Space Products & Innovation
The two 2015 inductees for the Space Foundation’s Space Technology Hall of Fame.
Due to the wide perspective of Earth provided by some satellites, industries involved in energy, resources, and environmental management are benefiting from multiple new developments in satellite technology and services. The Earth’s environment is in constant flux as natural resources are consumed and renewed continually.
The Space Technology Hall of Fame® increases public awareness of the benefits of space exploration and encourages further innovation by recognizing individuals, organizations and companies that effectively adapt and market technologies originally developed for space to improve the quality of life for all humanity.
Volunteer space operators who take over old NASA spacecraft; robots on faraway planets impacting the technologies of Earth’s inhabitants; space agencies finding alternative uses for technologies and processes originally designed for space operations and exploration–each one of these topics and others are worth exploring in more detail. This is the purpose of The Space Report’s “Featured Stories.” Years of featured stories are gathered here, some short, some long, but all interesting.
Every year, the Space Foundation recognizes space technologies applied to products and services in interesting and useful ways. Many products and services are nominated, but only two are inducted into the Space Foundation’s Space Technology Hall of Fame annually.
One standout story in 2014 exemplifies public interest, funding, and dedication to space exploration. The story involves an old NASA spacecraft, a group of volunteers, successful donation requests through crowdfunding, and ultimately, the reanimation and operation of a spacecraft once thought lost and useless.
The technology that keeps tractors within field boundaries is changing, using satellite technology to aid farmers in steering farm equipment within centimeters of its intended location. AREA4D is using satellite data from the European GNSS Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) and combining it with localized reference radio stations to build a better, faster, and cheaper PNT network.
Some garment makers, such as Björn Borg, are attempting to address a very real need for heat resistance in underclothes. Working with materials used to protect astronauts, garment manufacturers are heeding the wishes of Swedish steelworkers, a demographic working in very heated conditions, and coming up with cool solutions.
Counting white bears on a white background is a challenge when the polar bears are only yards away from an observer on the ground. Imagine how challenging it must be to see the bears in imagery from satellites. White specks on a sheet of ice are very difficult to detect from hundreds of miles away.