March 2013

Briefs: Materials
Soft-Bake Purification of SWCNTs Produced by Pulsed Laser Vaporization

The “soft-bake” method is a simple and reliable initial purification step first proposed by researchers at Rice University for single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) produced by high-pressure carbon mon - oxide disproportionation (HiPco). Softbaking consists of annealing...

Briefs: Materials
Improved Wide Operating Temperature Range of Li-Ion Cells

Future NASA missions aimed at exploring the Moon, Mars, and the outer planets require rechargeable batteries that can operate over a wide temperature range (–60 to +60 ºC) to satisfy the requirements of various applications including landers, rovers, penetrators, CEV, CLV, etc. This...

An improved method for culturing immature muscle cells (myoblasts) into a mature skeletal muscle overcomes some of the notable limitations of prior culture methods....

Briefs: Medical
Hand-Based Biometric Analysis

Hand-based biometric analysis systems and techniques provide robust handbased identification and verification. An image of a hand is obtained, which is then segmented into a palm region and separate finger regions. Acquisition of the image is performed without requiring particular orientation or placement...

Briefs: Medical
The Next Generation of Cold Immersion Dry Suit Design Evolution for Hypothermia Prevention

A body at sea is vulnerable to hypothermia, which often leads to loss of life. Hypothermia is caused by the differences between the core body temperature and the surrounding air and seawater temperatures. The greater the differences between the body core...

Briefs: Software
Integrated Lunar Information Architecture for Decision Support Version 3.0 (ILIADS 3.0)

ILIADS 3.0 provides the data management capabilities to access CxP-vetted lunar data sets from the LMMP-provided Data Portal and the LMMP-provided OnMoon lunar data product server. (LMMP stands for Lunar Mapping and Modeling Project.) It also provides...

Briefs: Software
Relay Forward-Link File Management Services (MaROS Phase 2)

This software provides the servicelevel functionality to manage the delivery of files from a lander mission repository to an orbiter mission repository for eventual spacelink relay by the orbiter asset on a specific communications pass. It provides further functions to deliver and track...

News
Researchers Develop Rechargable, Wireless Brain Sensor

A team of neuroengineers based at Brown University has developed a fully implantable and rechargeable wireless brain sensor capable of relaying real-time broadband signals from up to 100 neurons in freely moving subjects. Several copies of the novel low-power device, described in the Journal...

News
Army Researchers Develop Better Remote Sensors

Robert Pazda says his team within the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center is accustomed to having to fit 10 pounds of equipment into a five- pound bag. But his team's latest project – the Global Strike Near Real Time Battle Data Assessment System – could change all that.

News
Army Upgrades Protected Communications Satellite Terminal Training Suite

The Army recently began schoolhouse computer-based and simulated training upgrades for its advanced Secure Mobile Anti-Jam Reliable Tactical – Terminal to evolve the previous legacy training system to accommodate new system enhancements.

When commanders need...

News
Radio Telescopes Can Spot Clandestine Nuclear Tests

In the search for rogue nukes, researchers have discovered an unlikely tool: astronomical radio telescopes. Ohio State University researchers previously demonstrated another unlikely tool, when they showed that South Korean GPS stations detected telltale atmospheric disturbances from North...

Briefs: Software
Two Mechanisms to Avoid Control Conflicts Resulting from Uncoordinated Intent

This software implements a real-time access control protocol that is intended to make all connected users aware of the presence of other connected users, and which of them is currently in control of the system. Here, “in control” means that a single user is...

Briefs: Software
XTCE GOVSAT Tool Suite 1.0

The XTCE GOVSAT software suite contains three tools: validation, search, and reporting. The Extensible Markup Language (XML) Telemetric and Command Exchange (XTCE) GOVSAT Tool Suite is written in Java for manipulating XTCE XML files. XTCE is a Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) and Object Management...

Briefs: Information Technology
Remote Data Exploration with the Interactive Data Language (IDL)

A difficulty for many NASA researchers is that often the data to analyze is located remotely from the scientist and the data is too large to transfer for local analysis. Researchers have developed the Data Access Protocol (DAP) for accessing remote data. Presently one can use DAP...

Briefs: Information Technology
Mixture-Tuned, Clutter Matched Filter for Remote Detection of Subpixel Spectral Signals

Mapping localized spectral features in large images demands sensitive and robust detection algorithms. Two aspects of large images that can harm matched-filter detection performance are addressed simultaneously. First, multimodal backgrounds may thwart the...

