We stop our normal posts about space exploration off of our planet to bring you – the reader – some ground breaking technology already on our planet because of Space Exploration.
Have you taken a moment recently to check out NASA’s website? If not, please take a few minutes to do so. It is currently my favorite website and the source most of the information I have shared with you. It’s a great resource with a lot of amazing information. When I opened the web page as I do daily, I noticed a page I have never seen before:Benefits to You.
Curiosity (haha) got the best of me and I found myself on a new page with exciting things to learn. One of the first blocks on the page redirected me to homeandcity.nasa.gov. This is an extremely interactive page that illustrates how space exploration is intertwined into everyone’s life.
Obvious due to the site’s link, NASA has separated City and Home into 2 areas. In just a few clicks, I had learned so many interesting things. While, I don’t want to spoil too many of these for the Space Junkies, like myself, I do want to share my favorite from each room and place in the website.
I chose to start at Home, in the Living Room. Using the mouse, I am able to survey the room. Different bluepoints show anything that Space Exploration has assisted with. My favorite is the CMOS or “…complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) image sensor…“(homeandcity.nasa.gov). Essentially, a team at NASA created the digital camera that we have today. Something that many people in the world use daily was originally created for Space Exploration. While the website doesn’t go into detail about which Space Exploration projects the CMOS image sensor was invented for, it does state that the technology was invented in the 1990s. My mind runs crazy with possibilities. It personally makes me excited for the Mars Rover and the images NASA will receive back. After my time in the Living Room was completed,I made my way to the Kitchen.
The Kitchen has the same blue points indicating options for me to read. I found so many different things that drew my interest, that it was difficult to pick just one to write about! Eventually,I chose the Precision Coffee Maker. Using what I read to be basically Rover technology to keep the speed the same has been applied to an extremely advanced coffee maker. It’s really called “proportional-integral-derivative(PID) controllers (homeandcity.nasa.gov). Using the PID controllers, the coffeemaker can brew a cup of java using stored recipes with “unprecedented precision in pressure and temperature control” (homeandcity.nasa.gov). Check out the Kitchen for other cool research that has found its way into your life. After the Kitchen, I went to the Bathroom.
Space Exploration has assisted with medical advances in the Bathroom, specially found in the medicine cabinet. As astronauts extend their stays in Space, NASA had to find a way to combat bone and muscle loss. Now there is an osteoporosis treatment available. There’re a few other things in the Bathroom to read up on as well such as Environmentally safe sewage treatments, Skin Cream and a few others. I continued on to the Bedroom. Just like in the Kitchen, I had more options that were interesting to write about, but I had to only choose one! After the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, NASA wanted to learn more information about what had happened. This same technology was used by Engineers to create a high-performance shoe. The system that both NASA and the shoe manufacturer used is high-speed stereophotogrammetry. Try saying that 3 times fast. The Home and City page did not provide any additional information on what high-speed stereo photogrammetry. It is defined as “The technique uses two synchronized cameras to film an impact,and then software to analyze how the materials deform during the event. Those movements translate to stress and strain”. This definition is found on thespinoff.nasa.gov site, which the link is provided fro the Home and City page.The technology was used to ensure space shuttles were safe. In 2005, two years after the disaster, NASA resumed space shuttle flights again. I find it quite fascinating that technology used to ensure space shuttle flights were safe is the same technology used to make a high-performance shoe.
I had one more area at Home before making it to the City – the Outside. Off to the left of the screen, you’ll see‘Small living quarters design’. An architect, Finney, that was assisting in the design of a Habitation Module for the ISS went on to create Cricket, a small trailer that can be pulled with a 4-cylinder car. In spinoff.nasa.gov, Finney states that anytime he speaks about Cricket, he is telling the listeners wha the learned during his time with NASA.
I could continue on for City but why ruin all the surprises for you? Let me know what you think about this page?What cool things did you find in the Home side that I didn’t mention? What about the City?
Thank you for joining me on the journey to learn more about Space Exploration.