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Readout of DSN Monitor Data

DSN Monitor Data Reader is a computer program that, as its name suggests, reads file of monitor data from the Deep Space Network (DSN). The monitor data constitute information on the status and performance of tracking, telemetry, command, and pointing equipment at the DSN antennas. The DSN has recently introduced a new, more advanced monitor data format, denoted 0158-Mon, that is based on the standard formatted data unit (SFDU) and compressed header data objects (CHDO) of the Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS). The 0158-Mon data format is a very flexible generic format that provides for specific variable-length formats and for self-identifying parameters that obviate the proprietary NASA Communications (NASCOM) bit-packed formats of the past. The monitor data SFDUs are also encapsulated in Standard DSN Blocks and routed to DSN customers for processing at their local mission control centers. This program helps a DSN customer to read and parse the monitor data to assess the statuses of the DSN stations in support of spacecraft flight operations.

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Algorithm for Controlling a Centrifugal Compressor

Algorithm for Controlling a Centrifugal Compressor An algorithm has been developed for controlling a centrifugal compressor that serves as the prime mover in a heatpump system. Experimental studies have shown that the operating conditions for maximum compressor efficiency are close to the boundary beyond which surge occurs. Compressor surge is a destructive condition in which there are instantaneous reversals of flow associated with a high outlet-to-inlet pressure differential. For a given cooling load, the algorithm sets the compressor speed at the lowest possible value while adjusting the inlet guide vane angle and diffuser vane angle to maximize efficiency, subject to an overriding requirement to prevent surge. The onset of surge is detected via the onset of oscillations of the electric current supplied to the compressor motor, associated with surge-induced oscillations of the torque exerted by and on the compressor rotor. The algorithm can be implemented in any of several computer languages.

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PVM Wrapper

PVM Wrapper is a software library that makes it possible for code that utilizes the Parallel Virtual Machine (PVM) software library to run using the message-passing interface (MPI) software library, without needing to rewrite the entire code. PVM and MPI are the two most common software libraries used for applications that involve passing of messages among parallel computers. Since about 1996, MPI has been the de facto standard. Codes written when PVM was popular often feature patterns of and calls. In many cases, these calls are not contiguous and one set of calls may even exist over multiple subroutines. These characteristics make it difficult to obtain equivalent functionality via a single MPI "send" call. Because PVM Wrapper is written to run with MPI 1.2, some PVM functions are not permitted and must be replaced — a task that requires some programming expertise. The "pvm_spawn" and "pvm_parent" function calls are not replaced, but a programmer can use "mpirun" and knowledge of the ranks of parent and child tasks with supplied macroinstructions to enable execution of codes that use "pvm_spawn" and "pvm_parent."

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Simulation of Hyperspectral Images

A software package generates simulated hyperspectral imagery for use in validating algorithms that generate estimates of Earth- surface spectral reflectance from hyperspectral images acquired by airborne and spaceborne instruments. This software is based on a direct simulation Monte Carlo approach for modeling three- dimensional atmospheric radiative transport, as well as reflections from surfaces characterized by spatially inhomogeneous bidirectional reflectance distribution functions. In this approach, “ground truth” is accurately known through input specification of surface and atmospheric properties, and it is practical to consider wide variations of these properties. The software can treat both land and ocean surfaces, as well as the effects of finite clouds with surface shadowing. The spectral/ spatial data cubes computed by use of this software can serve both as a substitute for, and a supplement to, field validation data.

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Software for Analyzing Sequences of Flow-Related Images

Spotlight is a computer program for analysis of sequences of images generated in combustion and fluid physics experiments. Spotlight can perform analysis of a single image in an interactive mode or a sequence of images in an automated fashion. The primary type of analysis is tracking of positions of objects over sequences of frames. Features and objects that are typically tracked include flame fronts, particles, droplets, and fluid interfaces. Spotlight automates the analysis of object parameters, such as centroid position, velocity, acceleration, size, shape, intensity, and color. Images can be processed to enhance them before statistical and measurement operations are performed. An unlimited number of objects can be analyzed simultaneously. Spotlight saves results of analyses in a text file that can be exported to other programs for graphing or further analysis. Spotlight is a graphical-user-interface-based program that at present can be executed on Microsoft Windows and Linux operating systems. A version that runs on Macintosh computers is being considered.

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Windows®-Based Software Models Cyclic Oxidation Behavior

Oxidation of high-temperature aerospace materials is a universal issue for combustion-path components in turbine or rocket engines. In addition to the question of the consumption of material due to growth of protective scale at use temperatures, there is also the question of cyclic effects and spallation of scale on cooldown. The spallation results in the removal of part of the protective oxide in a discontinuous step and thereby opens the way for more rapid oxidation upon reheating. In experiments, cyclic oxidation behavior is most commonly characterized by measuring changes in weight during extended time intervals that include hundreds or thousands of heating and cooling cycles. Weight gains occurring during isothermal scale-growth processes have been well characterized as being parabolic or nearly parabolic functions of time because diffusion controls reaction rates. In contrast, the net weight change in cyclic oxidation is the sum of the effects of the growth and spallation of scale. Typically, the net weight gain in cyclic oxidation is determined only empirically (that is, by measurement), with no unique or straightforward mathematical connection to either the rate of growth or the amount of metal consumed. Thus, there is a need for mathematical modeling to infer spallation mechanisms.

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MPT Prediction of Aircraft Engine Fan Noise

A collection of computer programs has been developed that implements a procedure for predicting multiple- puretone (MPT) noise generated by fan blades of an aircraft engine (e.g., a turbofan engine). MPT noise arises when the fan is operating with supersonic relative tip Mach No. Under this flow condition, there is a strong upstream running shock. The strength and position of this shock are very sensitive to blade geometry variations. For a fan where all the blades are identical, the primary tone observed upstream of the fan will be the blade passing frequency. If there are small variations in geometry between blades, then tones below the blade passing frequency arise — MPTs. Stagger angle differences as small as 0.1° can give rise to significant MPT. It is also noted that MPT noise is more pronounced when the fan is operating in an "unstarted" mode. Computational results using a three-dimensional flow solver to compute the complete annulus flow with non-uniform fans indicate that MPT noise can be estimated in a relatively simple way. Hence, once the effect of a typical geometry variation of one blade in an otherwise uniform blade row is known, the effect of all the blades being different can be quickly computed via superposition. Two computer programs that were developed as part of this work are used in conjunction with a user's computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code to predict MPT spectra for a fan with a specified set of geometric variations: The first program ROTBLD reads the users CFD solution files for a single blade passage via an API (Application Program Interface). There are options to replicate and perturb the geometry with typical variations stagger, camber, thickness, and pitch. The multi-passage CFD solution files are then written in the user's file format using the API. The second program SUPERPOSE requires two input files: the first is the circumferential upstream pressure distribution extracted from the CFD solution on the multi-passage mesh, the second file defines the geometry variations of each blade in a complete fan. Superposition is used to predict the spectra resulting from the geometric variations.

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