Briefs: Information Technology
SequenceL: Automated Parallel Algorithms Derived from CSP-NT Computational Laws

With the introduction of new parallel architectures like the cell and multicore chips from IBM, Intel, AMD, and ARM, as well as the petascale processing available for high-end computing, a larger number of programmers will need to write parallel codes. Adding the...

Briefs: Information Technology
Determining Temperature Differential to Prevent Hardware Cross- Contamination in a Vacuum Chamber

When contamination-sensitive hardware must be tested in a thermal vacuum chamber, cross-contamination from other hardware present in the chamber, or residue from previous tests, becomes a concern. Typical mitigation strategies involve maintaining...

Techs for License
Electronic Device Prevents Hearing Loss

MP3 and MP4 players, along with powerful Class-D headphone amplifiers, can cause hearing loss due to a continuously high sound pressure level (SPL). A Hungarian university has developed an electronic device for preventing hearing loss and simulating ear distortion. The invention is a simple module that...

Techs for License
Palladium Membranes Separate Hydrogen

Compared to conventional technology, palladium membranes offer an increased flow of high-purity hydrogen from a gaseous stream. The membranes are prepared by electroless- deposition plating of Pd (or Pd alloy) on a porous support. The process results in a unique hexagonal structure. High flux translates to...

Tech Needs
Delivery of Antiseptic/Antimicrobial Formulation

A company must deliver a measured amount of antiseptic/ antimicrobial formulation to a specific surface area (between 1 to 3 square feet) and be able to verify visually that the area has been adequately covered and treated. Currently, the antimicrobial formulation is a liquid with a viscosity...

Tech Needs
Reduction of Liquid Temperatures in Metal/Glass Containers

Beverages, when served cold, quickly heat up during consumption. A client seeks material and process technologies that will insulate against heat gain or actively reduce temperature of liquids contained in glass bottles or metal cans. Processes that enable the printing, coating, and...

Developing an effective immersive training tool requires a fine balance of technology capabilities with human factors. Achieving a training goal to build squad leadership skills,...

Today’s micro-imaging analysis software systems provide users with a module-based approach that allows imaging and measurement to be customized to specific workflow...

The P.A. People, specialist contractors within the audio-visual systems sector, were commissioned by the Australian Grand Prix Corporation to deliver a large-scale video wall for...

Products: Imaging
Machine Vision Software

Microscan (Renton, WA) has announced AutoVISION™ 2.0 machine vision software. AutoVISION™ 2.0 provides additional capabilities, including Verification and OCV (Optical Character Verification) Tools to validate...

Products: Imaging
High-Resolution Camera

The Adimec SAPPHIRE S-25A45 camera from Adimec Electronic Imaging (Stoneham, MA) runs up to 45 fps. The SAPPHIRE S-25A45, based on ON Semiconductor’s VITA 25k image sensor, includes two-directional defect pixel...

Products: Imaging
3D Lens

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (Suwon, South Korea) has released the NX300 camera, which features a 45-mm F1.8 2D / 3D lens capable of capturing both stills and 1080p Full HD video in 3D quality. The NX300 includes a 20.3 Megapixel...

Products: Imaging
High-Resolution Cameras

Allied Vision Technologies (Newburyport, MA) has expanded the Prosilica GT camera series with five new high-resolution models from 9.2 to 29 Megapixels. The Prosilica GT4100, featuring a CMV12000 global shutter CMOS...

Products: Imaging
Machine Vision System

KEYENCE Corp. (Elmwood Park, NJ) has introduced the CV-X100 Series. New tools include Auto-Teach Inspection, as well as pointand- click measurement. The Auto-Teach Inspection technology automatically makes detections...

Products: Imaging
Infrared Imaging

To aid identification of thermal breakdown problems, FLIR Systems (Wilsonville, OR) has introduced Multi-Spectral Dynamic Imaging (MSX™), a new patentpending technology for its T450SC / 650SC Series IR cameras. MSX adds...

Products: Imaging
USB 3.0 Camera

The Lt425 and Lt225 from Lumenera Corporation (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) use USB 3.0 technology to deliver images up to 170 fps. Image captures, complemented by 128 MB of onboard memory, can be synchronized using either a...

