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Reduced-Cost, Chirped Pulse, Fourier Transform Microwave (CP-FTMW) Spectrometer Using Direct Digital Synthesis

This technology could be used to further extend the bandwidth of the instrument. Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland Microwave spectroscopy is an invaluable tool for studying the structure, dynamics, and even the handedness of gas phase species. In particular, the specificity of microwave spectroscopy has been central to the unambiguous identification of the great majority of molecules detected in the interstellar medium. Applications of microwave techniques to problems in physical chemistry and molecular astrophysics have been greatly accelerated by developments in laboratory techniques.

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Signal Digitizer and Cross-Correlation ASIC

The device can correlate outputs from a large number of receivers. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Microwave interferometry provides a means of synthesizing large scanning antennas that are not otherwise physically practical for spaceborne Earth observational systems. By cross-correlating multiple receivers of an array, high-resolution images are synthesized from a sparse — or thinned — array of small antennas rather than relying on extremely large mechanically scanned antennas. For Earth observations from space, high-datarate cross correlators are required that operate with low power and have low mass and complexity. ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) cross-correlators are an enabling technology for space-based interferometry. An ASIC CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) cross-correlator was developed to correlate outputs from a large number of receivers.

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Image Capture to Stereo Correlation in an FPGA

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California In this work, there were four independent vision modules implemented in an FPGA: a CameraLink camera interface, rectification, bilateral filtering, and stereo disparity correlation. Each module was originally designed to run from end to end, not in a pipeline with the other modules. This limited throughput to 3.75 Hz.

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Offset IQ Modulation Technique for Miniaturized Radar Electronics

This innovation can be used in aerospace and commercial weather radar applications. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California Constellations of low-cost, small instruments provide global, distributed, and frequent coverage, enabling unique science observations. However, radars are active instruments with size, mass, and power requirements that are often not compatible with small satellite platforms such as CubeSats or SmallSats.

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Flexible, High-Temperature Polyimide/Urea Aerogels

Cross-linked polyimide/urea aerogels are potential candidates for insulation for clothing, wrap-around items such as hoses, and refrigeration units. John H. Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio Cross-linked silica-based aerogels with polymeric materials, as well as incorporating a flexible linkage into the underlying metal oxide, have been proven to improve strength and resilience over their native, or non-cross-linked, counterparts without adversely affecting porosity and density. In this invention, high-temperature, stable, all-organic polyimide aerogels are prepared as reacting linear polyimide chains with a functional monomer to create branchings that are further room-temperature-cured with multifunctional isocyanate to form a three-dimensional network.

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Multilayer Insulation Systems

Applications exist where cryogenic fluids or liquefied gases are required, and in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), power transmission in big cities, food freezing, and blood banks. John H. Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio Cryogenic fluid management (CFM) is a critical technical area that is needed for the successful development of future space exploration. A key challenge is the storability of LH2, LCH4, and LOX propellants for long durations. The storage tanks must be well insulated to prevent over-pressurization and venting, which lead to unacceptable propellant losses for long-duration missions to Mars and beyond.

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Colorimetric Indicator for Detection of AF-M315E

John F. Kennedy Space Center, Florida An easy and instant method of detection was needed for AF-M315E, a “green” propellant that produces very little vapor. This makes it hard to detect by smell or other active sensors.

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