NASA Code Available for Down-to-Earth Apps
Whether you’re an entrepreneur, member of the Maker Movement or IFTTT communities, have a business use case, or are simply interested in cool technology, check out the latest NASA Software Catalog that’s available to download for free. The 2017–2018 NASA catalog has hundreds of free, downloadable software codes in categories ranging from aeronautics and autonomous systems to environmental science and vehicle management.
This is software used throughout NASA in shuttle missions, even by the Curiosity Rover, and it really is rocket science. Here are a few of the interesting technologies made available:
Robo-Glove. A robotic system developed between NASA and General Motors, primarily designed for heavily repetitive tasks that require high dexterity and hand strength. Category: Science & Technology.
Extended Range RFID and Sensor Tag. Could be used as a real-time location system for first responders and assets, in hospitals to track patients, vehicle and container tracking in harsh conditions, or remote temperature and pressure tracking in food processing. Category: Communications.
KNIFE (part of the FUN3D software and released as a package). Created to help us learn more about and predict sonic booms, it has also helped develop green energy sources such as wind turbines and techniques to minimize drag for long-haul trucking. Category: Design and Integration Tools.
Cart3D (Automated Triangle Geometry Processing for Surface Modeling and Cartesian Grid Generation). According to NASA, “If software codes went to high school, Cart3D would be Prom Queen. This software is so popular, it is being used in almost every mission area here at NASA.” Category: Design and Integration Tools.
And if you’re interested in incorporating 3D for your projects, NASA 3D Resources has a collection of 3D models, images, textures, and visualizations free to download and use. Still another resource is the NASA Technology Patent Portfolio, with more than a thousand technology patents available for licensing.
These NASA resources are part of the “Bringing NASA Technology Down to Earth” initiative that shares the benefits of the supporting research and technologies for NASA missions here on earth. And while you’re figuring out your next project, check out the Station Spacewalk Game.