• NASA Teleconferencing Pilot Project (An Evaluation of Teleconferencing as a Substitute for Travel)

      Fordyce, Samuel W.; NASA (International Foundation for Telemetering, 1977-10)
      NASA conducted a Pilot Project during 1975 and 1976 to determine the extent that teleconferencing could replace travel to meetings. The network consists of approximately 34 teleconference rooms and 50 fast facsimile machines, all interconnected on private lines to a master switchboard in Huntsville, Alabama. In addition, portable conference telephones augmented the voice network, and experimental video teleconferences were tried. Evaluations show that the teleconferences "saved" travel costs approximating 21% of the travel budget at a communications cost of 3% of this budget. The unused travel funds were diverted into travel other than to management meetings, and consequently, coordination may have improved. This paper discusses the operation of the Pilot Project, which has matured into an operational teleconference network. This experience may be of value to other organizations wishing to adopt teleconferencing.