Southern Californians got a special treat when the Space Shuttle Endeavor flew over southern Cal landmarks on Friday, September 21. For those who have had the blessing of viewing the incredible creatures that are the Space Shuttle and its 747 host, you can feel the point of technology merging with the spiritual.
It’s impossible to view the Space Shuttle and its 747 host carrier without feeling the presence of all of those engineers and other people that made it possible. In fact, the Space Shuttle has its own patentee and his name is Maxime A. Faget (pronouned “FAhzay”). The United States Patent Office has a special web page (see USPTO link here) on Mr. Faget’s Space Shuttle patent, U.S. Patent No. 3,702,688, which issued way back on November 14, 1972. The ‘688 patent discloses a space vehicle having two reusable stages joined “piggyback fashion”. While Mr. Faget’s invention was valuable, he was to never receive any royalties on it. This was because Mr. Faget patented the invention as an employee of the United States Government, and as such was not entitled to royalties.
During this lifetime (Mr. Faget passed away in 2004) Mr. Faget designed the Mercury and Apollo a spacecraft. He was also inducted into the National Space Hall of Fame and the National Inventors Hall of Fame (for more info see Wikipedia entry on Mr. Faget, here).