Tu-144LL 20th Anniversary: My own Experience Working in Russia following the Cold War by Glenn Bever


>>Good morning.Good morning, welcometo the Armstrong
Flight Research Center.I’m David McBride,
the Center Director.Welcome, thank you
for coming out todayto hear this great talk
about the 20th anniversaryof our involvement
in TU-144 Program.I’m glad to have Glenn
Bever back with us to talkabout his experiences
on the program.Glenn Bever is the former
Deputy Director for Researchand Engineering here
at the Center.Previously served as the Chiefof the Flight Instrumentation
Branch,Chief of the Flight Systems
Branch here at Armstrong.He developed embedded
systems for research aircraftat Armstrong for most
of his 42 years at NASA.He also served as
Project Chief Engineerfor the Automated
Aerial Refueling Projectand as Chief Engineer for the
C-17 Research Flight ComputingSystems Project.Glenn has worked on at least
17 different aircraft platformshere at the Center including
the F-104, F-16XL, CV-990,the SR-71, F-15D, high deck,
FBF-116 — or FBF-111, F-18,F-15, A-37, C-17, KC-135, C-140
Jetstar, Army OV-1 and TU-144and a few others that
aren’t on the list.For 16 years, Glenn was
the NASA representativeto the [Inaudible] AGARD
Flight Test Techniques Groupresponsible for publications
associatedwith flight test techniques and
flight test instrumentation.Glenn authored the AGARDograph
Digital Signal Conditioningfor Flight Test.Between 1995 and 1999, Glenn
spent much of his time in Russiaas the U.S. Instrumentation
and On-Site Engineerfor the TU-144L High-Speed
Research projectwhich he will be
talking about here today.Glenn’s currently retired
but holds the positionof America’s Engineer here at
NASA Armstrong, the first personto hold an America’s Engineering
position here at the Center.So please Glenn a warm welcome.[ Applause ]>>It wasn’t mine.First of all, I’d like to
note that my son Sam is here.He was not alive
for these eventsso he has a [laughter] chanceto see what his old man did
before he was the centerof our lives.For that matter, how many
people have even heardof this project prior
to the presentation?Okay, good [laughter].This is not a big
Cold War secret.How many people actually
worked on the program?I see Becky back
there, and Bob Curry,and some other people
watching, I think, from afar.Well, 20 years ago, on
November 29, 1996 to be exact,it was the day after
Thanksgivingso we spent Thanksgiving Dayon an airplane eating delta
rubber chicken on our wayto Moscow to watch the first
flight of this program.It didn’t break the
sound barrier that daybut it broke a barrier
of a different kind.It was the first
American-Russian collaborationon an aeronautics
flight research project.And as far as I know, it’s
the only one that we ever did.It hasn’t happened since.So we were breaking
a lot of new ground.I had a front row seat
because I was the bootson the ground there.This story is a story partly
about the program but mostlyabout my experiences there which
I find the more interesting.It was the most interesting
part to me in tryingto get this thing
literally off the ground.So what was the program
all about?Well the NASA High-Speed
Research Officeout of Langley funded a programto gather some quantitative
informationon a passenger class supersonic
aircraft with the goalof feeding that data
into the designof the next generation
supersonic aircraft.These things go in
cycles and this is a cyclewhere Boeing was
once again interestedin pursuing something like that.But there are only two vehicles
that existed at the timethat fit that class of aircraft,
the TU-144 and the Concorde.The TU-144 is known to
Westerners sometimesas the Concordski much to
the chagrin of the Russians.They really hated
that avolation.So what was going on
in Russia at the time?The Soviet Union had just
fallen a couple of years before,1991 — it had ceased to exist.It was now the Russian
Federation.The Russian economy
was in bad shape.It was a closed economy.They didn’t have hard currency.A lot of people had
jobs but no payso how they survived
with no pay?Well, it was largely
a barter economy.It took us a while
to figure that out.Some of the people I worked
with were not getting paidfor the work that
they were doing.But their apartments were
free, things like that.Russian aviation was
in bad shape alsobecause their customer base
was essentially all in Russia.And now the Russians were
able to buy Western aircraft.At least that possibility
was open to them.And so in Tupolev, the
Tupolev Design Bureauthat designed the TU-144
found their customer baseseverely limited.There was a lot of interest in
Western — anything Western.You know, the wall
had come down.The door had opened.They were very happy to
see people from the West.Most Russians had never
been out of the country,had never met anybody from
outside of the country.And they needed —
they needed money.They were interested in buying
anything Western or obtaining,whether we’re talking about
blue jeans, or if we’re talkingabout McDonald’s restaurants,
or Pizza Hut, which they had,and TGI Friday that literally
spelled that way in Cyrillic.I ate at a few of those places.And even Western
religion, you know,the Russian traditionally
was Russian Orthodox.Under Communist Russia,
they had not fared too wellbut they still existed.A lot of the cathedrals had
been turned into storage shedsand they were in the processof being turned back
into cathedrals.That was actually
a point of frictionwith some Russians I had met.They didn’t appreciate that
aspect of Western coming in.But it was kind of
a chaotic timebecause they didn’t
know what was going onand what was going to happen.One Russian described it to
me as “Chicago in the 1920s”.Moscow was a pretty secure city
before that, as you might expectwith a dictatorship,
and hierarchical regimeand the secret police,
and so forth.All that was swept away
at least for the time.And now they had such nice
things as murder in the subwayand Czechian separatists
setting off bombsin public transportation, all
in places that I frequentedso that was where it had
personal interest to me.So how did the program
get started?Well, the Vice-President Gore
and Prime Minister Chernomyrdinof Russia formed a Joint
Commission to study waysof collaborating between the
United States and Russia.It was a historic opportunity
and one that they didn’t wantto get by them, all kinds
of concerns about, you know,proliferation of
nuclear materialsand other things like that.But pertinent to this
discussion is in the contextto that they endorsed the
TU-144LL program in 1993.And in 1994, agreements
were signedwith the affected parties
most of which are listedat the bottom there, NASA
Langley, NASA Dryden,NASA Lewis which
is now NASA Glennand we’re now Armstrong
were involved.Boeing, Douglas and Rockwell
— Boeing gobbled up Douglasand Rockwell in the middle
of this program, by the way.So that things were
always changing.General Electric and Pratt
Whitney had an engine testingand experiment that was run.Tupolev Design Bureau which
owned the aircraft and IBPwhich is a small company out of
England that had all the rightsto the contract passed
through to Tupolev.So I got involved in
1994 and I was sentto the Defense Language
Institute up in Montereywhich is a place where they
train military personnelin all sorts of languages,
mostly for listening postsand things like that
during the Cold War.Well, the Cold War had endedand these people were
struggling a bit also,in what their future held.And so we contract with themto teach a small
group of us Russian.It’s a 46-week course which they
crammed into four [laughter].Yes [laughter], that was one of
the more humiliating experiencesof my life, being poured out of
that place with an expectationof knowing something
about Russian.And I did get an overall
structure of the languageand it was helpful but
it was not optimal.The flights ran from 1996,20 years ago this
month, to April of 1999.27 flights in all, 14 of
which were supersonic.And they were all flown
out of Zhukovsky Air Base.This was a NASA program
which was never flownin this country much
less this continent.They were all flown
out of Zhukovsky.This is the only chart I’m
going to show you so take heart.But this is just to show kind
of how people fit together.And this is my view of it.The High Speed Research
HSR Officeup in Langley had
the program moneyand they funded Boeing Seattle
to be the prime contractorto have a contract with
the Tupolev Design Bureau,the people of the airplane
but as I say it passedthrough IBP to make that happen.Dryden, shown prominently
in red there,was funded from the High
Speed Research Officebut we essentially worked
as a subcontractor to Boeingto handle the flight
instrumentation issues, supportand flight test management.We had a project management
office here that was managingthat part of the program.Ross Barber was the
head of that activity.After that it got very squishybecause the data coming
off the aircraft flew —came back to Dryden.We processed the data, applied
the calibrations and so forth.Put it in our data archive
