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From Space Back To Earth: NASA Wants You To Spinoff Its Patents

Kennedy Space Center's Mike Lester.

The same technology sending astronauts to space could be used here on Earth.

That’s the message from NASA’s Technology Transfer Program, which today reached out to Florida health care companies and executives. Kennedy Space Center’s Mike Lester said NASA has more than 1,400 patents that companies can commercialize, including more than 40 health care patents.

“Some of our technologies that we develop for space also have applications for Earth,” Lester said. “And sometimes those technologies are better than what is in the marketplace. And so we’re required by law to provide those technologies to commercial business for their use.”

NASA estimates that in the last decade, spinoffs from its patented research have led to 18,000 jobs and $5.1 billion in revenue. But NASA says there aren’t enough Florida companies involved in that, and is reaching out to the private sector.

Lester said companies in some cases, people can begin working with the technologies for free in some cases.

“Evaluation licenses, especially non-exclusive ones, are completely free,” Lester said. “We let you go play with the technology for a year, you can’t sell it or market it, but you can test it to see if it’s truly commercially viable.

Check here for a portal to search through the patents.

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WMFE is a partner with Health News Florida, a statewide collaborative reporting on health care.

Health reporting on WMFE is supported in part by AdventHealth.

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Abe Aboraya

About Abe Aboraya

Health Reporter

Abe Aboraya started writing for newspapers in High School. After graduating from the University of Central Florida in 2007, he spent a year traveling and working as a freelance reporter for the Seattle Times and the Seattle Weekly, and working for local news websites in the San Francisco Bay area. Most recently Abe ... Read Full Bio »

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