July 2016

News : Lighting
Graphene-based TEs for flexible, efficient OLEDs

The arrival of a thin, lightweight computer that even rolls up like a piece of paper will not be in the far distant future. Flexible organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), built upon a plastic substrate, have received greater attention lately for their use in next-generation displays that can be...

Who's Who : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Dr. Patrick Fink, Chief Technologist, Wireless Communication Systems Branch, Johnson Space Center, Houston TX

Dr. Patrick Fink leads technology development of radio frequency identification (RFID) systems. The RFID technology will support NASA's efforts to track its various inventories on the International Space Station, from personal supplies...

Electric Mesh Device “Hugs” Heart, Improving Cardiac Function

A research team led by investigators at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Seoul National University has developed a new electric mesh device that can be wrapped around the heart to deliver electrical impulses and improve cardiac function in experimental models of...

Eye-Tracking System Uses Ordinary Cellphone Camera

Researchers at MIT and the University of Georgia developed software that can turn any smartphone into an eye-tracking device. The eye tracker uses machine learning, a technique in which computers learn to perform tasks by looking for patterns in large sets of training examples. The training set...

Tool Improves Imaging of Brain Activity

Researchers from UNC-Chapel Hill and NC State University developed a new technology that will allow neuroscientists to capture images of the brain almost 10 times larger than previously possible – helping them better understand the behavior of neurons in the brain.

Dual-Function Aircraft De-Icer Also Prevents Freezing

Rice University scientists have advanced their graphene-based de-icer to serve a dual purpose. The new material still melts ice from wings and wires when conditions get too cold, but if the air is above 7 F, ice won’t form at all. The tough film that forms when the de-icer is sprayed on a...

Researchers Crash Drones to Expose Design Flaws

Sales of drones are soaring. But new research by a Johns Hopkins computer security team has raised concerns about how easily hackers could cause these robotic devices to ignore their human controllers and land or, more drastically, crash. The team discovered three different ways to send rogue...

NASA Works with Airline to Improve Pilot Training and Cockpit Displays

Through an agreement between NASA and American Airlines, engineers and scientists at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA, will work to improve flight training, cockpit displays, and other flight deck operations. They will have the chance to fly as observers in the...

News : Aerospace

Sturdy, lightweight carbon foam has many structural and insulating applications in aerospace engineering, energy storage, and temperature maintenance. Researchers have developed a strong, lightweight, environmentally friendly and low-cost method to produce carbon foam by using super-toasted bread.

News : RF & Microwave Electronics
New Radar Measures Flow Fields for More Intelligent Wind Farms

Texas Tech University scientists have brought the wind power industry one step closer to its potential with the creation of a system to measure wind flow and control turbine-to-turbine interaction for maximum power generation.

News : Test & Measurement
Gas Sensor Monitors Pollution from Power Plants and Roads 

A research team from Adelphi University in New developed a new device that can detect ultra-low concentrations of gases like nitrogen dioxide accurately and nearly instantaneously. The device works even when experiencing small vibrations, which is important if the instrument is deployed...

News : Medical
Wristband Sensor Predicts and Prevents Asthma Attacks

Researchers have developed an integrated, wearable system that monitors a user’s environment, heart rate, and other physical attributes with the goal of predicting and preventing asthma attacks. The system, called the Health and Environmental Tracker (HET), is composed of a suite of new...

News : Energy
Scientists Simulate Bacteria-Powered 'Windfarm'

A team of scientists from Oxford University has shown how the natural movement of bacteria could be harnessed to assemble and power microscopic "windfarms."

Question of the Week
Will security concerns prevent widespread adoption of wearables and IoT devices?

This week's Question: In the paper "Friend or Foe?: Your Wearable Devices Reveal Your Personal PIN" scientists from Binghamton University and the Stevens Institute of Technology combined data from embedded sensors in wearable technologies, such as smartwatches and...

Question of the Week
Should armed robots be used by police?

This week's Question: The Dallas Police Department used a bomb-disposal robot armed with a brick of C-4 explosives to kill the gunman who had shot and killed five Dallas police officers. The use of armed robots by police is worrisome to those who fear they could be used on American streets for crowd...

