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Rule-Based Analytic Asset Management for Space Exploration Systems (RAMSES)

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) systems have applications in tracking and managing small shipping containers and packages in the commercial supply chain. Stennis Space Center, Mississippi Human space systems, such as the International Space Station (ISS) and future planned missions to the lunar surface and beyond, require the crew’s ability to locate and manage the physical resources that are required for use to achieve mission objectives. However, the large number of assets, ranging from expensive, specialized equipment, to food, water, and medical consumables for the crew is an overwhelming management problem. These assets are stored in numerous containers that are sometimes nested within other containers, frequently removed from one container and placed in another location, consumed, and/or used, and then discarded. Additionally, sometimes the containers themselves are moved. The challenge is to track and manage these assets so that the crew can readily locate items and ground controllers can identify when there is a need to provide sufficient resupply for the mission.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Machinery & Automation, Robotics

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Post-Flight Analysis Statistical Heating (PFlASH)

Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas This software tool automates the statistical analysis of heating indicators for a family of trajectories. It allows for quick and clear relative comparison of the trajectories by concisely and meaningfully reducing an arbitrarily large set of body point heating into single values that are used to rank the trajectories. This software is user friendly, and enables other engineers to easily perform analysis. PFlASH post-processes the XF0002 Dump7 files or QLIST to calculate heating indicators and statistics on the heating indicators. PFlASH automatically generates Matlab.m files to produce presentation-quality plots that are ready to be inserted into briefings or collated into a pdf.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Mathematical/Scientific Software

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Magnetic Sensitivity of a Ka-Band Isolator Measured Using the GRAIL Testbed

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California The magnetic sensitivity of a Ka-band isolator’s output phase is measured at 7 × 10–4 deg/G level. This high degree of precision is enabled by the sensitive phase measuring capabilities of a testbed built to mimic NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) spacecraft. Its ground-based testbed was used to measure the magnetic sensitivity of a flight-spare Ka-band isolator, and the authors found it to be 0.0052 ±0.0007 deg/G along its most sensitive axis. The GRAIL mission was able to incorporate microwave isolators into its instrumentation because the spacecraft orbited the Moon and, thus, did not travel through a permanent magnetic field as it would in a mission around Earth. Understanding this magnetic sensitivity is key to evaluating the impact an isolator would have on data quality for future gravity missions such as GRACE-FO (Gravity Recover and Climate Experiment — Follow On), a scheduled follow-on mission to GRACE, which has been mapping out Earth’s gravity for over a decade.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Measuring Instruments

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Open-Source, Platform-Neutral BLAS Library

This work seeks to create libraries that are truly cross-platform, and support hardware from different manufacturers of different generations. Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland New hybrid computing systems consist of a multicore CPU (central processing unit) and one or more massively parallel accelerator devices, such as GPUs (graphics processing units). Effectively utilizing these systems involves using all of the available computational resources, which may be difficult to program. Computing libraries have long existed to alleviate programmer burden and to provide high-performing and tested implementations for common tasks. Unfortunately, the library space is very fragmented, even in cases where the libraries cover similar functionality. In the accelerated computing space, this is compounded by different libraries and manufacturer-specific products that are used, all of which are incompatible with one another. The work described here seeks to overcome much of this burden, by creating libraries that are truly cross-platform, supporting hardware from different manufacturers, of different generations, and of differing levels of parallelism.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Electronics & Computers

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JPL Unified Methodology Process (JUMP)

This is a unique rapid development framework, complete with checklists, schedules, and supporting procedures. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California JPL Unified Methodology Process (JUMP) is an effort to establish a common frame of reference across OCIO (Office of Chief Information Officer) and EBIS (Enterprise Business Information Services Division). The iterative approach to project management is more powerful and efficient, enables better reviews, and incurs lower overhead costs. JUMP is a tailored version of rational unified process (RUP) and the iterative process. This process is flexible, scalable, and manageable.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Electronics & Computers

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Automated Evaluation Software (AES) Web Application

Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland The Automated Evaluation Software Web application was created using Java Enterprise technologies, which provided capabilities for dynamic report generation and Microsoft output. The Tomcat Application server makes the application robust, fast, and reliable. HTML 4.0 was used to create the user interface, making it compatible with both Internet Explorer and Firefox. The application takes advantage of the Jakarta Struts framework, making a proper Model View Controller design. The Struts framework provides the ability to change the navigation and presentation without changing the underlying data model, and vice versa.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers

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A RESTful Web Service Connector for Phoenix Analysis Server

The Web service connects front-end user interfaces to the back-end analysis executions. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Engineering design models are normally developed using specific modeling tools such as Excel, Matlab, Maple, and Mathematica. It is difficult to connect various models written in different modeling environments and produce results without extensive effort. Phoenix ModelCenter is a commercial tool that can perform this kind of operation on a single desktop computer via a graphical user interface.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Electronics & Computers

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