World's Smallest Pacemaker Passes Space Test

World's Smallest Pacemaker Passes Space Test

Micra TPS remains functioning after bumpy rocket ride into space.

By Medtronic07.07.17

The world’s smallest pacemaker aced its space test.
Medtronic’s Micra™ Transcatheter Pacing System (TPS) not only survived a bumpy, 13-minute, 73-mile-high rocket ride into Earth’s sub-orbit, but initial interrogation of the device done a few hours after launch showed the device still functioning  the way engineers had designed.
“Just fantastic news,” said senior program manager Wade Demmer, who spent eight years working on Micra TPS for Medtronic.
Micra TPS was among dozens of experiments packed into the nose cone of NASA’s 36-foot long, Terrier-Improved Orion sounding rocket.
The idea to launch and test Micra in space came from 17-year-old Shelbi Klingsporn, a high school student from Scottsbluff, Neb.
Encouraged by science teacher Katie Juarez and English teacher Lesley Billingsley, Shelbi submitted a proposal, complete with diagrams and a written summary, to the Cubes in Space (CIS) project. Cubes in Space is a private, non-profit education program that, in partnership with NASA, encourages students to get involved in science and space. Hundreds of students from around the world submitted ideas—Shelbi’s was among just 80 selected for the flight.
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