Question of the Week
Will drone delivery be practical?

This week's Question: On July 11th, the convenience store chain 7-Eleven partnered with drone startup Flirtey to make the first commercial delivery – a chicken sandwich, donuts, coffee, candy, and Slurpees – to a private residence in Reno, Nevada. Many companies, like Amazon and Google, are exploring the use...

News : Medical
Researchers Develop Self-Healing, Shape-Changing Smart Material

Washington State University researchers have created a multi-functional smart material that changes shape when subjected to heat or light; the material then assembles and disassembles itself.

News : Electronics & Computers
Coding and Computers Could Help Detect Explosives

A modern twist on an old technology could soon help detect rogue methane leaks, hidden explosives and much more. A Duke University team is using software to dramatically improve the performance of chemical-sniffing mass spectrometers.

News : Data Acquisition
Engineers Use Cyborg Insects as Biorobotic Sensing Machines

A team of engineers from Washington University in St. Louis is looking to capitalize on the sense of smell in locusts to create new biorobotic sensing systems that could be used in homeland security applications.

News : Defense
Researchers Improve Decontamination Criteria for Combat-Vehicle Coatings

When it comes to protecting warfighters from exposure to chemical agents that have contaminated combat vehicles, determining how much agent gets absorbed into the material matters. That's what researchers at the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC)...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Hermetic Seal Leak Detection Apparatus with Variable Size Test Chamber

NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center has developed a unique apparatus ideal for use in nondestructive testing (NDT) of hermetic seals of containers or instrumentation. The device is capable of detecting both large and small leaks and can be calibrated to characterize the...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Extreme Low Frequency Acoustic Measurement System

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a system to detect and locate atmospheric clear air turbulence (CAT) by means of a ground-based infrasonic array to serve as an early warning system for aircraft. This system could augment existing systems such as pilot reports (PIREPs), airborne...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Low-Temperature Radiometer

Many present and future NASA missions require high-performance, large-scale cryogenic systems, such as the sunshields and cold instruments for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). Testing these systems is problematic because of both the size and the low heat loads allowed. The heat loads can be greatly influenced by...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Lightweight Internal Device to Measure Tension in Hollow-Braided Cordage

The suspension system of parachutes is typically made from ropes (referred to as cordage). Measuring loads in the suspension system cordage has thus far proven very challenging because of the dynamic nature of the parachute. The suspension lines must be deployed along with...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Improved Method to Quantify Leak Rates

One existing method to quantify the gas loss from a closed system is the mass point leak rate method. This traditional empirical method is capable of quantifying the loss of a known type of gas from a volume of known size. Using this method, measurement devices quantify the gas pressure and temperature...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Flight Test System for Accurately Predicting Flutter

Traditional methods of flight flutter testing analyze system parameters such as damping levels that vary with flight conditions to monitor aircraft stability. In the past, the actual flight envelope developed for aircraft operation was essentially determined only by flight testing. The edges...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
TestEVAL Software to Assist in Mechanical Testing

Typically, mechanical test data has been reviewed and processed using a combination of Excel, PDF Viewer, MATLAB, and other tools. TestEVAL provides a central tool for all these tools, and enhances their capability. Having been developed in Python, it is expendable and portable. It uses no...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Technique to Measure Degradation of Submillimeter-Wave Spectrometer Response to Local Oscillator Phase Noise

High-resolution submillimeter-wave spectroscopy is based on the heterodyne principle, where the incident signal is down-converted to a low intermediate frequency (IF) by nonlinear mixing with a local oscillator (LO) signal. The IF...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Polymer Nanofiber-Based Reversible Nano-Switch/Sensor Schottky Diode (nanoSSSD) Device

NASA’s Glenn Research Center has developed a groundbreaking new microsensor that detects toxic gases and explosives in a variety of environments. Most devices can perform only a unidirectional sensing task, lacking a switching feature that would allow the...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Method of Fault Detection and Rerouting

