May 2013

In many laser-based types of bioinstrumentation, including flow cytometers, confocal microscopes, and array readers for proteomics, laser output is delivered to the system’s final optics...

Application Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Calibration of 2D Cameras for 3D Inspection

In many applications, 2D cameras are used to produce 3D imaging for general purpose inspections. There are numerous 3D inspection applications. Some of them include reverse engineering, electronics...

Products: Photonics/Optics
High Performance Laser Systems

Edmund Optics® (EO) (Barrington, NJ) is now offering Coherent® High Performance OBIS™ Laser Systems. The High Performance OBIS Laser Systems feature the same compact design used for all wavelength options,...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Compact Laser Modules

The ZM12 range of small industrial laser modules from Z-LASER (Freiburg, Germany) is designed for industrial manufacturing processes such as laser marking or machine vision applications where superior quality and...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Turnkey Laser Systems

Superior heat dissipation and maximum durability are just two of the advantages of BEA Lasers’ (Elk Grove Village, IL) new MIL Series turnkey laser system. Offered in either 650nm (red) or 532nm (green) laser light,...

Products: Photonics/Optics
2013 Infrared Handbook

FLIR Systems (Croissy-Beaubourg, France) has announced an updated 2013 edition of its popular Infrared Handbook for R&D Professionals. Although infrared radiation (IR) is not detectable by the human eye, an IR camera...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Solar Blind Filters

Optical Filter Source (OFS) (Austin, TX), teaming with Pellicori Optical Consulting (POC) (Santa Barbara, CA) has developed and demonstrated solar-blind UV filters for applications in the wavelength range covering the UV...

Kyocera Corporation (Kyoto, Japan) announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Kyocera Crystal Device Corporation, in charge of development and manufacturing of crystal devices, has succeeded in...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Color Filter Stacks

Reynard Corporation (San Clemente, CA) recently introduced ColorLock™ color filter stacks. These filters utilize the transmission and blocking characteristics of two or more specialty designed filter glass types to...

Products: Photonics/Optics
UV Hybrid Fiber Laser

Spectra-Physics® (Santa Clara, CA) has introduced the Quasar, a breakthrough hybrid fiber laser that delivers high UV power at high repetition rates with TimeShift™ technology for precise micromachining. Combining...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Laser Diode Modules

The new range of laser diode modules from the Optoelectronics Company (Henham, UK) combines a high performance Opnext (OCLARO) laser diode with quality, externally adjustable optics, a Panasonic a spher ical glass lens,...

Products: Photonics/Optics
High-Current DC Interference Filter

SCHURTER (Santa Rosa, CA) presents its new 2300 A FMER SOL interference filter. In addition, the series is now offered without ground capacitors to safely prevent any leakage of current to ground. The...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Xenon-Ruby Lenses

Schneider Optics (Hauppauge, NY) has introduced new, lightweight and cost-efficient Xenon-Ruby C-mount lenses available in four focal lengths: 2.2/10mm, 2.3/16mm, 2.2/25mm and 2.3/35mm . Suitable for use in a wide range of...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Digital Camera

Point Grey (Richmond, BC, Canada) recently introduced the new Blackfly camera. The first model BLFY-PGE-13E4 features a 1.3 MP, 60 fps, CMOS global shutter sensor available in both monochrome and color, and less than 2W power...

Products: Photonics/Optics
Hyperspectral CMOS Camera

Imec (Leuven, Belgium) is currently sampling the line scan version of its hyperspectral imaging solution, offering a ready-to-use evaluation kit to the industry to line scan and analyze specific sample material....

Products: Photonics/Optics
High-Resolution Infrared Cameras

DRS Technologies, Inc. (Arlington, VA) has expanded its Tamarisk® product line by introducing the high-resolution Tamarisk®640, which is designed for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to incorporate...

Products: Photonics/Optics
MEMS Emitter

Cal Sensors (Santa Rosa, CA) has introduced a new MEMs Pulsed Emitter (MPE), a broadband source of quasi-black body pulsed light that operates over the 1 to 20 micron infrared (IR) spectrum. Designed with patented,...

Products: Photonics/Optics
638nm Fiber-Coupled Tailored Bar Modules

DILAS (Mainz, Germany) now delivers 40W output power from a T-bar based 638nm 400-micron/0.22NA, fiber-coupled module used for cinema projection. Through the optimization of semiconductor chip...