Products: Imaging
Zoom Lens

The Model 207 Motorised Mini Zoom Lens from Resolve Optics Ltd. (Chesham, UK) focuses on an object at infinity down to an object positioned 35 millimeters in front of the lens. The Model 207 (50 x 34 x 31 mm) is designed for use...

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping
3D Printing: A New Mindset in Product Design
What is 3D Printing?

The terms “3D printing” and “additive manufacturing” refer to processes that automatically build objects layer-by-layer from computer data. The technology is already...

The proposed quantum receiver in this innovation partitions each binary signal interval into two unequal segments: a short “pre-measurement” segment in the beginning of the...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Cobra Fiber-Optic Positioner Upgrade

A prime focus spectrometer (PFS), along with corrective optics, will mount in place of the secondary mirror of the Subaru telescope on Mauna Kea, Hawaii. This will allow simultaneous observations of...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Practical UAV Optical Sensor Bench With Minimal Adjustability

A multiple-pass optical platform eliminates essentially all optical alignment degrees of freedom, save one. A fourpass absorption spectrometer architecture is made rigid by firmly mounting dielectric-coated mirror prisms with no alignment capability to the platform. The laser diode...

Anext-generation low pressure chemical vapor deposition (LPCVD) optical thin film coating process is permitting the manufacture of interference filter coatings, such as single wavelength,...

Application Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Solar Powered UAVs

The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) has been increasing worldwide as demands for agile, rapid, targeted response forces have grown. UAVs provide surveillance and detection capabilities to these smaller forces that...

Products: Photonics/Optics
633nm Red Lasers

The new TopMode laser from TOPTICA Photonics, Inc. (Victor, NY) features proprietary CoHerence-Advanced Regulation Method (CHARM) technology that provides active stabilization of the lasers’ coherence. The TopMode laser...

Products: Photonics/Optics
CMOS Sensor

Truesense Imaging (Rochester, NY) recently announced its first CMOS image sensor specifically targeting applied imaging markets such as machine vision, intelligent transportation systems, and surveillance. With 12 million pixels...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Tactical Fiber Optic Connectors

TE Connectivity (TE) (Harrisburg, PA) announced that their PRO BEAM Jr. expanded-beam tactical fiber optic connectors have achieved qualification to U.S. government standard MIL-DTL-83526/20 and /21. This...

Products: Photonics/Optics
IX3 Breadboard and Filter Wheel Assembly

Prior Scientific (Rockland, MA) announced a new IX3 breadboard and filter wheel assembly for Olympus IX3 inverted microscope systems. Taking full advantage of the open access to the light path on the...

Products: Photonics/Optics
2MP Night Vision IP Camera

TRENDnet (Torrance, CA) recently announced a new 2-Megapixel PoE Day/ Night Dome Internet Camera, model TVIP262PI- A. The tamper resistant TV-IP262PI produces vivid 1280 x 1024 pixel (H.264 compression format)...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Laser Cutting Machine

Coherent, Inc. (Santa Clara, CA) has extended its integrated laser machine tool product portfolio with its new META platform, offering improved performance and greater ease-of-use. The META platform features a unibody...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Photodiode Modules

P-CUBE photodiode modules from Laser Components (Hudson, NH) enable precise measurements in a compact measurement setup. Low-noise, sensitive PIN photodiodes are housed in cubes that have an edge length of only 40mm. To...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Laser Shutters

CVI Melles Griot (Rochester, NY) recently introduced SafeClose laser shutters, based on the proven rotor drive actuation technology modified to close on power down. The proprietary Rotor Drive actuator provides a reliable,...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Krypton Light Source

The ecoVis is a compact, lowvoltage light source (400-2500nm) from Ocean Optics (Dunedin, FL) with built-in cuvette holder that’s suitable for basic lab measurements in teaching labs and other research environments....

Products: Photonics/Optics
Femtosecond Laser

Spectra-Physics (Santa Clara, CA) has introduced Spirit™ 8 W, an industrial-grade high power femtosecond (fs) laser for micromachining applications. The Spirit ultrafast laser provides high average power of >8 W in the...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Laser Light Source Controller

Energetiq Technology (Woburn, MA) has introduced. New smart controller for its laser-driven light sources. Developed for the EQ-99 series of Laser-Driven Light Sources (LDLS™), the EQ-99 Manager enhances...