and made it availableto U.S. team members
for analysis.But essentially all of the
working issues on the groundin Moscow with the exception
of a team from Langleyfor a cabin noise
experiment, was all really runthrough Dryden and that
meant largely through mebecause I was often
the only guy —the only American on site there
for large parts of this program.So this is the TU-144.This is a picture at
Zhukovsky Air Base.It’s, and I think there’s snow
on the ground in this picture,it was painted white twicebecause the first
time they painted it,they did such a poor job of
priming it that it was —the paint was coming off in very
large clumps even before it evergot in the air.So they named the plane the
[inaudible] which means Moscow.And by the way, the LL
designation at the endof TU-144, that stood for
[Inaudible] Laboratoriawhich means Flight
Laboratory in Russian.I always make the distinction.This was the only LL aircraft.By contrast, here’s a
picture of the Concorde.It’s kind of a poor
quality picturebecause this is a screen capturefrom a videotape
that I shot in Paris.This happened to be a
Concorde that I flew in a yearafter the program ended.I had so many frequent flyer
miles from flying to Russia,I got two free flights
on the Concorde goingto some meeting — to
and from some meetingsthat I had in Paris.And it’s a real interesting
experience landing before youtake off.It’s a fast airplane.But in comparing the two,
the airplane in red —whoops, is the TU-144 and the
Concorde is the one in blue.So you’ll see side by side,they are almost exactly
the same size.The TU-144 is a little bit
longer, a little bit taller.The wing shape you
see is different.The placement of the
engines is different.TU-144 is a little
bit heavier as well.The ceiling was a
little bit higher.And even the speed was a little
bit faster than the Concorde.But the Concorde
had a bigger range.Now, when we started
our program,they replaced the engines
with the NK-321 turbofans.Those were engines out of
the Russian Blackjack bomber.The original engines for the
TU-144 are no longer available.And one of my favorite
stories about that, you know,after they re-engined it and
changed the inlet configurationsand so forth to make them fit,and one of their supersonic
flights, they boomed the factorywhere the engines were
manufactured and broke a lotof windows [laughter]
— payback.This is a picture of
the Concorde or the —excuse me, the TU-144 cockpitand after it was all
put back together.The thing that strikes
me about this is it looksto me all the world like one
of our engineering simulators.It’s very boxy, very functional.The aircraft itself was
very stiff to handle.But the Russians built
things that last.Just to cite an example,
on a typical fighter,they put the inlets
on top of the wingsso that it doesn’t suck up all
the fog on the crappy runways.And the reasoning is we’re
fighting in a battle.We’re not going to have —we’re going to have
battlefield conditions.We don’t — we’re not going
to have pristine runways.So they approached things
often differently than we did.Here’s another screen capture
of the Concorde in flight.I actually was in the cockpit
during Mach 2 flight taking thispicture, actually taking
a whole series of videosof which this is
a screen capture.This is, you know, a
year-and-a-half before 9-11.And a flight attendant
actually came up and asked meif I wanted a tour of
the cockpit in flight.So I took my video camera,
went up and I spent a long timeup there videotaping the
gauges and the pilot activityand putting my hand on the
bulkhead, feeling the heatfrom the Mach 2 flight
happening.Where the flight engineer
has his hand is closeto a gap behind the console
where at Mach it’s expandedby like, I think, about an
inch or inch-and-a-half justfrom the friction, the
heat from the Mach flight.So what were we actually
measuring on this airplane?This is like — and selected out
of a whole group of experiments,this was what was selected.There are six experiments
listed there.And we added a seventh
in phase two flight,the quality of pilot assessment.But quantitatively, we had a
handling quad as experiment.A boundary layer experiment —you can see it listed
some pressureslike we had pressure strip of
tubing on the starboard wing.We had thermal couples and
RTDs and heat flux gaugeson the port wing for surface
structure equilibrium test.Ask Greg Stevens
about that sometime.He was — that was
his experiment.Engine air flow and heat,
slender wing ground effect.Ask Bob Curry about that.He’s in the back
of the room there.That was an experiment he
was interested in which ledto some other stories
hopefully, I’ll get to later.So 722 PCM data channels
but those —and oh, I forgot to mention
the cabin noise experimentmostly inside.That was principally
a Langley experimentwith some participation
from Boeing.So we were majoring all that
as well various air data.You can see where the
sensors were placedwhich is pretty far aft
from where the inlets where.So we had some significant
lags due to that.And they’re also using
Armenian sensors.And whenever I asked them, what
sensors they use and they’d say,“Armenian,” and then
they’d laugh [laughter].Okay, it turns out that
Armenian to them was like madein Japan was here in the 1960s.They were considered
poor quality instrumentsand they were a joke.It was no laughing
matter to me because I hadto analyze the data coming
off of those sensors.And the characteristics of a
fine sensor was a saw tooth.You’d go up an altitude.You continue up an altitude,
continue up an altitude.So the calibration curve was
constantly changing slopeand there’s hysteresis at those
points so you could not predictwhere it was going to happen.I had to go and by hand
in the data and figureout where those points where so
I could apply the calibrationcurve to make that change.And if that change
happened in the middleof a flight test
point, not optimal.So I got tired of it finally
and designed my own systemand put it on board so I
didn’t have to mess with that.This is a screenshot of a chart
I made showing all the flights.The phase one and phase
two from 1996 to ’99,these were all the flights
where they happened.And if you can see
the red on there,those are the supersonic
flights.We had some gaps to
handle some reconfigurationand aircraft issues
and convertingfrom phase one to phase two.Right here, you see
U.S. evaluation flights.That was for these two guys.Most of you will recognize
the guy on the leftas our own Gordo Fullerton.Gordo was a bulldog in making
sure this flight happened.He really wanted to
fly this airplaneand he really pushed it.Rob Rivers is the
other pilot there.He’s out of Langley.You can see the degree
of his commitment alsobecause you might notice that
he’s sporting a cane there.The reason for that was
a month or two priorto that, he broke his leg.And he was not 100%
healed franklyand hobbled around on that cane.But he managed to convince
doctors on both sidesof the Atlantic that he was
fit enough to fly [laughter].And remember what he saidabout the stiff handling
of the TU-144.It was not an easy aircraft
to fly if you were not 100%.But he did.So what’s coming
next is a video.This is about three-and-a-half
minutes long.And this is video
that was shot by —mostly by Lori Losey
here so we sent her —Jim Ross and her to
Moscow for these flightsto get us some decent pictures.And this is Gordo’s
first flight.There’s the takeoff.You can see the Snoopy ears
there deployed, the winglets —that’s something the
Concorde did not havebut they had a [inaudible]
problem with this aircraftand they had to put those on
there to balance things out.And you’ll also notice
the drooped nose.Someone called this
the sad dragon face.But it’s drooped down
12-and-a-half degreesso the pilots can see the
runway on takeoff and landing.Something else the
Concorde also did.It was a beautiful aircraft.But that aircraft was —this particular one was the
17th off the assembly line.It was the last TU-144 built.They had like 82 flight hours.It was retired in 1989.From commercial service, it
retired, I think, about ’79but they did some other
testing up until ’89.And then it sat there.So there were no
flyable aircraftat the time we started
the programmingand the Russians
resurrected this one.And they had high hopes that
we would continue the programand make more use out of that.It’s coming in for
a landing here.Those aircrafts or one of its
sister ships famously crashedin 1973 Paris Air Showunder rather controversial
circumstances.You can Google it on the
internet sometime and findout all the different
opinions about that.But it pretty well killed
its commercial viability,at least in the Western world.And it spent the rest of
its commercial life flyingwithin the Soviet Union
from Siberia and back again.The handling quality,
by the way,are considerably different
expectation in the U.S. pilotsthan the Russian pilots.When you talk to — with
Borisov [assumed spelling],the chief pilot of the TU-144
came out here and flew an F-18.They actually chased the SR-71
on one flight and Borisov said,“Well, I’ve chased an SR once
