Start the Countdown NASA technology isn't just for space exploration. Image courtesy of NASA You may already be aware of the many amazing products that were invented as a result of NASA research (and no, Tang isn't one of them). After all, NASA doesn't just exist to explore space -- since its creation in 1958, the organization's mission has also been to find ways of improving our lives here on Earth. NASA works with a number of companies and research teams across the country to develop concepts that advance technology in a variety of fields, from healthcare to entertainment. Since 1976, NASA has even published a journal called "Spinoff," which details the various commercial products and technologies that started out as NASA ideas. The fact that some of this technology led to great, everyday products makes perfect sense -- you can probably see a correlation between NASA applications and things like improved telecommunications, memory foam mattresses and cordless power … [Read more...] about 5 Strange Items Developed from NASA Technology
Has NASA affected the air in your office? Creatas/Thinkstock In the summer of 1973, a trio of astronauts aboard Skylab -- the United States' first-ever space station -- used air testing instruments to see what they would be breathing during their two-month stay in space. The results were worrying: Skylab's air was filled with trace amounts of more than 100 harmful chemicals. The space station was made from some of the world's most cutting-edge synthetic materials: plastics, polymers and resins. But while processed materials make for good space stations, they make for lousy air. The materials were emitting small amounts of toxic gas, a phenomenon known as "off-gassing." It's not like the Skylab astronauts could open a window, so for their next 58 days in space, the astronauts simply had to breathe in a swamp of carcinogenic chemicals. A few hundred miles below, earthlings were having a similar problem. In the face of skyrocketing energy costs during the late 1970s, office … [Read more...] about How has NASA helped improve our air and water?
The founders of Martek and many of its lead scientific team spent time as researchers for NASA, and it was there that they first conceived of a nutritional supplement called Formulaid — baby formula. Image Source/Getty Images The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, better known as NASA, has been the space program for the U.S. government since it was established by the National Aeronautics and Space Act on July 29, 1958. Since then, Americans have seen man walk on the moon and explore the interstellar highways. The very way we look at space has been redefined ever since astronaut Neil Armstrong took his "one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind." Because of the prestige that comes with working for NASA, the space program has always attracted the top engineers and pilots and is known for consistently being on the leading edge of all kinds of technology. Over the years, regular civilians have benefited from some of this technology. NASA has impacted our … [Read more...] about How Did NASA Improve Baby Food?
Start the Countdown Astronaut Dale A. Gardner holds up a 'For Sale' sign referring to the two satellites he and another astronaut retrieved from orbit after their Payload Assist Modules (PAM) failed to fire. NASA On any successful space mission, the crew's morale is at the top of the list of priorities. After all, the final frontier can be one high-stress workplace. So it's no wonder that, in the 59 years since it was first established, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration has seen a small army of passionate pranksters. Now we're not talking anything too serious of course. That could get dangerous on a NASA mission. These pranks are all relatively mild and silly, but still not necessarily what we'd expect from the crew of astronauts who were the first men to walk on the moon. But when your job consists of being launched into space at 17,500 miles per hour (28,000 kilometers per hour), sometimes a little comedy to go with the cosmos isn't a bad thing. … [Read more...] about Ridiculous History: 5 of NASA’s Greatest Pranks
A fascinating new NASA video gives us a glimpse into the atmosphere of one of our solar system neighbors like never before. The footage shows cloud streaks developing, moving and eventually fading above the surface of Titan, the largest moon of Saturn. Traveling at a speed of about 14 to 22 miles per hour (22.5 to 35.4 kph), the clouds are composed of methane. Besides Earth, Titan is the only other body in the solar system where we've found large amounts of liquid on its surface. NASA's time-lapse video above was created using a narrow-angle camera and infrared filters over a period of 11 hours, with one image taken every 20 minutes. While the Cassini probe has photographed clouds on Titan before, most have been one-off snapshots — this new sequence of images is the best instance yet of allowing scientists to examine cloud formation and movement on Titan. An artist's interpretation of what the methane lakes on the surface of Titan might look like. Steven … [Read more...] about NASA Captures Mesmerizing Footage of Clouds Drifting Above a Distant World