Briefs: Physical Sciences
Optical Testing of Retroreflectors for Cryogenic Applications

A laser tracker (LT) is an important coordinate metrology tool that uses laser interferometry to determine precise distances to objects, points, or surfaces defined by an optical reference, such as a retroreflector. A retroreflector is a precision optic consisting of three orthogonal...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

An improved method and apparatus have been devised for measuring cyclic errors in the readouts of laser heterodyne interferometers that are configured and operated as displacement...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

A method is proposed for end-toend, full aperture testing of large-aperture telescopes using an innovative variation of a Hartmann mask. This technique is practical for telescopes...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

The figure schematically depicts a laboratory setup for determining the optical length of a fiber-optic delay line at a precision greater than that obtainable by use of optical...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Compact, Reliable EEPROM Controller

A compact, reliable controller for an electrically erasable, programmable readonly memory (EEPROM) has been developed specifically for a space-flight application. The design may be adaptable to other applications in which there are requirements for reliability in general and, in particular, for prevention of...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs

The design, simulation, and characterization of a novel Ka-band (32.05±0.25 GHz) rectangular waveguide two-way branch-line hybrid unequal power combiner (with port impedances...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Quad-Chip Double-Balanced Frequency Tripler

Solid-state frequency multipliers are used to produce tunable broadband sources at millimeter and submillimeter wavelengths. The maximum power produced by a single chip is limited by the electrical breakdown of the semiconductor and by the thermal management properties of the chip. The solution is to...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Radiation-Hardened Solid-State Drive

A method is provided for a radiationhardened (rad-hard) solid-state drive for space mission memory applications by combining rad-hard and commercial offthe- shelf (COTS) non-volatile memories (NVMs) into a hybrid architecture. The architecture is controlled by a rad-hard ASIC (application specific integrated...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Reconfigurable Hardware for Compressing Hyperspectral Image Data

High-speed, low-power, reconfigurable electronic hardware has been developed to implement ICER-3D, an algorithm for compressing hyperspectral-image data. The algorithm and parts thereof have been the topics of several NASA Tech Briefs articles, including “Context Modeler for...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
High-Speed Ring Bus

The high-speed ring bus at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) allows for future growth trends in spacecraft seen with future scientific missions. This innovation constitutes an enhancement of the 1393 bus as documented in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 1393-1999 standard for a spaceborne...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

A spatio-temporal equalizer has been conceived as an improved means of suppressing multipath effects in the reception of aeronautical telemetry signals, and may be adaptable to...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Lunar Dust-Tolerant Electrical Connector

An electrical connector was developed that is tolerant of the presence of lunar dust. Novel features of the connector include the use of a permeable membrane to act both as a dust barrier and as a wiper to limit the amount of dust that makes its way into the internal chamber of the connector. The...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

Nanoionics-based devices have shown promise as alternatives to microelectro-mechanical systems (MEMS) and semiconductor diode devices for switching radio-frequency (RF) signals in...

Briefs: Information Technology
ICER-3D Hyperspectral Image Compression Software

Software has been developed to implement the ICER-3D algorithm. ICER-3D effects progressive, threedimensional (3D), wavelet-based compression of hyperspectral images. If a compressed data stream is truncated, the progressive nature of the algorithm enables reconstruction of hyperspectral data at...

Briefs: Information Technology
Context Modeler for Wavelet Compression of Spectral Hyperspectral Images

A context-modeling subalgorithm has been developed as part of an algorithm that effects three-dimensional (3D) wavelet-based compression of hyperspectral image data. The context-modeling subalgorithm, hereafter denoted the context modeler, provides estimates of probability...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Two concepts that could be applied separately or together have been suggested to enhance the utility of deployable truss structures. The concepts were intended originally for application to a truss...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Use of Nanofibers to Strengthen Hydrogels of Silica, Other Oxides, and Aerogels

Research has shown that including up to 5 percent w/w carbon nanofibers in a silica backbone of polymer crosslinked aerogels improves its strength, tripling compressive modulus and increasing tensile stress-at-break fivefold with no increase in density or decrease in...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Assemblies comprising multiple limited-height toroidal inflatable structures nested in a concentric arrangement have been invented to obtain more design flexibility than can be obtained in...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Investigating Dynamics of Eccentricity in Turbomachine

A methodology (and hardware and software to implement the methodology) has been developed as a means of investigating coupling between certain rotordynamic and hydrodynamic phenomena in turbomachines. Originally, the methodology was intended for application in an investigation of coupled...

Briefs: Materials
Improved Low-Temperature Performance of Li-Ion Cells Using New Electrolytes

As part of the continuing efforts to develop advanced electrolytes to improve the performance of lithiumion cells, especially at low temperatures, a number of electrolyte formulations have been developed that result in improved low-temperature performance (down to –60...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

White-light phase-conjugate mirrors would be incorporated into some optical systems, according to a proposal, as means of correcting for wavefront distortions caused by...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Biasable, Balanced, Fundamental Submillimeter Monolithic Membrane Mixer

This device is a biasable, submillimeter-wave, balanced mixer fabricated using JPL’s monolithic membrane process — a simplified version of planar membrane technology. The primary target application is instrumentation used for analysis of atmospheric constituents,...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Integrity Monitoring of Mercury Discharge Lamps

Mercury discharge lamps are critical in many trapped ion frequency standard applications. An integrity monitoring system can be implemented using end-of-life signatures observed in operational mercury discharge lamps, making it possible to forecast imminent failure and to take action to mitigate...

Briefs: Information Technology

A methodology and software to implement the methodology are under development in an effort to automate at least part of the process of designing integrated-circuit (IC) chips that...

Blog
Transforming Design

This week, I’m coming to you live from Anaheim, CA, and SolidWorks World 2010. The SolidWorks user community continues to flock to this annual event, and this year, there are more than 5,000 registrants learning about new features coming up in the next version of SolidWorks, as well as networking with other users,...

News: Energy

DOE recently announced that it is awarding $78 million in stimulus money for research and development of algae-based biofuel. Yet researchers from the University of Virginia have found there are...

News: Energy

Researchers from Carnegie Institute for Science have modeled three hydrogen-dense metal alloys and found there are pressure and temperature trends associated with the...

Question of the Week
Will 3D be the next major TV trend?

This week’s question concerns 3D TV. The recent success of 3D movies such as Avatar has added to an already-growing interest in 3D television and content. TV makers such as Sony, Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics, and Panasonic showed 3D ready televisions at the recent Consumer Electronics Show and expect...

News: Energy

A low-cost wildfire detection and monitoring system using mobile communications technology is being developed by researchers at University of Adelaide's School of Electrical and Electronic...

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