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Editor's Choice: January 2016

A miniature, low-mass vehicle is driven by a piezoelectric stack that generates ultrasonic vibrations that are transmitted through the vehicle walls. This eliminates the need to use gears or bearings, and avoids shafts or cabling through the vehicle wall. The transferred power can be used to activate sensors, and the motors are also selfbraking. The vehicle wheels or legs can be driven through the vehicle wall without perforating the structure, which is critical in harsh environments. Find out more HERE.

Posted in: UpFront

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NASA Tech Briefs Turns 40!

Join the party as we celebrate our 40th birthday this year with a special contest! How have you benefited from reading NASA Tech Briefs? Has the magazine helped you with a product design, a product introduction, a technology advancement, saved you time or money, or even advanced your career? Here’s a chance for you to tell us your story.

Posted in: UpFront

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Supercomputers Help NASA Understand Booster Separation

NASA’s new heavy-lift launch vehicle, the Space Launch System (SLS), will carry three times the payload of the space shuttle, requiring innovative rocket design. The SLS configuration consists of a center core stage with four RS-25 engines and two solid rocket boosters (SRBs) that separate from the core as fuel is exhausted soon after liftoff.

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Editor's Choice: December 2015

A Fluid Preservation System (FPS) was developed to address NASA’s need for a way to preserve body fluids collected from astronauts during flight. Sample processing is done within the system container, and the samples are hermetically sealed in a small, convenient package. Blood sample collection has significant commercial demand in areas such as cancer research, and for certain assays and bio-indicators. This application also extends to veterinary analysis and widespread monitoring of livestock, as well as use by first responders during natural disasters. Find out more HERE.

Posted in: Articles, UpFront

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A Robotic Titan to Build Rocket Parts

A titan resides at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. One of the largest composites manufacturing robots created in America, it will help NASA build the biggest lightweight composite parts ever made for space vehicles. The robot will build structures larger than 26 feet in diameter, and is mounted on a 40-foot-long track.

Posted in: Articles, UpFront

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Vest Warns Construction and Rescue Workers

Working at a construction site is loud, dirty, and often dangerous. Virginia Tech researchers have combined small radio sensors that construction workers can wear on or inside vests with connected vehicle technology that allows cars to “talk” to one another, roadside infrastructure, and personal electronics such as mobile phones.

Posted in: Articles, UpFront

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Editor's Choice: November 2015

A safety system for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) monitors crucial components and transmits system health information to a human operator, who can then trigger onboard emergency maneuvers. When operating close to the ground, this system lets the operator take over control of the vehicle entirely. Find out more HERE.

Posted in: UpFront

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