The first 30 minutes of TV synchronised with Honeysuckle audio


Heer’s the first 30 minutes of the EVA TV synchronised with Net 2 and Alpha

Duration: 45 minutes. Stereo sound.
See it on Vimeo for full screen and to download the file.

The start of the Apollo 11 EVA – with air/ground audio on the left channel and Honeysuckle Creek Alpha comms loop and Net 2 on the right channel.

Begins about 10 minutes before the TV starts and runs to 30 minutes into the EVA.

I originally produced this in 2004, at the suggestion of Mike Dinn for the Apollo 11 35th anniversary lunch in Canberra. It was distributed on DVD.

Mike had a 45 minutes cassette tape of the Honeysuckle main comms loop (Alpha) mixed with Net 2 (the MSFN tracking station comms loop).

I synchronised it with the first 30 minutes of the TV, using the NASA film archive. I also added footage (of varying quality) and photos for the period before the TV comes on.

Many friends in Australia and the USA helped to identify all the speakers.

The Alpha and Net 2 audio could be a second or two out by the end of the video.

I have continued to use the NASA archive instead of the 2009 restored video as this is what the international TV audience saw on the day.

– Colin Mackellar.


Here’s the text I wrote to go with the original DVD in 2004 -

On July 21st 1969, thousands of people supported the Apollo 11 EVA – including those at Honeysuckle Creek and its wing at Tidbinbilla; Goldstone, Carnarvon, NASCOM in Deakin, Sydney OTC, the PMG and the Parkes Radio Telescope – as well as others behind the scenes in Houston and at Goddard.

While Fresnedillas (Madrid) could not see the EVA, it tracked the lunar landing and liftoff.

This DVD is a tribute to all these “unsung heroes”.

For the start of the EVA, Goldstone and Honeysuckle were in mutual view, however problems at Goldstone meant that the world saw the first step through Honeysuckle Creek.

Signals from Honeysuckle and Parkes were sent to Sydney Video where the best picture was selected for transmission to Houston and the world. The Parkes signal was selected 8'53" into the TV coverage when the Moon rose high enough for Parkes to send a stable TV picture.

On the day, the conversations on Net 2 (the NASA tracking station network) and Alpha (the Honeysuckle operations comms loop) were recorded by Bernard Scrivener, the departmental Admin officer.

For the first time, this audio has been synchronised with the first part of the video of this historic event and can be seen here.