The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is often known for projects such as creating ambitious telescope systems that can see the beginning of the universe, or sending man to the moon and back. But, few know that it is also responsible for products like swimsuits, eye surgery technology, and the way you take selfies.
The everyday products listed below are just 15 of the more than 2,000 consumer products that come from NASA’s space programs. All are based on technology and discoveries developed directly by NASA, in partnership with NASA, or through NASA funding.
Memory foam mattress
If your mattress, pillow, couch, sofa or anything else contains activated foam, aka a “memory cushion” due to its ability to return to its original shape after use, you can thank NASA. The material was developed by NASA-funded aeronautical engineer Charles Yost and was originally used to create better crash-absorbing aircraft seats for pilots in a variety of tests.
Classic computer mouse
The computer mouse was invented at Stanford University in the early 1960s by Doug Englebart, based on a study of interactive computer input funded by NASA. The research was conducted by NASA computer science expert Bob Taylor.
If you’ve ever checked your temperature with an infrared thermometer, remember that you wouldn’t have been able to do it without NASA. The US space agency has developed infrared thermometers to measure the temperature of distant space objects, and the technology has finally found a way to appear in homes, by becoming the The importance of household thermometers.
High performance swimwear
Most of us don’t wear performance swimsuits very often, but swimmers like Michael Phelps do use them on a regular basis. Speedo’s LZR Racer Swimsuit – the outfit of choice for elite swimmers – launched in 2008 and features unique underwater dynamics that were born after in-road testing wind tunnel at NASA’s Langley Research Center.
Cell phone camera
The image sensors used in most modern digital cameras are sourced directly from NASA. Eric Fossum, an employee of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, was the first to use CMOS technology in cameras. The original goal was to create a better, cheaper, and more efficient camera system for spacecraft, but the technology quickly spread around the world.
We may have more widespread use of this technology in the near future thanks to the Quantum Science and Technology group of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, whose projects began in the 1980s. Among their inventions is one that has the evocative name of “library whisper-mode optical resonator”. It’s a spherical resonator for light waves. Until recently, this technology was only used in practice, when it was integrated into the LiDAR system for self-driving cars.
In an effort to determine how the lack of gravity affects eye movements, NASA conducted a series of experiments aboard the International Space Station in the mid-2000s. The results were not helpful for humans. much, but the eye-tracking technology developed on top of it greatly helped in subsequent experiments, making LASIK vision correction surgeries possible.
There have been many types of scratch-resistant lenses, but nothing is as good as the technology on Ray-Ban’s Survivor line of glasses, because it is licensed technology from NASA. NASA has pioneered coating sensitive instrument screens with a diamond-like carbon to make them 10 times more scratch resistant than other methods. This might be a bit of an overkill for sunglasses, but it’s still pretty awesome.
Air traffic control system
The US Federal Aviation Administration and NASA recently completed the development of an innovative system for managing flights on the ground. It is known as IADS (Integrated Arrival, Departure, and Surface (IADS) for short) and is now set up at 27 of the busiest airports in the US.
The road surface has grooves
Even if you don’t notice, the whole world is less slippery thanks to NASA. Specifically, NASA researchers have demonstrated that cutting thin grooves on concrete runways to create channels for excess water to drain out reduces the risk of accidents due to slips at airports. As a result, hundreds of commercial airports around the world have been fitted with safety trenches, then even on highways. Safe grooving has also been applied to curves and overpasses, then pedestrian walkways, ramps and steps, then food processing plants and cattle sheds. .
The technology has also been shown to restore wet friction performance to trail or smooth surfaces and extend their service life from 5 to 10 years, resulting in significant savings in maintenance costs.
Emergency rescue blanket
The thin, sticky life blankets packaged in first aid kits and often given out at the end of marathons were developed by NASA in 1964. Its material is made by evaporating aluminum onto surfaces. The plastic surface is thin and is now used in camping, sunshades, space telescopes, etc. As a shield, it reflects heat back to whoever or what is wrapped in it.
Nike Air Shoes
These sneakers are the product of two NASA innovations. The hard rubber molding of the sneakers is accomplished through “blow molding” technology, a process pioneered at NASA for helmet production. The shock-absorbing material used in the Nike Air comes from NASA engineer Frank Rudy.
While researching nutritional strategies for future trips to Mars, NASA scientists discovered a natural source for an omega-3 fatty acid previously found only in breast milk. This ingredient is now used in most infant formulas on the market.
Cordless vacuum cleaner
Black and Decker worked closely with NASA in the 1960s to produce cordless drills, hammers, and other tools to create products that could operate in low-gravity (or zero-gravity) environments. ). And now, you can see this technology in the wide range of cordless vacuum cleaners on the market.
Refer to lifehacker, NASA