Imaging

Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis for Monitoring Hazards (ARIA-MH)

Geodetic imaging capabilities may be brought to a level that will enable NASA scientists and technologists to support local, national, and international hazard response communities. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Space-based geodetic measurement techniques such as Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) and Continuous Global Positioning System (CGPS) are now critical elements in the toolset for monitoring earthquake-generating faults, volcanic eruptions, landslides, glacial ablation, reservoir subsidence, and other natural and man-made hazards. Geodetic imaging’s unique ability to capture surface deformation with high spatial and temporal resolution has revolutionized both earthquake science and volcanology. Continuous monitoring of surface deformation and surface change before, during, and after natural hazards allows for better forecasts, increased situational awareness, and more informed recovery. Combining high-spatial-resolution InSAR products with high-temporal-resolution GPS products, and automating this data preparation and processing across global-scale areas of interest, is an untapped science and monitoring opportunity.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Imaging

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Next-Generation Integrated Camera (NIC)

Design and fabrication of a modern, compact, highly modular, and extreme-environment-capable replacement have been proposed for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) camera. This next-generation camera is based on a CMOS (complementary metal-oxidesemiconductor) imager rather than a CCD (charge-coupled device) imager, and will provide similar image quality to the MER cameras. At the same time, the NIC will enjoy a higher readout speed, operate over a wider temperature range (–135 °C to 125 °C), and cost less to fabricate while seeing a 10× reduction in mass, size, component count, and power consumption of the camera.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Imaging

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Homography Warp Image FPGA Implementation

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California A landing system for Mars matches features seen in descent imagery against a map constructed from orbital imagery. The spacecraft attitude and altitude are known, but lateral position is known only poorly. From attitude and altitude, one can generate a mapping (homography) that allows the descent image to be warped into the orthonormal viewpoint of the map. The homography maps any pixel in the map image to the corresponding pixel in the descent image.

Posted in: Briefs, Imaging

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Improved Hall Thrusters Fed by Solid Phase Propellant

Mg is more abundant than Xe and provides a much higher specific impulse. John H. Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio Hall thrusters normally use Xe propellant, which is expensive and scarce in the solar system. The weight of Xe is such that typical Hall thrusters are limited in specific impulse to approximately 3,000 s. The objective of this program was to improve and demonstrate Mg Hall thruster systems. Mg is abundant in the solar system and has an atomic mass approximately one-fifth that of Xe, which means much higher specific impulse is achieved than with Xe at typical thruster operating conditions (power, voltage).

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Aerospace, Imaging

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Mikrotron Cameras Bring Accuracy, High Performance, and Flexibility to 3D Trajectory Reconstruction

Static two-dimensional images have proven to be of great analytical value, but analysis in more dynamic environments depends upon accurate and continuous imaging of three-dimensional volumes. Fluid motion often presents that type of dynamic environment. For example, turbulent fluid flow through irregular media — such as water flow along a gravel streambed — is almost impossible to represent with a closed-form mathematical model. To study such situations, researchers turn to a technique called 3D particle tracking velocimetry, or 3D-PTV. Mikrotron cameras have proven to be invaluable elements of high-performance 3D-PTV systems.

Posted in: White Papers, Imaging

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Researcher Spotlight: Imaging Software Improves Video Monitoring of Vital Signs

By detecting nearly imperceptible changes in skin color, emerging imaging technologies have been able to extract pulse rate, breathing rate, and other vital signs from a person facing a camera. The videography tools have struggled, however, to compensate for low light conditions, dark skin tones, and movement.

Posted in: Articles, Briefs, Imaging

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High Dynamic Range Imaging (HDRI) Upgrades Inspection Results

HDRI features capture details when the environment, or the objects themselves, are both bright and dark. Designers and operators of automated inspection systems have long been challenged with completing accurate inspections when those tasks required high dynamic range, or when there was a need to capture critical details in objects or environments with high contrast between their brightest and darkest areas.

Posted in: Articles, Briefs, Imaging

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Advanced Holography Offers 3D Fire Measurements

In a propellant fire, large molten aluminum drops form at the burning surface. The drops are lofted into the environment and can severely damage anything that they fall on. Liquid breakup must be understood to predict the scale and intensity of such fires.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Briefs, Imaging

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Cameras Provide Critical Data for NASA Rocket’s First Flight

On March 11, NASA tested the powerful five-segment booster for NASA’s new rocket, the Space Launch System. To provide critical data for the rocket’s first flight, eight cameras with more than 40 different settings — including varying exposures — were set up near the forward portion of the booster. During the two-minute test, the cameras were computer-controlled and cycled through pre-programmed settings.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Briefs, Imaging

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New Method Generates High-Resolution, Moving Holograms in 3D

The 3D effect produced by stereoscopic glasses used to watch movies cannot provide perfect depth cues. Furthermore, it is not possible to move one’s head and observe that objects appear different from different angles — a real-life effect known as motion parallax. Researchers have developed a new way of generating high-resolution, full-color, 3D videos that uses holographic technology. Holograms are considered to be truly 3D, because they allow the viewer to see different perspectives of a reconstructed 3D object from different angles and locations. Holograms are created using lasers, which can produce the complex light interference patterns, including spatial data, required to re-create a complete 3D object. To enhance the resolution of holographic videos, researchers used an array of spatial light modulators (SLMs). SLMs are used to display hologram pixels and create 3D objects by light diffraction. Each SLM can display up to 1.89 billion hologram pixels every second. Source:

Posted in: News, Imaging, Video, Medical

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