Today was a maintenance day at the Christa McAuliffe Space Education Center. I stopped by to check up on Jon Parker (assistant director) late this afternoon and found a few interesting bits and bops you Troubadours may find of interest.
Let's start with the Magellan's bridge. For the first time in years, the big screen monitor which sat behind the Admiral's / Captain's chair was removed. What will take its place is yet to be determined according to Jon Parker, the Space Center's assistant director. It had to go because the graphics from the looped video which played on it for years were burned onto the screen.
Here it is, removed and ready for the district to come and haul it away. Troubadour, I give you the Magellan's Admiral Station video wall monitor in all its 1000 pound glory.
"You've got to come in and see this!" Jon was almost giddy with excitement as he dragged me into the Magellan's Control Room. "Now this is what I call a flight director monitor," Jon said as he sat down and literally purred in delight as his hands stroked the keyboard and the mouse danced across the screen.
This monitor takes flight directing to a new level. The CMSEC can now hire people nearly blind as a bat to flight direct their missions with a screen this size.
In addition to the jumbotron flight director monitor, the Magellan Control Room also sports a new CCTV video monitor, giving the flight director a much better view of the bridge.
Another CCTV monitor sits at the second chair station for the supervisor and volunteers to monitor.
"You'll be happy with this improvement," Jon explained. "The supervisor sits in the center where you see the two keyboards. Any one of the Farpoint Voyager cadets can sit here on the supervisor's left and run this station." Jon pointed stood behind the station with his arms folded. "The volunteer will be able to monitor written messages and phone calls as they move around the ship and respond to them if he wants. Great for training."
The video station sits at the end of the counter. Another good place for a volunteer.
I found this interesting conversation piece on the shelf above the second chair position.
Apparently Magellan supervisor Andrew is claiming he doesn't make enough to afford a pair of black pants - a new dress requirement for staff at the CMSEC. Mr. Porter, CMSEC Director, has taken up Andrew's cause and put this jar in the control room soliciting donations to help Andrew's plight. Any amount is welcome :)
Maintenance days always include removing equipment for deep cleaning. This maintenance day was extra special because of the root cause. The CMSEC is formally switching the Magellan from its Revolution computer controls to the new Cocoa controls recently completed by Matt Long and his team. "It's Cocoa or Bust!" Jon said, raising his hand into the air with index finger extended.
The Discovery Room was a managed mess but I could tell that Jon had everything under control. He knew where every piece of equipment belonged.
Miranda is the Phoenix Simulator's new Set Director. I found her in the Phoenix rearranging equipment and deep cleaning. I also found this....
Many great people got a start in their employable life at the CMSEC. Megan was one of them. We wish her all the best as she pulls up stakes and moves to California.