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The Space Above Us The Space Above Us


Table of Contents

Contact #

  • Twitter: @SpaceAboveUs
  • Email:
  • Physical Mail: 3540 Crain Hwy #188, Bowie, MD 20716, USA (If you send me a note in the mail I’ll send you back a postcard! But I only check the PO box every few weeks, so be patient!)

About #

Hi, my name is JP Burke and I’m a software and flight dynamics engineer working at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. I am currently writing flight dynamics ground systems software for the OSAM-1 mission (formerly known as Restore-L). OSAM-1 is a NASA mission that will be the first to service (refuel and relocate) a satellite, with Earth observing satellite Landsat 7 as the target. Previously I wrote mission support software for the Terra, Aqua, and Aura Earth observing satellites. These spacecraft travel in sun-synchronous orbit and gather critical data that allow scientists from all around the world to study our changing Earth.

When I started this podcast I was working as a software engineer for an education company in Manhattan and I still can’t believe I’m working for NASA.

The goal of this podcast is to take a look at each and every one of the crewed NASA spaceflights, all the way from Freedom 7 to STS-135. I hope to educate others and share my passion for spaceflight, while learning more about the fascinating missions that are often left out of the popular histories.

My other interests include photography, Formula 1, virtual reality, modular origami, Rubik’s Cubes, video games and piano.

Please feel free to contact me (contact info is at the top of the page) to provide any compliments, criticism, or just to say hi.

The opinions I express on this website, The Space Above Us podcast, social media, or anywhere else are my own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of my employer or NASA.

Tech Details>

Tech Details #

The podcast is made with the following tools:

  • iPad Pro (2019) 12.9", using the Notability app (for reading and highlighting documents)
  • Google Docs (writing the scripts, 2016-2020)
  • Synology Drive (writing the scripts, 2020-present)
  • Audiotechnica 2020 (microphone)
  • Behringer XENYX X1204USB mixer (massages audio and delivers it to the PC)
  • My PC “Bebop” (2016-2022) (writing the scripts, recording and editing audio)
  • My MacBook “Narcissus” (the name is from Ripley’s escape ship) (2015-2021) (writing the scripts)
  • My MacBook “Skyranger” (2021-Present) (writing the scripts)
  • My PC “Starblaster” (2022-Present) (recording and editing audio)
  • Audacity (recording and editing audio)
  • iTunes (converting the episode .wav to the final .mp3 for the first 168 or so episodes)
  • Mp3tag (for tagging the episode MP3s and adding the show’s logo)
  • Hugo (used to generate this website)
  • Blowfish (Hugo theme for this website, hacked modified by me)
  • Libsyn (podcast hosting and distribution)
  • Amazon S3 (hosts the Patreon bonus content)
  • The show’s intro and outro is “When Heroes Walk Among Us” from Premium Beat

Thanks #

  • My Mom, for encouraging my love of spaceflight and always patiently listening to whatever esoteric space topic was on my mind that day.
  • My family and friends for listening to early episodes and not thinking the idea was crazy.
  • Mike Duncan, for inspiring the show with The History of Rome.
  • Omar, for coming up with the show’s name.
  • Mel, for gifting me the show’s logo. (Logo by Mel Rainsberger, a different Mel!)
  • Alan, for letting me know about Libsyn.
  • Vic, for gifting me the show’s microphone and for answering numerous audio questions.
  • Joe, Dan, and Topaz for reading a number of scripts to make sure they were comprehensible at all.
  • Gravmath, for helping with many technical spaceflight questions and never giving up on me.
  • Dan Tani, for being the first astronaut to listen, and for answering many questions about what astronaut life is like.
  • Arterich, AstroBob, Baldrad, Cadair, Jai, Kyle, Matte, Medtner, Michael Rennick, Needler, Tyler, and all the other early TSAU Patreon Discord regulars.
  • Everyone who’s ever donated, supported the Patreon, or helped spread the word about the podcast.
  • Most of all, thanks to everyone who listens to the show!