GI Joe and the lunar rover plus much much more. One more thing to note, the American flag almost did not make it to the Moon. Find out why as Charles discussed this in detail as we approached the end of our program.
During our discussion we fielded several listener emails with related questions for our guest. Several of the email questions focused on his labor formula mentioned above. Listen to how he calculated the behind the scenes ratio of work hours to flight hours. Also note what he said about the $19.2 billion cost of Apollo with regards to affording to return to the Moon today. It is worth noting the items he used in his comparison for 1969, for example how much money we spent on cigarettes compared to the Moon program. Later in the discussion, I asked our guest about Ch. 5, :"The Man Who Saved Apollo." This was a fascinating story about NASA, MIT software programming and code, and the man sent in to clean up the mess so that Apollo 11 could fly to the moon, Bill Tindall. Don't miss this story! By the way, did you know the Moon has a distinct smell to it? Charles talked about that later in our discussion.
Our guest offered us concluding comments and two big takeaways. He said it was a myth that Apollo had no impact. It had a huge impact in many areas. Listen to what he said about this. Next, he said the phrase coined from the Moon landing that goes like "If we can land a man on the Moon, we can certain do___________________ (fill in the blank)." Charles said that phrase is used as much today as it was back in the Apollo era and post Apollo era. It indicated and still dos that we can do extraordinary things. Listen to his detailed commentary on this particular aspect of Apollo. Most of all, our guest brought us a refreshing new and at times very unique perspective to our going to the Moon, landing, and walking on it.
Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog for this show. You can reach our guest through me or the book website, www.onegiantleap.space.