Special Coverage

Lightweight Internal Device to Measure Tension in Hollow- Braided Cordage
System, Apparatus, and Method for Pedal Control
Dust Tolerant Connectors
Foldable and Deployable Power Collection System
Iodine-Compatible Hall Effect Thruster
Development of a Novel Electrospinning System with Automated Positioning and Control Software
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Interferometric Quantum-Nondemolition Single-Photon Detectors

These detectors would function independently of frequency. Two interferometric quantum-nondemolition (QND) devices have been proposed: (1) a polarization- independent device and (2) a polarization- preserving device. The prolarization- independent device works on an input state of up to two photons, whereas the polarization- preserving device works on a superposition of vacuum and single-photon states. The overall function of the device would be to probabilistically generate a unique detector output only when its input electromagnetic mode was populated by a single photon, in which case its output mode would also be populated by a single photon.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Physical Sciences

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Ring-Down Spectroscopy for Characterizing a CW Raman Laser

Parameters of operation can be obtained from a single ringdown scan. A relatively simple technique for characterizing an all-resonant intracavity continuous- wave (CW) solid-state Raman laser involves the use of ring-down spectroscopy. As used here, “characterizing” signifies determining such parameters as threshold pump power, Raman gain, conversion efficiency, and quality factors (Q values) of the pump and Stokes cavity modes.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Physical Sciences

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Imaging Spectrometer on a Chip

One integrated circuit would perform the functions of a conventional several-kilogram spectrometer. A proposed visible-light imaging spectrometer on a chip would be based on the concept of a heterostructure comprising multiple layers of silicon-based photodetectors interspersed with long-wavelength-pass optical filters. In a typical application, this heterostructure would be replicated in each pixel of an image-detecting integrated circuit of the active-pixel-sensor type (see figure).

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Semiconductors & ICs

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AIRSAR Web-Based Data Processing

The AIRSAR automated, Web-based data processing and distribution system is an integrated, end-to-end synthetic aperture radar (SAR) processing system. Designed to function under limited resources and rigorous demands, AIRSAR eliminates operational errors and provides for paperless archiving. Also, it provides a yearly tune-up of the processor on flight missions, as well as quality assurance with new radar modes and anomalous data compensation.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Software

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Translator for Optimizing Fluid-Handling Components

A software interface has been devised to facilitate optimization of the shapes of valves, elbows, fittings, and other components used to handle fluids under extreme conditions. This software interface translates data files generated by PLOT3D (a NASA grid-based plotting-and- data-display program) and by computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software into a format in which the files can be read by Sculptor, which is a shape-deformation- and-optimization program. Sculptor enables the user to interactively, smoothly, and arbitrarily deform the surfaces and volumes in two- and three-dimensional CFD models. Sculptor also includes design-optimization algorithms that can be used in conjunction with the arbitrary-shape-deformation components to perform automatic shape optimization. In the optimization process, the output of the CFD software is used as feedback while the optimizer strives to satisfy design criteria that could include, for example, improved values of pressure loss, velocity, flow quality, mass flow, etc.

Posted in: Briefs, Software

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Progressive Failure Analysis of Composite Structures with FEA Software

A combination of analysis programs simulates the stochastic nature of fiber breakage in composites. The Micromechanics Analysis Code with Generalized Method of Cells (MAC/GMC) is core technology in a software suite called ImMAC, developed at NASA’s John Glenn Research Center. An abbreviation for Integrated Multiscale Micromechanics Analysis Code, ImMAC is used in the design and analysis of advanced composite structures.

Posted in: Briefs, Materials

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Pattern Matcher for Trees Constructed From Lists

A software library has been developed that takes a highlevel description of a pattern to be satisfied and applies it to a target. If the two match, it returns success; otherwise, it indicates a failure. The target is semantically a tree that is constructed from elements of terminal and non-terminal nodes represented through lists and symbols. Additionally, functionality is provided for finding the element in a set that satisfies a given pattern and doing a tree search, finding all occurrences of leaf nodes that match a given pattern. This process is valuable because it is a new algorithmic approach that significantly improves the productivity of the programmers and has the potential of making their resulting code more efficient by the introduction of a novel semantic representation language. This software has been used in many applications delivered to NASA and private industry, and the cost savings that have resulted from it are significant.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Software

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