Features

Autonomous Vehicles Could Improve Traffic Flow

Autonomous vehicles are getting closer to making their debut on our roads, which is leading researchers to think about how they can assist with traffic flow and fuel consumption. Temple University, with a grant from the National Science Foundation, is researching traffic-flow modeling and how synchronizing autonomous vehicles can enable them to communicate and share information. In order to operate safely, these vehicles have to collect large quantities of data about the environment around them. That data, such as traffic density and flow velocity, could be communicated from one vehicle to another, causing the vehicles to react in a way that alters the flow of traffic.

Posted in: UpFront

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Products of Tomorrow: November 2014

The technologies NASA develops don’t just blast off into space. They also improve our lives here on Earth. Life-saving search-and-rescue tools, implantable medical devices, advances in commercial aircraft safety, increased accuracy in weather forecasting, and the miniature cameras in our cellphones are just some of the examples of NASA-developed technology used in products today.

Posted in: Products, Techs for License, Articles

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Evaluating Electrically Insulating Epoxies

Epoxies are versatile polymer systems that are “go-to materials” for electrical, electronic, and microelectronic systems, especially in applications where outstanding electrical insulation properties are needed. Their wide usage is due to their excellent adhesion to a wide variety of substrates, superb chemical and heat resistance, and long-term durability. They are serviceable for bonding, sealing, coating, and encapsulating/potting applications.

Posted in: Articles

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Integrated Data Acquisition and Measurement Hardware Tests New Launch System

NI PXI DMM and NI PXI multifunction DAQ module National Instruments Austin, TX 1-800-531-5066 www.ni.com Larger than the Saturn V rocket and designed to eventually take crewed missions to Mars, the Space Launch System (SLS) will be the most powerful, versatile rocket ever created. Before its maiden launch in 2017, the rocket will go through testing at various facilities throughout the US, with one of the most impressive being the large structural tests scheduled for 2015 at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama.

Posted in: Data Acquisition, Application Briefs

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Cabin Pressure Monitors Notify Pilots to Save Lives

Designed for astronauts and pilots, this device could save skydivers and mountain climbers. Typical cruising altitudes for business and commercial aircraft are up to 50,000 feet or more. Occupants could not survive in this environment without pressure inside the aircraft being controlled to maintain oxygen concentrations consistent with those at lower altitudes. A cabin pressure warning system typically lets pilots and crews know when pressure becomes dangerously low, but these can malfunction or be accidentally switched off. The result can be insidious and deadly, as those on the plane become slowly incapacitated by hypoxia — oxygen deprivation — without being aware of it.

Posted in: Articles, Spinoff

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2014 Create the Future Design: Grand Prize Winner

Robotic Building Construction By Contour Crafting Behrokh Khoshnevis University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA Contour Crafting (CC) is a computerized construction method that 3D prints large-scale structures directly from architectural CAD models. Walls are built up by forming their outer surfaces via extrusion of a paste-like material such as concrete, and the use of a robotic trowel to provide a smooth, contoured surface. CC is a very flexible technique, capable of constructing aesthetically pleasing “organic” curvilinear shapes as easily as “boxy” rectilinear shapes; as such, it has attracted strong interest from leading architects.

Posted in: Articles

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2014 Create the Future Design: Aerospace & Defense Category Winner

The Polariton Interferometer — A Novel Inertial Navigation System Frederick Moxley Louisiana State University Baton Rouge, LA Chances are, you have been routed incorrectly by your Global Positioning System (GPS), but many of us would be lost without GPS navigation. GPS technology relies on a combination of signals from a complex satellite and ground station network. This is problematic in aerospace and defense, as GPS signal jamming is prevalent. Other technologies, such as Inertial Navigational Systems (INS), can operate independently from GPS satellites, but rely on GPS satellites to correct measurement errors. These errors are often due to limitations of an interferometer device within the system, known as a gyroscope.

Posted in: Articles

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