Techs for License
Acceleration Sensor Enables New Robotics Applications

The Inclinos 3DS inclination and acceleration sensor, based on thermodynamic effects, exhibits no hysteresis in response signal (output lag). A power distribution of four heaters is controlled by a closed loop, and the temperature of each heater is constantly affected by any acceleration. The...

Techs for License
Water-Based Cooling Fluid Reduces Corrosion

A water/propylene glycol-based formulation acts as a heattransfer medium and reduces the corrosion of sensitive metals by 10x to 100x in heat exchangers, radiators, cold plates, and associated plumbing. The water-based cooling fluid can be used with equipment containing a variety of metals, while still...

Tech Needs
Dissolution Device

To enhance transportability and shelf life, many drugs and pharmaceuticals are distributed as freeze-dried formulations. The formulations must be dissolved before they can be injected. A client therefore seeks a new device or container that helps lyophilized preparations dissolve rapidly and completely with diluents such as...

Tech Needs
Grab-Bars and Safety Grips

Because of their weight and the weight they bear, most grab-bars must be installed permanently in a home, usually by drilling through the wall material and into a wall stud. In the case of grab-bars installed in a tub enclosure or shower, a permanent hole may need to be drilled through ceramic tile, thus making a...

For more than two decades, nearly all renewable energy endeavors have incorporated the latest advances in turbomachinery design and turbomachinery manufacturing technology in an...

As part of NASA’s Hurricane Severe Storm Sentinel (HS3) missions, video processing technology from GE Intelligent Platforms was deployed onboard NASA’s Global Hawk...

Bodkin Design & Engineering, LLC (BD & E) has been awarded a $125,000 SBIR contract by NASA to develop a surface temperature mapping system for re-entry vehicle heat...

Articles: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Space-Inspired Trailers Encourage Exploration on Earth

Garrett Finney moved the office coffeemaker into the full-size, cardboard mockup of the new trailer he was designing. The need for caffeine — and the threat of hot coffee accidentally...

Rob Mueller is the Lead Senior Technologist for the RASSOR (Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot) project, as well as all Kennedy Space Center (KSC) Human Robotics...

Energy can be found everywhere — in the movement of doors and windows or machine components, the vibration of motors, changing temperature or variances in luminance level. These energy...

Lighting, as an industry, has seen very few significant innovations in the basic technology of light production in the past century. As a result of this static situation, lighting companies have...

One of the most pervasive challenges in the world today is increasing energy efficiency. The consumer electronics industry is evolving towards higher efficiency due to newer and stricter energy...

The nighttime twinkling of fireflies has inspired scientists to modify a light-emitting diode (LED) so it is more than one-and-a-half times as efficient as the original. Researchers from...

If engineers at Stanford have their way, biological research may soon be transformed by a new class of light-emitting probes small enough to be injected into individual cells without...

Amulti-university research team has used a new spectroscopic method to gain a key insight into how light is emitted from layered nanomaterials and other thin films. The technique, called...

Ateam of researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has shown that by bringing gold nanoparticles close to the dots and using a DNA template to control the...

An effort by students, faculty, and staff at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to install ultra-efficient LED light bulbs in one campus facility will save the...

Philips recently unveiled what it claims is the world’s smartest web-enabled LED home lighting system. Philips hue allows you to create and control the light in your home...

Products: Lighting
LED Area Lamp

DELO (Windach, Germany) has enhanced its DELOLUX 20 / 400 area lamp. The new version offers excellent irradiation homogeneity and compact design. The new DELOLUX 20 / 400 predominantly aims at easy integration into production...

ERNI (Richmond, VA) has developed an ultra-compact 1.27mm pitch single row connector system that delivers high current density. The MiniBridge™ wire-to-board connector features a high-temperature IDC wire...

Products: Lighting
LED Driver

Light-Based Technologies (LBT) (Vancouver, BC), a developer of intelligent power and control electronics for solid state lighting (SSL), has achieved UL Recognized Component Marking for its Ultra-Compatible (UC) Deep Dimming LED...

Products: Lighting
LED Ring Lights

Orled (Tigard, OR) has introduced a new line of high intensity ring lights, the Model RL16Q and Model RL28Q with Quadrant Driver. Designed to be mounted on a wide variety of microscopes and other optical systems, they are...

