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Cooper's Island,Bermuda  


Connecting Our Past with Our Future


Robert P. Burgess (Bob) May 67 - March 73, served as Electronics . Technician in the Precision Measuring Equipment Lab for three years. He then transfered to the station's Telemetry and Display section. Duties included operating and maintaining control room equipment, recording weather data, plotting radar present position and impact prediction charts, recording rocket engine's thrust, yaw and pitch as well as astronauts biomedical data. Special equipment was also used to record scientific data from moon quakes. In Novmber 1970, Mr Burgess received advanced studies in Telemetry Data Concepts at NASA's Manned Space Flight Network Training Facilty, near Washington D.C. These courses were designed to develop the maintenance and operational skills of Telemetry Technicians in support of Apollo lunar missions.



Randy DouglasRandolph Douglas (Randy) 1961 -1965 was one of the first Bermudians to be hired as an Electronic Technician at the NASA Bermuda Tracking Station. He started in the Precision Measuring Equipment Lab, then transfered to the Telemetry area where he learned about Decommutation equipment. Randy worked with equipment racks and sometimes had to install cables in what he considered to be challenging, claustrophobic places. On special launches, he recalls going to the Tudor Hill Site in Southampton to set up and work with telemetry equipment. Randy feels that his experiences at the NASA Bermuda Tracking Station definitely prepared him for further advances in the field of electronics where he was able to move from a career in hardware to one in software.




les lynchLeslie Lynch (Les) was attached to spacecraft communications and took care of transmissions between the spacecraft andthe controllers at Houston. He was responsible for equipment that confirmedthe voice transmissions being sent and received. When Houston was out of touch with the spacecraft, Bermuda received the astronaut's voice which was relayed back to the center. Leslie's equipment recorded the voice levels and when he announced "Modulation is Go"this signified Bermuda was in contact. Les recalls "it was a great feeling when the voice came through indicating the flight was going well. It was good because this was a most critical part of the flight."




roger oldfieldRoger Oldfield April 8th, 1963 - July 21st, 1972. Roger worked in the Precision Measurement Equipment Lab, then in the Air-to-Ground section, followed by the Command section and lastly, the Telemetry section. Roger enhanced his career by receiving special training in Solid State and Digital Devices, Apollo Timing and PSK/Demodulator Technology. Roger was appointed Distinguished Capable Tracker of Gemineers, recognized as active participant in the Apollo VII and Apollo VIII missions. Roger received Letters of Appreciation as well as many other Group Achievement Awards, especially the one pertaining to the first Apollo Moon landing in July 1969.




cal simonsCalvin Simons (Cal) April 1962 - April 1973. Cal started his career at NASA working in the Precision Measurement Lab, then quickly advanced to the Acquisition Aid area. Later he attended numerous courses in advanced electronics at Goddard Space Flight Center's Test and Training Facility located at Greenbelt, Maryland. Assigned to the NASA Station's Telemetry Section, Calvin actively engaged in receiving and monitoring signals from Apollo space craft. He was one of a team of technicians who commanded machines that received signals capable of recording everything from a battery voltage level in the spaceship to the heart-beat of an orbiting astronaut. The received signal provided ground controllers with information regarding the performance of both the spacecraft and the astronauts. Calvin took a keen interest in computers and as a result, he was transfered to the computer section which was responsible for radar tracking and telemetry data transmitted back to the Mission Control Center.



clarence somnerClarence Somner was assigned as an electronic technician in the Unified S-Band system and operated equipment which transmitted and received voice, telemetry data and televison signals from the lunar surface through a 30ft diameter Unified S-Band antenna. Clarence received his education at the Francis Patton School and Howard Academy. Advanced electronics training was received from the many NASA sponsored courses he attended. In 1974, Clarence was offered an opportunity to be a part of an exciting weather experiment tracking storms on board NASA's ship the Vanguard which was re-assigned near the Cape Verdi Islands. As Clarence explains: "The offer was too good to resist... I was on the Vanguard some 90 days and was assigned to the radar section as an Optical Tracker Person."



William ToddWilliam Todd (Bill) 1963 - 1973, as a radar technician, Bill explained that radar people were always tracking somehing, although more especially busy during Apollo missions. "We were always busy tracking something. Even after Apollo was over there was still a lot of stuff moving up there, it could be space debris, or spent rocket engines." William and his colleagues spent about 12 hours on duty every day when an Apollo craft was in space. Much of the time was passed testing and preparing the masses of radar and ancillary equipment to make ready for the crucial time when the craft appeared above the horizon. The radar section was fed information by U.S. authorities on where the vehicle shouls be and the massive 30-foot diameter scanners was tuned to the position.



William Way (Bill) was born in Philadelphia, Pa on August 31, 1935 and died in Bermuda on January 29th, 2009. He graduated from St Thomas Moore High School and later from Lehigh University in 1957 where he majored in Physics and Electrical Engineering. Bill met his future wife Margaret, when they were young teenagers. The couple married in 1957 and three years later, Bill moved to Bermuda with his wife and family. For almost his entire career Bill worked at the Bermuda NASbill wayA Tracking station. He was a dilligent worker who earned his way up the ladder of success to Station Manager. He was probably one of a very few who could say they were there when 'Nasa Bermuda' started and when it finished. In May 2001, Bill was quoted as saying: "As you might know, I'm the last of the BFEC Mohicans at the NASA Bermuda Tracking Station..." Shortly after that the station was closed.