Application Briefs

Magnetostrictive Sensor System Helps High-Performance Car Brake Quickly

The Bugatti Veyron is the world’s fastest street-legal motor vehicle, a high-end passenger car that can reach speeds of more than 200 miles per hour. These high speeds require extra braking power, which comes from raising an aerodynamic rear wing and generating additional braking forces. The Veyron can decelerate from 230 mph to 0 in only 7.5 seconds, largely due to the extra down force achieved with the rear wing, which is raised within 0.4 seconds to a 55° angle.

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Creating Motion Control and Drive Electronics With an FPGA-based System

Complex machines in semiconductor manufacturing often have tough performance requirements for motion control. When traditional PLCor PC-based motion controllers fail to meet these requirements, machine builders turn to custom board development — a time-consuming and expensive process. Recent advances in embedded technologies have made it possible to use FPGA-based COTS platforms to not only meet those requirements, but also to get to market faster by using graphical system design.

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Power Complex Protects NASA Test Equipment

Centralized Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) Lee Technologies Fairfax, VA 703-968-0300 NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Bay St. Louis, MS, is NASA’s primary site for rocket propulsion testing. It is also home to the Applied Research and Technology Project Office (ARTPO), which supplies project management to support NASA’s science and technology goals. Recently, Stennis awarded Lee Technologies a contract to construct a centralized uninterruptible power supply (UPS) and emergency generator. Under the terms of the contract, Lee Technologies will partner with Z Corporation in Burlington, MA, to construct the power complex at Stennis.

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Diving Equipment Helps Expedition Team Uncover Microbial Adaptation to Harsh Environments

CODE Rebreathers and SSV Lifejackets Aqua Lung Vista, CA 760- 597-5000 The High Lakes Project (HLP) is funded by a grant from the NASA Astrobiology Institute to the SETI/NAI team. The HLP is an endeavor involving a team of expert scientists, mountainclimbers, and divers that will explore the ecosystems of three high-altitude-summit lakes in Bolivia and Chile. The physical and environmental conditions around and in these lakes — characterized by a thin atmosphere, temperature swings, and intense ultraviolet radiation — are uniquely analogous to ancient Martian lakes about 2.7 billion years ago. Learning about how microbial organisms adapt to such harsh environments is a critical step in preparing for life on Mars. The HLP also aims to understand how rapid climate change affects life and habitats, which is relevant to Martian exploration and to Earth’s current evolution.

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InGaAs SWIR Imagers Optimize Semiconductor Inspection

As the volume of consumer electronics increases, semiconductor fabrication plants are manufacturing larger and larger wafers to handle the demand (e.g., 300 mm substrates). The escalating value of these larger wafers is driving the industry to employ more advanced imaging technologies for quality control. Inspecting the raw material substrate for flaws before processing and detecting defects during processing is critical to keeping costs down. New and improved inspection techniques save the semiconductor manufacturing industry hundreds of millions of dollars each year.

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

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Encapsulated Video “Brick” Bolsters Video Surveillance Along Boarder

Increasingly dependent on continuous video monitoring and recording, even today’s more sophisticated security surveillance systems are often plagued by reliability problems. In some ways, more complex video systems are susceptible to signal and other dependability problems simply because they are multifaceted. Systems integrators may know what cameras and recorders to use in a given situation, but they also need to consider how subcomponents could play a critical role under certain conditions. A noisy switch or incompatible distribution amplifier (DA) can compromise the integrity of a video security system yet go undiagnosed or even undetected until the horse is already out of the barn.

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Multi-Bit-Rate Switcher Is Part of High-Definition Upgrade at NASA

HANABI HVS-3800HS Multi-Bit Rate Switcher FOR-A Waltham, MA 714-867-3311 www.for-a.com NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Greenbelt, MD, manages the Hubble Space Telescope that has, since its launch in 1990, recorded more than 700,000 images in its quest to explore the solar system. Recently, NASA announced plans for a fifth servicing mission to the Hubble in which the FOR-A HANABI switcher was used in a live press conference to produce and record the news in high-definition (HD). The images were then converted for distribution to the public via NASA-TV. “Given that the Hubble is so important, we wanted to be able to announce this in HD for historical purposes,” said Patrick Kennedy, GSFC’s TV production manager.

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