Products: Photonics/Optics
High Power Optical Fibers

Universal Clad (UniClad) optical fiber from Fiberguide (Stirling, NJ) is designed for integration into fiber based lasers and OEM systems performing high power transmission. The fiber uses a large core-to-clad ratio to reduce stress transfer to its core, maintaining laser beam quality and improving focal ratio...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Dual-Band Raman Analyzer

The Agility™ is the world’s first transportable Raman Analyzer to offer a dual-band option. The Agility™ Series employ a highly efficient Volume Phase Grating (VPG®) as the spectral dispersion element,...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Deep Cooled Vacuum-Based 6mp CCD

Raptor Photonics (Larne, Northern Ireland) has launched the Kingfisher V, a deep cooled vacuum-based CCD using Raptor’s new vacuum technology called PentaVac™. The Kingfisher V has 4.54m × 4.54m pixels...

Application Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Bearing Keeps Spectrometer Stable in Telescope

How do you collect data from stars thousands of light years away while positioning a 300-ton, 10-meter telescope to within a fraction of a human hair? You use a high-tech spectrometer called...

Nearly everyone is familiar with terms like 20/20 vision, but what does that mean when it comes to developing a flight simulator?

Following the Space Shuttle Columbia accident in 2003, the Columbia Accident Investigation Board spent nearly seven months examining the cause of the accident. To this end, investigators...

Bob Reisse coordinates the design and testing of ALHAT (Autonomous Landing Hazard Avoidance Technology) sensors. In December, ALHAT instruments were melded to HUEY...

Podcasts
Bob Reisse, ALHAT Project Manager, Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA.

Bob Reisse coordinates the design and testing of ALHAT (Autonomous Landing Hazard Avoidance Technology) sensors. In December, ALHAT instruments were melded to HUEY helicopters, which used sensors and an integrated computer system to provide guidance and assist pilots....

Podcasts
Bob Reisse, ALHAT Project Manager, Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA.

Bob Reisse coordinates the design and testing of ALHAT (Autonomous Landing Hazard Avoidance Technology) sensors. In December, ALHAT instruments were melded to HUEY helicopters, which used sensors and an integrated computer system to provide guidance and assist pilots....

Solid-state lighting (SSL) is increasingly being introduced into the market and it is expected that many of the light sources currently used for general illumination will...

InfiniLED’s latest MicroLEDs (μLEDs) have produced record optical beam intensity. This new device is capable of producing up to 1mW of light from a single 20μm pixel at 405nm. This is...

Briefs: Lighting
Chips That Can Steer Light

If you want to create a moving light source, you have a few possibilities. One is to mount a light emitter in some kind of mechanical housing — the approach used in, for example, theatrical spotlights, which...

As specifiers and end users began moving away from incandescent lighting three decades ago, they started utilizing high intensity discharge (HID) and compact fluorescent (CFL) lamps and...

A successful LED system design must be able to transfer the active device’s heat efficiently from its own PN junction to the ambient. This path includes the printed circuit board on...

Light emitting diodes (LEDs) are known for their energy efficiency and durability, but the bluish, cold light of current white LEDs has precluded their widespread use for indoor lighting....

Newspapers are filled with stories describing reductions and removal of street lighting in order to reduce municipal costs. Tackling the tricky questions of when...

To provide significant energy savings with optimal lighting quality, JetBlue Airways recently selected MaxLite’s High- Max® High Output compact fluorescent (CFL)...

GE Lighting LED solutions were recently installed in several locations at Marriott International’s headquarters located in Bethesda, Md. The installations have enriched lighting...

Hoffman Performance Lighting has introduced the firstever PAR64 LED Landing Light, a drop-in replacement for existing Q4559 and Q4559X quartz halogen lamps. The ruggedized PAR64 can be...

Products: Lighting
Top View LEDs

Everlight Electronics (Carrollton, TX) has introduced a new highly efficient white mid-power LED series 62-227B (0.4W) and 62-217B (0.5W). These top view LEDs (5630 package) provide high efficacy, high CRI (min. 80 or min. 75),...

Products: Lighting
LED-Driver Reference Designs

Power Integrations (San Jose, CA) recently announced two new reference designs describing high-efficiency, non-isolated, high-power-factor (PF) LED drivers for T8 tubes. The designs feature low component count...