before but it’s over the Balticand I couldn’t catch it.”But he said the F-18,
its sensitivity,it was just way too
sensitive an aircraft.And he talked to the American
pilots flying the TU-144and saaid, “The thing
handled like a truck.”And the, notice he hangs onto
his jacket through all this.This is a very Russian
scene here.But the Russians also said
during one of those thingsthat the TU-144 flew like
a good fighter should.So the whole expectation levelbetween the two countries’
pilots was justentirely different.Okay, so as Paul
Harvey used to say,“Now for the rest of the story.”That’s pretty much
it for the program.What were some of the
challenges we faced there?Well, import and
export was the big one.We didn’t do a lot of importing
and exporting in those days.And we certainly didn’t
do much to Russia.There were some Space
Station activitybut NASA didn’t really
have a hard and fast policyabout how this is
supposed to happen.I found myself on
the phone to the guyat headquarters responsible
for this a lot,sort of making it
up as we went along.This is what I want to do,
how do I do it kind of thing.On top of that, the Russians
didn’t have a good setof consistent policies and they
were constantly changing thingsmostly when you weren’t
aware of it.Some of the items like the —our GPS was used in the
ground effect study.We wanted to keep limitations
removed that are normally haveto be in place when we
export from a countryand it took 17 levelsof signatures including
the Assistant Secretaryof State’s signature to
allow us to export that unitto Russia for this program.Long distance travel
was obviously an issue.It’s a 7000-miles great
circle distance from here.It’s an 11-hour time
zone differencewhich meant there was no common
workday between here and there.The language and communication
was certainly a big one.Few Russians on the program knew
any English and none of themthat I worked with didwhich meant given my
meager Russian skills,I worked with a full-time
technical interpreterwho was quite good.Any Russian that
was on the programthat spoke English found
themselves off the programpretty quickly because their
skills were in short supplyin the rest of the
Russian industry.And that was a skill
that they could marketand actually get paid for.Interpersonal relationships,
it was initially a challenge —initially at least a challenge
in getting to know the Russiansand develop enough trust
that we could move forwardwith the project.It was also an issue at home
because we were spendingthat much time overseas.You can ask any servicemanon overseas deployment
how easy it isto maintain personal
relationships back at home.So that could be
a challenge also.Zhukovsky Air Base —Remember I talked about how
abysmal the Russian economy was?If you square that and that’s
the infrastructure problemsat the air base itself.To give you some idea, when
we first arrived out thereand someone asked to use
the restroom, they pointedto the woods [laughter]
because the restrooms werein really, really bad shape.The lights were out.The plumbing was gone.You were glad the lights were
out because you didn’t wantto see what was in there.The Russians were embarrassed
about some of these things.The dogs roaming the hallwaysand leaving little
presents everywhere.It was — when some foreign
press made note of thisin the early days, the
Russians were not amused.Heat — Russia is not known
for being a balmy place.And when it’s 40 below
and you have no heaters,you know it’s 40 below.They had heaters but they
had no fuel for them.They couldn’t afford it.So in the laboratory, we
had a home-brew space heaterwhich would have our
safety people cringe.That was the only source of heatin the laboratory
in the wintertime.And even the phone lines.This is in the days, you know,mid-90s before cell
phones were ubiquitous.Just getting a phone line
between Zhukovsky Air Baseto Moscow 20 miles away, we had
to walk three buildings overand up about two flights of
stairs into a back officeand get a phone line which
had a lot of static problems.That was our phone
line to Moscow.Boeing had hired a Russian to
be sort of their eyes and ears.They issued him a cellphoneand he was the most
popular guy in the air base.Structurally, the Russians
are very hierarchical and manyof us were using
— used to operatein a more matrix-type
of environment.Western business
practices that are thingsthat are just de rigueurto us were often not the
way the Russians worked.Things like contracts,
statements of work,managers wanting details
of schedules, deliverablesand costing — just try
to get that informationout of the Russians, you know.You ask them what
the schedule is like.“We will fly in March!”“Okay. Any problems?”“No! No problems!”Until the end of February
[laughter] when you findout what the problems
actually were.This drove our managers crazy
and I was usually the guyon the ground that
had to deal with that.Russian business
practices, by the same token,they largely operated,
in my experience,through summaries of discussion.This was something that at the
end of each series of meetingsor each visit, you would write
out that everybody would agreeto yes, this is what
we talked about.This is what we’re
going to do next.So it was sort of an incremental
contract what their nextpriority was.And I wrote those things.We didn’t really understand
initially how important theywere to the Russians and what
force of law they had with them.But we — we came to
understand that pretty quickly.And it was a major trustthat initially we would
write those things out bothin Russian and English.We would both read those.We would sign the other
copies and after a while,the interpreter would
just read the —translate the English
version to Russian verballyand the Russians and we would
all sign the English copy.Then it got to a point where the
Russian would say, “You know,if you put the signature
page by itself,if we had to make any changes,
we wouldn’t have to resign it.”[ Laughter ]So since I was writing them, I
was okay with that [laughter].And I found a lot of
Russians would come inand they would sign the
signature page and then leavewithout ever hearing what
the summary discussion said.And that’s when I knew
that I had their trust.August was a lost month
because of holidays.The weather was often
bad in the wintertime.The work pace was slower than
we would have liked it to be.The technology was — I’ve got
a story about technology later.But let’s just say
it was probably 20or 30 years behind what
we were used to seeing.And there’s always the
issue of flight researchversus flight test and
the quality of datawhich is no different there.Now I can’t have a
discussion about Russiawithout talking about vodka.I don’t have time to
talk a lot about vodka,but vodka was central
to toasting,and toasting was central to
the way Russians operate.Very, very cultural but spill a
great deal over in the business.And virtually every meeting that
I ever went to, every luncheon,every snack, vodka
was available.And everybody was
expected to toast.And toasting in the Russian
tradition is where everybodyin turn is expected to stand
up and utter some pieceof poetic wisdom to commemorate
the occasion or something.They could toast whatever
they wanted to but they hadto come up with something.And so the larger
the meeting you had,the more toasting you had
because everybody had to toast.And I once saw that the
[inaudible], the chief designer,Professor Pukhov [assumed
spelling] knock back 21 shotsin a row for every person
that was in the room.Now after observing this in the
initial days of the program,when the American management
would come out and notto be outdone, they would
be, you know, right in line.The next day, they couldn’t
function [laughter].And I did some fast
thinking and said, “You know,I’m going to be here a lot.I’ve got actual work to do.I can’t afford to do that.”So I just set the ground rulefrom the beginning
that I didn’t drink.Now the Russians thought
that was kind of peculiarand maybe a little suspicious.I mean, after all, if you
don’t want to get drunk,you must be a spy, right?But they got used to it.It was a source of amusement.But they tolerated it.And I still toasted with water
which looks just like vodka.In fact, there’s only one letter
difference in the Russian wordfor it — [inaudible]
versus vodka.Not that I was fooling
anybody but nevertheless,you went through a ritual
of toasting and so forth.That by the way is
[inaudible], Golden Ring Vodka.That B is actually
a V. There’s a lotof interesting differences
like that.This was a dinner
— my final dinnerwith Professor Pukhov who’s
sitting there at the endwith a coat and tie and his
wife sitting next to him.It was the first time we’ve met
his wife in this entire program.They didn’t usually mix personal
and professional that way.The thing that sticks out of my
mind most about this dinner waswhen Professor Pukhov’s wife
turned to him and berated himfor not being more
like me [laughter].He drinks too much.I don’t drink at all.You should be more like him.What do you do with that?Smile and keep quiet mostly.But Russians would
also say things like,“You’re every Russian
