Special Coverage

Supercomputer Cooling System Uses Refrigerant to Replace Water
Computer Chips Calculate and Store in an Integrated Unit
Electron-to-Photon Communication for Quantum Computing
Mechanoresponsive Healing Polymers
Variable Permeability Magnetometer Systems and Methods for Aerospace Applications
Evaluation Standard for Robotic Research
Small Robot Has Outstanding Vertical Agility
Smart Optical Material Characterization System and Method
Lightweight, Flexible Thermal Protection System for Fire Protection
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On-Demand Urine Analyzer

A lab-on-a-chip was developed that is capable of extracting biochemical indicators from urine samples and generating their surface-enhanced Raman spectra (SERS) so that the indicators can be quantified and identified. The development was motivated by the need to monitor and assess the effects of extended weightlessness, which include space motion sickness and loss of bone and muscle mass. The results may lead to developments of effective exercise programs and drug regimes that would maintain astronaut health.

Posted in: Briefs, MDB, TSP, Briefs, TSP, Imaging, Bio-Medical, Medical, Patient Monitoring, Diagnosis, Fluids and secretions, Human factors, Medical equipment and supplies, Test equipment and instrumentation, Spacecraft

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Advanced Liquid-Cooling Garment Using Highly Thermally Conductive Sheets

This garment provides metabolic heat rejection applicable to surgical cooling vests, combat fatigues, and firefighter and hazmat suits. This design of the liquid-cooling garment for NASA spacesuits allows the suit to remove metabolic heat from the human body more effectively, thereby increasing comfort and performance while reducing system mass. The garment is also more flexible, with fewer restrictions on body motion, and more effectively transfers thermal energy from the crewmember’s body to the external cooling unit. This improves the garment’s performance in terms of the maximum environment temperature in which it can keep a crewmember comfortable.

Posted in: Briefs, MDB, TSP, Briefs, TSP, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Bio-Medical, Medical, Human factors, Thermal management, Spacesuits

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Engineering Devices to Treat Epilepsy

Intelligent implantable epilepsy devices will likely be tuned to individual patients, and may need to predict events rather than merely detect them. Many technologies have been proposed for treating epileptic seizures, with the ultimate goal being implantation of stimulators or drug infusion devices in the brain to abort seizures before clinical onset. Device designs range from “blind” stimulators to “intelligent” devices, which are triggered by detecting or predicting seizure onset. Intelligent implantable epilepsy devices will likely process multiple channels of data, be tuned to individual patients, and may need to predict events rather than merely detect them.

Posted in: Briefs, MDB, TSP, Briefs, TSP, Bio-Medical, Drug Delivery, Implants & Prosthetics, Medical, Diseases, Nervous system, Prostheses and implants, Reaction and response times

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More-Realistic Digital Modeling of a Human Body

A MATLAB computer program has been written to enable improved (relative to an older program) modeling of a human body for purposes of designing space suits and other hardware with which an astronaut must interact. The older program implements a kinematic model based on traditional anthropometric measurements that do provide important volume and surface information. The present program generates a three-dimensional (3D) whole-body model from 3D body-scan data. The program utilizes thin-plate spline theory to reposition the model without need for additional scans.

Posted in: Briefs, MDB, Briefs, Bio-Medical, Medical, Software, CAD, CAM, and CAE, Computer software and hardware, Anatomy, Anthropometrics, Kinematics, Spacesuits

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Taking COTS to the Next Level in Vetronics Subsystems

Embedded vetronics (vehicle electronics) subsystems for rugged deployed ground vehicles have long benefited from the reduced risk, faster time to market, and long lifecycle support offered by COTS board vendors. Recent advances in open standards developments, namely the OpenVPX/VITA 65 specification that defines system-level interoperability profiles for VPX architecture boards and backplanes, promise to take the COTS model from the board to the subsystem level, enabling faster deployment of proven, standards-based fully integrated enclosures.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Application Briefs

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Cooling Embedded Systems What Are The Options?

As the cooling challenges in embedded system applications have multiplied due to increased processing performance, smaller package and system footprints, and the requirement to operate in more rugged environments, new thermal management options and industry standards continue to evolve. Designers of systems for these markets, and especially those in remote or rugged, 24/7 operating environments, have always had to make difficult decisions regarding lifespan, reliability, and cost.

Posted in: Articles, Articles

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The Inner Workings of Solid State Flash: SLC versus MLC

Because all solid state flash products are not created equal and flash storage is finding its way into more and more embedded computing applications, system designers should understand the critical tradeoffs between competing technologies when evaluating flash products. Most commonly, the endurance and reliability required in end-user applications help dictate the appropriate storage technology to use. Two well-known flash storage technologies, Single Level Cell (SLC) and Multi Level Cell (MLC), offer distinct advantages, depending on a user’s needs.

Posted in: Articles, Articles

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