Special Coverage

Distributed Propulsion Concepts and Superparamagnetic Energy Harvesting Hummingbird Engine
Wet Active Chevron Nozzle for Controllable Jet Noise Reduction
Magnetic Relief Valve
Locking Mechanism for a Flexible Composite Hinge
Active Aircraft Pylon Noise Control System
Unmanned Aerial Systems Traffic Management
Method of Bonding Dissimilar Materials
Sonar Inspection Robot System

Quickly Approximating the Distance Between Two Objects

A method of quickly approximating the distance between two objects (one smaller, regarded as a point; the other larger and complexly shaped) has been devised for use in computationally simulating motions of the objects for the purpose of planning the motions to prevent collisions. The method is needed because computer-based-graphics techniques that have been used heretofore to make such estimates entail amounts of computation that are excessively large for purposes of the simulations.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Sciences


Cryogenic Pupil Alignment Test Architecture for Aberrated Pupil Images

A document describes cryogenic test architecture for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) integrated science instrument module (ISIM). The ISIM element primarily consists of a mechanical metering structure, three science instruments, and a fine guidance sensor. One of the critical optomechanical alignments is the co-registration of the optical telescope element (OTE) exit pupil with the entrance pupils of the ISIM instruments. The test architecture has been developed to verify that the ISIM element will be properly aligned with the nominal OTE exit pupil when the two elements come together.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Physical Sciences


Thermal Transport Model for Heat Sink Design

A document discusses the development of a finite element model for describing thermal transport through microcalorimeter arrays in order to assist in heat-sinking design. A fabricated multiabsorber transition edge sensor (PoST) was designed in order to reduce device wiring density by a factor of four.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Information Sciences


Wireless Solutions Improve Communications and Productivity in Manufacturing Facilities

While automotive, aerospace, and high-tech equipment manufacturers are early adopters of wireless networks, the overall manufacturing industry has been slow in adoption.

Posted in: Articles


Software Aids Design of Ares V Composite Shroud Structure

NASA’s Ares V space launch vehicle makes significant use of composites, and during flight, the shroud of the Ares V will separate into four petals to release the Lunar Lander. In the design of the structure, the aerodynamic pressure on the shroud is resolved into internally distributed forces. A combination of two software packages — HyperSizer structural sizing software and Abaqus FEA (finite element analysis) software from SIMULIA (Providence, RI) — was used to model and simulate this process.

Posted in: Application Briefs


Battery Will Provide Backup Power for Space Shuttles

International Battery is building a battery prototype for NASA that will provide backup power in support of the space shuttle program. NASA is interested in the company’s largeformat, high-energy-density prismatic cells that provide advanced energy storage, as well as their Battery Management System (BMS). The BMS is specifically designed for large-format cells and provides increased safety through individual cell monitoring and continuous cell balancing. The entire system is being deployed as an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) to maintain backup power for critical ground operations.

Posted in: Application Briefs


Smart and Intelligent Sensors

Rocket engine testing is the primary mission for Stennis Space Center. Test stand facilities include the B-1/B-2 complex built for the Apollo Program, which is now used to test the RS-68 engine. A number of smaller test stands are available for testing components and lower thrust rocket engines. A-3 is a new test stand under construction that will have the capability to simulate high-altitude conditions. For each test article, the customer expects to receive highquality measurements to support their engine design, validation, and certification requirements. Making these measurements requires hundreds or thousands of sensors.

Posted in: NASA Tech Needs


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