The Space Shuttle Program: The impact it has had on everyday life July 29, 2011Posted by escapewire in Uncategorized.
Millions of people watched as the space shuttle Atlantis concluded its final voyage last week. This moment concluded the American space shuttle program however the program leaves a legacy behind that will not soon die out. Thousands of technologies that improve our way of life owe their creation to the space program. We see it in our homes, hospitals, cars, as well as on vacation.Most people think of rockets, spacesuits, and Dippin Dots, the ice cream of the future, when they think of space shuttle technology. You may be surprised to learn just how many things would not exist if it weren’t for NASA’s drive to improve the space shuttle program. Check out NASA’s annual publication, Spinoff, its goal is to inform the general public about technologies designed or commissioned for the space shuttle program that have been commercialized. It may shock you to know that if it weren’t for the development of space shuttle technologies, these items might not exist: Athletic Shoes – Some are made using a procedure called blow rubber molding which was designed to produce space helmets. This enables companies to make soles hollow and fill them with a shock absorbing substance. Nike Air is probably one of the most commonly known shoe utilizing this technology. DustBusters – NASA commissioned engineers at Black and Decker to formulate a cordless power drill to use for moon landings. The technology is actually a software program that allows motors to perform well even when using very little power. Black and Decker then expanded this and gave us the DustBuster. Smoke Detectors – These were originally developed in 1970 for America’s first space station, Skylab. They are now so crucial in households that it is against the law to construct a house without installing a functioning smoke detector. Human beings have forever been moved by the notion of exploring space. The drive to do this has inspired incredible technologies. Though the space shuttle will be greatly missed, NASA will not stop creating new technologies that people will find a way to implement in a more terrestrial fashion. As we think about all the ways everyday life has benefited from the space shuttle program, we see that it will live forever in our homes as well as our hearts.