Products: Lighting
LED Chains

Universal’s (Nashville, TN) new family of Signa® LED chains makes it simple to design signage with high lumens, consistent color, superior reliability, and an installer-friendly module fastening system. Offering high-efficiency...

Products: Lighting
RGB Pixel Control Lighting

EnvironmentalLights.com (San Diego, CA) recently launched a new family of individually addressable RGB LED pixel lighting called Pixel- Pro LED lighting that combines the ability to produce millions of colors with...

Products: Lighting
LED Drivers with Triac Dimming

Aimtec (Vaudreuil-Dorion, Canada) recently introduced its AMEPR30D-5070AZ-220 AC/DC LED driver with triac dimming. Available in constant output currents ranging from 0.2 to 2.0A, the AMEPR10D-AZ (10 watt),...

Products: Lighting
LED Power Supplies

Green Watt Power (Concord, CA), a division of Calex Mfg. Co., has announced CSA/UL agency approvals on the Green Watt Power offering of LED Constant Current power supplies. The GLC Series offers solutions from 18 Watts to...

N2Power (Simi Valley, CA) a division of Qualstar Corporation, has announced constant current versions of its 375W AC-DC power supply dubbed XL375LED. The new units are designed to drive strings of LEDs in...

Products: Lighting
1.5A DC/DC Buck Converter

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (Dallas, TX) recently introduced a 1.5A constant current DC/DC buck converter with a combination of frequency synchronization, pulsewidth modulation (PWM) dimming and thermal...

Products: Lighting
Flickerless LED Drivers

iWatt (Campbell, CA) has launched its iW3616 (12W) and iW3617 (25W) LED driver ICs based on the company’s thirdgeneration digital AC/DC SSL (solid state lighting) LED driver platform. The drivers are designed for...

Products: Lighting
Continuous-Dimming LED Drivers

O2Micro International Limited (Santa Clara, CA) recently extended the company's Free Dimming™ technology and lighting product portfolio with the introduction of the OZ8024 and OZ8024R LED Driver Controllers....

Products: Lighting
LED Planar Modules

Planar lighting pioneer Oree (Ramat Gan, Israel)recently unveiled the LightCell™ Plus to give lighting fixture manufacturers more options for developing innovative LED-based planar light fixtures. LightCell Plus is...

Products: Lighting
Epoxy Based UV Curable System

Master Bond UV15 (Hackensack, NJ) is widely used for a variety of bonding, coating and sealing applications in the optical, electronic and optoelectronic industries. This epoxy based UV curable system is 100%...

Products: Lighting
Constant Current Regulators

ON Semiconductor (Phoenix, AZ) has introduced the new NSIC20xx series of linear constant current regulators (CCR) designed for use in solid state lighting systems. The new NSIC20XX series of CCRs offer a maximum...

Products: Lighting
Step-Dimming Module

Thomas Research Products (Hyntley, IL) has introduced a new step-dimming module that offers easy bi-level dimming control for LED luminaires. The SD1 device works with two standard wall switches to allow bi-level...

Briefs: Information Technology
Display Provides Pilots with Real-Time Sonic-Boom Information

Supersonic aircraft generate shock waves that move outward and extend to the ground. As a cone of pressurized air spreads across the landscape along the flight path, it creates a continuous sonic boom along the flight track. Several factors can influence sonic booms: weight, size, and...

Briefs: Information Technology
Vectorized Rebinning Algorithm for Fast Data Down-Sampling

A vectorized rebinning (down-sampling) algorithm, applicable to Ndimensional data sets, has been developed that offers a significant reduction in computer run time when compared to conventional rebinning algorithms. For clarity, a two-dimensional version of the algorithm is discussed to...

Briefs: Software
Monitoring and Acquisition Realtime System (MARS)

MARS is a graphical user interface (GUI) written in MATLAB and Java, allowing the user to configure and control the Scalable Parallel Architecture for Real-Time Acquisition and Analysis (SPARTAA) data acquisition system. SPARTAA not only acquires data, but also allows for complex algorithms to be...

Briefs: Information Technology
Onboard Algorithms for Data Prioritization and Summarization of Aerial Imagery

Many current and future NASA missions are capable of collecting enormous amounts of data, of which only a small portion can be transmitted to Earth. Communications are limited due to distance, visibility constraints, and competing mission downlinks. Long missions and...