Podcasts
Rob Mueller, Lead Senior Technologist, Kennedy Space Center, FL

Rob Mueller is the Lead Senior Technologist for the RASSOR (Regolith Advanced Surface Systems Operations Robot) project, as well as all Kennedy Space Center (KSC) Human Robotics Systems. The RASSOR mining robot will collect soil (known as regolith) on the moon or Mars so it...

Briefs: Software
Test Waveform Applications for JPL STRS Operating Environment

This software demonstrates use of the JPL Space Telecommunications Radio System (STRS) Operating Environment (OE), tests APIs (application programming interfaces) presented by JPL STRS OE, and allows for basic testing of the underlying hardware platform. This software uses the JPL...

Briefs: Medical
Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Signals Measure Neuronal Activity in the Cortex

Functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is an emerging optical neuroimaging technology that indirectly measures neuronal activity in the cortex via neurovascular coupling. It quantifies hemoglobin concentration ([Hb]) and thus measures the same...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
ESD Test Apparatus for Soldering Irons

ESDA (Electrostatic Discharge Association) ESD STM 13.1-2000 requires frequent testing of the voltage leakage from the tip of a soldering iron and the resistance from the tip of the soldering iron to the common point ground. Without this test apparatus, the process is time-consuming and requires several...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Pneumatic Proboscis Heat-Flow Probe

Heat flow is a fundamental property of a planet, and provides significant constraints on the abundance of radiogenic isotopes, the thermal evolution and differentiation history, and the mechanical...

Briefs: Information Technology
Sequential Probability Ratio Test for Spacecraft Collision Avoidance Maneuver Decisions

A document discusses sequential probability ratio tests that explicitly allow decision-makers to incorporate false alarm and missed detection risks, and are potentially less sensitive to modeling errors than a procedure that relies solely on a probability of...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
FPGA-Based X-Ray Detection and Measurement for an X-Ray Polarimeter

This technology enables detection and measurement of x-rays in an x-ray polarimeter using a field-programmable gate array (FPGA). The technology was developed for the Gravitational and Extreme Magnetism Small Explorer (GEMS) mission. It performs precision energy and timing...

Briefs: Information Technology
Cursor Control Device Test Battery

The test battery was developed to provide a standard procedure for cursor control device evaluation. The software was built in Visual Basic and consists of nine tasks and a main menu that integrates the set-up of the tasks. The tasks can be used individually, or in a series defined in the main menu.

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Method to Measure Total Noise Temperature of a Wireless Receiver During Operation

A method has been developed to measure the total effective noise power in a GPS receiver, including contributions from the system temperature, the antenna temperature, interference, lossy components, etc. A known level of noise is periodically injected before the...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Advanced Materials and Fabrication Techniques for the Orion Attitude Control Motor

Rhenium, with its high melting temperature, excellent elevated temperature properties, and lack of a ductile-to-brittle transition temperature (DBTT), is ideally suited for the hot gas components of the ACM (Attitude Control Motor), and other hightemperature...

A proof-of-concept device is being developed (see figure) for hydrogen gas production based on water-splitting redox reactions facilitated by cobalt tetra-aryl porphyrins (Co[TArP])...

This packaging design approach can help heritage hardware meet a flight project’s stringent EMC radiated emissions requirement. The approach re quires only...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
An Offload NIC for NASA, NLR, and Grid Computing

This work addresses distributed data management and access — dynamically configurable high-speed access to data distributed and shared over wide-area high-speed network environments. An offload engine NIC (network interface card) is proposed that scales at n×10- Gbps increments through 100-Gbps...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
RF Reference Switch for Spaceflight Radiometer Calibration

The goal of this technology is to provide improved calibration and measurement sensitivity to the Soil Moisture Active Passive Mission (SMAP) radiometer. While RF switches have been used in the past to calibrate microwave radiometers, the switch used on SMAP employs several techniques...

Briefs: Materials
Self-Healing Nanocomposites for Reusable Composite Cryotanks

Composite cryotanks, or composite overwrapped pressure vessels (COPVs), offer advantages over currently used aluminum- lithium cryotanks, particularly with respect to weight savings. Future NASA missions are expected to use COPVs in spaceflight propellant tanks to store fuels,...

