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NASA Spacecraft Breaks Solar Power Distance Record

NASA's Juno mission to Jupiter broke the record to become humanity's most distant solar-powered emissary when Juno was about 493 million miles from the Sun. Launched in 2011, Juno is the first solar-powered spacecraft designed to operate at such a great distance from the Sun. That's why the surface area of solar panels required to generate adequate power is quite large. The four-ton Juno spacecraft carries three 30-foot-long solar arrays festooned with 18,698 individual solar cells.

Posted in: News

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Design Tips For Using Coatings

When designing parts for coatings, there are some things you’ll want to take into account. Even the most impeccably designed parts sometimes face problems during the coating process. By following a few basic design tips, you can avoid potential issues down the road. Read our white paper to learn more.

Posted in: White Papers, Coatings & Adhesives

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New Vitamin-A Material Reduces Scarring

To prevent scar formation within blood vessels, a team from Northwestern University has created a biodegradable material with built-in vitamin A. The soft elastic material can be used to treat injured vessels or make medical devices, such as stents and prosthetic vascular grafts.

Posted in: News

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Microelectronics Package for Extreme Environments

The MSK Products Division of Anaren, Inc. is pushing the boundaries of hybrid microelectronic packaging. They have designed, built, and tested a high-temperature, co-fired ceramic (HTCC) electronics package for use in oil and gas drilling, operating over two miles underground. This has proved MSK's ability to push the boundaries for developing microelectronics packages to survive in difficult high-temperature environments. This capability is extremely valuable for oil and gas exploration as well as for high-temperature aerospace applications.

Posted in: White Papers, White Papers, Electronics

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Will "Antipodes" take off?

This week's Question: Canadian industrial designer Charles Bombardier has developed an aircraft concept that, in theory, could send passengers from London to New York in 11 minutes. The "Antipode" would have a scramjet engine and wings fitted with rocket boosters, propelling the aircraft to 40,000 feet and enabling the aircraft to reach Mach 5. To bring the concept to reality, engineers are challenged with addressing sonic booms as well as the materials' resistance to high heat. A proposed aerodynamic technique called long penetration mode (LPM), however, would use a nozzle on the aircraft's nose to blow out air and cool down the surface temperature, while also muffling the noise made from breaking the sound barrier. The design is decades away, according to the researchers. What do you think? Will "Antipodes" take off?

Posted in: Question of the Week

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Development of a Multi-User Modem for Space Telecommunications

This technology has applications in the cellphone industry. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Efficient support of planetary surface missions typically requires an orbiting asset that acts as a relay point to/from Earth. Orbital relay passes are normally 5 to 15 minutes in duration over any specific landed site. When multiple landed assets are co-located or near-located in the same coverage circle of a single relay orbiter, their telecom relay support opportunities will overlap. This will be the case with cooperative lander missions, a lander-rover operations pair, distributed intelligent lander missions, and future deployment of multiple equipment components for support of complex sample return or manned operations. In these situations, the capability of simultaneous support to multiple landers is very valuable for mission performance and operations flexibility. This technology work enables simultaneous telecom support to multiple landers (Mars, Titan, Europa), and provides single-radio, multi-mode support to Entry, Descent & Landing (EDL) and emergency operations (e.g., demodulation + Open Loop Recording).

Posted in: Briefs, TSP

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Wire Bonding to Pads in Tilted Planes

This technique can be used in industries where devices need to be made smaller and lighter, such as medical, aerospace, automotive, and military. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Scientific imaging arrays need to have their individual imaging elements arranged in a close-spaced mosaic. The typical single imaging element is a silicon chip mounted on a larger support frame. This excess area of the support frame takes away valuable imaging space from the mosaic. This appears as a grid of black (no data) in the overall mosaic image. Making the support frame smaller makes the amount of lost data smaller, and the imaging elements can be spaced more closely together. Eliminating the support frame altogether brings the imaging elements even closer. This is referred to as four-side buttable.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP

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