We are here in the official NASA Kennedy Space Center news center and have completed the first press conferences of our stay. We positioned the high definition camera in the conference room and made sure to set up early in order to reserve our spot. The technician running sound cables told us that there are a lot of Japanese media personnel here and that we should set up often and early. It’s interesting to see mission materials that have a Japanese influence, with the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) providing stickers that feature space station components and the appropriate nomenclature written in Kanji characters.
From a multimedia standpoint, the facilities here are outstanding. There is a massive collection of all historic NASA footage and over 500 gigabytes of video from the last three missions. According to Margaret Persinger, multimedia specialist at the news center, the agency’s collection of video goes all the way back to the World War II era and NASA’s humble beginnings. Anytime you see a documentary about NASA or its missions on TV anywhere internationally, the official footage comes from this office and we have access to it. We plan to put in a request for video of when the Pensacola-based Blue Angels were here for an air show and some other Pensacola-related historical gems. We are currently downloading all current mission footage in high definition. Also available are thousands of photos of previous missions.
According to local administrators, there are not any tours available today, but we did glean some interesting information from the press conferences and a couple of briefings. The press conference at noon covered prelaunch proceedings and a weather report. The briefing at about 1 p.m. was about the space station’s science and technology with many details about the various Japanese experiments taking place at the space station. The second half of this briefing concentrated on commercial enterprises related to onboard mechanics and science experiments. The final briefing we attended at 3 p.m. covered the biological research in canister 16, which was related to growing plants in near-zero gravity environments.
Live footage from the noon conference was be available through NASA via http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/index.html and we plan to upload some of the other briefings at ecorsair.com. Check back often for updates.