“That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.”
– Neil Armstrong
This past Saturday, American space hero Neil Armstrong passed away at the age of 82. He was the first man to set foot on the moon, and those famous words — along with his legacy — will surely outlive him.
Such a lingering presence isn’t uncommon for NASA, though. Its missions into space have awed and inspired, and many of its inventions have done the same — and subsequently have become part of our everyday lives.
NASA has documented more than 1,500 spinoffs, and many have helped build businesses, or even create whole companies. Here’s a look at just a few of them: five companies that owe a debt of thanks to Armstrong and the rest of NASA’s pioneers.