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Simulating Images of a Rising or Setting Sun

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California This software simulates Sun images observed on the ground and from space with an easy-to-use analytical approach and with high accuracy. It is a simple, analytical approach with the accuracy of a rigorous, multilayer model. The existing analytical approach cannot predict when the image of the Sun is blocked by the surface of the Earth, but the current approach can.

Posted in: Information Sciences, Electronics & Computers, Software, Briefs

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Partition Level Application Test for Orion (PLATO)

Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas For Orion Exploration Flight Test One (EFT-1), the unit-under-test for flight software verification has been chosen as the entire integrated flight software load. At the time of this reporting, the unit test tool, while powerful, operates on very small units, usually classes. This leaves a sizable gap between unit testing and verification. Orion flight software is divided into ARINC 653 partitions, and partition level testing is in this large gap.

Posted in: Information Sciences, Electronics & Computers, Software, Briefs

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Rad-Hard PM Optical Fibers for Space Gyro Application

              Optical fiber gyroscopes for space require a small form (for tight winding), small beat length (for high extinguishing ratio) and radiation hardness. Here we demonstrate an optical fiber specialized for space gyro applications, combining our expertise in optical waveguide design, optical material design and manufacture, optical measurement, and modeling of complex degradation and failure phenomena.

Posted in: Tech Talks

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Accurate Finite Element Simulation of Conductors

Simulation of electromagnetic systems relies on the accurate and efficient representation of electrical conductors and coils. This whitepaper reviews the ways conductors can be represented using the industry leading Opera Simulation Software Suite from Cobham. The methods explored include various bulk approximations useful for multi-turn windings as well as explicit methods to include current redistribution due to proximity, geometry and skin effects.

Posted in: Electronics & Computers, White Papers

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Electronic Noses Detect Chemical Warfare Gases

Researchers at the Polytechnic University of Valencia have developed a prototype electronic "nose" for the detection of chemical warfare gases, mainly nerve gas, such as Sarin, Soman, and Tabun.

Posted in: Electronics & Computers, Electronics, Sensors, Detectors, Data Acquisition, Defense, News

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What Limits Computers From Getting Smaller and More Powerful?

Computers have radically transformed industry, commerce, entertainment, and governance while shrinking to become ubiquitous handheld portals to the world.

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Fundamental Chemistry Could Help Extend Moore's Law

Over the years, computer chips have gotten smaller thanks to advances in materials science and manufacturing technologies. This march of progress, the doubling of transistors on a microprocessor roughly every two years, is called Moore's Law. But there's one component of the chip-making process in need of an overhaul if Moore's law is to continue: the chemical mixture called photoresist. Similar to film used in photography, photoresist, also just called resist, is used to lay down the patterns of ever-shrinking lines and features on a chip.

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