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Calibration Software for Use With Jurassicprok

The Jurassicprok Interferometric Calibration Software (also called “Calibration Processor” or simply “CP”) estimates the calibration parameters of an airborne synthetic- aperture-radar (SAR) system, the raw measurement data of which are processed by the Jurassicprok software described in the preceding article. Calibration parameters estimated by CP include time delays, baseline offsets, phase screens, and radiometric offsets. CP examines raw radar-pulse data, single-look complex image data, and digital elevation map data. For each type of data, CP compares the actual values with values expected on the basis of ground-truth data. CP then converts the differences between the actual and expected values into updates for the calibration parameters in an interferometric calibration file (ICF) and a radiometric calibration file (RCF) for the particular SAR system. The updated ICF and RCF are used as inputs to both Jurassicprok and to the companion Motion Measurement Processor software (described in the following article) for use in generating calibrated digital elevation maps.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP

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Software for Generating Strip Maps From SAR Data

Jurassicprok is a computer program that generates strip-map digital elevation models and other data products from raw data acquired by an airborne synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) system. This software can process data from a variety of airborne SAR systems but is designed especially for the GeoSAR system, which is a dual-frequency (P- and X-band), single-pass interferometric SAR system for measuring elevation both at the bare ground surface and top of the vegetation canopy. Jurassicprok is a modified version of software developed previously for airborne-interferometric- SAR applications. The modifications were made to accommodate P-band interferometric processing, remove approximations that are not generally valid, and reduce processor-induced mapping errors to the centimeter level. Major additions and other improvements over the prior software include the following: A new, highly efficient multi-stagemodified wave-domain processing algorithm for accurately motion compensating ultra-wideband data; Adaptive regridding algorithms based on estimated noise and actual measured topography to reduce noise while maintaining spatial resolution; Exact expressions for height determination from interferogram data; Fully calibrated volumetric correlation data based on rigorous removal of geometric and signal-to-noise decorrelation terms; Strip range-Doppler image output in user-specified Doppler coordinates; An improved phase-unwrapping and absolute-phase-determination algorithm; A more flexible user interface with many additional processing options; Increased interferogram filtering options; and Ability to use disk space instead of random- access memory for some processing steps.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP

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Open-Source Software for Modeling of Nanoelectronic Devices

The Nanoelectronic Modeling 3-D (NEMO 3-D) computer program has been upgraded to open-source status through elimination of license-restricted components. The present version functions equivalently to the version reported in “Software for Numerical Modeling of Nanoelectronic Devices” (NPO-30520), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 27, No. 11 (November 2003), page 37. To recapitulate: NEMO 3-D performs numerical modeling of the electronic transport and structural properties of a semiconductor device that has overall dimensions of the order of tens of nanometers. The underlying mathematical model represents the quantum-mechanical behavior of the device resolved to the atomistic level of granularity. NEMO 3-D solves the applicable quantum matrix equation on a Beowulf- class cluster computer by use of a parallel-processing matrix·vector multiplication algorithm coupled to a Lanczos and/or Rayleigh-Ritz algorithm that solves for eigenvalues. A prior upgrade of NEMO 3-D incorporated a capability for a strain treatment, parameterized for bulk material properties of GaAs and InAs, for two tight-binding submodels. NEMO 3-D has been demonstrated in atomistic analyses of effects of disorder in alloys and, in particular, in bulk InxGa1-xAs and in In0.6Ga0.4As quantum dots.

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Prioritizing Scientific Data for Transmission

A software system has been developed for prioritizing newly acquired geological data onboard a planetary rover. The system has been designed to enable efficient use of limited communication resources by transmitting the data likely to have the most scientific value. This software operates onboard a rover by analyzing collected data, identifying potential scientific targets, and then using that information to prioritize data for transmission to Earth. Currently, the system is focused on the analysis of acquired images, although the general techniques are applicable to a wide range of data modalities. Image prioritization is performed using two main steps. In the first step, the software detects features of interest from each image. In its current application, the system is focused on visual properties of rocks. Thus, rocks are located in each image and rock properties, such as shape, texture, and albedo, are extracted from the identified rocks. In the second step, the features extracted from a group of images are used to prioritize the images using three different methods: (1) identification of key target signature (finding specific rock features the scientist has identified as important), (2) novelty detection (finding rocks we haven't seen before), and (3) representative rock sampling (finding the most average sample of each rock type). These methods use techniques such as K-means unsupervised clustering and a discrimination-based kernel classifier to rank images based on their interest level.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP

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Software and Algorithms for Biomedical Image Data Processing and Visualization

PlaqTrak automatically assesses plaque deposits on teeth. A new software equipped with novel image processing algorithms and graphical-user-interface (GUI) tools has been designed for automated analysis and processing of large amounts of biomedical image data. The software, called PlaqTrak, has been specifically used for analysis of plaque on teeth of patients. New algorithms have been developed and implemented to segment teeth of interest from surrounding gum, and a real-time image-based morphing procedure is used to automatically overlay a grid onto each segmented tooth. Pattern recognition methods are used to classify plaque from surrounding gum and enamel, while ignoring glare effects due to the reflection of camera light and ambient light from enamel regions. The PlaqTrak system integrates these components into a single software suite with an easy-to-use GUI (see Figure 1) that allows users to do an end-to-end run of a patient's record, including tooth segmentation of all teeth, grid morphing of each segmented tooth, and plaque classification of each tooth image.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP

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Using a Quadtree Algorithm To Assess Line of Sight

A matched pair of computer algorithms determines whether line of sight (LOS) is obstructed by terrain. These algorithms were originally designed for use in conjunction with combat-simulation software in military training exercises, but could also be used for such commercial purposes as evaluating lines of sight for antennas or determining what can be seen from a “room with a view.” The quadtree preparation algorithm operates on an array of digital elevation data and only needs to be run once for a terrain region, which can be quite large. Relatively little computation time is needed, as each elevation value is considered only one and one-third times. The LOS assessment algorithm uses that quadtree to answer LOS queries. To determine whether LOS is obstructed, a piecewise-planar (or higher-order) terrain skin is computationally draped over the digital elevation data. Adjustments are made to compensate for curvature of the Earth and for refraction of the LOS by the atmosphere. Average computing time appears to be proportional to the number of queries times the logarithm of the number of elevation data points. Accuracy is as high as is possible for the available elevation data, and symmetric results are assured. In the simulation, the LOS query program runs as a separate process, thereby making more random-access memory available for other computations.

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Optics Program Modified for Multithreaded Parallel Computing

A powerful high-performance computer program for simulating and analyzing adaptive and controlled optical systems has been developed by modifying the serial version of the Modeling and Analysis for Controlled Optical Systems (MACOS) program to impart capabilities for multithreaded parallel processing on computing systems ranging from supercomputers down to Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP) personal computers. The modifications included the incorporation of OpenMP, a portable and widely supported application interface software, that can be used to explicitly add multithreaded parallelism to an application program under a shared-memory programming model. OpenMP was applied to parallelize raytracing calculations, one of the major computing components in MACOS. Multithreading is also used in the diffraction propagation of light in MACOS based on p-threads [POSIX Thread, (where “POSIX” signifies a portable operating system for UNIX)]. In tests of the parallelized version of MACOS, the speedup in ray-tracing calculations was found to be linear, or proportional to the number of processors, while the speedup in diffraction calculations ranged from 50 to 60 percent, depending on the type and number of processors. The parallelized version of MACOS is portable, and, to the user, its interface is basically the same as that of the original serial version of MACOS.

Posted in: Photonics, Software, Briefs, TSP

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