woman’s dream!A man that doesn’t drink.”But then they have
to ask themselves,why isn’t he drinking?So that’s vodka.Technical challenges.Well, remember this
is the mid-’90s.Internet was still
kind of in its infancy.There wasn’t — it was there
but the entire data link for allof the American teams in Moscow
was a one-and-a-half megabit persecond data link, a T1 link.That’s not a band — you know,by contrast, I checked
last night.My internet at home is
70 megabits per second.This was one-and-a-half for
all of the city of Americansin the same so it wasn’t
bandwidth to support web accessso we didn’t have that.When I transferred data back, it
was at 10 kilobits per second.It literally took all
night to transfer a flightof 120 megabytes back
to the machines here.The only email I
had originally wasthrough a local internet
service provider.Telephone costs at the
hotel were $7.50 a minute.Now the per diem at the time
for overseas was $7 a day.And the phone system,
as I mentioned before,was not optimal in
the first place.In fact, if we had telecons
between Russia and here,it usually took 10 or 15 minutes
just to set up the telecom,and every half-hour like
clockwork, it would drop offand you would have to start
the process all over again.And that was outside of
the common workday as well.In data processing, this
one fell heavily on mebecause I received the data — I
received the calibration files.They did some funny thingswith their data using what’s
called ratio metric calibrationsbecause the power supplies
were of such poor qualitythat you had to measure the
power supply at the same timeas the data so you
could ratio those thingsto make sure you knew
what the output was.We hadn’t done that in probably,
I don’t know, 30 years here.We just improved
our power supplies.So none of our calibration
systems would deal with that.The data that I got on
disk was not compatiblewith the way we did
things in our range.And so bit by bit, I foundthat I replaced the
entire Dryden systemwith programs that I wrote.Data coming off the aircraft,
doing a software decommutationto dealing with the embedded
system time which, by the way,ran backwards sometimes,
to select any calibrationsto formatting them,
and compressedfor a format applying
the calibrations to that,and then depositing it
directly into [inaudible].So from end to end, I just
[inaudible] from the Russiansthrough my programs
into our archivewhere it still sits today.So that was a challenge.For some reason, when the
Russians came to Williamsburg,they visited Langley and I
took them to Williamsburg.I couldn’t get them
into the Stocks.So I took one for the teamand had their picture
taken that way.But we took them to Langley.The first thing they want to do
is go to Wal-Mart [laughter].One guy wanted to get
a prescription glasses.Everybody else was running
around buying blue jeansand shoes like they’re
going out of style.They’re actually just
going into style in Russia.Well, you want to try this on?No, it doesn’t matter.They were just buying them
for family and friendsand you know, maybe to sell.We took them to Disneyland and
Universal City when they cameout here in the beach and
some of those kind of places.And Wilson Van Dyer
[assumed spelling],who was my immediate predecessoron this project before
he retired, was drivingand Sergei [Inaudible], our
interpreter, pops open a canof beer in the back seat.And Wilson about came unglued.“You can’t do that!”“You can’t do what?”“You can’t open a beer
in a moving vehicle!”“Well, why not?”“We have a rule again — we
have a law against that.”“Well, why?What kind of democracy is this?”They just didn’t understand it.We’d be driving out
in the desert here.You come to a stop sign
and you stop, right?And the Russians
would say [laughter],“There’s nobody coming.Why did you stop?”“It’s a stop sign.”And they just couldn’t
understand that.And after watching driving
in Moscow sometime later,I could understand
their confusion.And then we went to Parisbecause they had selected a
French instrumentation system,the Damien 5 which
was manufacturedin [Inaudible], south of Paris.And we spent two weeks therewith the Russians learning
the system at the same time.And so they were kind
of neutral territory.This is some of the Russians
sitting with me on the couch.[Inaudible] in the center is
one of those English speakersthat didn’t last
long with the programbecause well, she spoke English.Alexander [Inaudible] right
there was my counter —instrumentation counterpart.Sergei [Inaudible], one
of our interpreters.Sergei’s smile says it all.He was a character.He was a former Russian
Army major.You ever ask him how many
languages he speaks, he says,“I speak one, Russian.The rest I interpret.”[ Laughter ]But that was, it was interesting
to get to know the Russians.This was the first time
I had met many of themof the working level people.Because most of the working
level Russians were not allowedto travel the United States.But in class, the classes taught
by a Frenchman speaking Englishand the interpreter would
translate the Englishto Russian.And sometimes when I would
ask a question in English,the Frenchman didn’t understand
what I was talking about.He didn’t understand me.So the Russian interpreter
would translate my Englishto English [laughter] that the
Frenchman could understand.So he said we should
pay him extra for that.As we’re walking around Paris,one of the Russians not
pictured here was goingon about things he observed.He had never been out of
the Soviet Union beforeand he was just buffaloed
by some of the stuff he saw.He’d see a patch of grass
like a 10 by 10 foot lawnin somebody’s front
yard and he’d say,“What a waste of space.They should plant
vegetables there.What are they going to
eat in the wintertime?”It gives you some idea of
what they were used to.And then it was on to Moscow.I spent — I made 19 trips
there in that four-year period.Average stay was about two weeks
so about every other month,I was there for half the month.Total time I spent
there was eight months.I hit every month of
the year at least once.It was — this is a picture in
Moscow so you can get an ideaof the — you see the
clean car sitting there.By the way, there was a law
in the city that you hadto keep your car clean.There was also a law in the citythat you couldn’t wash
your car in public.Seatbelts were required.The fact to know that seatbelts
worked was immaterial, I guess.But we’d be driving
down the roadand there’d be a policeman
standing on the sideof the road with a white stick.If he pointed to the car, they
were supposed to pull over.The driver would nudge me.He’d throw a seatbelt
over his lap,pass the policeman then
throw the seatbelt off.It didn’t work anyway.But there’s no place
I have ever driventhat I needed a seatbelt more
than driving around Moscow.I mean, if the streets were
clogged, they’d just get outand drive down the
opposing traffic lanes.So what was a typical
daily life there like?I stayed at a very nice hotel.It was very expensive.One time I investigated
getting a local sortof subletting an apartment
which I could have donefor much, much cheaper.But there was a catch.I had to do it in cash.It was very much a
cash carry economy.So I went to our legal office
and asked them, I said,“I can save the government a
lot of money if I just do thisbut I have to do it in cash.”They looked at me and said,“Don’t try to save
the government money.It just confuses them.”[ Laughter ]So I abandoned that approach.But frankly, I needed the hotel
communications that was growingup at this particular
hotel anyway to do my job.But it was a very nice
hotel and it had a very,you know, opulent breakfast.They had people playing
harps in the upper tier.A lot of out-of-work musicians
running around Moscow.You’d see string
quartets playingin the subways, you
know, for money.Their attitude about
drivers was interesting.To them, a driver of a car
was like a captain of the shipand what the captain said, goes.You know, wherever he decided
to go and when he decidedto go, that was his job.We viewed it somewhat
differently.We hired the driver
and the vehicle to gowhere we wanted him to go.And so sometimes, they
come running and say,“The driver wants to leave.”We’d say, “So?”He’d just have to wait.I often found myself with
what I call holding courtbecause as a liaison,
I would carry requestsfrom the American team
and issues and requestsfrom the Russian team back.And so I’d sit in a conference
room and sort of single file,one after the other, Russians
would come in and kindof with hat in hand and
give me their requestor give me some information
and request.And I kind of felt
like the Godfather.What could I do for you?But I got to talk to a lot of
interesting people that way.People that had designed
systems on the original TU-144like a guy from Rockwell was
looking at the fuel systemand he asked me, “Well, how’s
the fuel system laid out?”So I asked Tupolev and
they sent in the guythat designed the fuel system.And he sits down with a
pencil and paper and sketchesout the whole system and
how the fuel was transferredand I translated that
