Mission control at JSC, old and new

-December 31, 2013

The day of the Speed2Design behind-the-scenes tour of Johnson Space Center was finally here! We all stood in the lobby, eager to get going, chatting about all kinds of cool technology we were hoping to see. Our shuttle arrived and we quickly loaded up, dubbing the shuttle that would take us to NASA, the "space shuttle."

The lobby of Mission Control.

The first area that we got a chance to see was the current Mission Control Center. This is where everything with the current space program is handled. You can see the multiple screens on the far wall with important information about the International Space Station (ISS). On the predominantly white screen you can actually see the commands being sent to the onboard computers in real time. On this particular day, the ISS was experiencing some issues with a cooling system so they were actively working on that. On the other screens you can see what was live video from the ISS, both internal and external.

Commands being sent to the computers aboard the ISS.

Live feeds from aboard the ISS.

After getting a chance to watch how things are currently run, and see some action on the screens, we were herded out of the press area and into a different section of the building. This time, we were going a bit beyond where the typical tourists go. The location is the original mission control room, which is now a registered historical monument, only instead of sitting in the press room, we got to explore.

The winners of the contest were almost completely silent as they slowly proceeded from the doorway into the room. Click through to the next page to see what the winners saw.

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