NASA seeks partners interested in the commercial application of the In Situ Wire Damage Detection and Rerouting System (ISWDDRS). NASA’s Kennedy Space Center is soliciting licensees for this innovative technology. The ISWDDRS consists of a miniaturized inline connector containing self-monitoring...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Metal Oxide Vertical Graphene Hybrid Supercapacitors

NASA has developed a novel hybrid supercapacitor system utilizing vertical graphene as an electrode material grown directly on collector metals using a plasma enhanced chemical vapor de - position. Supercapacitors are an alternative to batteries for energy storage, offering high power density...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Reconfigurable Drive Current System

NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) has developed compact, reconfigurable electronic devices to drive and control avionics instruments. Typical avionics systems function through centralized power distribution units (PDUs), which have complex, expensive, and time-consuming design, development, test,...

Briefs : Aerospace
System and Method for Aiding Pilot Preview, Rehearsal, Review, and Real-Time Visual Acquisition of Flight Mission Progress

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a synthetic 3D visualization flight display that presents flight data information in an intuitive way using 3D computer graphic capabilities. The flight crew can preview and...

Briefs : Aerospace
System, Apparatus, and Method for Pedal Control

Innovators at NASA’s Johnson Space Center have developed a novel footpedal-operated system and device to control movement of an object in three-dimensional (3D) space. The system enables operators to control movement of spacecraft, aircraft, and watercraft using only foot pedals. This design...

Briefs : Aerospace
RapidScat Flight Software

The legacy SeaWinds scatterometer radar needed to be interfaced to the International Space Station (ISS) without any modifications. It had been designed to fly on the Adeos II spacecraft. An interface to translate between ISS protocols and the existing radar interface was needed both for commanding and for science data...

Briefs : Aerospace
Achieving a Realistic Model of Flight Dynamics and Aeroelasticity of Flexible Aircraft

Researchers at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center have developed a method that allows for the translation of frequency-domain aerodynamics from commercial code (e.g., ZAERO™ or NASTRAN®) to a time-domain formulation that can be easily understood by...

Briefs : Aerospace
AutoNav: Navigation Flight Software on a Smartphone

Today’s mobile computing platforms (phones and tablets) contain considerable computing power and are instrumented similar to spacecraft. They have cameras, accelerometers, gyros, magnetometers, GPS, and multiple radios for communication. It was postulated that a modern commercial smartphone...

Briefs : Energy
Method and Circuit for In-Situ Health Monitoring of Solar Cells in Space

NASA’s Glenn Research Center has developed a method and apparatus for in-situ health monitoring of solar cells. The innovation is a novel approach to solar cell monitoring, as it is radiation- hard, consumes few system resources, and uses commercially available...

Briefs : Energy
Foldable and Deployable Power Collection System

NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center is developing a lightweight space-based solar power array with a high power-to-stowed-volume and weight ratio. The system provides power to small satellites and CubeSats that are power starved, operating on extremely limited power because of the size...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Solid-State Ultracapacitor

NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center has developed a solid-state ultracapacitor utilizing a novel nanocomposite dielectric material. The material’s design is based on the internal barrier layer capacitance (IBLC) concept, and it uses novel dielectric and metallic conductive ink formulations.

Briefs : Energy
Double-acting Extremely Light Thermo-Acoustic (DELTA) Converter

Power generation from an external or internal heat source using thermal energy conversion technologies such as solid-state thermionics and thermoelectrics or dynamic conversion with Otto, Stirling, Brayton, or Rankine technologies is fundamentally limited in maximum specific power...

Briefs : Energy
Chassis Short Mitigation and Characterization Technique for the Multi-Mission Radioisotope Thermoelectric Generator

The radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) is a flight-proven, capable source of power that reliably converts heat into electricity. NASA and the Department of Energy (DoE) have developed a new generation of such power systems...

Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
Dust Tolerant Connectors

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center has developed a novel ruggedized housing for an electrical or fluid umbilical connector that prevents intrusion of dust, sand, dirt, mud, and moisture during field use under harsh conditions. The technology consists of a pair of hand-sized protective umbilical interface housings, each...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Systems, Methods, and Apparatus of a Low-Conductance Silicon Micro-Leak for Mass Spectrometer Inlet

Mass spectrometers on atmospheric entry probes require a method for introducing gas from high-pressure ambient regions to the vacuum of the mass spectrometer interior.

