Application Briefs

Data Acquisition System Monitors Lightning Strikes

Genesis HighSpeed data acquisition system and Perception software HBM Marlboro, MA 508-624-4500 www.hbm.com NASA Kennedy Space Center, based in Cape Canaveral, FL, has one of the highest rates of ground lightning strikes per square kilometer in the United States. In 2009, it was estimated that the NASA Space Shuttle Endeavour launch pad area was struck a minimum of 11 times on the lightning mast and water tower, leading to costly launch delays. A spacecraft is vulnerable to lightning strike damage from the moment it emerges from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) until final launch. During this time, it is important to continuously monitor numerous points to identify any potential induced area lightning effects.

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Sensors Measure Vibroacoustic Shock During Launches

G-Link®, SG-Link®, WSDA®, and SensorCloud® wireless sensor components MicroStrain Williston, VT 802-862-6629 www.microstrain.com MicroStrain provided NASA Kennedy Space Center in Florida with the wireless sensor technology to remotely monitor liftoff acoustics and vibration generated during the launch of both Endeavour and Atlantis space shuttles.

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Fine Laser Cutting Technology

Fine laser cutting is an ideal technology for specialized cutting requirements found in the manufacturing of medical tube tools and components. From surgical instruments used in cutting and biopsy, to needles containing unusual tips and side wall openings, to puzzle chain linkages for flexible endoscopes, laser cutting provides higher precision, quality, and speed than traditionally used cutting techniques. In addition, new laser cutting technologies are now coming to market, including a 5-axis motion package that gives the designer freedom to cut more challenging geometries in one pass.

Posted in: ptb catchall, Applications, Photonics, Application Briefs

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DC Motor Automates Patient Transfer Device

One of the growing problems facing nurses is a reduced staff, and with it the need to care for overweight patients with very little help. This effort has led to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) including back injuries. In fact, 12 percent of nurses leave the profession each year due to back injuries. Those working in nursing homes have an even higher rate of injuries. Until recently, moving a patient was performed manually or with minimal automation.

Posted in: Applications, Motion Control, Application Briefs

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Multi-Layer Films and Tapes Provide Thermal Protection for NASA Spacecraft

Multi-Layer Insulation (MLI) materials Dunmore Corporation Bristol, PA 215-781-8895 www.dunmore.com The final flight of the Space Shuttle Atlantis carried Multi- Layer Insulation (MLI) materials from Dunmore Corp. The MLI materials replace heavier materials such as metals and composites used to shield sensitive space-based systems from cold, debris, and radiation. The cargo bays on Atlantis, as well as the Endeavor and Discovery shuttles, are lined with insulation blankets covered by Dunmore’s thermal protection systems (TPS). The insulation blankets protect the inside of the shuttle from extreme temperature fluctuations when the cargo bay doors are open.

Posted in: Features, Application Briefs

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NASA Uses Emergency Notification System to Communicate With Personnel

The Communicator!® NXT™ emergency notification system Cassidian Communications (an EADS North America company) Temecula, CA 951-719-2100

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Using Aspheric Optics in Complex Lens Designs

Optical design engineers often discuss the use of aspheres to reduce element count, but they seldom put the discussion into real-time practice, often fearing that the more complex fabrication process of the asphere itself overwhelms the advantages that they might gain.

Posted in: Imaging, Application Briefs

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