Briefs: Materials
Ceramic Adhesive and Methods for On-Orbit Repair of Re-Entry Vehicles

This adhesive is capable of repairing damaged leading edge components of re-entry vehicles while in space, and is novel with regard to its ability to be applied in the vacuum of space, and in a microgravity environment. Once applied, the adhesive provides thermal and oxidation...

Briefs: Materials
Aerogel-Based Multilayer Insulation With Micrometeoroid Protection

Ultra-low-density, highly hydrophobic, fiber-reinforced aerogel material integrated with MLI (aluminized Mylar reflectors and B4A Dacron separators) offers a highly effective insulation package by providing unsurpassed thermal performance and significant robustness, delivering...

Briefs: Materials
Pt-Ni and Pt-Co Catalyst Synthesis Route for Fuel Cell Applications

Oxygen reduction reactions (ORRs) at the cathode are the rate-limiting step in fuel cell performance. The ORR is 100 times slower than the corresponding hydrogen oxidation at the anode. Speeding up the reaction at the cathode will improve fuel cell efficiency.

Briefs: Materials
Multi-scale CNT-Based Reinforcing Polymer Matrix Composites for Lightweight Structures

Reinforcing critical areas in carbon polymer matrix composites (PMCs), also known as fiber reinforced composites (FRCs), is advantageous for structural durability. Since carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have extremely high tensile strength, they can be used as a...

Briefs: Materials
Manufacturing of Nanocomposite Carbon Fibers and Composite Cylinders

Pitch-based nanocomposite carbon fibers were prepared with various percentages of carbon nanofibers (CNFs), and the fibers were used for manufacturing composite structures. Experimental results show that these nanocomposite carbon fibers exhibit improved structural and...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Optimized Radiator Geometries for Hot Lunar Thermal Environments

The optimum radiator configuration in hot lunar thermal environments is one in which the radiator is parallel to the ground and has no view to the hot lunar surface. However, typical spacecraft configurations have limited real estate available for top-mounted radiators, resulting...

Future missions to Mars that would need a sophisticated lander, hopper, or rover could benefit from the REARM Arch i tecture. The mission concept REARM...

Future sustainable energy generation technologies such as photovoltaic and wind farms require advanced energy storage systems on a massive scale to make...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Reliability of CCGA 1152 and CCGA 1272 Interconnect Packages for Extreme Thermal Environments

Ceramic column grid array (CCGA) packages have been increasing in use based on their advantages of high interconnect density, very good thermal and electrical performance, and compatibility with standard surface-mount packaging assembly processes. CCGA...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Using a Blender to Assess the Microbial Density of Encapsulated Organisms

There are specific NASA requirementsfor source-specific encapsulated microbial density for encapsulated organisms in non-metallic materials. Projects such as the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) that use large volumes of non-metallic materials of planetary protection concern...

Briefs: Software
Sasquatch Footprint Tool

The Crew Exploration Vehicle Parachute Assembly System (CPAS) is the parachute system for NASA’s Orion spacecraft. The test program consists of numerous drop tests, wherein a test article rigged with parachutes is extracted or released from an aircraft. During such tests, range safety is paramount, as is the...

Briefs: Software
Galactic Cosmic Ray Event- Based Risk Model (GERM) Code

This software describes the transport and energy deposition of the passage of galactic cosmic rays in astronaut tissues during space travel, or heavy ion beams in patients in cancer therapy. Space radiation risk is a probability distribution, and time-dependent biological events must be...

Briefs: Software
Multi-User Space Link Extension (SLE) System

The Multi-User Space (MUS) Link Extension system, a software and data system, provides Space Link Extension (SLE) users with three space data transfer services in timely, complete, and offline modes as applicable according to standards defined by the Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems...

Briefs: Information Technology
Control Software for Piezo Stepping Actuators

A control system has been developed for the Space Interferometer Mission (SIM) piezo stepping actuator. Piezo stepping actuators are novel because they offer extreme dynamic range (centimeter stroke with nanometer resolution) with power, thermal, mass, and volume advantages over existing motorized...

Briefs: Information Technology
Optimization of Turbine Blade Dovetail Geometry

The reliability of a gas or steam turbine is strongly dependent on the structural design of its blades. In land-based power generation units, turbine blades are connected to the turbine disk by...