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
In-Situ Load System for Calibrating and Validating Aerodynamic Properties of Scaled Aircraft in Ground-Based Aerospace Testing Applications

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed three techniques and systems to calibrate and validate wind-tunnel force balances and other multi-component force transducers. The first is the Single Vector...

Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
Release of a Stuck Solar Array or Antenna

Satellite launches experience approximately one deployment failure every two years. These failures include a solar array or antenna that fails to deploy because it is stuck due to a mechanism failure, or is snagged by a cable or thermal blanket. Knowledge of the exact circumstances of the deployable...

Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
High-Heat-Flux-Capable Boundary Layer Vortex Generator and Boundary Layer Transition Device

Afixed geometry device has been developed to promote boundary layer transition and generation of streamwise vorticity, and is capable of withstanding entry heating environments for the Space Shuttle Orbiter. Designed to have a total height above the...

Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
GEMINI Stability Control for Reducing Pointing Jitter in CubeSats and Smallsats

Because of the cost-effectiveness of flying smallsats compared to large flagship spacecraft, there is increasing interest in boosting their capabilities for supporting precision science payloads and sophisticated instrumentation. Unfortunately, a major current...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Piezoelectric-Actuated Rotary Ultrasonic Motor

This actuator was developed out of a need for a cryogenic actuator that can operate effectively in spite of the thermal mismatch involved with construction materials that have different expansion coefficients. Also, there is a need for a cryogenic motor that can drive infrared systems and produce...

Briefs : Materials
Method for Exfoliation of Hexagonal Boron Nitride

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a method for exfoliating commercially available hexagonal Boron Nitride (hBN) into nanosheets a few atomic layers thick. Currently, hBN has limited use because it is insoluble with limited dispersibility, despite hBN having excellent thermal...

Briefs : Materials
Sucrose-Treated Carbon Nanotube and Graphene Yarns and Sheets

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a method to consolidate carbon nanotube yarns and woven sheets and graphene sheets via the dehydration of sucrose. The resulting materials are lightweight and high strength. Sucrose is relatively inexpensive and readily available;...

Briefs : Materials
Method for Manufacturing a Thin Film Structural System

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a technology that uses commercially available additive print manufacturing to add various levels of structural hierarchy to thin-film surfaces. The approach adds very little mass to thin films, but provides substantial performance enhancements,...

Briefs : Materials
Integrated Ceramic Matrix Composite-Carbon/Carbon Structures for Large Rocket Engine Nozzles and Nozzle Extensions

Low-cost access to space demands durable, cost-effective, efficient, and low-weight propulsion systems. Key components include boost and upper stage rocket engine nozzles and extensions. Nozzle material options include ablatives,...

Briefs : Materials
Aromatic Thermosetting coPolyester (ATSP) Composites for High-Temperature and Cryogenic Applications

Advanced composite materials processable by cost-effective manufacturing play an important role in developing lightweight structures for future space and planetary exploration missions. With the growing demand for improved performance in the...

Briefs : Materials
Ultralow-Temperature-Operable Solid Propellant Binder

A unique binder was developed that exhibits a glass transition temperature of –100 °C, which is more than 50 °C lower than that of traditional HTPB (hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene) and CTPB (carboxyl-terminated polybutadiene) binders. This innovation would be a solid propellant that...

Briefs : Materials
Carbon Nanotube-Assisted Microwave Healing of Thermally Re-Mendable Composites

A method creates thermally healable composites using carbon nanotubes. Carbon nanotube microwave heating provides a pathway to overcome issues associated with electrical resistive heating networks. Carbon nanotubes embedded within a thermally reversible polymer can be...

Briefs : Materials
Aluminoborosilicate Supplement for Thermal Protection of a Re-entrant Vehicle

The Toughened Uni-piece Fibrous Reinforced Oxidation-Resistant Com posite (TUFROC) allows for much more affordable and sustainable operations involving Space Launch Services and other systems that utilize Earth reentry vehicles. TUFROC has an exposed surface design and...

