Why do we explore space when it’s so expensive and challenging? Well, besides the fact that we need to get off this rock someday after we inevitably ruin it, we get a lot of cool technology from space exploration that ends up in our everyday lives.

That includes our cars! More technology than you might expect on your vehicle comes from advancements made in the service of exploring space.

So that’s our question of the day: What’s the coolest car tech, new or old, that owes its origins to space missions?

From NASA themselves, here’s just one: better tires.

Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company developed a fibrous material, five times stronger than steel, for NASA to use in parachute shrouds to soft-land the Vikings on the Martian surface. The fiber’s chain-like molecular structure gave it incredible strength in proportion to its weight. Recognizing the increased strength and durability of the material, Goodyear expanded the technology and went on to produce a new radial tire with a tread life expected to be 10,000 miles greater than conventional radials. (Spinoff 1976)

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SCIENCE!


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