Briefs: Information Technology
Mixed Integer Programming and Heuristic Scheduling for Space Communication

Optimal planning and scheduling for a communication network was created where the nodes within the network are communicating at the highest possible rates while meeting the mission requirements and operational constraints. The planning and scheduling problem was...

Briefs: Information Technology
Video Altimeter and Obstruction Detector for an Aircraft

Video-based altimetric and obstructiondetection systems for aircraft have been partially developed. The hardware of a system of this type includes a downward-looking video camera, a video digitizer, a Global Positioning System receiver or other means of measuring the aircraft velocity...

Blog
On the Floor at SPIE Defense, Security & Sensing

The SPIE Defense Security & Sensing Show in Baltimore, which began on Monday and ends today, provided attendees with an exhibit hall full of new products and technologies. If you weren’t at the show, here’s some of what you missed:

LaserMotive (Kent, WA) had the first public flight...

News
Robots Use Whole-Arm Sensing to Reach Through Clutter

Robots are now able to intelligently maneuver within clutter, gently making contact with objects while accomplishing a task. The new control method has wide applications, ranging from robots for search-and-rescue operations to assistive robotics for people with disabilities.

News
Acoustic Time Delay Device Could Reduce Size of Phased Array Radar Systems

Radar systems today depend increasingly on phased-array antennas, an advanced design in which extensive grids of solid state components direct signal beams electronically. Phased array technology is replacing traditional electro- mechanical radar antennas – the familiar...

News
Soldiers Use New Network to Prepare for Advise, Assist Mission

For Staff Sgt. Stephen Kovac, getting important information and instructions to the rest of his platoon was a struggle. He could radio back to higher headquarters and wait for the calls to filter back down, losing precious seconds during an operation. Or, he said, he could "yell and...

News
Researcher Explores New Use For Weapons-Detecting Radar?

Kamal Sarabandi is an electrical engineering professor at the University of Michigan. His specialty is remote sensing—detecting objects and gathering information from a distance. For several years ending in mid-2012, he was funded by the Department of Defense to tweak a type of radar not...

News
Fly's Eye Inspires Hemispherical Digital Camera

Inspired by the complex fly eye, an interdisciplinary team led by researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Northwestern University has developed a hemispherical digital camera with nearly 200 tiny lenses, delivering wide-angle field of view and sharp images.

Question of the Week
Would You Enjoy This Kind of Tech-free Weekend?

A new summer camp, called "Camp Grounded," invites over 200 adults to take a break from technology for a weekend. The retreat, which takes place near Anderson Valley, Calif., brings people together in a "summer camp" atmosphere. The rules are: No technology use, no cell phones allowed, and no...

News
Army Improves Vehicle Design with Blast Tests

With the growing threat of improvised explosive devices over the past decade, Army researchers have been hard at work testing and evaluating ways to keep Soldiers safe from bomb blasts. The U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command analyzes under-body blasts, known as UBBs.

News
Robotic Insects Achieve Vertical Takeoff and Steering

Inspired by the biology of a fly, with submillimeter-scale anatomy and two wafer-thin wings that flap almost invisibly, 120 times per second, a tiny device from Harvard University researchers represents cutting-edge micromanufacturing and control systems.

News
NASA Begins Acoustic Testing of Space Launch System

Engineers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama are making progress on the agency's new rocket by listening closely to the roar of four thrusters. The agency is developing the new rocket, called the Space Launch System, or SLS, at Marshall. This vehicle will enable space...

News
Seahorse Tail Inspires Robotics Designs

A seahorse tail’s exceptional flexibility is due to its structure, made up of bony, armored plates, which slide past each other. Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, are hoping to use a similar structure to create a flexible robotic arm equipped with muscles made out of polymer, which...

News
Race Car with Electric Motors Demonstrates New Sensor Concepts

Fraunhofer Institute research scientists use an electric racing car to present novel solutions for battery management and electronic sensor systems, together with an industry partner.

EVE, a racing car with a very quiet engine, goes from 0 to 100 in 3.6 seconds. EVE is powered...

News
3D Motion Detector Could Prevent Shoulder Injuries in Baseball Pitchers

A new 3D motion detection system could help identify baseball pitchers who are at risk for shoulder injuries, according to a new study conducted at Loyola University. The system can be used on the field and requires only a laptop computer. Other systems that evaluate...

