Tech Briefs

Apparatus for Testing Flat Specimens of Thermal Insulation

An improved design affords flexibility for testing under diverse conditions.

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Quadrupole Ion Mass Spectrometer for Masses of 2 to 50 Da

H2, He, O2, and Ar can be quantitated at low concentrations in N2.

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Miniature Laser Doppler Velocimeter for Measuring Wall Shear

Interference fringes are configured for sensitivity to a velocity gradient.

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Atom Skimmers and Atom Lasers Utilizing Them

Atom skimmers act as conduits and low-pass velocity filters.

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Gears Based on Carbon Nanotubes

Nanometer size gears could be used in molecular-scale machines.

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Dielectric Heaters for Testing Spacecraft Nuclear Reactors

A document proposes the development of radio-frequency- (RF)-driven dielectric heaters for non-nuclear thermal testing of the cores of nuclear-fission reactors for spacecraft.

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Neuropsychological Testing of Astronauts

The Spaceflight Cognitive Assessment Tool for Windows (WinSCAT) is a computer program that administers a battery of five timed neuro-cognitive tests.WinSCAT was developed to give astronauts an objective and automated means of assessing their cognitive functioning during space flight, as compared with their own baseline performances measured during similar prior testing on the ground. WinSCAT is also intended for use by flight surgeons to assess cognitive impairment after exposure of astronauts to such cognitive assaults as head trauma, decompression sickness,and exposure to toxic gas. The tests were selected from among a group of tests, denoted the Automated Neuropsychological Assessment Metrics, that were created by the United States Navy and Army for use in evaluating the cognitive impairment of military personnel who have been subjected to medication or are suspected to have sustained brain injuries.These tests have been validated in a variety of clinical settings and are now in the public domain. The tests are presented in a Microsoft Windows shell that facilitates administration and enables immediate reporting of test scores in numerical and graphical forms.

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