Briefs : Materials
Processing and Manufacture of Inorganic-Organic Hybrid Syntactic Structural Cryogenic Insulator

Reducing the cost and weight of launch structures is essential to meeting NASA goals for reliable access to space. Currently, separate systems are used for structure and pressure containment, cryogenic insulation, and high-temperature insulation. One...

Briefs : Medical
Computer-Controlled Solid-State Lighting Assembly to Emulate Diurnal Cycle and Improve Circadian Rhythm Control

The Lighting System to Improve Circadian Rhythm Control was designed and built to help regulate the sleep cycles of astronauts working on the International Space Station (ISS) and during long-duration spaceflight. In space, the lack of...

Briefs : Medical
Capillary Driven Microorganism Cultivation Platform for Human Life Support

The high water-to-biomass ratio characteristic of conventional algae cultivation systems requires large energy inputs for pumping and mixing the culture during cultivation, as well as for dewatering and harvesting the resultant biomass. In light of this challenge, the...

Briefs : Medical
Device and Method for Healing Wounds

This technology is a device that uses electrical activity to facilitate the wound healing process while protecting the wound. The bandage is made of an electroactive material (see figure) that is stimulated by the heat of the body and the pressure of cell growth, thus no external power source is required.

Briefs : Medical
Portable Acoustic Holography Systems for Therapeutic Ultrasound Sources

High-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a rapidly developing medical technology that relies on focusing acoustic waves to treat remote tissue sites inside the body without damaging intervening tissues. HIFU can be used to treat benign and malignant tumors, dissolve blood...

Briefs : Medical
Probiotic Therapy for Astronauts, and During Radiation Therapy

A new method to screen the gastrointestinal (GI) tract for radiation sensitivity and radiation-induced gene damage has a number of applications. This technology could be used to assess radiation susceptibility in individuals, such as astronauts, nuclear reactor workers, those...

Briefs : Medical
Methods of Manufacturing Bioactive Gels from Extracellular Matrix Material

Biologic scaffolds composed of extracellular matrix material (ECM) have been used for the repair of a variety of tissues including the lower urinary tract, esophagus, myocardium, and musculotendinous tissues, often leading to tissue-specific constructive remodeling with...

Briefs : Medical
Multi-Parameter Biodosimetric HemoDose Tools

There are continuous concerns about the possibility of nuclear and radiological terrorism or accidents that may result in mass casualties in densely populated areas. To guide medical personnel in their clinical decisions for effective medical management and treatment of exposed individuals, biomarkers...

Briefs : Medical
Soft-Tissue Emulsification Using a Mechanism of Ultrasonic Atomization Inside Gas or Vapor Cavities

The current method of emulsifying tissue employs focused ultrasound with microsecond pulses and cavitation. This invention emulsifies soft tissue using a mechanism of ultrasonic atomization inside gas or vapor cavities.

The method of...

Briefs : Software
System and Method for Transferring Telemetry Data Between a Ground Station and a Control Center

The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) employs many advanced innovations developed at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and in collaboration with other organizations. The applications and benefits for these technologies are advantageous for many...

Briefs : Software
Method and Apparatus for Generating Flight-Optimizing Trajectories

NASA’s Langley Research Center is developing Traffic Aware Strategic Aircrew Requests (TASAR). TASAR features a cockpit automation system that monitors for potential flight trajectory improvements and displays them to the pilot. These wind-optimized flight trajectory changes...

Briefs : Software
Systems, Methods, and Apparatus for Developing and Maintaining Evolving Systems with Software Product Lines

Physical manufacturers have been taking advantage of mass manufacturing ideas for a long time, increasing their productivity, cutting their costs, and ensuring the quality and uniformity of their products. Now, this idea is being applied...

Briefs : Information Technology
Team Electronic Gameplay Combining Different Means of Control

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a technology at the forefront of a new generation of computer and video game environments that trains valuable mental skills, beyond eye-hand coordination, for the personal improvement, not just the diversion, of the user.

