News

Cost worth it

by
February 17, 2017

You may not be aware of it but the space program has developed more than 1000 spin-offs that have directly or indirectly benefited humanity.

Are you one of those people who think the space program is a waste of money? Do you think the money could be better spent here on Earth?

You may not be aware of it but the space program has developed more than 1000 spin-offs that have directly or indirectly benefited humanity. In fact, you use dozens of them going about your daily affairs.

Take for example electrolyte drinks, and water and air purification technology. These spin-offs created a multi-million-dollar industry producing filters for homes, hospitals and swimming pools.

Hey, let’s not forget scratch-resistant lenses. NASA developed a special coating to protect helmet visors and other space equipment from dirt and particles. This technology is used on eye glasses today.

Are you seeing things clearly yet?

In the safety department, NASA developed search-and-rescue tracking systems to improve distress signal communication. More than 30000 people have been saved using this system alone.

NASA software is also used to enhance imaging in mammograms and X-rays for the early detection of breast cancer.

For the computer buff, NASA started developing cloud-controlling software in 2008 in order to help standardise its web development. There are more than 200 businesses using the software today.

NASA earlier invested money in a study that led to the creation of the computer mouse.

Industry did well out of it too. In 1961 NASA contracted Black & Decker to develop a cordless drill to extract rock samples from the surface of the moon.

Hey, I almost forgot. One out of every three mobile phone cameras uses technology developed for space cameras.

It’s a fact that for every one dollar spent on the space program, between $7 and $14 is returned back to the economy.

Finally, NASA developed technology that converted urine and grey washing water into safe drinking water. It’s true! The spin-offs for Third World countries with polluted streams and rivers is enormous!

Are you a NASA convert now?

David Reneke is a feature writer for Australasian Science magazine and a science correspondent for ABC and commercial radio. Get David’s free astronomy newsletter at www.davidreneke.com

By
More in Shepparton News
Login Sign Up

Dummy text