Broadcast 1191 (Special Edition)

14 Jul 2009 Sy Liebergot
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Guest: Sy Liebergot. Topics: Apollo, NASA Flight Controllers, NASA risk aversion, NASA Administrators, school lectures. Sy Liebergot returned to The Space Show to discuss his book by Apogee, "Apollo EECOM: Journey Of A Lifetime." This book will be available on the One Giant Leap Foundation book page, By purchasing this book through this link, Amazon contributes to The Space Show/One Giant Leap Foundation, Inc. Please note that this show was dedicated to honor Space X for their successful Falcon 1 launch on July 13, 2009. Also, there were some minor audio issues toward the end of the first segment coming up on the break causing some rough edits. I apologize in advance for any confusion the edits may cause in your smooth listening of this particular set of comments as we approach the first break. In talking to Mr. Liebergot, we learned that the Apollo 8 flight was his most memorable and important. Listen to what he said about this particular Apollo mission and see if you concur. He had the most fun with the ATSP flight. We also learned that he hated Skylab. Listen to what he said about it and why it was so disliked by the flight controllers. It sounds like the rotating shifts were most unpleasant. Listeners asked him about risk in NASA then and now. Sy had much to say about risk and the consciousness of risk in the space mindset during Apollo. For the most part, they never thought about it. Today, risk assessment rules in so many different ways that it’s a detriment to NASA and space development. Another listener asked about the accuracy of the film Apollo 13 since Sy was part of the real Apollo 13 mission. He said it was a Hollywood film and not bad but the real documentary which was excellent was a PBS documentary from 1994, "Apollo 13: To the Edge and Back." In response to other listener questions, Mr. Liebergot commented on the new incoming NASA Administrator and private company efforts to take us to the Moon should the U.S. fail to return in our civil space program. When asked what he would recommend to put the U.S civil space program back on track , he said he agreed with Buzz Aldrin and we should go directly to Mars. When asked how we could do that given he had previously listed several human factors problems and challenges that prevented a humans to Mars trip at this time or even long term space settlement, he said that we would have to focus and use the time readying the Mars mission to come up with answers to the human factors issues. We then had a spirited discussion about political and policy leadership, inspiration, and how a commitment for humans to Mars would support a turnaround in American attitudes, especially among school kids and other various groups within our nation and even the world. You can learn more about Sy Liebergot, his work, his current speaking and visiting engagements and more by visiting his website, If you want to send him an email question or comment, please do so at



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