As part of our ongoing effort to promote U.S. Manufacturing, we highlight each month products and companies that provide innovative and unique products that make a difference in people’s lives. We encourage our readership to both buy and promote products made in America. Here’s our hip find for the month:
NASA has created a wearable robotic exoskeleton called the X1. While still in research and development, the X1’s original intent was for astronauts. Wearable from the torso down, the robot would help them exercise while in zero gravity in order to stay healthy on long space trips. The device also has the ability to record, measure and stream in real time back to flight controllers on earth giving doctors feedback on the crew’s daily regimen.
NASA’s website explains:
NASA and The Florida Institute for Human and Machine Cognition (IHMC) of Pensacola, Fla., with the help of engineers from Oceaneering Space Systems of Houston, have jointly developed a robotic exoskeleton called X1. The 57-pound device is a robot that a human could wear over his or her body either to assist or inhibit movement in leg joints.
In the inhibit mode, the robotic device would be used as an in-space exercise machine to supply resistance against leg movement. The same technology could be used in reverse on the ground, potentially helping some individuals walk for the first time.
For those of you, like myself, who have friends and loved ones that do not have the ability to walk, the X1 may be the device that grants them mobility.
“Robotics is playing a key role aboard the International Space Station and will continue to be critical as we move toward human exploration of deep space,” said Michael Gazarik, director of NASA’s Space Technology Program.
What’s extraordinary about space technology and our work with projects like Robonaut are the unexpected possibilities space tech spinoffs may have right here on Earth. It’s exciting to see a NASA-developed technology that might one day help people with serious ambulatory needs begin to walk again, or even walk for the first time. That’s the sort of return on investment NASA is proud to give back to America and the world.
Unfortunately the X1 could be in danger of not being completed because NASA’s funding from the government has been dwindling. In fact, the Obama funding was cut in half and the space program had to cut back and lay off 7,000 employees to keep up with the lack of funding.
This new invention could potentially help disabled people walk again! Clearly great things have come out of NASA and hopefully our government leaders realize this so that NASA regains the funding it needs to continue research and development on projects like the X1. NASA’s X1 could really be the start of something great for those who are paralyzed.
Raphael Iuzzolino is the Sales Associate at Accelerated Buy Sell, Inc. as well as a contributing author to the blog. He helps spread the word about the “Accelerated Group of Companies” that provides tools and services to help manufacturers grow and exit strategies to maximize dollars when they are ready to retire or sell their manufacturing business. Accelerated’s group of companies that provide services to the manufacturing industry includes:
www.AcceleratedBuySell.com – Provides Online Industrial Auction Services, Used Equipment Auctions, Capital Equipment Auctions, Plant Liquidations, Industrial Plant Cleanout Services, Used Machinery Location Services, Certified Machine Tool and Equipment Appraisals, and more.
www.AcceleratedMfgBrokers.com – Specializes in Manufacturing Business Brokerage and Mergers and Acquisitions. We help manufacturers develop exit strategies to maximize retirement dollars, and successful manufacturers expand through acquisition of other manufacturing companies, product lines and customer lists. Manufacturing Companies for sale throughout the United States are listed on this site.
www.AcceleratedRE.com – Provides Industrial Real Estate Brokerage Services, Online Real Estate Auctions, Sealed Bid Real Estate Auctions and complete industrial facility cleanout services.
www.IgniteMfg.com – Provides funding for products made in the USA, and engineering/manufacturing educational needs through Crowd Funding.
www.MfgWebSolutions.com – Provides web development and social media services for manufacturers at under-market rates.
Raphael Iuzzolino is a contributing author to:
blog.AcceleratedBuySell.com - A site that provides the latest manufacturing news, statistics and opinion. It also provides information on how to grow a manufacturing business, and what to do if you are a manufacturing company that needs to close.