Briefs : Information Technology
The K Development Language

Graphical modeling tools have gained popularity within engineering communities, but such languages are known to suffer from lack of semantics and mathematical rigor. By supporting a graphical language with a textual language, and mapping graphical models to the textual language, one ensures proper unique semantics of...

Briefs : Software
Mission Assurance Systems (MAS) Software Used for Engineering Data Sets Across NASA

In the 2006 timeframe NASA’s Constellation Program was looking to address several issues with the way Problem Reporting data had been collected for the Shuttle Program including multiple systems across groups and centers (20+ for Shuttle), inconsistent schemas...

Briefs : Software
MATTC Method for Efficient Prediction of Boundary Layer Transition

The objective of the current innovation was to develop a simple but accurate method for predicting boundary layer transition that would include the growth characteristics of laminar boundary layer disturbances while requiring only the pressure distribution over an aerodynamic...

Briefs : Information Technology
Google Earth Offline Cache Pre-loader v1 (GEOCP)

Google Earth is a geospatial browser produced by Google that allows interactive exploration of the world from data servers on the Internet. An integral part of Google Earth is a built-in “cache” that is stored locally on the user’s computer, and allows the user to later revisit previously...

Briefs : Information Technology
Robustness Analysis and Robust Design of Uncertain Systems

A methodology was developed for the analysis and design of systems subject to parametric uncertainty in which design requirements are specified via hard inequality constraints. Hard constraints are those that must be satisfied for all parameter realizations within a given uncertainty...

Briefs : Software
XDB3 Extension for Equality and Relational Operators

While keyword full-text searches work well for textual data, they do not work well for numeric, date, or other more highly structured information. In particular, Netmark/XDB could retrieve any record where the author contained “Knight” in the text, but could not return only those records...

Briefs : Information Technology
Simulator for a Self-Stabilizing Synchronization Protocol for Arbitrary Digraphs

This work was conducted to create a means of simulating and visualizing the behavior of a self-stabilizing distributed clock synchronization protocol developed at LaRC (Langley Research Center). The protocol has many applications including projects that directly...

Briefs : Software
Testing Encapsulation of Internet, DTN, and LTP Traffic over AOS Space Data Link Protocol

The CCSDS ENCAP Over AOS Over UDP software engine encapsulates live Internet Protocol (IP), DTN Bundle Protocol (BP), or Licklider Transport Protocol (LTP) traffic over a Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS)-compliant Encapsulation Ser vice...

Articles : Aerospace
Products of Tomorrow: July 2016

The technologies NASA develops don’t just blast off into space. They also improve our lives here on Earth. Life-saving search-and-rescue tools, implantable medical devices, advances in commercial aircraft safety, increased accuracy in weather forecasting, and the miniature cameras in our cellphones are just some...

Articles : Robotics, Automation & Control
NASA's Game-Changing Robotics

“Over the years, I’ve asked people, ‘If you had a robot, what would you want it to do for you?’” said Rob Ambrose, principal investigator for NASA’s Game Changing Development Program and chief of the Software, Robotics, and Simulation Division at NASA’s Johnson Space Center. When he asks astronauts,...

Application Briefs : Aerospace
Machined Parts Accelerate Design Tests for NASA
Proto Labs, Inc.
Maple Plain, MN

University student Mel Du was searching for a source to manufacture metal parts for a student research challenge project he was working on for NASA. The project centered on designing, building, and testing...

NASA Spinoff : Materials
Primer Stops Corrosion Without Requiring Rust Removal
Primer Stops Corrosion Without Requiring Rust Removal

NASA Technology

The world is made out of bad concrete and rusty steel, and corrosion is the primary cause of deterioration of our infrastructure,” says Bob Walde, vice...

Primer Stops Corrosion Without Requiring Rust Removal
Products : Aerospace
Product of the Month: July 2016

Tecplot, Bellevue, WA, announced Tecplot 360 EX 2016 Release 2 computational fluid dynamics (CFD) post-processing software with SZL technology. An updated FEA data loader supports data files from Abaqus 6.14, ANSYS 16.2, and CFX 16.2. Another new feature is support for the SpaceMouse 3D navigation device from...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Smartphone Video Guidance Sensor

The need arose to apply the state determination algorithms developed for the Advanced Video Guidance Sensor autonomous rendezvous and docking (AR&D) sensor onto a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS), smartphone-based platform to create a lower-mass, lower-cost sensor for small satellite and CubeSat applications....

