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NASA’s Impact

Teams with Astrobotic install the NASA meatball decal on Astrobotic’s Peregrine lunar lander on Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2023, at the Astrotech Space Operations Facility near the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

NASA contributes to our Nation’s economic competitiveness, fueling growth in American industry and supporting quality, high-paying jobs across the country and internationally. NASA’s economic impact is also seen in the incalculable value of the climate change data provided by our earth-observation satellites and scientists, and shared freely and openly with the world.

Economic Impact

NASA contributes to our Nation’s economic competitiveness, fueling growth in American industry and supporting quality, high-paying jobs across the country. NASA commissioned a study of its national economic impact for FY21, which showed that every U.S. state and the District of Columbia benefited from NASA activities.

NASA Economic Impact Report about Economic Impact
Artist illustration of an unmanned passenger aircraft preparing to land on the vertiport.


NASA’s Artemis campaign will return humans to the lunar surface in the 2020s, create a long-term American presence for years to come, and provide the experience and technology to conduct the first human missions to Mars. While providing scientific returns, geopolitical leadership, and the enduring value of human and robotic space exploration, Artemis offers considerable benefits to American citizens in the prospect of substantial economic growth while driving a workforce of the future.

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NASA astronauts Reid Wiseman, Victor Glover, and Christina Hammock Koch, and Canadian Space Agency astronaut Jeremy Hansen will venture around the Moon on Artemis II, the first crewed mission on NASA’s path to establishing a long-term presence at the Moon for science and exploration through Artemis.
NASA/James Blair


Results achieved by NASA’s aeronautical innovators through the years directly benefit today’s air transportation system, the aviation industry, and the passengers and businesses who rely on those advances in flight every day. As a result, every U.S. commercial aircraft and U.S. air traffic control tower uses NASA-developed technology to improve efficiency and maintain safety.

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Sunset view of the DC-8 parked on the tarmac is getting inspected.
NASA’s DC-8 airborne laboratory is inspected and secured for the night at Cecil Field in Jacksonville, Florida.
NASA/John Gould

Benefits to Humanity

Technologies and missions we develop for human spaceflight have thousands of applications on Earth, boosting the economy, creating new career paths, and advancing everyday technologies all around us.

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The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating system, a field of mirrors with large towers in the background.
The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System is an example of a concentrated solar power plant, which works by having hundreds of reflective panels heating up a central tower.
Cliff Ho/U.S. Department of Energy

Benefits to Science

Recently launched earth science missions are providing unprecedented views of our planet, incredible insight into the health of our oceans and atmosphere, and helping decision-makers improve lives on Earth and safeguard our future. At NASA, we are fortunate that our science and exploration endeavors are inextricably linked and help us discover and innovate for the benefit of humanity. 

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NASA'S Europa Clipper Spacecraft
Artist’s rendering of NASA’s Europa Clipper spacecraft.

International Space Station

The benefits derived from an orbiting laboratory are definitely not limited to space exploration. Examples range from the tangible, such as air purification and water filtration products, to the potential, such as cleaner combustion engines or medical scans that expose patients to lower levels of radiation. Some  benefits arise from new scientific knowledge, while others are derived from the specialized equipment needed to live in and conduct research in space.

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image of astronaut’s hands wearing blue gloves as he works on an experiment inside a glovebox
NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei works inside the Life Science Glovebox (LSG) for the Celestial Immunity study that may provide insights into new vaccines and drugs possibly advancing the commercialization of space.


Science is interconnected; no important question stands alone. The Science Mission Directorate (SMD) is an organization where discoveries in one scientific discipline have a direct route to other areas of study. This flow is something extremely valuable and is rare in the scientific world.

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The James Webb Space Telescope's Engineering Design Unit (EDU) primary mirror segment, coated with gold.
The James Webb Space Telescope’s Engineering Design Unit (EDU) primary mirror segment, coated with gold.
NASA/Drew Noel 

STEM Engagement

NASA makes vital investments in a diverse portfolio of learning opportunities and impactful activities designed to engage as many U.S. students and educators as possible, from kindergarten through graduate school, and through venues from the local library to the university. NASA is uniquely positioned to use its platform of exciting missions and world-class experts to aid in building a skilled STEM workforce with the technical skills needed to carry forward our nation’s vital work in aeronautics and space into the future.

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Four young students with safety glasses on working on an experiment, stem engagement
Students work together on a STEM activity


NASA technology development supports the nation’s innovation economy by creating solutions for space exploration that also generate tangible benefits for life on Earth. NASA is investing in the future of innovation.

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Orpheus submersible robot is being developed by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute and JPL
The Orpheus submersible robot is being developed by Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to explore the deep ocean autonomously.