Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Diaphragm Pump With Resonant Piezoelectric Drive

A diaphragm pump driven by a piezoelectric actuator is undergoing development. This pump is intended to be a prototype of lightweight, highly reliable pumps for circulating cooling liquids in...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Improved Quick-Release Pin Mechanism

An improved quick-release pin mechanism supplants a prior such mechanism in which the pin bears a shear load to hold two objects together. The prior mechanism, of a ball-locking design, can fail when vibrations cause balls to fall out. The load-bearing pin is an outer tube with a handle at one end (hereafter...

An anodizing process, at an early stage of development at the time of reporting the information for this article, has shown promise as a means of fabricating alumina nanotemplates...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fluorine-Based DRIE of Fused Silica

A process of deep reactive-ion etching (DRIE) using a fluorine-based gas mixture enhanced by induction-coupled plasma (ICP) has been demonstrated to be effective in forming high-aspect-ratio three-dimensional patterns in fused silica. The patterns are defined in part by an etch mask in the form of a thick,...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Mechanical Alloying for Making Thermoelectric Compounds

An economical room-temperature mechanical alloying process has been shown to be an effective means of making a homogeneous powder that can be hot-pressed to synthesize a thermoelectric...

An automated flying-insect detection system (AFIDS) was developed as a proof-of-concept instrument for real-time detection and identification of flying insects. This type of system has use in...

A laboratory blackbody cavity has been designed and built for calibrating infrared radiometers used to measure radiant temperatures in the range from about 200 to about 273 K. In this...

Calligraphic poling is a technique for generating an arbitrary, possibly complex pattern of localized reversal in the direction of permanent polarization in a wafer of LiNbO3 or other...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Composite Pulse Tube

A modification of the design of the pulse tube in a pulse-tube cryocooler reduces axial thermal conductance while preserving radial thermal conductance. It is desirable to minimize axial thermal conductance in the pulse-tube wall to minimize leakage of heat between the warm and cold ends of the pulse tube. At the same time,...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Photometric Calibration of Consumer Video Cameras

Equipment and techniques have been developed to implement a method of photometric calibration of consumer video cameras for imaging of objects that are sufficiently narrow or sufficiently distant to be optically equivalent to point or line sources. Heretofore, it has been difficult to calibrate...

A study of four previously published computational criteria for identifying vortices in high-pressure flows has led to the selection of one of them as the best. This development can...

The risk of premature failure of thermal barrier coatings (TBCs), typically composed of yttria-stabilized zirconia (YSZ), compromises the reliability of TBCs used to provide thermal protection...

A class of proposed thermionic cooling devices would incorporate precise arrays of metal nanowires as electron emitters. The proposed devices could be highly miniaturized, enabling...

A method of approximating a scalar function of n independent variables (where n is a positive integer) to arbitrary accuracy has been developed. This method is expected to be...

A method of automated recognition of three-dimensional (3D) features in images generated by ground-penetrating imaging radar (GPIR) is undergoing development. GPIR 3D images can be analyzed...

An algorithm has been developed to enable a computer aboard a robot to autonomously plan the path of the manipulator arm of the robot to avoid collisions between the arm and any...

A recently conceived method of automated diagnosis of a complex electromechanical system affords a complete set of capabilities for hybrid diagnosis in the case in which the state of...

Briefs: Information Technology
State-Estimation Algorithm Based on Computer Vision

An algorithm and software to implement the algorithm are being developed as means to estimate the state (that is, the position and velocity) of an autonomous vehicle, relative to a visible nearby target object, to provide guidance for maneuvering the vehicle. In the original intended...

Briefs: Information Technology
Accumulate-Repeat-Accumulate-Accumulate Codes

Accumulate-repeat- accumulate-accumulate (ARAA) codes have been proposed, inspired by the recently proposed accumulate- repeat-accumulate (ARA) codes. These are error-correcting codes suitable...

Briefs: Medical
Ultraviolet-Resistant Bacterial Spores

A document summarizes a study in which it was found that spores of the SAFR-032 strain of Bacillus pumilus can survive doses of ultraviolet (UV) radiation, γ radiation, and hydrogen peroxide in proportions much greater than those of other bacteria. The study was part of a continuing effort to understand...

Briefs: Medical
Effects of Bone Morphogenic Proteins on Engineered Cartilage

A report describes experiments on the effects of bone morphogenic proteins (BMPs) on engineered cartilage grown in vitro. In the experiments, bovine calf articular chondrocytes were seeded onto biodegradable polyglycolic acid scaffolds and cultured in, variously, a control medium or a...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Launching Payloads Into Orbit at Relatively Low Cost

A report proposes the development of a system for launching payloads into orbit at about one-fifth the cost per unit payload weight of current systems. The system would be based on the formerly secret PILOT microsatellite- launching system developed in response to the Soviet launch of...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Telescope Formation at L2 for Observing Earth’s Atmosphere

Two documents describe a proposed Earth-atmosphere observatory to orbit the Sun at the Sun-Earth L2 Lagrange point — a point of unstable equilibrium in the shadow of the Earth, about 1.5 million km from the Earth along an outward projection of the Earth-Sun axis. The observatory...

Briefs: Software
Designing Rolling-Element Bearings

Bearing Analysis Tool (BAT) is a computer program for designing rolling-element bearings for cryogenic turbomachines. BAT provides a graphical user interface (GUI) that guides the entry of data to develop mathematical models of bearings. The GUI breaks model data into logical subsets that are entered through...

DSS-Prototyper is an open-source, real-time 3D virtual environment software that supports design simulation for the new Vision for Space Exploration (VSE). This is a simulation of NASA's proposed...

Patented in 1991, friction stir welding (FSW) has since been used widely to create strong joints in aluminum alloys. The aircraft industry has started to adapt this...

Computational analysis of fluid-structure interactions (FSI) represents a considerable challenge for most computational analysis codes. Simple one-way coupled problems,...

Briefs: Software
Solving Equations of Multibody Dynamics

Darts++ is a computer program for solving the equations of motion of a multibody system or of a multibody model of a dynamic system. It is intended especially for use in dynamical simulations performed in designing and analyzing, and developing software for the control of, complex mechanical systems....

Briefs: Software
Analysis of Complex Valve and Feed Systems

A numerical framework for analysis of complex valve systems supports testing of propulsive systems by simulating key valve and control system components in the test loop. In particular, it is designed to enhance the analysis capability in terms of identifying system transients and quantifying the valve...

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