Welcome to the
Flight Deck Podcast

Listen to all of the Museum’s best aviation and aerospace stories on the Flight Deck Podcast, a podcast that makes history personal. Episodes released every other Tuesday. We hope you enjoy it!!

The Missing Million: Part One

November 23, 2021 / plane, Seattle, fun, Conspiracies, Pacific, Air Travel

This episode comes out on the brink of a major anniversary here in Seattle. 50 years ago tomorrow, November 24, on the eve of Thanksgiving, a man known only as DB Cooper boarded a plane in Portland headed for Seattle. What followed is a tale of danger, extortion, and hundreds of thousands of missing dollars - over a million in today's money. Host Sean Mobley sat down with Museum of Flight docent Mike Burns to get the story.

Full shownotes after the player.

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Link to the Boeing 727. Explore the type of aircraft that DB Cooper hijacked.

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Stories From a Stewardess

November 2, 2021 /

If you’ve shopped in the Museum’s store, Lynda Eck may have helped you with your purchase. Before she started working here at the Museum, however, Lynda had a 35-year career flying with United, first as a stewardess, then as a flight attendant. She joins host Sean Mobley for a conversation about her career chock full of stories from the friendly skies.

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Alone Among the Stars

October 19, 2021 / Space, Storytelling, SpaceTravel, Games, STEM

What’s it like to drift from planet to planet, exploring the universe? In today’s episode of The Flight Deck, you get to do just that. Host Sean Mobley invites you to take a break from the hustle and bustle for a few minutes as he leads you through a game of Alone Among the Stars, a journaling game where you play an intergalactic explorer chronicling their adventures through a series of writing prompts. Imagination is at the core of science, so remember to practice imagining from time to time! You never know what discoveries it will lead to.

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The World's Smallest Spaceship

October 5, 2021 /

How does studying a giraffe help make a better space suit? Dr. Dava Newman is the current Director of the MIT Media Lab and served as a Deputy Administrator of NASA in the mid-2010s. She’s been with MIT’s School of Engineering since 1993, where she ponders questions like how giraffes avoid passing out lifting their little heads up to munch on some trees, and uses these findings to lead a team of innovators creating the MIT BioSuit, which is a completely new approach to a long-standing challenge in aerospace, namely how to keep a human body pressurized at high altitudes or in space, where pressure is absent. A BioSuit is currently on display at The Museum of Flight in our temporary exhibit, “Stranger Than Fiction: The Incredible Science of Aerospace Medicine.” Dr. Newman joins host Sean Mobley to talk about giraffes, and other inspirations from nature, about the BioSuit, and about how imagination and creative thinking dwell at the core of science and engineering.

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How to Build a Rocket Engine

September 21, 2021 / Space, Safety, rockets

How do you build a rocket engine without blowing your factory up? Vern Estes took on this assignment as one of his first tasks in the family business of model rocket manufacturing. In today’s podcast episode, he recalls reaching the challenging goal of creating a machine that could quickly, and safely, pack model rocket engines to keep up with the voracious demand from a public eager to launch their own kits into the atmosphere.

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The Birth of the Balloon

September 7, 2021 / History, Radio, balloons

Before the Wright Brothers and airplanes, hot air balloons dominated the skies. Today we’re going to explore the origin of the hot air balloon, and we’re going to do it with an old time radio show: the original podcast. First aired September 17, 1946, ‘The Birth of the Balloon’ is a dramatized recreation of what people in 1946 thought the early days of ballooning might have been like based on their understanding of history.

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Astronaut Wendy Lawrence

August 24, 2021 / NASA, astronaut, Women, SpaceTravel

Former NASA Astronaut Wendy Lawrence is a veteran both of the Untied States Navy and four NASA Space Shuttle missions – including the Return to Flight mission following the Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster. In today’s episode, she talks about how she had to stop thinking of Russians as Cold War enemy and start thinking of them as space-bound allies, how she mapped out her future into space as a teen, and the perspective that astronauts gain when they’re out there among the stars.

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Curios from the Collection

August 10, 2021 / Storytelling, fun, Collections, technology, Moon Landing, Pacific, Scale Models

Flying fish from the Civil War era. Jetpacks with dolls. Planes in a bottle. As with any museum, only a fraction of The Museum of Flight’s collection is on display. In today’s episode, members of the Museum’s Collections team discuss some of the curios they’ve come across during their work, all of which are features on The Museum of Flight’s Collections Instagram.

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Stranger Than Fiction - Stories From A Flight Surgeon Part II

July 27, 2021 / FlightDeck, Vietnam, technology, aerospace

Picture this: You’re a doctor on an aircraft carrier. You’re awoken and told of an emergency on the lowest decks of the ship. You rush down staircase after staircase and find a sailor, his legs crushed by an elevator that’s stuck. You need to amputate or he’ll likely die. You don’t have time to go get your full kit. All you have on you is a pocketknife. This was Hank Davis’ reality, as he shares in this second part of his conversation with host Sean Mobley. In honor of the new temporary exhibit at The Museum of Flight, Stranger Than Fiction: The Incredible Story of Aerospace Medicine, Hank shares this and other stories from his time aboard the USS Coral Sea.

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Stories From a Flight Surgeon - Part 1

July 6, 2021 / Pilot, Health, technology

We’re celebrating the opening of our new temporary exhibit Stranger Than Fiction: The Incredible Story of Aerospace Medicine by chatting with Hank Davis, a former flight surgeon on the USS Coral Sea.

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