Highlights from this issue include: A look forward to the first launch of the Space Shuttle 'Next Year', the launch of Pioneer Venus, Satellite Power System, Electric Vehicals, Satellite Search and Rescue, Mapping of Earths Magnetic Field, Heat Mapping, Ovation Guitars, Dome Sports Stadiums, Solar Meter, Inflatable liferafts, Radiation Hazard Detector, Carbon Monoxide Sensor, Hydrogen Generator, Fire Detector, Ground Fault Interrupter (GFI), Intruder Detection Systems, Infant Radiant Warmer, Heart Monitoring by Satellite, Emergency Communications Console, Automated Blood Pressure Measurement, ExerGenie, Convertable Stadiums, Trash Compactor, Foam Filters, Bulb-Miser, Jetfoil, Mobile Phone Terminal, Heat-resistant Paint, Pig Pregnancy Detector
As a result of a 1958 congressional mandate, NASA, in 1962, created the Technology Utilization Program. It was supported by Technology Utilization Offices at each of the field centers and four Industrial Applications Centers (IACs). The number of IACs grew rapidly to seven by the early 1970s and ten in the early 1980s.
Early studies of Tech Briefs, the publication dedicated to informing the scientific community about available NASA technologies, and ongoing requests received for supporting information, indicated a strong need in the private sector for new technology to aid in the development of commercial products and services.
When spinoff products began to emerge from space technologies, NASA considered the possibility of an annual report to present at congressional budget hearings. The result was a black and white ÃƒÂƒÃ‚Â¢Technology Utilization Program Report,ÃƒÂƒÃ‚Â¢ published in 1973, followed by another one in 1974. The technologies in these reports created interest in the technology transfer concept, its successes, and its use as a public awareness tool. The reports generated such keen interest by the public that NASA decided to make them into an attractive publication. Thus, the first four-color edition of Spinoff was published in 1976.
Each year since, a new issue has highlighted the transfer of NASA technology to the private sector. The Agency distributes copies to politicians, economic decision makers, company CEOs, academics, professionals in technology transfer, the news media, and the general public.
NASAÃƒÂƒÃ‚Â¢s Spinoff publication accomplishes several goals. First, it is a convincing justification for the continued expenditure of NASA funds. It serves as a tool to educate the media and the general public by informing them about the benefits and dispelling the myth of wasted taxpayer dollars. It reinforces interest in space exploration. It demonstrates the possibility to apply aerospace technology in different environments. It highlights the ingenuity of American inventors, entrepreneurs, and application engineers, and the willingness of a government agency to assist them. And finally, it continues to ensure global competitiveness and technological leadership by the United States.
The total number of stories published since 1976 is nearly 1,800, which does not include approximately 100 stories featured in the 1973 and 1974 reports.
I AN ANNUAL REPORT
National Aeronautics and
Office of Space and
Technology Utilization Division
Informatics Information Systems Company
for coordinating the preparation of this
report; Plumridge Advertising for design
and production, and William P. Taub for
assistance with photography.
by James J. Haggerty January 1978
For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Oflice
Washington. D.C. 20402
Stock NO. 033-000-00712-4
Some six thousand years ago, an unknown Bronze Age
inventor conceived the idea of the wheel, which permit-
ted draft animals to pull greater loads by rolling a cart
rather than dragging it. One of man's earliest and most
significant technologies, the wheel has been re-
adapted countless times over the millenia. In ancient
times it provided the departure point for such devices
as the potter's wheel, the grindstone, the pulley, the
spinning wheel, the lathe and the windlass. The same
rotary motion concept is the cornerstone of many
modern transportation compoents-for example,
gears, rotating shafts, propellers and turbines-and for
a great variety of non-transportation conveniences
from casters to doorknobs.
The evolution of wheel-derived contrivances is
perhaps the broadest example of how technology,
once developed, can be transferred to uses different
and often remote from the original application. This
process of "spinoff" has been going on since the dawn
of technology, expanding constantly under the impetus
of an ever-widening technology base. In the past 20
years, there has been exceptional acceleration of
technology transfer, due in great measure to NASA's
aerospace research programs. To meet the goals of
space exploration and aeronautical advancement,
NASA and its contractors have of necessity developed
innovations in virtually every field of science and
technology. This storehouse of knowledge provides an
extremely broad technical foundation for the