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FLUID FLOW TECHNOLOGY THAT MEASURES UP

From 1994 to 1996, NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center conducted a Center Director's Discretionary Fund research effort to apply artificial intelligence technologies to the health management of plant equipment and space propulsion systems. Through this effort, NASA established a business relationship with Quality Monitoring and Control (QMC), of Kingwood, Texas, to provide hardware modeling and artificial intelligence tools. Very detailed and accurate Space Shuttle Main Engine (SSME) analysis and algorithms were jointly created, which identified several missing, critical instrumentation needs for adequately evaluating the engine health status. One of the missing instruments was a liquid oxygen (LOX) flow measurement. This instrument was missing since the original SSME included a LOX turbine flow meter that failed during a ground test, resulting in considerable damage for NASA. New balanced flow meter technology addresses this need with robust, safe, and accurate flow metering hardware.

Posted in: NTB, Spinoff

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PROVIDING A TURN FOR THE BETTER

Engineers are tasked with designing new systems every day to meet changing or unexpected technical requirements. After the tragic explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger on January 28, 1986, NASA engineers embarked on a complete overhaul of many of their long-standing quality systems and procedures. When the official cause of the accident was determined to be an O-ring failure in the right Solid Rocket Booster, NASA's Shuttle Program initiated a thorough redesign of the rocket boosters clevis ends, which are the O-ring's mating surfaces.

Posted in: NTB, Spinoff

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HEARING IN TRUE 3-D

In 1984, researchers from Ames Research Center came together to develop advanced human interfaces for NASA's teleoperations that would come to be known as virtual reality. The basis of the work theorized that if the sensory interfaces met a certain threshold and sufficiently supported each other, then the operator would feel present in the remote/synthetic environment, rather than present in their physical location. Twenty years later, this prolific research continues to pay dividends to society in the form of cutting-edge virtual reality products, such as an interactive audio simulation system.

Posted in: NTB, Spinoff

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CONVERSING WITH COMPUTERS

I/NET, Inc., is making the dream of natural human-computer conversation a practical reality. Through a combination of advanced artificial intelligence research and practical software design, I/NET has taken the complexity out of developing advanced, natural language interfaces. Conversational capabilities like pronoun resolution, anaphora and ellipsis processing, and dialog management that were once available only in the laboratory can now be brought to any application with any speech recognition system using I/NET's conversational engine middleware.

Posted in: NTB, Spinoff

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MANAGING CONTENT IN A MATTER OF MINUTES

NASA software created to help scientists expeditiously search and organize their research documents is now aiding compliance personnel, law enforcement investigators, and the general public in their efforts to search, store, manage, and retrieve documents more efficiently.

Posted in: NTB, Spinoff

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NASA Tech Briefs Free Webinar

Specialty Lubrication in New Product Design Wednesday, September 19, 2007, 2:00 PM EST Lubricants are often the forgotten components in the design of moving elements. Last-minute redesign and changes can be avoided by considering lubricant performance needs during the design phase. High-performance equipment generates more local heat because of the higher speeds and loads in smaller components. Traditional lubricants that may have worked in the past often fail in the next-generation component causing delays in product launch or significant customer dissatisfaction during use. By using premium, high-performance synthetic lubricants, improved performance and extended life can be achieved. Sponsored by DuPont, NASA Tech Briefs presents this FREE webinar, which will: - Review characteristics of true high-temperature/high-performance lubricants. - Describe applications that have benefited from improved lubrication performance. Visit here for more info and to register.

Posted in: Blog

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Innovate and Win!

The 2007 Create the Future Design Contest, presented by SolidWorks Corp. and NASA Tech Briefs, is now open for entries in these categories: Machinery, Equipment, and Component Technology; Consumer Products; Medical; Safety and Security; Transportation; and Sustainable Technologies. The sixth annual Create the Future design contest recognizes outstanding innovations in product design, awarding a Grand Prize of $20,000, and six First Prizes (one from each category) of Hewlett-Packard engineering workstations. Entrants may elect to have their entry posted on the contest Web site, and the 10 most-visited entries will each be awarded $250. All qualified entrants will receive a Create the Future Design Contest T-shirt. The contest is co-sponsored by COMSOL Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co. and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. So, exercise your imagination and submit your innovative design ideas today. All entries must be received by October 15, 2007. Click here for guidelines, tips on winning, and the official entry form.

Posted in: Blog

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