Briefs : Imaging
A Smooth-Walled Feedhorn with Sub-30-dB Cross-Polarization Over a 30-Percent Bandwidth

The focus of this research was the design, optimization, and measurement of a monotonically profiled, smooth-walled scalar feedhorn with a diffraction-limited ~14° FWHM (full width at half maximum). It is an easier-to-manufacture, smooth-walled feed that...

Briefs : Imaging
Partially Transparent Circular Mask to Suppress Narrowband Laser Light

The evolved Laser Interferometry Space Antenna (eLISA) is the implementation of the original Laser Interferometry Space Antenna (LISA) concept that will be proposed for the European Space Agency’s (ESA) L.3 Cosmic Visions opportunity. The eLISA observatory uses lasers to...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Large-Area, Polarization-Sensitive Bolometer for Multi-Mode Optics

Measurements of the cosmic micro wave background are a powerful probe of the early universe. Part-per-million fluctuations in the intensity of background trace the initial conditions of matter and energy shortly after the Big Bang, mapping the large-scale structure of spacetime....

Briefs : Imaging
A Novel Orbiting Cloud Imager System for IR/UV/X-Ray Bands

Typically, the cost of a spaceborne imaging system is driven by the size and mass of the primary aperture. Innovative solutions for imagers that are less complex and are lightweight are very desirable. Currently, telescopes such as JWST and ATLAST are very expensive and very complex.

Articles : Photonics/Optics
NASA’s Infrared Sensor Spots Near-Earth Asteroids

The Near-Earth Object Camera (NEOCam) is part of a proposed NASA mission to find potentially hazardous asteroids. In a Q&A with Photonics & Imaging Technology, NEOCam principal investigator Amy Mainzer ex plains how the NEOCam chip, a stamp-sized mega pixel infrared sensor, detects the...

Articles : Photonics/Optics
Using Optical Simulation Tools to Design 3D Printers

High-definition digital projectors based on Texas Instruments’ DLP® technology are widely known for being used in more than 90% of the world’s digital movie theaters. However, DLP chips are being selected increasingly by design engineers for use in industrial applications, including 3D...

Articles : Imaging
Advanced Digital Microscopes Providing Simple Solutions to Common Microscopy Issues

Thanks to a combination of high-quality optics and advanced digital imaging technology, today’s newest digital microscopes provide efficient solutions to a variety of common microscope challenges faced by users of conventional optical and digital microscopes....

Application Briefs : Robotics, Automation & Control
Algorithm Helps Lunar Rover Move Through Clutter

Today’s robots easily execute “pick-and-place” tasks: finding an object in one specified location and bringing it to another. But what if there are obstacles in a robot’s way? And what if the machine is on uncertain terrain, like the surface of the Moon?

Application Briefs : Imaging
Ground Tactical Vision Comes Full-Circle

The “always-true” use case for 360º vision systems is to avoid blind spots. Blind spots are a byproduct of conventional cameras. They have a limited field of view and they only see in the direction that they were pointed at. Point them to a new direction and you miss what happened at the old...

Products : Imaging
Transmission Electron Microscope

JEOL’s (Peabody, MA) most recent addition to its suite of Transmission Electron Microscopes is the versatile JEM-F200, or “F2,” the only advanced analytical, high-throughput 200kV S/TEM in its class to offer a Cold Field Emission Gun and dual Silicon Drift Detectors. The high brightness/narrow energy spread...

Products : Manufacturing & Prototyping
High-Speed Cameras

The EoSens® 25CXP+ and EoSens® 12CXP high-speed cameras from Mikrotron GmbH (Poway, CA) are powered by the OnSemi PYTHON CMOS sensor. Both 80 × 80 × 66 mm models have a global shutter and a photo-sensitivity of 5.8 V/lux*s @ 550nm. A 4-channel CXP-6 CoaXPress® V1.1 interface transmits data at speeds up to 25 Gigabits per...