Briefs: Software
Remote Data Access with IDL

A tool based on IDL (Interactive Data Language) and DAP (Data Access Protocol) has been developed for user-friendly remote data access. A difficulty for many NASA re searchers using IDL is that often the data to analyze are located remotely and are too large to transfer for local analysis. Researchers have developed a...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Data Compression Algorithm Architecture for Large Depth-of- Field Particle Image Velocimeters

A large depth-of-field particle image velocimeter (PIV) is designed to characterize dynamic dust environments on planetary surfaces. This instrument detects lofted dust particles, and senses the number of particles per unit volume, measuring their...

Planar, semiconductor heat arrays have been previously proposed and developed; however, this design makes use of a novel, microscale black silicon wick structure that provides...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Analog Signal Correlating Using an Analog-Based Signal Conditioning Front End

This innovation is capable of correlating two analog signals by using an analog- based signal conditioning front end to hard-limit the analog signals through adaptive thresholding into a binary bit stream, then performing the correlation using a Hamming...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Robust Multivariable Optimization and Performance Simulation for ASIC Design

Application-specific-integrated-circuit (ASIC) design for space applications involves multiple challenges of maximizing performance, minimizing power, and ensuring reliable operation in extreme environments. This is a complex multidimensional optimization problem, which...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Castable Amorphous Metal Mirrors and Mirror Assemblies

The use of mirror assemblies is commonplace in the aerospace industry, as most satellites and spacecraft contain optics. The fabrication of these mirrors is extremely complex due to the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Apparatus for Pumping a Fluid

A fluid pump has been developed for mechanically pumped fluid loops for spacecraft thermal control. Lynntech’s technology utilizes a proprietary electrochemically driven pumping mechanism. Conventional...

Next-generation heat-pipe radiator technologies are being developed at the NASA Glenn Research Center to provide advancements in heat-rejection systems for space power and...

Briefs: Materials
Non-Toxic, Non-Flammable, –80 ºC Phase Change Materials

The objective of this effort was to develop a non-toxic, non-flammable, –80 °C phase change material (PCM) to be used in NASA’s ICEPAC capsules for biological sample preservation in flight to and from Earth orbit. A temperature of about –68 °C or lower is a critical temperature...

Blog
MIL/Aero Backplanes - SFF vs. OpenVPX

Today we are pleased to have a guest blog on military backplane technology from Justin Moll, vice president of U.S. market development for Pixus Technologies.

3U OpenVPX is the 800 lb gorilla in all types of heavy signal processing Mil/Aero applications for SIGINT, C4ISR applications, etc. that are...

Question of the Week
Does Telecommuting Restrict Innovation and Productivity?

A Yahoo Inc. internal memo, which introduced a ban on working from home, has set off a debate on whether "telecommuting" and working remotely leads to greater productivity and job satisfaction, or kills creativity and is just a chance to take it easy. Supporters of this kind of ban say...

News
New Imaging Technique Allows Firefighters to See Through Flames

A team of Italian researchers has developed a new imaging technique that uses infrared (IR) digital holography to peer through chaotic conflagrations and capture potentially lifesaving and otherwise hidden details.

News
2013 'Create the Future' Contest Begins

The 11th annual "Create the Future" Design Contest, sponsored by COMSOL, SAE International, and Tech Briefs Media Group has begun. The contest will recognize outstanding innovations in product design worldwide, awarding a Grand Prize of $20,000. There is no cost to enter.

News
Flexible Image Sensor Enables Touch-Free Interfaces

An Austrian research team has developed a new way of capturing images based on a flat, flexible, transparent, and potentially disposable polymer sheet. The new imager, which resembles a flexible plastic film, uses fluorescent particles to capture incoming light and channel a portion of it to an...

News
Virtual Vehicle Vibrations Provide Human Motion Data

A University of Iowa researcher has designed a program to predict the role posture may play in reducing head and neck injuries. The work could help vehicle designers create a robot that is actually a computerized model of a long-distance truck driver or other heavy equipment...

News
Autonomous Navigation of Mobile Robots Based on Insect Visual System

Scientists from the University of Lincoln and Newcastle University in the U.K. have created a computerized system that allows for autonomous navigation of mobile robots based on the locust’s unique visual system. The work could provide the blueprint for the development of...

