His runners Marathon and long distance races receive a special blanket after the finish. THE “space blanket“, as it is called because of its metallic appearance, has only one goal: to protect them from possible hypothermia.
The “space blankets”, which have become synonymous with the Marathon, were – initially – developed by NASA in 1964.
He was then working as a sales manager for a metallurgical company that made products used in aerospace insulation, and he thought of making his own version of the blanket. At first it faced many problems, the main ones being the cost of the finished product and how unwieldy it was. He came up with a new design using polyester. Later, he used a plastic called polyethylene, which was treated with aluminum on one side.
How Marathon blankets work
The highly reflective insulators they help to avoid sudden changes in the body temperature of the athleteswhile they have also been incorporated into clothing and sleeping bags for outdoor spaces.
In particular, the temperature of the human body increases during the race. Even after the effort is over, marathon runners continue to lose heat. And in case of low temperatures, it decreases even faster, putting them at risk hypothermia.
“Your body is still trying to get rid of the extra heat, even though it’s colder outside,” Dr. Alexis Colvin, orthopedic surgeon specializing in sports medicine.
More than just acting as a layer of insulation, “space blankets” are one radiation barrier. The human body constantly emits low-level radiation. But, more than 90% of the body’s own radiation bounces back to it when it is wrapped in this material.
In 1979, Mr David Deigan, founder of the company Heatsheets, was running in the New York City Marathon and noticed that the organizers were handing out these strange blankets. He picked one up, out of curiosity, to examine it.
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