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Inflatable

— Space

NASA awards contract to Bigelow Aerospace for inflatable ISS module

By - January 13, 2013 4 Pictures
NASA has announced that it has awarded a US$17.8 million contract to Bigelow Aerospace to provide the International Space Station with an inflatable module. Details of the award will be discussed by NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver and Bigelow Aerospace President Robert Bigelow at a press conference on January 16 at the Bigelow Aerospace facilities in North Las Vegas. However, based on previous talks, it’s likely that the module in question could be the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (BEAM). Read More

Mpowerd launches inflatable solar lantern

New York City-based Mpowerd introduced the Luci solar-powered inflatable lantern earlier this month. The lantern folds like an accordion and shines with the force of 10 LED bulbs. Its integrated solar panels also means you should never have the hassle of switching out batteries. Read More
— Digital Cameras

AirTracks replaces metal video sliders with a light, inflatable track

By - October 22, 2012 8 Pictures
An important part of any serious videographer's gear is a quality slider. It allows them to get smooth tracking shots, without having to set up railway-like tracks on the ground. Most sliders – such as the mobislyder, GlideTrack, Rhino Slider and RigWheels system – are made from rigid components that can be awkward to carry. AirTracks is designed to combat this issue by offering the same features as other sliders, but in a lightweight, inflatable package. Read More
— Architecture

Trampoline Bridge concept is in-Seine

By - October 17, 2012 4 Pictures
There are currently 37 bridges spanning the River Seine in Paris, but there must surely be room for one more; one that's rather different than the rest, that is perhaps inflatable and comprising three huge trampolines. Such a bridge may not be practical, but it would be fun, and no doubt become something of a tourist attraction in a city already blessed with an abundance of tourist attractions. Such a bridge exists, at least in the form of a concept design by Paris-based architectural studio Atelier Zündel Cristea. Read More
— Marine

Super slides for superyachts

By - August 20, 2012 13 Pictures
How many times have you been aboard some billionaire’s superyacht only to be disappointed because there wasn’t a giant, inflatable slide hanging off the stern? Yes, we’ve all been there. Now, Freestyle Slides comes to the aid of the embarrassed super rich with its line of bespoke Freestyle Cruiser PVC slides that give a hundred million dollar yacht that little something extra – in this case, it’s an inflatable, 45-degree water slide with a one-story drop. Read More
— Outdoors

Kelty AirPitch inflatable tents pitch in less than a minute

By - August 15, 2012 4 Pictures
Most tents still use solid metal, fiberglass and composite poles, but a few manufacturers, including Nemo, have experimented with inflatable poles to limit packed size and make set-up easier. Now Colorado-based Kelty can be added to their number with its AirPitch tents that leave the irritation of bendy, shock-corded poles in the past. The tents use inflatable poles, which Kelty claims guarantee quick, easy set-up and tear-down. Less time hacking together your shelter means more time spent with your family ... or knocking back a cold one while enjoying the views. Read More
— Space

NASA tests IRVE-3 inflatable heat shield in hypersonic flight

By - July 23, 2012 4 Pictures
Legendary science fiction author Sir Arthur C. Clarke (1917-2008) scored another hit in the prediction department on Monday, July 23, 2012 when NASA tested an inflatable heat shield that he foresaw back in the 1980s. The test of the Inflatable Re-entry Vehicle Experiment (IRVE-3) was launched by rocket into a suborbital trajectory from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, VA. The unmanned vehicle reached velocities of up to 7,600 mph (12,231 kph), yet was protected from atmospheric heating by the mushroom-shaped shield. Read More
— Automotive

Mercedes-Benz to introduce inflatable Beltbag seat-belt

By - July 22, 2012 1 Picture
We first saw Mercedes-Benz’s Beltbag in the company’s gadget-laden ESF2009 Experimental Safety Vehicle. Now the German automaker has announced the inflatable seat-belt strap is set to go into production and debut in an as yet unnamed luxury-class model. Mercedes is following in the footsteps of Ford, which introduced the first production inflatable seat-belts in the 2011 Explorer and now includes the technology in a number of models. Read More
— Space

NASA to test IRVE-3 inflatable reentry system

By - June 17, 2012 13 Pictures
Your spacecraft is falling from the skies at an initial speed of Mach 25. Your reentry heat shield, that has to survive a 7,800 degrees Celsius (14,072° F) plasma shock, is a finely tuned hi-tech amalgam of refractory metals and carbides and reinforced carbon-carbon ablation materials. Care to replace your mighty heat shield with a balloon? Not likely! But that is exactly what NASA is considering. Read More
— Health and Wellbeing

Inflatable deep pressure vest gives you a hug, could help Autism sufferers

By - June 11, 2012 4 Pictures
Autism sufferers can often experience high levels of anxiety caused by sensory overload. While some would-be solutions focus on removing this sensory stimulation and distraction (like the Study Nook) others aim at dealing with the stress caused. The Squease Vest is an inflatable vest which, it's claimed, can help to alleviate anxiety through deep body pressure. Read More
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