News
'Yeti' Robot Explores Arctic and Antarctic Landscapes

A century after Western explorers first crossed the dangerous landscapes of the Arctic and Antarctic, researchers funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) have successfully deployed a self-guided robot that uses ground-penetrating radar to map deadly crevasses hidden in ice-covered...

News
Holographic Technique Could Lead to Bionic Vision

Computer-generated holography, they say, could be used in conjunction with a technique called optogenetics, which uses gene therapy to deliver light- sensitive proteins to damaged retinal nerve cells. In conditions such as Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) - a condition affecting about one in 4000 people...

AFL (Lowell, MA and Spartanburg, SC) has introduced the family of NOYES FOCIS PRO automatic fiber inspection solutions. The FOCIS PRO System consists of the DFD1 Touchscreen Tablet, the DFS1 Digital...

Ocean Optics (Dunedin, FL) has expanded its Elite Series of high-performance modular spectrometers with the introduction of the Ventana line of high throughput spectrometers. Ventana spectrometers combine an...

Ophir Photonics Group (North Logan, UT) recently introduced a new low cost laser power/energy meter called StarLite that provides both digital and analog screen displays. A compact, handheld unit, StarLite displays a...

CRAIC Technologies (San Dimas, CA) has added Raman Spectral Surface Mapping™ (S2M™) capabilities to its Apollo™ Raman microspectrometer line. S2M gives CRAIC Raman microspectrometer users the ability to...

Question of the Week
Will Privacy Concerns Keep You from Using Google Glass?

As many users anticipate the arrival of Google Glass, augmented reality technology shaped like a pair of glasses, some technologists are questioning the privacy issues associated with the use of these wearable computers. Many express concern about users' ability to secretly capture audio...

News
New Surface Coating Cuts Through the Fog

A team of MIT researchers has developed a coating that outperforms others not only in preventing foggy buildups, but also in maintaining good optical properties without distortion. Preventing glass from fogging or frosting up is a longstanding challenge with myriad applications, including eyeglasses,...

News
Scientists Develop Novel Single-Photon Detector System

A single photon may not seem like much of a catch. But detecting photons one- by-one with near-perfect reliability is formidably difficult. It is also an extremely important research goal, not only in fiber-based telecommunications, but in numerous other fields from quantum information...

News
Researchers Develop New Simulation Capability to Model Plasma

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) researchers have developed a new simulation capability to model a classic plasma configuration. They have demonstrated for the first time a fully kinetic model of the dense plasma focus (DPF) Z-pinch device, including the electrodes, in a...

News: Robotics, Automation & Control
'Cheetah' Robot Hits High Speeds, Wastes Little Heat

A 70-pound “cheetah” robot designed by MIT researchers may soon outpace its animal counterparts in running efficiency: In treadmill tests, the researchers have found that the robot — about the size and weight of an actual cheetah — wastes very little energy as it trots continuously...

News
Cricket Hair Inspires Motion Detection 'Cameras'

Crickets use sensitive hairs on their cerci (projections on the abdomen) to detect predators. For these insects, air currents carry information about the location of nearby predators and the direction in which they are moving.

News
NASA Integrates First Laser Communication System

A new NASA-developed, laser-based space communication system will enable higher rates of satellite communications similar in capability to high-speed fiber optic networks on Earth.

The space terminal for the Lunar Laser Communication Demonstration (LLCD), NASA's first high-data-rate laser...

News
Production Process Doubles Speed and Efficiency of Flexible Electronics

Stretched-out clothing might not be a great practice for laundry day, but in the case of microprocessor manufacture, stretching out the atomic structure of the silicon in the critical components of a device can be a good way to increase a processor's performance. Creating...

News
Turning Waste Heat into Electricity on the Nanoscale

A new type of nanoscale engine has been proposed that would use quantum dots to generate electricity from waste heat, potentially making microcircuits more efficient.

Products: Electronics & Computers
High-Speed Data Converter System Evaluation Kit

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (Dallas, TX) has introduced the industry’s first complete high-speed data converter system evaluation kit (HSDC-SEK), which reduces system evaluation costs...

Products: Electronics & Computers
Digitally Tunable Capacitors

Peregrine Semiconductor Corporation (San Diego, CA), a fabless provider of high-performance radio frequency integrated circuits (RFICs), announced that it has expanded its DuNE™ Digitally Tunable Capacitor...

