Category Back Stories

Apollo 11 (Armstrong, Aldrin, Collins & Kranz) – Tough and Competent

From FLY-theBook.com Apollo 11 50 years ago today, as Apollo 11 completed its Trans Lunar Injection burn to accelerate and position into a Free Return Trajectory on the way to the moon, it’s worth remembering how long and fragile the early chain of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo operations were and how, if the culture […]

Technical – ATSB Report – “QF32 – The story behind the story”

My book “QF32” was published in July 2012, about one year before the ATSB published its report into QF32.   Because of this mismatch in time, I was not permitted to publish information discovered by the ATSB that was not already available in the public domain.  Information I included in the “Stub Pipe” chapter was therefore limited […]

Decision Making (…..& ptsd)

Below find a link to the High Stakes video, a one hour SBS Insight program in which I join many people discussing how people make high-stakes decisions in the face of life and death. Decision Making is an extremely complex topic.  Jenny Brockie hosts the discussion, surfacing decisions that many people made and how these decisions changed their lives […]

Buzz Aldrin in Australia

Buzz Aldrin visited Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra in November as the guest of “National Geographic Live”. Mars is no longer Science fiction.… it’s now science fact (Ron Howard) Jason Crusan, Dr Katherine Mack, Prof Mark McCaughrean, Ray Martin and Buzz prior to the Canberra performance 7th November 2016. During the evening: Ray Martin interviewed Buzz Aldrin […]

Review “Sully” Movie

Summary “Sully” is a story of personal and team resilience. Sully made a difference for his passengers, crew, company and their friends. The real Sully Sullenberger and Jeff Skiles are larger in life than their characters in the movie.  Their values, words and actions provide life lessons for us all. Islands of human resilience like the […]

Australia Day 2016 – ICAO & RAeS – “Nancy-Bird Walton Lecture”

Update – 4 March 2019 I feel both surprised and proud. Today it was announced that the $5.3 billion Western Sydney Airport will officially become the Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport. The campaign to rename the airport started when I presented the inaugural Nancy-Bird Walton Lecture on behalf of the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS)  at the International […]

Nancy-Bird Walton’s 100th Birthday Celebration

Update – December 2015 Many great airports are named after famous people. I propose that Sydney Badgerys Creek airport be named “Sydney Nancy-Bird Walton International Airport” in honour of Australia’s greatest aviatrix. Her airport would sit beside “Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport”, named after Australia’s greatest aviator. Click here to read more … Original Post […]

Technical Lessons from QF32

With my suggestions for the Industry Jaanus Torp writes: Hello Richard, I just finished your book and I might say that it is not suitable for before bed reading.  Even though I had read the final report and knew the outcome, I was still quite wired by the masterfully written gripping drama. I have a […]

Technical – QF32’s Hydraulics, Apollo 13 and the “Fog of War”

Mike asks: Hi Richard, Having read your book QF32 and a number of resources available online, please let me ask one question regarding  your video interview on youtube. During the interview, you talk about the decision whether to follow the ECAM instructions to switch off the ENG 4 hydraulic pumps (“5 and 6″), and how you […]

“Resilience at the edge of chaos” (My interview with Mark Bouris)

I enjoyed being interviewed by Mark Bouris this week about “Resilience at the edge of chaos”.   We discussed issues ranging from the neuroscience of leadership to survive ‘Black Swan events’, to future technologies  and how robots will impact business and employment.  markbouris.com.au/episode-14-mark-bouris-podcast Mark’s Podcasts Mark’s fascinating podcasts are downloaded by about 275,000 listeners every […]