That cordless power drill you gave dad years ago now sits lifeless in storage. Though today it seems insignificant, cordless tools were a crucial invention necessary for space travel. While NASA didn't actually invent the cordless power drill, a partnership with Black and Decker is responsible for many of the cordless tools we have today.
Well aware that outer space didn't come with electrical sockets, NASA joined with Black and Decker, which was already working on cordless technology in the 1950s [source: NASA 360]. Alonzo Decker came up with the idea for cordless tools to help workers installing storm windows in residential homes. While installing storm windows, workmen would plug into power sockets indoors. The process was cumbersome and inconvenient. Decker knew he was on to something. Conveniently, NASA urgently needed the technology in space, and so an alliance was born.
Together they designed the cordless rotary hammer drill for the Apollo 15 moon program. The cordless hammer drill extracted rock samples from the moon for testing on Earth. This early invention led to other cordless tools including the cordless vacuum, drill and shrub trimmer.
Read on to learn what automatic film advancement meant for space travel.