Products: Electronics & Computers
PCI-104 RS-232/422/485 Serial Communication Boards

ACCES I/O Products, Inc. has released a new family of PCI-104 serial communication boards—the 104I-COM-8SM Series. These PCI-104 boards feature a selection of 8, 4, or 2-ports of field...

Products: Electronics & Computers
Eurocard Subrack Enclosures

Pixus Technologies (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada) offers Eurocard subracks for 3U and 6U boards in multiple configurations. The subrack enclosures can house backplanes or special modules for industrial, mil/aero,...

News
NASA Scientists Build First-Ever Wide-Field X-ray Imager

Three NASA scientists teamed up to develop and demonstrate NASA's first wide field-of-view soft X-ray camera for studying "charge exchange," a poorly understood phenomenon that occurs when the solar wind collides with Earth's exosphere and neutral gas in interplanetary space.

News
Organic Sensors Increase Light Sensitivity of Cameras

Researchers from Technische Universität München (TUM) have developed a new generation of image sensors that is more sensitive to light than the conventional silicon versions, with the added bonus of being simple and cheap to produce. They consist of electrically conductive plastics, which...

Question of the Week
Does RSS Still Matter?

Reactions ranged from outrage to apathy when Google announced that it would be shutting down its Google Reader RSS client. The search giant said that the move was due to a decline in usage. Some fans of the 'Reader' and RSS cite its centralized features and its way of organizing a user's content. Others say...

News
Engineers Build Self-Healing Electronic Chips

A team of engineers at the California Institute of Technology has developed self-healing integrated chips. The technology will allow chips in a smartphone or computer, for example, to repair and defend themselves on the fly, recovering in microseconds from problems ranging from less-than-ideal...

News
Pixels Help Guide the Way for the Visually Impaired

Images transformed into pixels and projected onto a headset can help the visually impaired in everyday tasks, such as navigation, route planning and finding objects, according to a study led by researchers from the Keck School of Medicine of USC.

News
'Metasurfaces' Enable Advanced Solar Cells, Chemical Sensors

New optical technologies using "metasurfaces" are nearing commercialization, with potential applications including advanced solar cells, computers, telecommunications, sensors, and microscopes.

News
Humanoid Robot Assists Children with Autism

An interdisciplinary team of mechanical engineers and autism experts at Vanderbilt University have developed robotic systems that will enhance the basic social learning skills of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

News
NASA Project Would Turn Blue Skies Green

Air travelers of the future could have quieter, greener and more fuel-efficient airliners because of NASA research efforts that are moving into further development and testing.

News
Braille Aircraft Lavatory Makes Travel Easier for the Visually Impaired

The School of Design at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University has recently designed a new aircraft lavatory especially for the visually impaired by providing an organized system for reading Braille and other tactile information. This unconventional design is called...

News
Aircraft-Based Humidity Sensor Helps Improve Weather and Climate Models

A humidity sensor developed by the Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB), the SEALDH laser hygrometer, has proven its worth when used aboard an aircraft; it fulfills all pre-conditions to be used as a transfer standard for conventional humidity-measuring instruments....

Question of the Week
Do the Benefits of Domestic Drones Outweigh Privacy Drawbacks?

Congress has ordered the Federal Aviation Administration to open up airspace to unmanned aircraft by October 2015, a decision that will likely see thousands of domestic drones soaring the sky. Many are excited about the many innovative possibilities of the autonomous technology,...

News
3D Printing Tests Strengths of Modeled Shapes

A University of Chicago research group manufactured granular materials of various shapes in a 3D printer to test their aggregate properties when jammed into a confined space.

News
Engineers Develop Nanofoams for Better Body Armor

Engineers at the University of California, San Diego are developing nanofoams that could be used to make better body armor; prevent traumatic brain injury and blast-related lung injuries in soldiers; and protect buildings from impacts and blasts.

The nanofoams are made up of a honeycomb, or...

News
Researchers 'Paint' Plastic Electronics

A new method for getting semi-conducting polymers in line could pave the way for cheaper, greener, “paint-on” plastic electronics. A Michigan Engineering team created a liquid polymer solution that they could brush over a surface, automatically aligning the molecules with one another in the direction...

Autodesk, San Rafael, CA, has introduced Autodesk Fusion 360 cloud-based 3D CAD modeling software that allows users to create 3D product designs and collaborate...

Videos