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Kiwi wool could soon be used in NASA spacecrafts

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Section
Audio,
Publish Date
Wednesday, 24 October 2018, 8:52a.m.
A New Zealand developed, wool-based filter designed by Auckland company Lanaco is being evaluated by NASA. Photo / Getty Images

Kiwi ingenuity might be about to be displayed on the world stage or rather, in space.

A New Zealand developed, wool-based filter designed by Auckland company Lanaco is being evaluated by NASA to protect its astronauts in the Orion spacecraft on upcoming exploration missions.

Called the Helix, the filter is being tested for use in Orion's emergency life-support system in the event of on-board fires.

Lanaco CEO Nick Davenport told Mike Hosking wool has an advantage because it's natural.

"Being a natural product people feel comfortable having a natural sustainable product in their environment rather than a synthetic product that may be made from oil or fibre glass or something like that."

He said wool has a number of useful attributes which make it suited to protecting people from poor quality air.

"The emergency breathing equipment on the space craft has to be able to tolerate a high level of heat, a high level of noxious particles being emitted from the flame source and it also has to be able to operate without clogging.'

The filter is already being used in protective equipment in high contaminant situations like construction and mining.

LISTEN ABOVE AS NICK DAVENPORT SPEAKS WITH MIKE HOSKINGĀ 

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