News
Piezoelectric “Taxels” Convert Motion to Electronic Signals for Tactile Imaging

Using bundles of vertical zinc oxide nanowires, Georgia Tech researchers have fabricated arrays of piezotronic transistors capable of converting mechanical motion directly into electronic controlling signals. The arrays could help give robots a more adaptive...

News
Fatigue Failure of Teeth Simulated with Finite Element Analysis

Scientists of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology and the Senckenberg Research Institute in Frankfurt, together with dental technicians, have digitally analyzed modern human teeth using finite element analysis to evaluate the biomechanical behavior of teeth under...

News
Softening Steel Problem Expands Computer Model Applications

Sandia National Laboratories researchers Lisa Deibler and Arthur Brown had a ready-made problem for their computer modeling work when they partnered with the National Nuclear Security Administration’s Kansas City Plant (KCP) to improve stainless steel tubing that was too hard to meet...

News
Petaflop-Level Earthquake Simulations Made on GPU-Powered Supercomputers

A team of researchers at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) and the Department of Electronic and Computer Engineering at the University of California, San Diego, has developed a highly scalable computer code that promises to dramatically cut both research times and...

Question of the Week
Can the Desktop PC Market Be Reinvigorated?

As consumers increasingly use cheaper, smaller tablets and smartphones, a recent IDC report showed that PC sales are down 14% year over year, and Apple's desktop sales are flat. PCs are still more powerful than competing computing devices, and still have a prominent role in the enterprise,...

News
Robot Discovers Objects on its Own

Robots can continually discover and refine their understanding of objects, say researchers at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute. The Lifelong Robotic Object Discovery (LROD) process, developed by the research team, enabled a two-armed, mobile robot to use color video, a Kinect depth camera, and...

News
Researchers Use TEM Imaging to Observe Battery Performance

Researchers at MIT and Sandia National Laboratories have used transmission electron microscope (TEM) imaging to observe, at a molecular level, what goes on during a reaction called oxygen evolution as lithium-air batteries charge.

The reaction is thought to be a bottleneck limiting...

News
World-Record Millimeter-Wave Output Power Generated From Nanoscale CMOS

Harish Krishnaswamy, assistant professor of electrical engineering at Columbia Engineering, has generated a record amount of power output—by a power of five—using silicon-based nanoscale CMOS (complementary metal oxide semiconductor) technology for millimeter-wave power...

News
Student-Built Solar Village to House Microgrid Project

Four solar homes built by students at Missouri University of Science and Technology will soon become home to an experimental microgrid to manage and store renewable energy. The houses, all past entries into the Solar Decathlon design competition, make up the university’s Solar Village.

News: Transportation
Electric Car Battery Charger Aims for More Efficiency and Power

Arkansas Power Electronics International Inc. (APEI), a Genesis Technology Incubator client at the University of Arkansas, has developed a prototype battery charger for Toyota’s plug-in hybrid electric vehicle battery charger that is designed to be more efficient, more powerful...

News: Imaging
NASA Collaboration Reconstructs Image of Earth

Engineers at NASA's Ames Research Center and amateur radio operators around the world collaborated to reconstruct an image of Earth sent to them from three smartphones in orbit. The joint effort was part of NASA's nanosatellite mission, called PhoneSat.

News
Reducing Noise in Qubit Arrays Keeps Quantum Logic Gates Coherent

If quantum computers are ever to be built, qubits will have to be made more robust and more numerous. Qubits, the quantum equivalent of the bits used in conventional computers, can easily lose their orientation in a process called decoherence when confronted with a noisy...

Blog
Explore & Discover with NASA

NASA is one of the top research entities in the world, producing technologies that range from electronics and new materials, to state-of-the-art robotics and sensors. Readers of NASA Tech Briefs get a firsthand look at these new technologies every month. But how many of you have had the chance to go behind the scenes...

News: Medical
“Transient Electronics” Disappear When No Longer Needed

Scientists recently unveiled a new genre of tiny, biocompatible electronic devices that could be implanted into the body to relieve pain or battle infection for a specific period of time, and then dissolve harmlessly. These “transient electronics,” described at a meeting of the...

Question of the Week
Is Warp Speed Possible?

