Special Coverage


Fast Classification Method for Multivariate Mixtures of Spectroscopic Responses

Method uses a large database composed of correlated predictors. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California In many fields of spectroscopy, classification of the measured multivariate response is not always a straightforward process. Accurate classification is limited by many factors that are highly dependent upon the spectroscopy method being utilized. In all cases, however, the classification process is complicated by the complexity of the multivariate response, the quality and size of the database being utilized, and the ever present, clouding contaminants of noise and undesired background. A new classification scheme addresses these complications with a very fast, simple, and easily implemented algorithm that allows one to easily and quite accurately identify individual features of spectroscopic mixtures. The method is applied to Raman spectroscopy with the use of the RRUFF database for classification of mineralogical mixtures acquired using a time-gated Raman spectrometer.

Posted in: Articles, Briefs, TSP, Electronics & Computers


Feature Database

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California The primary function of the Feature Database (FDB) is to contain information about all the ground features seen so far in a sequence of aerial images. This information is organized so that features can be efficiently located and tracked into later images. As each new image is processed, the database grows to include more images and more features. Feature tracking is a basic component of a number of general-purpose computer vision algorithms, with wide applicability in aeronautical and space activities such as terrain modeling, mapping, GPS-denied navigation, and geo-registration. The Feature Database extends feature tracking capabilities, and should enhance its use in these kinds of applications.

Posted in: Articles, Briefs, TSP, Electronics & Computers


DRAT: A Distributed Release Audit Tool

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California DRAT software overcomes limitations inherent in the Apache Release Audit Tool (RAT), and also brings code auditing and open-source license analysis into the realm of Big Data by using scalable, open-source Apache technologies. Distributed RAT (DRAT) leverages Apache Tika to automatically detect and classify files in source code repositories, and determines what in the code is a binary file, what is source code, what are notes that need skipping, etc.

Posted in: Articles, Briefs, Electronics & Computers


Design of High-Brightness, Fiber-Coupled Diode Laser Modules

In the past decade, diode lasers have made great strides in both power and reliability. The performance improvements have enabled new applications, particularly in areas where optical brightness is a key performance metric. The fiber-coupled diode pumping of fiber lasers is a critical technology in commercial, industrial and defense applications. Materials processing, once the singular province of fiber lasers, can now be addressed in some respects by diode laser beams directly delivered by optical fiber.

Posted in: Articles, Features, Fiber Optics, Lasers & Laser Systems, Photonics


SPIE Photonics West 2015 Preview

The SPIE Photonics West 2015 technical conference and exhibition, taking place February 7-12 at The Moscone Center in San Francisco, offers attendees the opportunity to learn about the latest technological developments in lasers, photonics, optics, optoelectronics, biophotonics, biomedical optics, 3D printing and more. Incorporating BiOS, the world’s largest biomedical optics conference, the event will offer its anticipated 20,000 attendees the opportunity to access roughly 4700 technical papers and view the products and services of more than 1250 exhibitors over the course of a week (http://spie.org/photonics-west.xml).

Posted in: Articles, Features, Fiber Optics, Lasers & Laser Systems, Optical Components, Optics, Photonics


Fabricating Custom Components from Stock Optics

Two quantities are perennially in short supply on engineering projects: time and money. When it comes to producing custom optical components in less time, for less money, one feasible approach is to modify off-the-shelf components to meet customers’ unique requirements. This tactic is particularly valuable in the prototyping stage or for one-of-a-kind instruments, when a full production run would be unjustifiably expensive and take an unreasonably long time.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Articles, Applications, Optical Components, Photonics


Active Layer Optimization in Ultra-Thin, Surface-Parallel, Deformable Mirrors

This method enables low-cost, lightweight, active mirrors with a large dynamic range and improved actuation characteristics. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California A design methodology was developed that optimizes the performance of active mirrors. Patterns of parameterized ellipsoidal actuators are overlaid onto the mirror, and then numerically optimized to improve performance of the mirror in optical modes that are typically difficult to correct, while also improving performance in other optical modes.

Posted in: Articles, Briefs, Tech Briefs, Optics, Photonics


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