25 Years Since Galileo: A Recent Look at NASA Technologies
October 18 marks the 25th anniversary of the 1989 launching of the Galileo spacecraft by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, a mission which focused on the study of the planet Jupiter and its moons. For decades, the operations of NASA have been incredibly innovative and inspirational to inventors of all kinds. The agency is still involved in various programs for scientific research, especially involving Mars… Although a patent has not yet been issued, metamaterials, or artificial materials engineered to have properties that aren’t found in nature, are the focus of U.S. Patent Application No. 20140287904, which is titled Negative Dielectric Constant Material Based on Ion Conducting Materials. The metamaterials involved in the invention are specifically negative index materials which have the unique ability to achieve a negative refractive index, enabling the creation of superlenses with greatly increased optical resolutions. The invention has multiple applications in both the commercial aerospace and military industries, such as cloaking or high-frequency communication systems.