as best as I couldand sent it back to the States.Russian chocolate was a
particular favorite of mine.And they very quickly
discovered this.I guess I gave it
away when I said,“Where do you get this
marvelous chocolate?”Because I wanted
to buy it myselfand they never would tell me.But they always took great
delight in making surethat that chocolate
was availableon a table wherever
I was sitting.And like I said, the hotel
was expensive and it was.Most things in the city for a
foreigner were very expensive.But it was a two-tier structure.They had, say if you
went to a museum,the price for a local is
probably 10 times lessthan it was for a foreigner.And one time, we were at a
museum and my interpreter looksat me and he says,
“You look Russian.Keep quiet.”And goes over and buys
us two local ticketsfor us — for the museum.But speaking of museums, one
day I was in a museum by myself.They have two costs there.You can go in a museum with
a camera for one price,without a camera
for a lower price.I didn’t feel like paying extra
money so I left my camera.I was up on the second or
third floor and I spiedover in the corner,
this pile of junkbut I noticed there was
Air Force markings on them.So I went over and looked at it.It was Francis Gary Powers’ U-2.For those of you that don’t
know, that was a planethat was famously shot down
in 1960 over Soviet Russia,great to the embarrassment of
the Eisenhower administration.I had occasion just a couple of
days ago to talk to a guy herein town that had met Francis
Gary Powers and he asked him,“Why didn’t you bite down
on the cyanide capsule?”And he said, “That’s kind of
permanent, don’t you think?”[ Laughter ]This is a picture of some
of the people I workedwith in the laboratory
out at Zhukovsky.That was invariably a
pleasant experience otherthan the lack of heat.Because the people I workedwith were very professional
and very pleasant.We got along very well, never
had an issue with workingwith — as I’ve often
discovered in my career,you get the managers out
of the way, the people tendto work together pretty well.And at the time, I
was not a manager.I was an Indian surrounded by
managers from the U.S. teamwhen they were there
for drinking vodka.But otherwise, they were back
home and didn’t bother me.Here are some of the —
some of the U.S. team.You can guess who oneof the Americans is
wearing the Purdue t-shirt.That’s Steve Rizzi,
Donna Gallagher,Keith Harris, and myself.They were here for the
cabin noise experiment.I got to talk a little bit
about some of the key players.Bottom right-hand corner is Bill
Adams who’s a program managerfrom Rockwell.He was often called the
father of the TU-144 programbecause I gather it was his
vision and foresight that ledto the creation of this
program in the first place.Our own Ken Szalai, who was the
Dryden Director at the time —very material in made
sure this came about.And the [Inaudible]
himself, Alexander Pukhov,the Chief Designer
of Tupolev NTKwhich is basically this
joint stock company.He was the sparkplug
that made things happenfor the Russian side.He was one of the designers of
the original TU-144, a leader,diplomat, vodka drinker.You know, he was a force
to be reckoned with.But another force to be reckoned
with was Judith De Paul.Judith was the President and CEOof that small company I talked
about, IBP which is actually runout of England but
she was from New York.Judith had a very
interesting background.She started her career in show
business as a dancing matchboxin a cigarette commercial
when she was seven years old.She later was an opera
singer at the New York Met,performed with Pavarotti.I think she did some
shows with Placido Domingobecause she moved
into productionand produced some
plays, musicals —two of which she
got an Emmy for.I’ve seen them at
her place in England.And — but she also was brought
into Russia by Armand Hammerand introduced to a lot
of people in the 1980s.And she was well-positioned
after the Soviet Union fellto look at some business
opportunities there.And she managed to get all of
the rights to Western contractsto Tupolev which is why we had
to pass through her company.She got all the film rights
to the Russian film archiveand made a documentary
on Russia’s involvementin World War II during
the program.She was first and
foremost a businesswomanwho was always looking
for an opportunity.One of the things she liked to
say was, “Is there money in it?”But she was very much
a dominant presencebecause of her show
business background.She knew how to make
an entrance.Whenever Judith came
into a room,everybody knew Judith was there.And she was the dominant
presence there.She once told me that
she never crashedthrough the glass ceiling.She landed on top
of it [laughter]and that is the best
description of Judiththat I think I’ve ever
heard — from her own lips.And by the way, all
the interpretersthat I had worked for her.We had a contract
with them for that.This just shows the
typical office at Zhukovsky.Very reminiscent, I think,
of a 1950s feel here to me.Some key players
in there, Borisov,the Chief Pilot in the center.The Chief Engineer, the Chief
Instrumentation Engineer,the Chief Designer, and I’ll
be mentioning this character alittle bit later.A couple of shots
on the aircraftto show they actually
did do some workon the aircraft when
I was there.By the way, just about every
American that came there wantedto buy one of these
Russian hats.I never did.I found them too bulky
and too hard to deal with.With my little ski
cap, I could do stuffwith my pocket and
I was good to go.I’ll talk a little bit
about safety at Zhukovsky,in particular — I kept losing
equipment on the workbenchand I was noticing some
spotty sensor alarms going offso I measured the
voltage differencebetween the power outlet
and the ground on the bench.It was 90 volts.This is not good [laughter].But it goes to the
infrastructure again.I talked about the
seat belts already.The briefings were what I
called dog and pony shows.If we went through a flight
readiness review that consistedof a bunch of people sittingaround a table saying,
“We’re good to go.We’re good to go.Nyet problem.No problem.”And it wasn’t like one of
our flight readiness reviewsor tech briefs where
we’re trying to diginto make sure everybody
understands what they don’tunderstand and have thoughtabout what they need
to think about.That was not transparent to us.In fact, I was sent one time —or commissioned by the managers
here to find out more about thatbecause they said — they
weren’t getting the scheduleand costing information
and all that kind of stuff.And after I asked him,
the Chief Engineer,some questions he said, “Well,I’m surprised you
don’t know this stuff.”One of the other
Russians pointedout that they never
invite me to the meetings.How am I supposed
to know about that?They still never invited
me to the meetings.This was a real FRR.A bunch of Russians gathered by
the aircraft making the go no —no go decisions in
close communicationbecause it was cold.A few items about some
things that were off nominal.I mentioned on the starboard
wing, we had a strip of tubingfor measuring pressures.We had one of those come off at
Mach 2 and peel back and wraparound the pressure rigs of
the aft end of the aircraft.I had a cockpit window crack.And then there are things
that I consider off nominal.You know, paying for a
quarter-of-a-million poundsof pull with a suitcase of cash
literally is not something wetypically do around
here [laughter].The very first time
I arrived in Moscow,I got as far as passport
control.And the passport agent was
asking me a bunch of thingsin Russian that I
didn’t understand.When they finally pointed over
to the section of the floor,there’s this little square.So I went over and I stoodon this square thinking,
“Now what?”My interpreter is on the other
side of the security boundaryand any other American I was
with was also over there.I was by myself, had no
idea what the issue was.My interpreter finally managedto talk his way past the
security boundary and come overand asked the passport
agent what the problem was.And it turned out that
the spelling of my nameon my visa was different
than the spelling of my nameon their list which
isn’t a big surprisebecause it was all
transliterated from our alphabetto Cyrillic, and there’s a
number of ways you can do that.And they just chose two
different ways of doing it.And then Sergei followed
all that upby asking the passport
agent for a date.And that pretty well
defined Sergei.[ Laughter ]I wasn’t going to core
drill that one too much.Okay, some things
scared me a bit.And top of the list is what
I called the GPS incident.I told Bob Curry a few months
ago that he nearly landed mein jail and he didn’t know
what I was talking about.But what happened was one
morning I’m sitting in my hotel,reading the Moscow Times — this
is an English language paper.And there’s this little article
there about a Qualcomm engineerthat had just been arrested
for doing a GPS survey outsideof a former Soviet
military base.My blood kind of ran coldbecause I was doing exactly
the same thing except I wason a former Soviet
