September 22, 2008
NASA and NASCAR
This NASA video segment explores how NASCAR uses NASA technologies to provide safer stock cars for drivers. One example is the problem NASCAR drivers were experiencing with increased levels of carbon monoxide in their cars due to combustion. The NASCAR race team PENSKE designed a catalytic air filter to remove airborne particles supplying fresher air for drivers. Another borrowed technology is the thermal protection system NASA uses for the space shuttle’s re-entry to Earth’s atmosphere. Thermal protection is also used inside race cars to reduce the amount of heat caused by the stock car’s roof and confined space. Full-scale wind tunnel tests are run on stock cars at NASA Langley Research Center.