NASA Spinoff

Ultrasonic Detectors Safely Identify Dangerous, Costly Leaks

NASA Technology In 1990, NASA grounded its space shuttle fleet. The reason: leaks detected in the hydrogen fuel systems of the Space Shuttles Atlantis and Columbia. Unless the sources of the leaks could be identified and fixed, the shuttles would not be safe to fly.

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Detectors Ensure Function, Safety of Aircraft Wiring

NASA Technology Pedro Medelius waited patiently in his lab at Kennedy Space Center. He had just received word that a colleague was bringing over a cable from a Space Shuttle solid rocket booster to test Medelius’ new invention. Medelius was calm until his colleague arrived—with about 30 other people.

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Emergency Systems Save Tens of Thousands of Lives

NASA Technology Shortly before midnight on September 21st, 2010, the small fishing boat Ebby Luz started taking on water. In immediate danger and 8 miles from the shore, its crew activated an emergency beacon that began transmitting their distress signal, identity, and location. Within minutes, the Coast Guard was notified and launched a helicopter to the coordinates

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Oxygen Assessments Ensure Safer Medical Devices

NASA Technology Alongside the tragedies that are part of the history of human spaceflight, bittersweet lessons have been learned. These lessons have not only taught us about the extreme requirements of space travel; they have taught us how to live more safely on Earth.

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Collaborative Platforms Aid Emergency Decision Making

NASA Technology Terra. Aqua. Cloudsat. Landsat. NASA runs and partners in many missions dedicated to monitoring the Earth, and the tools used in these missions continuously return data on everything from shifts in temperature to cloud formation to pollution levels over highways. The data are of great scientific value, but they also provide information that can play

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Simulation Tools Model Icing for Aircraft Design

NASA Technology Here’s a simple science experiment to try: Place an unopened bottle of distilled water in your freezer. After 2–3 hours, if the water is pure enough, you will notice that it has not frozen. Carefully pour the water into a bowl with a piece of ice in it. When it strikes the ice, the

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Modified Fittings Enhance Industrial Safety

NASA Technology Kennedy Space Center is not only home to one of the largest buildings in the world—the massive Vehicle Assembly Building—it also hosts a number of one-of-a-kind facilities. The more than 30-mile-long campus has witnessed every launch from the Space Shuttle Launch Pad, as well as many homecomings at the Shuttle Landing Facility. Just as important, the

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Information Systems Coordinate Emergency Management

NASA Technology The rescue crews have been searching for the woman for nearly a week. Hurricane Katrina devastated Hancock County, the southernmost point in Mississippi, and the woman had stayed through the storm in her beach house. There is little hope of finding her alive; the search teams know she is gone because the house is gone.

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Imaging Systems Provide Maps for U.S. Soldiers

NASA Technology Spanning nearly four decades, the remarkable Landsat program has continuously provided data about the Earth’s surface, including detailed maps of vegetation, land use, forest extent and health, surface water, population distribution, as well as how these features have changed over time. Managed by NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey, Landsat’s series of satellites obtain data through

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High-Pressure Systems Suppress Fires in Seconds

NASA Technology Much deserved attention is given to the feats of innovation that allow humans to live in space and robotic explorers to beam never-before- seen images back to Earth. In the background of these accomplishments is a technology that makes it all possible—the rockets that propel NASA’s space exploration efforts skyward.

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