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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. Enjoy!

Preserving the Future History of Space

August 21, 2018 / History, NASA, Blue Origin, SpaceX

As SpaceX and Blue Origin continue to make history by building rockets that will take future space vacationers to the Moon or Mars, the Museum is thinking about how to preserve the history of these private companies. Back in the 1960’s and up until now, it was easy for historians to access public records at NASA that documented the space race; and that’s not the case now. According to our Adjunct Curator for Space History, Geoff Nunn, “corporate archives are becoming ever more important, but private records don’t automatically make their way through the public record trail like NASA documents did.” Geoff and other space historians now have to ask themselves, “How do you archive a Slack thread?” and “What happens when YouTube goes under and we no longer have videos of launches?”

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Fighter Aces - In Their Words

August 7, 2018 / Fighter Aces, Personal Courage, WWII, Storytelling

The American Fighter Aces Association preserves the memories of pilots who have sacrificed bravely for their country, and the Museum is home to its collection of artifacts and stories

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Meet an R2-D2 Builder!

July 24, 2018 / Storytelling, Star Wars, R2-D2, Engineering

Bob Jacobson, R2-D2 builder extraordinaire, claims that he wasn’t always into engineering, but the process of building his droid forced him to learn some basic and advanced techniques.

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She Opened Up the Skies

July 10, 2018 / Storytelling, airlines, First Passenger

A faceless mannequin wearing a 1920s’ style dress is posed next to our Boeing model 40B, but it’s not just there for show. The mannequin represents Jane Eads, the world’s very first transcontinental commercial airline passenger.

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The Man Behind the Hubble

June 26, 2018 / Space, Hubble, Astronomy

Back in 1977, when Bob Alexander was just a young engineer, he was chosen to work on a challenging new project: the Hubble space telescope.

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Do Airplanes Have Keys?

June 12, 2018 / Storytelling, travel, airlines

This week we talk to Kevin Gordon, first officer for Alaska Airlines, who graciously answers questions that our listeners have submitted via social media.

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Surviving the Final Frontier

May 29, 2018 / Space, NASA, astronaut, SpaceTravel

Did you know that for every month you spend in space, you lose about 2% BMI? Neither did we until we talked to Tommy Gantz, one of our volunteers and resident space experts.

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The Angel Bird

May 15, 2018 / Vietnam, Huey, History, Storytelling

Hustling in and out of a Huey helicopter is one of the most vivid memories of Platoon leader David Waggoner and crew chief Jerry Sousa: it took 10-15 seconds to load and unload the helicopter, and their journeys took them to hot zones where they were vulnerable to enemy fire. The Huey and those who flew in it were fearless, reporting to every call no matter how dangerous, and ended up transporting over 90,000 soldiers during the war. Ultimately, Waggoner and Sousa want listeners to know that Huey pilots “fought against the odds to save soldiers’ lives,” and they look forward to sharing more stories about Vietnam by giving tours in our new exhibit.

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Remembering Apollo Astronaut Richard Gordon

May 1, 2018 / Apollo, Dick Gordon, NASA, Personal Courage, Seattle

Dick Gordon passed away in November 2017, and author and volunteer Jake Schultz had the honor of recording Gordon’s oral history few months prior to learn about his experiences as an astronaut.

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Shouting at Hitler

April 17, 2018 / WWII, FlightDeck, History, Personal Courage, B-17

In this second installment of our Personal Courage series, B-17 pilot Dick Nelms takes us on one of his missions and shares how he and his comrades dealt with fear and other realities of war.

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