Features

A Robotic Titan to Build Rocket Parts

A titan resides at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. One of the largest composites manufacturing robots created in America, it will help NASA build the biggest lightweight composite parts ever made for space vehicles. The robot will build structures larger than 26 feet in diameter, and is mounted on a 40-foot-long track.

Posted in: Articles, UpFront

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Vest Warns Construction and Rescue Workers

Working at a construction site is loud, dirty, and often dangerous. Virginia Tech researchers have combined small radio sensors that construction workers can wear on or inside vests with connected vehicle technology that allows cars to “talk” to one another, roadside infrastructure, and personal electronics such as mobile phones.

Posted in: Articles, UpFront

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High-Speed ‘Electron Camera’ Captures Motion — One Quadrillionth of a Second at a Time

Using a method known as ultrafast electron diffraction (UED), a scientific instrument at the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, located in Menlo Park, CA, reveals nature’s high-speed processes, including phase changes and the motions of electrons and atomic nuclei within molecules.

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Finding the Right Lens: The Factors to Focus On

A sharp image requires more than just a good camera; it also takes the right lens. Several aspects must be considered to make sure that the camera and lens work perfectly together and fit a specific application.

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From 2D to 3D: MARVEL Tool Offers Immersive View Inside the Brain

Thanks to a partnership between a surgeon and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), a new camera system could improve minimally invasive surgeries and provide 3D endoscopic images of the brain.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Articles

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Choosing the Right Potentiometer for Reliable Sensing

In today’s market, there are a variety of available types of position sensing systems. It is important to compare unique features to application needs in order to find the best fit. A potentiometer sensor is an electromechanical component that consists of a resistor where the voltage divider value can be measured at any position by means of sliding contacts between the applied voltage values. Physically, a potentiometer consists, at a minimum, of a resistance track, a collector track, and a sliding contact that can be moved along the resistance track by means of mechanics (Figure 1). The movement of the sliding contact can be rotatory (angle) or translational (path).

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2015 Create the Future Design Contest

The 2015 Create the Future Design Contest — sponsored by COMSOL, Mouser Electronics, and Tech Briefs Media Group (publishers of NASA Tech Briefs) — recognized innovation in product design in seven categories: Aerospace & Defense, Automotive/ Transportation, Consumer Products, Electronics, Machinery/Automation/ Robotics, Medical, and Sustainable Technologies. In this special section, you’ll meet the Grand Prize Winner, as well as the winners and Honorable Mentions in all seven categories, chosen from a record 1,159 new product ideas submitted from across the world. To view all of the entries online, visit www.createthefuturecontest.com.

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