Products : Imaging
Laser-Based Light Engines

LASOS (Jena, Germany) has announced the commercial release of its MCS Series multi-color, laser-based light engines. The platform offers output power levels to 100 mW and up to six individual wavelengths from 405 to 785 nm. Product configurations include both benchtop, OEM, and 19-inch rack mount designs.

Products : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Hyperspectral Camera

XIMEA (Golden, CO) offers the xiSpec Hyperspectral Multi-Linescan Camera, which includes a line-wise arrangement of 150 HSI bands between 470 and 900 nm. Objects can be moved orthogonally to the horizontal color filters of a mounted camera, e.g., on a conveyor belt. Additionally, the camera can be attached to a UAV.

Products : Imaging
45 W LED Power Supplies

LinkCom Manufacturing (Walnut, CA) has announced a new family of INCORE high-performance constant-current LED power supplies. The first offering in the family is the 45 W DBFN-45 series. The slender, low-profile (372 × 30 × 27 mm; 14.6 × 1.18 × 1.06 in) power supplies are designed for industrial (low-bay) and...

Products : Photonics/Optics
Inspection System

Coherix (Ann Arbor, MI) has announced the Predator3D™, an advanced bead inspection system used to monitor and control the dispensing of structural adhesives and sealants. The Predator3D captures the 3D data, including bead size, shape, volume, and location. Based on defined user criteria, the system then reports failures as...

Products : Photonics/Optics
Industrial Camera

JAI (San Jose, CA/Shanghai, China) has added the GO- 2400-PMCL to its Go Series of industrial cameras. A two-channel Mini Camera Link interface enables its Sony IMX174 CMOS imager to output full-resolution 2.35-megapixel images at up to 165.5 frames per second (in 8-bit continuous mode). The imager features 5.86-micron square...

Products : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Laser Modules for Harsh Environments

To prevent lasers from sustaining damage as a result of their environment, Laser Components (Bedford, NH) places them in housings that can withstand all conditions. Thanks to the IP67 protective class, the FLEXPOINT® HD laser modules not only withstand sandstorms, they can also go into one-meter-deep water...

Products : Photonics/Optics
CMOS Camera

The S-25A80/CXP camera from Adimec Electronic Imaging (Stoneham, MA) uses the ON Semiconductor Python 25k 25 MP CMOS global shutter image sensor. Images of 5120 x 5120 pixels are taken at a maximum of 80 full frames per second (fps). The CoaXPress V1.1 Quad interface (4 x CXP-6) utilizes Adimec’s new 2 Gigapixels/s camera platform....

Products : Photonics/Optics
2D Optical Measuring Device

Titan Tool Supply, Inc. (Buffalo, NY) has introduced a mobile and compact 2D optimal measuring device that provides accurate and precise measurements of workpieces in a matter of seconds. Manufactured in Germany by Schneider Messtechnik, the VCAD Rapid combines high-precision optical measurement technology with...

Products : Imaging
Rapid Alignment Mirror Mounts

The OS-Z range of mirror mounts from Optical Surfaces Ltd. (Surrey, UK) provides ultra-stable, stress-free mounting and rapid alignment of off-axis parabolic, spherical, and flat mirrors as well as wedge back and parallel back mirrors. Constructed in black anodized aluminum, six models of the OS-Z mount provide a...

Products : Photonics/Optics
Laser Polishing

PowerPhotonic (Dalgety Bay, UK) has spent many years developing a laser machining and polishing process to create ultra-high efficiency refractive optics, used in high power collimation and beam shaping applications. This process unique to PowerPhotonic allows it to create beam shaper optics that transform the way in which the...

Dr. Patrick Fink, Chief Technologist, Wireless Communication Systems Branch, Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX

Dr. Patrick Fink leads technology development of radio frequency identification (RFID) systems. The RFID technology will support NASA’s efforts to track its various inventories on the International Space Station, from personal...


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New Developments in Catheter Shaft Components – Part 2