NASA Spinoff

Sensors Locate Radio Interference

Originating Technology/NASA Contribution While many air travelers are accustomed to rules against electronic devices during takeoff and landing, they might not be aware that these devices are banned because they can cause electromagnetic interference (EMI) with navigation equipment. Because similar problems can occur near launch sites for space missions, NASA began


Surface Operations Systems Improve Airport Efficiency

Originating Technology/NASA Contribution As part of its research to make air travel safer, NASA began collaborating with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in 2005 to develop what are now called surface traffic management systems (STMS). Both agencies have expressed a need to gather and organize data on airport surface operations, the


Nontoxic Resins Advance Aerospace Manufacturing

Originating Technology/NASA Contribution A small pile of PETI-330 resinous powder PETI-330 is the first resin created specifically for high-temperature composites formed with resin transfer molding and resin infusion. Offering processability, toughness, and high-temperature performance, the resin has a low-melt viscosity and, when cured, a high glass transition temperature.


Software Performs Complex Design Analysis

Originating Technology/NASA ContributionDesigners use computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to gain greater understanding of the fluid flow phenomena involved in components being designed. They also use finite element analysis (FEA) as a tool to help gain greater understanding of the structural response of components to loads, stresses and strains, and the

Engineering Models Ease and Speed Prototyping

Originating Technology/NASA ContributionNASA astronauts plan to return to the Moon as early as 2015 and establish a lunar base, from which 6-month flights to Mars would be launched by 2030. Essential to this plan is the Ares launch vehicle, NASA’s next-generation spacecraft that will, in various iterations, be responsible for

Aerodynamics Research Revolutionizes Truck Design

Originating Technology/NASA ContributionThe last 35 years have seen a sea change in the design of trucks on America’s highways, reflecting extensive research into vehicle aerodynamics and fluid dynamics conducted by NASA engineers. Thanks to the ingenuity of a Dryden Flight Research Center researcher bicycling through the California desert and a

Advanced Control System Increases Helicopter Safety

Originating Technology/NASA ContributionFor over 30 years, NASA and U.S. Army engineers have worked together at Ames Research Center to make rotorcraft fly more quickly, quietly, and safely in all kinds of weather. Development of new technologies for both military and civil helicopters, tiltrotor aircraft, and other advanced rotary-wing aircraft has

Lithium Battery Power Delivers Electric Vehicles to Market

Originating Technology/NASA ContributionAs increased energy efficiency, and particularly fuel efficiency, becomes a greater concern, hybrid and electric vehicles gain greater prominence in the market. Electric vehicles (EVs), in particular, provide an attractive option as they produce no emissions during operation, isolating any potential emissions and effluents in the manufacturing and

Deicing System Protects General Aviation Aircraft

Ice accumulation is a serious safety hazard for aircraft. The presence of ice on airplane surfaces prevents the even flow of air, which increases drag and reduces lift. Ice on wings is especially dangerous during takeoff, when a sheet of ice the thickness of a compact disc can reduce lift


Advanced Airfoils Boost Helicopter Performance

Advanced rotorcraft airfoils developed by U.S. Army engineers working with NASA’s Langley Research Center were part of the Army’s risk reduction program for the LHX (Light Helicopter Experimental), the forerunner of the Comanche helicopter. The helicopter’s airfoils were designed as part of the Army’s basic research program and were tested