Application Briefs

Imaging Technology Enables 3D Monitoring for Surveillance and Missile Defense

A new imaging technology can quickly give users accurate three-dimensional depictions of objects being tracked, whether they are incoming missiles or the faces of suspects in a crowd. The technology, being developed by Visidyne of Burlington, MA, has numerous applications beyond missile defense. The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) originally funded the company through a 2003 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II contract.

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Equipment Enables Communications in Hazardous Locations

DICES Subsystem Multiplexer (Sub-MUX)  communications equipment Quintron SystemsSanta Maria, CA 805-928-4343 www.quintron.comNASA is installing Quintron’s Sub-MUX multi-channel communications system at two locations: Stennis Space Center in Mississippi, and Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. The first installation at Stennis will complete the required capacity at the SSC A1 Test Stand, and includes a Sub-MUX chassis and 11 user stations (four hazardous-duty wall-mount units and seven control-room rack units).

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Imaging Sensors Examine Evolution of Solar Activity and Space Weather

e2v CCD203-82 charge-coupled device sensorse2v TechnologiesEssex, United Kingdom+44 (0)1245 493493 www.e2v.comSix Charge-Coupled Device (CCD) imaging sensors have been incorporated in NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) spacecraft, the first of NASA’s Living With a Star (LWS) programs to launch. The LWS programs are designed to study and understand the causes of solar variability and their impact on Earth and near-Earth space. In order to study the Sun on small scales of space and time, and in many wavelengths simultaneously, the SDO has three scientific instruments on board: the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA), the EUV Variability Experiment (EVE), and the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI).

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Control System Safely Moves a Robot During Invasive Neurosurgery

Robotic devices have been used in the medical industry for more than 40 years. Despite the advantages, researchers have faced unique challenges in developing effective, safe robotics applications for medical use. In contrast with industrial applications in which robots operate in work cells where human staff is not permitted to enter, robots in the medical field must operate in direct contact with the patient and medical staff; therefore, the safety requirements are considerably more complex and restrictive than in industrial situations.

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Cockpit Vision System to Improve Pilot Safety

Inertial-Optical Head-Tracking System InterSense Billerica, MA 781-541-6330 www.intersense.comUnder NASA funding, InterSense is developing and testing an inertial-optical head-tracking system for commercial pilots. The company will work with a miniaturized inertial-optical tracker prototype integrated into a Head-Worn Display (HWD). The next phase involves testing and analysis of the system with flight tests in order to assess functionality and performance.

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Vibration Isolators Supplied for James Webb Telescope Testing

Vibration isolators Minus K® Technology Inglewood, CA 310-348-9656 www.minusk.comMinus K Technology was chosen by ITT Space Systems, LLC, a subcontractor to Northrop Grumman Corp., to provide vibration isolators for the ground testing of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) at NASA s Johnson Space Center (Houston, TX). The JWST will be placed in a vacuum chamber at Johnson Space Center, and supported by a set of custom vibration isolators.

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Optimizing the Interoperability of Military Satellite Communications

Satellite communications offer mobility and communications for military operations in remote locations where terrestrial-based connectivity is not available, or is too expensive. Unfortunately, satellite connectivity brings many challenges that can impair network performance in delivering mission-critical information and applications. High-latency transport and application protocol inefficiencies, adverse weather, and interference are just a few of the causes that slow the delivery of applications and limit the amount of traffic that can run over a satellite link. Compounding these problems is interoperability among disparate military networks that can jeopardize mission-critical communications.

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