military base [laughter].This is the survey of the field
so that we could get, you know,data for the ground effect
to know exactly how farabove the air field
the plane wasbecause the Russian
radar was crappy.Now this is one of those caseswhere the Russians
made up a new rule.He was officially
arrested for having —not having the right import
license for his GPS unit.There was no such thing.At least it wasn’t at the time
that we imported our units.So they had me kind of sweating
there for a while wonderingwhen the other shoe
was going to drop.They eventually released himand not much more
was made out of that.But other GPS’s I don’t
have time to go into.The streets of Moscow, as
they say, were problematic.There were two classes
of drivers,the professional drivers
and the amateur drivers.And the amateur drivers usually
had no training whatsoever.And both types of drivers
drove very aggressively.One of our drivers — it
turns out he was the driverof the former head of the KGB.In fact, he was the driver
that drove Solzhenitsynout of the country when he was
expelled some years before that.One day, I was sitting
in the officeof Mr. [Inaudible] having lunch.We often had lunch
in his office.He was not in attendance
that day and we’re talkingabout something and I commented
that there was a guy backat Dryden that reminded meof Mr. [Inaudible]
only Bill was a redneckand [Inaudible] was a communist.And the Russians got big
saucer eyes and said,“How did you know
[Inaudible] was a communist?”[ Laughter ]There’s a picture of Lenin
hanging on his wall [laughter].I thought that was a clue.And there’s always
cultural mistakesthat you run across,
most of them small.But some of them
larger than others.The — we were in —we had dinner at our
interpreter’s house one day.This was the first and only
time we ever was invitedinto anybody’s home there.And we arrived — we decided
it would be a good ideato take some roses
for the hostess.And so, bought some flowers,
I think it was a dozen rosesand our interpreter said,
“You know, it’s bad luckto give someone an even
number of flowers.”No, didn’t know that.So we started to
enter and shake hands.She says, “Oops, bad luckto shake hands across
the threshold.You got to come inside
to do that.”Okay, didn’t know that either.Refusing to toast
obviously was a faux pas.We were visiting a
monastery one weekendout of — it was [Inaudible].And we got a tourby an English-speaking
Russian Orthodox nun.And at one point, we’re
standing inside the cathedraland she starts admonishing
us because severalof our members were
standing therewith their hands in our pockets.And by way of example, she says,
“You know, if you were talkingto your boss, would
you stand therewith your hands in
your pockets?”Sure.[ Laughter ]And she was aghast.I thought Americans had
more manners than that.So — just for the record, I
wasn’t standing with my handsin my pockets but
you just never know.And the Wilson in the earlier
days, I stayed back in Zhukovskyor at Tupolev one day and
he went back to the hotel.He was on the subway talking to
our interpreter and a woman getsup and starts berating Wilson
for something in Russian.He had no idea what it was.And she got off and
a young man comes upand does the same thing.Wilson had a heck of a time
getting the interpreterto tell him what the problem
was and she said, “Well,she was unhappy with
you crossing your legson the subway.”But he never would tell us why.We had a few guesses.Maybe he was showing
the sole of his footor maybe he was taking
up too much space.I don’t know but it was
apparently a no-no that —one of those unwritten rulesthat foreigners were just
not going to know about.One day, I was in a telecom in
Russia talking to the U.S. teamand Norm Prince — and someof you might know who’s
worked projects in conjunctionwith us later, he was doingand handling quality
assessment for Douglas.And I knew that he had to
coordinate with the Russiansfor flight cards and I said,
“Norm, if you want to cometo Moscow to coordinate
your flight cards,now’s a good time to come.”And the Deputy Program Managerat Boeing jumped
all over my case.“I don’t know how they do
things at NASA but at Boeing,we let our managers make
those kind of decisions.”Okay, so I said, “Well, I don’t
know how you do things at Boeingbut at NASA, we like to give our
managers information on whichto base their decisions.”And that’s all I was doing and
I wasn’t a manager at the time.I certainly wasn’t Norm’s
manager but I was the guyat the ground that had the
intelligence, the informationand I was passing it on.I often found it easier to work
with the Russians than to workwith Boeing at this
project [laughter].To be fair, they were
the prime contractorand so it was their
responsibilityto run this program but
they weren’t sending peopleover to actually do that.And one thing I discovered
with the Russians —unless you’re there, your
job has a lower priority.And I was the guy that was thereso I was passing
on the information.It was often because of
the import-export issues,it was hard to send
things back for servicing.So in at least one occasion,
I was trained by the factoryto do the servicing on our
flight recorder unit myselfbecause it’s easier to send
me there to do it on site.And as many times
as I was there,my participation was
still kind of an event.It wasn’t just seamless.Oh, you’re here again.Let’s go do stuff.There’s a bit of
ceremony often involved.You had — you didn’t have
direct access to people.And I already talked about
the issues of keeping warm.But you can see how
they kept warm.This is a very common
winter garb for the womenand there’s a reason for it.Here’s a typical
lunch at Zhukovskyand you probably can’t tellbut that’s Donna Gallagher
beneath the burka there.Completely wrapped including
gloves just to keep warmat our literally cold lunch.There were some positive
things about this and backin those days, the airline
baggage limit was largerthan it is now.And I usually used it to the maxbecause I was transporting all
kinds of stuff back and forth.Airlines still serve foods.Security was such that I
could carry bottles of waterfrom California to Moscow
and not have it confiscated.I even often got upgraded to
business class automatically.That was a bit dicey
in the early daysbecause the government
had rules against that,that were changing at the time.In fact, the frequent flyer
miles rules changed during thisas well.I accumulated the milesand never expecting I’d
be able to use them.I ended up using them
for the Concorde flightbut that was officially
a business tripbecause I was going
to Moscow for a —I mean to Paris for a meeting.The 11-hour time
difference allowed meto take advantage
of a double shift.I’d get information at
Zhukovsky and Tupolev in Moscow,go back to my hotel,
write emails.Go to bed, wake up
in the morning.Meanwhile the people in the
States have had a chanceto work their normal work day.I’d take the answers
and go back to Tupolev.So that — if you
handled that right,that worked out rather well.It also gave me the
ability out of necessityto operate pretty autonomously.There was nobody to talk toand limited ways in
which to do that.I couldn’t call them
on the phone initially.They wouldn’t be
there first of all.Second, it was prohibitively
expensive initially.Emails — I was going
through a local ISP so I hadto be somewhat carefulabout what information we were
transferring back and forth.I was the only guy
there so I gotto make decisions somewhat
to Boeing’s chagrin.So what I’d do on the weekends?One of my favorite pictures.I took this picture.This is a park just a
few blocks from my hotel.The Russians were very fond of
walking the park with the familyand with sleds, as you see —very pleasant if
cold environment.And I was a frequent
visitor to this place,the [Inaudible] Flea Market.I would take the Moscow
subways across townand you could buy everything
there from matryoshka dollsto surplus military hardware.Not wanting to deal
with customs issueswith the surplus
military hardware,I opted for the matryoshka
dolls.And I became quite
adept at pickingout good quality matryoshka.Those are stacking dolls.Sold by the artists
of those things,people that actually
painted them,good quality for a low cost.Like you go to the same —I could find the same dolls
in the GUM Department Storein downtown Moscow for
probably five times the cost.And to get there,
I’d use the Metro.The Metro stations themselves
were rather opulently appointed.There’s a lot of marble
columns and statuesand sometimes chandeliers.The subway cars themselves
were very boxyand functional and blue.And the markings — unless
you could read Cyrillic,you had no clue where
to go on the subwaysbecause all you had was just a
stack of names about this longin the Cyrillic alphabet
that listed the stops.If you had some kind of a map,
they were listed as color codedbut none of the color
coding ever made itinto the subway itself.And I think this is
initially a security featureto the Russians.They didn’t want foreigners
wandering around knowingwhere to go, you know.Putting things like
military baseson the maps is a foreign
