In 1958, a Congressional Mandate directed the National Aeronautics and Space Agency to ensure for the widest possible dissemination of its research and development results. Thus, the Scientific and Technical Information (STI) Program was born. While this program addressed mostly the timely dissemination of information to NASA, NASA contractors, other government agencies, and the public, technologies were identified that were clearly transferrable and applicable to industry for additional use in the development of commercial products and services. Such considerations spun off the Technology Utilization Program.
The very successful program went through several name changes and is today called the NASA Commercial Technology Program.
The changes that have occurred over time are not only name changes, but program changes that have dramatically altered the philosophy, mission, and goal of the program. It has been identified that a more intense and proactive outreach effort within the program is necessary in order to make the newest and latest technologies available to industry now--at the time the technology is actually developed.
The NASA Commercial Technology Network (NCTN), its interaction with industry at all levels through a large network of organizations and offices, is contributing to the success of small, medium, and large U.S. businesses to remain globally competitive.
At the same time, new products and services derived from the transfer and application of NASA technology benefit everyone.
This publication is one true measurement of NASA's commitment and technique to transfer all applicable technologies through the employment of modern approaches and outreach concepts--the new way of doing business. The benefits (spinoffs) to you, the taxpayer are forever increasing, and improving the quality of life for all humankind. These benefits represent a substantial dividend from the national investment in aerospace research.
We hope that each year this publication continues to demonstrate--through a kaleidoscope of NASA efforts and commercial successes--the variety of projects and programs resulting in transferrable technologies that may be adopted by industry; the mechanism that is in place to facilitate commercialization; and spinoff products and services that have come to our attention in recent times.
Dr. Robert L. Norwood
Director, Commercial Programs Division
National Aeronautics and Space Administration