It Came from Outer Space!: Everyday Products and Ideas from the Space Program

What do anthrax protection, golf clubs, and cordless power tools have in common? Each was invented or improved with technology first developed for the space program. Since NASA's inception 45 years ago, hundreds of everyday devices and products have emerged from the research and development required to put rockets into space and humans on the moon. To expand our knowledge of the universe, scientists and engineers with the space program constantly confront new challenges in vehicle design, life support, communications, and astronaut health and well-being. The solutions to these challenges have often benefited those of us who remain on Earth. This book tells the story of 67 of the most consumer-friendly products born of space-related research. Discover the fascinating histories of commonplace items that we now take for granted. One model of ergonomic chairs was based on the position of astronauts at rest in Skylab. Improvements in health-rate monitors resulted from the need to track changes in an astronaut's heart rate. Even swimsuits and ballpoints pens have been improved by space technology. This book also includes extensive information on the history of NASA, and on the technology-transfer centers that help make such product improvements happen. Lesson plans and resources offer additional sources of information on this remarkable subject.