concept to them as well.And you might have seen
St. Basil’s Cathedralat the end of Red Square.It’s a very famous icon.Okay, we had — we had good
technical interpreters.I’ll mention one story where
that didn’t work out so well.We were doing a summary
discussion at the end of oneof my visits and looking at a
shipping document that listedwhere I had left some things.And I read off some items,
the interpreter said somethingin Russian and the Russians
got this confused lookon their face.So I said it again
and I listenedto what the interpreter was
saying and I knew just enoughto recognize he wasn’t
saying it right.So in desperation, I
broke into Russian myself.Anybody here speak Russian?Good [laughter].But I said.[ Speaking in Foreign Language ]Which means items one, two and
three are Zhukovsky and four,five and six are in Moscow.And they got another startled
expression on their faceand from then on, they never
were quite sure how much RussianI understood.[ Laughter ]And they all handled
it in different ways.Some guys would go off
and whisper in the corner.Other guys would
come right to my faceand start chattering
away at Russianand assume I knew
everything they were talkingabout which was not
often the case.Briefly, the Germans sent a film
team out and for three days,they followed me around
and did a documentary,kind of like a reality show
before there was such a thingin which I figured prominently.I have a copy of it only
because it aired in Germanyand a colleague of mine
— his daughter saw it,recognized my name and
hit the record buttonand so I got a copy
of that in German.The calibration lab —
they were giving me a tourof how they calibrated pressure
transducers and at the endof it, the interpreter
or the head of the lab,the aforementioned communist
turned to me and asked,“So tell me, are we behind?”And I was thinking,
“Heck, yeah.”But what I said was — I
started my career at NASAin the pressure calibration lab.My first job was to
design an automatic programfor automating the processof calibrating pressure
transducers.And some of the stuff I just
seen there was antiquatedwhen I arrived at NASA
over 20 years before that.But what I told him was, “Well,
we do an automated processbut what I’ve discovered is
the technicians have often losttouch with the physics
of the situation.”And the technician drew
herself up proudly and said,“I understand the
physics of the situation.Let’s move on.”[ Laughter ]And just quickly, Mark Twain,I discovered was a popular
favorite author in Russia.And I let it slip one daythat he was actually a
distant relative of mine.And that got them all excited.To the extent of next day,
they brought in copiesof Russian works of Mark Twain
and had me autograph them[ Laughter ]And I said, “But I’m
only a distant relative.”They said, “Well,
don’t put that part.”So I used my toasting experience
to say, “From the banksof the Mississippi River
to the banks of the Moscow,we send you greetings.”And signed my name to it.So they were very happy.Now some of these — if
you tell me what they meanbut there were things
that were uttered.[ Laughter ]I was asked to help them with
a Windows problem one day.And remember the little —[ Laughter ]Remember the little
flying folderof copying and the countdown?Well, it kind of
would get down to zeroand sit there while the
folder was still flying.And I said, “Wait for it.”Sure enough, about 30 seconds
later, it finished and that’swhen one of the Russians
said that line [laughter].On a more serious note, one
of the conversations I hadwith my interpreter, you know,
they were still trying to figureout how things worked.They knew how things workedunder communism whether
they liked it or not.They knew how it worked.Under capitalism, they didn’t
know what was going on.But one interpretation
was there —it’s every man for himself are
expected to do their worse,could not work for
the common good.So that was a very interesting
observation on the partof someone who grew
up in that system.That’s Mr. [Inaudible],the communist there
and Mr. [Inaudible].So I’m trying to
wrap it up here.What happened afterwards?Boeing decided that engine
technology, it just wasn’t thereto support the next generationof supersonic transport
in the late ’90s.They couldn’t make the economic
case and at the same time,the high speed research program
ended for various reasons,one of which I gather
is that it lookedlike Boeing was thinking NASA
was going to do all the researchfor them so they cut back the
research program and NASA lookedat Boeing cutting back the
research program and said,“Well, this is no
longer of interestto them so we cut back ours.”The Space Station
was way over budgetand if they got the
appropriation line stuff sortedout, I gather than all the money
kind of went that direction.But I will say that these
things go in cycles.And as you know, the supersonic
[inaudible] lab is over landand that has a renewed emphasis.And I think a lot
of data gatheredon this program could still
be quite useful in that.And we still have it and as
the instrumentation is here,I know how to interpret it.But we did learn a great deal.I gathered a great deal
of quantitative data.And I personally learned how
to work with Russians and honedown some of my diplomatic
skillslike in the calibration lab.It was an opportunity to
build trust with the Russianswhich I think we did
pretty effectively.And it was a unique experience
to work in an environment —I did a lot of traveling before
this but I had never really beenin a place where it was
hard to find someonewho spoke my language.And I knew more of the local
language than they knew of mine.So it was kind of forced the
issue to use it a bit more.And it was an experience
of a lifetime.When I left the program,
when the program ended,some of my Russian colleagues
put together this collageand signed it to give to
me which I appreciated.They also gave me a medal.This is actually the
first medal I ever got.I got a few from
NASA subsequentlybut this is the first
medal I was ever awarded.And it was for excellence in the
field of aviation technology.Now the kicker there — the
reason I show you this isbecause they told
me I was the —only the second foreigner they
had ever given this medal to.Want to know who
the first one was?The head of North Korea.[ Laughter ]My old buddy, yeah [laughter].One thing and please don’t
tell my security servicesabout this, okay?And a year after
the program ended,the Russians sent
this certificate.And I want to read
you what it sayson there as closely as I can.“This given certificate is in
confirmation of your abilityto cope with all difficulties
in extreme situations similaron the character of flood, fire,
earthquake, volcano eruption,marriage or family life.”[ Laughter ]“Let us congratulate
you on your marriage.At last it happened.We congratulate your
bride on very good taste.We swear before her
and before the Godthat she has chosen
a very reliable manto herself as a husband.Wishing you happiness and good
luck through all family life.”And it’s signed by the Chief
Designer, Alexander Pukhov.I think I broke the
cultural barrier.Thank you.[ Applause ]Sorry, I took longer than
I expected to, right.As long as I feared but
longer than I expected to.But anyway, we have time
for a few questions,if anybody is still awake.>>I have a question
[inaudible].Did you make any
significant measure —did you make any significant
measurements in the inletssince that is such an important
factor in high speed flight?It’s as much important, maybe
more so, than the engine itself.>>Well, we took a
number of measurements.There were pressures and
temperatures in the inlet.We also tried to
measure the fuel flow.We were using an
acoustical sensorwhich I arranged to bring there.It wasn’t very successful
because the noise environment —the acoustical environment of
the engine was just too much.The acoustical sensor
would have worked okayin an engine test stand.But it wasn’t working in flight.I am not an expert in
any of the actual resultsof the data that were gathered.There were some reports that
were published at that time.But I don’t know
what the qualityof those were considered to be.>>I wonder also about dynamic
measurements as contrastedwith static measurements
of pressure.Did you get high frequency
pressure measurementson anything?>>We did.I’d have to go back and lookto see what the frequencies
were of those.But I don’t know that right
off the top of my head.Terry.>>You neglected to mention.Talk about the mugging
[laughter].>>Yeah but it wasn’t
my mugging [laughter]but what happened was
I found a dictionaryof Russian obscenities in a
bookstore here in the Stateswhich I took with me to Moscow
and one of my colleaguesfrom Langley took great delight
in reading off different partsof that to our driver on the
way to the air base [laughter].I have to tell the
Steve story nowas you opened that
Pandora’s Box.Steve in one day talking
with the Chief Designer,the Chief Designer
said somethingand he uttered a phrase which
basically meant up yours.And the Chief Designer thought
