Application Briefs

NASA Satellite System Ground Segment to Receive Update

Ground system telecommunications architectureGeneral Dynamics C4 SystemsFalls Church, VA480-441-3033 www.gd.com

As part of its seven-year contract with NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland, General Dynamics C4 Systems will focus on making improvements to the ground system and network for NASA’s Tracking Data and Relay Satellite System (TDRSS) constellation.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Information Sciences, Architecture, Telecommunications, Satellites
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LEDs Illuminate Major Bridge in China

Philips Lumileds, San Jose, CA

National Semiconductor, Santa Clara, CA

Abridge lighting project was recently completed in the Chinese city of Harbin, utilizing 1,288 linear floodlights containing 12,000 LUXEON Rebel Green LEDs from Philips Lumileds. The new lighting spanning the 1565-meter Songhuajiang Bridge over the Songhua River was designed and manufactured by Roled Opto Electronics Shanghai Co., Ltd., with LEDs and solution support supplied by Future Lighting Solutions.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Lighting
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All Aboard: Making (Light) Waves

Ocean LED, Nuneaton, UK

Proto Labs, Maple Plain, MN

Richard Sant, Chief Designer at OceanLED, sought a fast and flexible way to make low-cost, high-quality components for the firm’s latest LED lights. He found the answer with Protomold®, the rapid injection molding service from Proto Labs®. Sant worked with the company's Telford, UK location, which has a full manufacturing and sales facility.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Lighting
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Using Ultrafast EMCCD Cameras for Faster DNA Sequencing

To decode the human genome and gain a greater understanding of diseases and their aetiology, advances need to be made in the rate at which the nucleotides that comprise DNA can be sequenced. Approaches to DNA sequencing have moved on considerably since the development of “chain-terminator” methods by Maxam and Gilbert, and by Sanger, in the1970s, and are now evolving beyond the so-called “next generation” toward today’s “third generation” systems.

Posted in: Application Briefs, ptb catchall, Optics, Imaging and visualization, Medical, health, and wellness
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Emergency Notification System Enables Coordinated Communication Across Facilities

The Communicator! NXT emergency notification systemPlantCML, an EADS North America companyFranklin, TN951-719-2423 www.plantcml-eads.com

NASA will use PlantCML’s Communicator! NXT emergency notification system to improve its communication and incident response capabilities.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Communications, Communication protocols, Collaboration and partnering, Disaster and emergency management, Emergency management
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3D Scanning and Processing Software Spots Tile Damage on NASA Shuttle Discovery

Geomagic Studio 3D scanning and processing softwareGeomagic Inc.Research Triangle Park, NC800-691-1839 www.geomagic.com

Ceramic tiles used on the underside of the NASA Discovery shuttle protect the spacecraft and its astronauts from 2300-degree heat as they re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere. When Discovery launches again, Geomagic’s 3D scanning and processing technology will inspect tile conditions and help bring the astronauts back to Earth safely.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Software, Computer software and hardware, Imaging and visualization, Ceramics, Insulation, Inspections, Spacecraft
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Cavitating Pump Dynamics Test Facility for Vehicle System Stability Modeling

A unique cavitating pump dynamics test facility has been developed at Concepts NREC (CN, White River Junction, VT) in cooperation with engineers at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (Huntsville, AL). Its purpose is to determine pump dynamic transfer functions for use in vehicle system stability modeling and analysis. This analysis is vital to ensure that future space launch vehicles do not exhibit self-excited longitudinal oscillations, also known as “Pogo” — so named because the phenomenon vibrates the rocket up and down in a manner similar to bouncing on a pogo stick. The vibrations severely impair the astronauts’ ability to pilot or respond to emergencies and can cause structural failure of the vehicle. NASA first became aware of the disastrous consequences from Pogo during the Gemini-Titan program, and continued to be plagued by it through the Saturn V Moon launch missions.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Test & Measurement, Simulation and modeling, Vibration, Pumps, Test facilities, Launch vehicles
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Moving From System Specification to Software Development

Systems engineering is not about developing electronics, mechanical, or software designs. Systems engineering is really about four things:

Posted in: Application Briefs, Application Briefs
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Testing DC Power Systems

DC is not always DC. When systems are developed to operate on DC power, the DC electrical environment will have noise and may experience other disturbances. This article will explore considerations for generating low frequency disturbances (glitches, sags, surges, spikes) that occur in the 100 microsecond and longer region with bandwidths of 10 kHz or less. In contrast, noise, which is outside of the scope of this article, can be low frequency (like 50/60 Hz hum) but becomes a challenge to generate in range from kHz, to MHz or up to the GHz range.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Application Briefs
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Robotic 3D Scanner Automatically Scans Spacecraft Heat Shields

Adept Viper 850 robot armAdept TechnologyPleasanton, CA925-245-3400 www.adept.com

NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, CA, performs research and technology in aeronautics, spaceflight, and information technology in a 3D vision lab. Using Adept’s robot arm and NASA 3D scanning technology, the vision lab engineers created a large-area 3D scanner to demonstrate the capability of inspecting an entire assembled Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) heat shield and its individual components.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Robotics, Imaging and visualization, Robotics, Insulation, Spacecraft
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