Santosh Prabhu is talking about the evolution, ongoing development, iterations and innovations of the life-saving cardiovascular devices he's responsible for leading at Abbott and, as he does, the mind wanders to thinking about the evolution, ongoing development and iterations of the man himself. Santosh Prabhu 1.0 is not on the line right now. That guy's work was on its way to outer space. 'I wanted to be a rocket scientist and work for NASA,' Prabhu said. Abbott's divisional vice president of product development for the Structural Heart business certainly had the chops for it after more than a decade of studying aerospace and mechanical engineering for his undergraduate, masters and PhD degrees. That was then. Santosh Prabhu 2.0 has spent more than two decades traveling to the inner-most spaces of the heart. 'I was trying to find new areas where I could apply my skills. I came across cardiovascular medical devices — namely cardiovascular stents — where they were working with new materials and computational techniques that have been used in aerospace applications for a long time,' Prabhu said. He knew the ways composite materials and metallic alloys such as cobalt chromium and nitinol behaved under aerodynamic loading conditions in air and space. Now he was applying his knowledge to understanding how the alloys performed in the body. That transition was one small step for a man. But the work he and his team have led are giant leaps in the treatment of the hearts of mankind. 'It's motivating because the work we're doing is actually having a positive impact on the lives of patients all over the world,' Prabhu said. Motivating. And personal. Young Santosh Prabhu suffered a devastating loss that set the stage for the devotion of his life's work. 'At the age of 7, I lost my dad to a heart attack,' he said. 'Some of the very technology that I work on, had it been available many years ago, would have saved his life. I thought that was my calling.'