Photo: Dylan Love
There’s no argument that NASA works to develop advanced technologies to make space travel easier.But did you know that plenty of NASA technologies have made their way into our daily lives?
Discovery.com has this list, and we added several more.
Originally developed to be used in seat cushions to lessen impact during landing, memory foam now helps people around the world fall asleep more easily.
The modern microchip is a descendant of the circuits used in the Apollo Guidance Computer.
Translucent polycrystalline alumina, or TPA, was used to protect the infrared antennae of heat-seeking missile trackers before someone figured out it makes excellent material for invisible braces.
It's hardly an overnight innovation, but multiple NASA technologies come together to make long-distance communication possible -- consider the 200-odd communication satellites that are in orbit right now. That's why we're able to call Tokyo from Vegas.
Ear thermometers rely upon NASA's method of measuring the temperature of stars with infrared technology. It's how a nurse is able to accurately determine your body temperature in less than two seconds.
In an effort to keep water as clean as possible while in space, NASA was the first to use charcoal to filter water. Now this technology is everywhere.
The CAT scanner was originally used to find imperfections in parts of the spacecraft. Now it's an invaluable diagnostic tool for doctors.
This method of preparing food simultaneously reduces weight and maintains nutritional value, both essential to space travel.
Originally conceived for moon boot technology, a shoe company called KangaROOS USA was the first to commercialize the idea of a shoe insole in the 1980s.
A fire on a space shuttle is just about the worst possible scenario in space. NASA invented the adjustable smoke detector that let you set a sensitivity level as a way to prevent false alarms.
The insulation in your house uses the same reflective material that protects spacecraft from radiation.
NASA teamed up with Black & Decker to invent battery-powered tools that could be used in outer space to retrieve rock and soil samples. Now we have them around our house.
Safety grooving is the name given to small canals dug into roads that help divert water off the road to keep the tires firmly fixed to the surface. It was conceived by NASA as a means of helping planes land more safely.
NASA designed scratch-resistant visors for its spacesuits due to all the debris floating around in space. The Foster-Grant sunglasses company recognised an opportunity and licensed the material for use in sunglasses.
To bust a quick myth, NASA didn't invent Tang. It was created by William Mitchell, working for the General Foods Corporation. Sales of the powdered drink formula were poor until John Glenn used it on his Mercury flight and later Gemini missions.