that was hysterically funny.Steve became his best friend.This is really cool.He was able to swear in Russian.So Steve is feeling really good
about this and the next dayor two, he had occasion
to use the same phrasewith another Russian and nearly
got called out to a duel, so.But anyway, one of my
interpreters wantedto borrow my dictionary when
I went back home one time.And the next time I came
back, he met at the airportand he had a black eye and
he had cuts over his eyeand he had — he was — his
face had obviously been messedand I said, “What happened?”He said, “I got mugged.”He said, “I’m sorry to
tell you that you know,they took my briefcase
and your dictionaryof Russian obscenities
was in the briefcase.”I said, “Oh, that’s too bad.I’m sorry to hear
that you got mugged.”And he said, “But I
felt so bad about that.”He went out and he bought
another Russian obscenitiesdictionary in Moscow that
was published in Russia.So now I had a dictionary that
had the Russian expressionsand the literal English
translationswhich often made no sense
whatsoever [laughter].So I actually traded
up at his expense.Any other questions?>>I have a question.>>It’s [inaudible].>>All right, oh thanks.So related to the Tupolev,
the Blackjack versus the B-1,I was just wondering if you
could add an opinion, you know,just being in that
environment and workingwith people associated
with that company?I’ve had some just sort
of security trainingwhere they kind of drive
home the point of, you know,keeping a secret by
showing the image of the B-1and the Tupolev Blackjack.And it’s just sort of see it,be quiet otherwise you
know, this is what happens.And I’m wondering if over there,
is the opinion quite reversed?Does the aerospace
community over there thingthat we copied the Tupolev
designs with our B-1?So which is it?>>I’ve never heard anybody
express that opinion over there.That wasn’t weighing on
their minds, if it was.I saw the Buran which is
the Russian Space Shuttlewhich was quite clearly very
similar to the one we put on.And they are sensitive to
thinking that they copied someof our designs like
with the Concorde.But remember that the
industry, there was hurtingand they were looking
for a customer base.And we represented their
best hope at a customer base.They were hoping to continue
this project after phase twoand as I said, that
didn’t happen.But the Russians had actually
invested some of their own moneyin this refurbishment.We didn’t pay for
the entire thing.They put a fair amount of moneyinto their own refurbishment
efforts.But security was not —
was not a real key factor.The only problem I had with
security was trying to find waysat passing my information
back to the Statesthat our growing IT security
infrastructure would putup with.Because every time I came up
with a method, they said, “Oh,we don’t really like that.”So I come up with something elseso I get some more
data transfer.“Oh, we don’t like
that one either.”So I was always trying to keep
a step ahead of the restrictionsthat were put on me for
actually getting the informationout of Russia back
to the United States.Christian.>>They [inaudible]
shared or something?Was the data mutually
shared with the Russians?>>Yes. I mean, I got
the data from them.I mean, when I — the data
files off the aircraft,I got from the Russians.Originally with the
flight data recorder,we eventually used a
Russian PC basicallythat captured the data
in commutated form.So that was raw information
I got.All the calibration files
I got for the parameters,I got from the Russians
and calibrated them.They typically did
their own data analysisin their own systems but I had
the data that was translatedand used by the American team.So it was a complete
sharing of data.It was their aircraft.Sometimes sensors that —often sensors that we
bought but they installed.So it was a real
collaborative effort.Like I said, it was unique.At the time, we had some
Space Station activity goingon in Moscow and I’d
run across, you know,Goddard people and JSC people.In fact, I didn’t tell a
story about the Abbey Expresswhich I often took that
originated in Houston that kindof puddle jumped across the
Atlantic as a charter flightbut this was the only — the
only game for aeronauticsand it was a complete
sharing of data.By the way, I’m — my plan isto produce a memoir
about this program.This is a kind of — the
surface of what’s going to bein the book because
there’s just a lot of —I figured out, if you could
spend four or five yearsin a place, there’s a lot of
stories that come out of it.I’m trying to capture those.Anything else?Yes?>>Glenn, I’m curious if you
keep up with the people you metover there, the colleagues
and do you have a desireto go back and if you do, why?>>Well, first of all, I have
not maintained communicationwith the people there.It was initially very, very,
very difficult to do that.They often did not
have email addressesor electronic communication.I did keep up with one of my
interpreters for a little whilebut it was difficult to do
that for various reasons,some of which I don’t
understand but suspect.One of my relatives once said,
“Never get good at somethingthat you don’t want
to be doing.”And it was a once-in-a-lifetime
experience.And once is probably enough.I mean, I would like to go back.I never did get to St.
Petersburg, for example.I always — I got a visa
because in Russia, you got visasfor the city you were visiting.If I wanted to visit two
cities I had to get a visathat included both cities on it.And I actually got a visa
that included St. Petersburgbut to get there, it was like
— I don’t know, about a six,seven-hour ride on a train and
I kept hearing horror storiesabout people getting
gassed and robbedon the train and so forth.And I was by myself and so I
was a little reluctant to travelaround too far from the
fort in that environment.But I always regretted
that I never —never made it up
to St. Petersburg.And I would like to see how
some things have changed nowbut all this was pre-Putin
Russia, just barely.And one thing that
I discovered isthat Russians really respect
a strong leader regardlessof where they come from.The Secretary of State at
the time, Madeleine Albright,who also spoke Russian because
she was from Czechoslovakia —they respected her because she
was regarded as a strong leader.So that transcended
gender as wellas nationality although
there are some interestinggender-related stories
that you can ask Lori Loseyabout some time.The Russian views about accessto aircraft immediately before
a flight did not include theconcept of allowing
women on board.And that was a tough
nut to crack.One of the technicians, Donna
Gallagher, had the same issue.And I had to argue vociferously
in some meetings to get themto allow that to happen
because they were just criticalfor what we needed them to do.Bob.>>I think I just — you know,
one perspective that I sawand that was a little
different from Glenn’sbecause I was an
experimenter and, you know,so lots of us experimenters
— but Glenn, you know,is responsible for the
instrumentation systemwhich is critical to
all the experiments,much more critical — lots
of the experiments cancelledor dropped out along the way.You know, Dryden had undertaken
the most visible and high —you know, if they had failed,the whole effort would
have been a bust.And you know, I did get
with [inaudible] earlyon in the development of it, you
know, designing the experimentsand went back several times.And I will say that you can’t —you know, it’s hard to ever
state how politically valuablethis project was.When it started out, it was
at the height of, you know,trying to build technical
relationships with Russiaafter the Cold War and Space
Station cooperation was big.But this one was near term and
it had a lot of quick payback.And the high point
politically for allof this was the roll-out
ceremonywhich was a joke technically.You know, the plane
was badly painted.It didn’t have an engine in it.But there were people from every
one of those organizations.They sent vice-presidents,
big name managers out for thisand you know, watching it as an
engineer, you’re all jockeyingfor position and you know,
who’s going to sit where.And after that roll-out
ceremony, they disappeared.You never saw them again.And truly at that point on,the people who made the
project work were Glennand one other name?It was Ross Barber who was the
other — well, the person who,you know, rolled up his sleeves.You know, kind of an
unsung hero and you know,that’s how the project
really got to work.And I thought — you know, for
all the organizations you showup there, Dryden’s the
tiniest one but that’s what —you know, that’s what Dryden
or Armstrong really does well.They actually made it work.And I think, you know, I think
they really — Glenn, you know,really made the Center look
good and really more than that,probably made the whole
national team look good.People have thought of it —
a lot of high idealism goinginto it and you know, a lot
of it could have fallen apartif we hadn’t come through on it.>>Well, thanks Bob.I’ll pay you later [laughter].Okay.[ Applause ]

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