Airbags for Spirit Mars lander used rubber coating

A Massachussetts company supplied the airbags used to protect the Mars landing craft known as Spirit, during its descent to the planet’s surface. Bradford Industries of Lowell Massachussetts specialises in airbags, mostly for the auto industry, but the company also made the bags for NASA’s Spirit lander. They were made from Celanese’ Vectran liquid crystal fibre, coated in silicone and rubber.

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