Human Space Travel Primary Sources

FOOTSTEPS: IEEE's Commemoration of Human Space Travel. Photo courtesy of NASA
Liftoff of Apollo 7, first manned Apollo flight, on October 11, 1968. NASA Photo
Neil Armstrong works on the Lunar Module in the only photo taken of him on the moon from the surface
Apollo-Saturn 501 Vehicle Preparations
NASA Apollo 1's Command Module Open Hatch
This is the 13th Lunar Module built, and was originally intended for the Apollo 18 mission, which was cancelled. It is on display in the Cradle of Aviation Museum at Mitchel Field, Garden City, NY.
Valentina Tereshkova, 1969, the first woman to have flown in space
Astronaut John Glenn, Jr., as he enters into the spacecraft Friendship 7 prior to MA-6 launch operations at Launch Complex 14, February 20, 1962. Astronaut Glenn is entering his spacecraft to begin the first American manned Earth orbital mission

In 2019, IEEE is celebrating the contributions technologists in its fields of interest made to human space travel.

This is a resource page for primary source materials (e.g. oral histories, first-hand histories, milestones, etc.) related to commemorating human space travel, the Saturn and Apollo Projects, and the Lunar landings of 1969.

If you know of materials that should be added to these pages such as Oral histories, First-Hand Histories, Journal or Conference papers, etc. please contact Robert Colburn at the IEEE History Center r.colburn at

For further resources, see:

We encourage anyone who was involved in the technologies for the Apollo project to write a First-Hand History or a encyclopedia article for the ETHW.

Primary accounts

Oral Histories

  • Robert Briskman Space communications, Unified S-band system
  • Merril Buckley project management for complex electronic systems (e.g., AEGIS, APOLLO)
  • Sajjad Durrani Space communications pioneer, COMSAT, NASA
  • Ivan Getting President of The Aerospace Corporation, launches of Mercury and Gemini
  • Dimitry Grabbe electronic components for Apollo project, especially for Apollo guidance computer
  • William Gretsch TV camera for Apollo project
  • Myron Kayton lunar modular electronics, shuttle electronics
  • James Lovell Gemini and Apollo VIII and Apollo XIII missions, first person to make a second voyage to the Moon
  • Naomi McAfee (2003) Apollo lunar camera
  • Naomi McAfee (2010, IEEE) Apollo lunar camera
  • Naomi McAfee (2010, SWE) Apollo lunar camera
  • Ian Ross Managing Director of Bellcom, systems engineering to NASA's Project Apollo
  • Balraj Sokkappa Steering equations for command module, and training astronauts
  • Cary Spitzer NASA Langley Research Center
  • Gene Strull TV camera for Apollo project, work for NASA
  • Len Svensson managed team that built TV camera used in Apollo Moon landing
  • Arthur Winston Apollo heat shield technology, reminiscence about Buzz Aldrin

First Hand Histories

Encyclopedia Articles


  • Julian J. Bussgang Bussgang was a consultant to Grumman Aircraft in the selection, simulation and evaluation of Rendezvous Radar and Landing Radar for LEM (Lunar Module).
  • Robert Edwards Re-entry guidance for Apollo
  • Maxime A. Faget Chief Engineer and Director of Engineering and Development at the Johnson Space Center
  • Keith Glennan first Administrator of NASA
  • Peter Glaser Project manager for the Apollo XI Laser Ranging Retro-reflector Array, also involved with solar power and generating power in space.
  • Lawrence A. Hyland Hughes Electronics Co., 1967 Surveyor moon landing
  • Neal A. Richardson TRW's evaluation of the Apollo Lunar Landing success probability


Technical topics


ASME Landmarks

IEEE Milestones

We encourage any IEEE member to propose Space Travel-related achievements as an IEEE Milestone. If you are interested in proposing an IEEE Milestone, you can find the instructions here: Milestone Guidelines. To see the Milestone proposals already in progress, please go to: Milestone Status Report