NASA scientists are currently working on the first practical field test toward proving the possibility of warp drives and faster-than-light travel. Thanks to a loophole in the theory of relativity, a ship could theoretically travel in such a way that the universe moves around it, allowing it to reach faraway planets...

News
3D Design Tool Interprets Hand Gestures

A new design tool interprets gestures, enabling designers and artists to create and modify three-dimensional shapes using only their hands as a "natural user interface," instead of keyboard and mouse.

News
Nanosystem 'Forest' Achieves Artificial Photosynthesis

Scientists with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have reported the first fully integrated nanosystem for artificial photosynthesis. While “artificial leaf” is the popular term for such a system, the key to this success was an...

News
Naval Research Lab Shatters Electric UAV Endurance Record

Researchers at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory flew their fuel-cell-powered Ion Tiger unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) for 48 hours and 1 minute using liquid hydrogen fuel in a new, NRL-developed, cryogenic fuel storage tank and delivery system. This flight shatters their previous record...

News
DOE Technique is New Advance in Biofuel Production

Advanced biofuels – liquid fuels synthesized from the sugars in cellulosic biomass – offer a clean, green and renewable alternative to gasoline, diesel and jet fuels. Bringing the costs of producing these advanced biofuels down to competitive levels with petrofuels, however, is a major...

News
Preventing Insect Remains from Adhering to Aircraft Wings

Researchers at NASA's Langley Research Center in Virginia are studying ways to prevent the remains of insect impacts from adhering to the wing of an aircraft in flight. The research is serious, and positive results could help NASA's aeronautical innovators achieve their goals for...

News
Navy Completes First Carrier-Based Catapult Launch of a Combat UAV

The X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System demonstrator (UCAS-D) completed its first ever carrier-based catapult launch from USS George H.W. Bush off the coast of Virginia. The unmanned aircraft launched from the deck, executed several planned low approaches to the carrier, and safely...

News
NASA Seeks Innovative Materials

NASA, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the U.S. State Department and Nike have issued a challenge to identify 10 game-changing innovations that could enable fabric systems to enhance global economic growth, drive human prosperity and replenish the planet's resources.

News
Thermal Imaging Improves Quality Control of Lithium-Ion Batteries

Purdue University researchers have created a new tool to detect flaws in lithium-ion batteries as they are being manufactured, a step toward reducing defects and inconsistencies in the thickness of electrodes that affect battery life and reliability.

The electrodes, called...

News
New Camera Reveals What Snow Looks Like in Midair

University of Utah researchers developed a high-speed camera system that spent the past two winters photographing snowflakes in 3D as they fell – and they don’t look much like those perfect-but-rare snowflakes often seen in photos.

NASA and the U.S. Army helped fund development of the...

News
Terahertz Technology Sees More with Less

Terahertz technology is an emerging field that promises to improve a host of useful applications, ranging from passenger scanning at airports to huge digital data transfers. Terahertz radiation sits between the frequency bands of microwaves and infrared radiation, and it can easily penetrate many...

News
Bug’s View Inspires Digital Camera’s Hemispherical Imaging

Researchers have created the first digital cameras with designs that mimic those of ocular systems found in dragonflies, bees, praying mantises and other insects. This class of technology offers exceptionally wide-angle fields of view, with low aberrations, high acuity to motion, and...

Question of the Week
Will 3D Printed Food Help to Solve World Hunger?

Systems & Materials Research Corporation recently received a six-month $125,000 grant from NASA to create a prototype of a universal 3D food printer. The company's creator imagines a day when every kitchen has a 3D printer, and the Earth's 12 billion people feed themselves customized,...

News
Waterproof Fabrics Whisk Away Sweat

Waterproof fabrics that whisk away sweat could be the latest application of microfluidic technology developed by UC Davis bioengineers.

Microchip Technology, Chandler, AZ, offers BodyCom™ technology, which provides designers with the world’s first framework for using the human body as a secure communication channel. BodyCom...

Blog
Laser Eye Beams

As the editor of Photonics Tech Briefs, I cover laser technology for a living. They’re pretty fascinating devices, but that doesn’t mean I ever wanted to have a laser beam shot into my eye. Unfortunately, Father Time and our own bodies do not always give us a choice.

I was recently diagnosed as a prime candidate for...

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