Briefs : Physical Sciences
MEMS-Based Piezoelectric/Electrostatic Inchworm Actuator

A proposed inchworm actuator, to be designed and fabricated according to the principles of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS), would effect linear motion characterized by steps as small as nanometers and an overall range of travel of hundreds of microns. Potential applications for...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
The Ames Power Monitoring System

Power demand can be managed to reduce cost.

The Ames Power Monitoring System (APMS) is a centralized system of power meters, computer hardware, and special-purpose software that collects and stores electrical power data by various facilities at Ames Research Center (ARC). This system is needed because of...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Adaptive Suppression of Noise in Voice Communications

A subsystem for the adaptive suppression of noise in a voice-communication system effects a high level of reduction of noise that enters the system through microphones. The subsystem includes a digital signal processor (DSP) plus circuitry that implements voice-recognition and...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Microbatteries for Combinatorial Studies of Conventional Lithium-Ion Batteries

Integrated arrays of microscopic solid-state batteries have been demonstrated in a continuing effort to develop microscopic sources of power and of voltage reference circuits to be incorporated into low-power integrated circuits. Perhaps even more importantly, arrays...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
High-Performance Solid-State W-Band Power Amplifiers

The figure shows one of four solid-state power amplifiers, each capable of generating an output power ≥240 mW over one of four overlapping frequency bands from 71 to 106 GHz. (The bands are 71 to 84, 80 to 92, 88 to 99, and 89 to 106 GHz.) The amplifiers are designed for optimum performance...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Paint-Overspray Catcher

An apparatus to catch paint overspray has been proposed. Overspray is an unavoidable parasitic component of spray that occurs because the flow of air or other gas in the spray must turn at the sprayed surface. Very small droplets are carried away in this turning flow, and some land on adjacent surfaces not meant to be...

Briefs : Information Technology
Aerodynamic Design Using Neural Networks

The design of aerodynamic components of aircraft, such as wings or engines, involves a process of obtaining the most optimal component shape that can deliver the desired level of component performance, subject to various constraints, e.g., total weight or cost, that the component must satisfy. Aerodynamic...

Briefs : Information Technology
Adaptation of Mesoscale Weather Models to Local Forecasting

Methodologies have been developed for (1) configuring mesoscale numerical weather- prediction models for execution on high- performance computer workstations to make short-range weather forecasts for the vicinity of the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) and the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station...

Briefs : Information Technology
Software for Managing Inventory of Flight Hardware

The Flight Hardware Support Request System (FHSRS) is a computer program that relieves engineers at Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) of most of the non-engineering administrative burden of managing an inventory of flight hardware. The FHSRS can also be adapted to perform similar functions for...

Briefs : Information Technology
yourSky: Custom Sky-Image Mosaics via the Internet

yourSky is a computer program that supplies custom astronomical image mosaics of sky regions specified by requesters using client computers connected to the Internet. [yourSky is an upgraded version of the software reported in "Software for Generating Mosaics of Astronomical Images" (NPO-21121),...

Briefs : Information Technology
Software Estimates Costs of Testing Rocket Engines

Simulation-Based Cost Model (SiCM), a discrete event simulation developed in Extend™, simulates pertinent aspects of the testing of rocket propulsion test articles for the purpose of estimating the costs of such testing during time intervals specified by its users. A user enters input data for...

Briefs : Information Technology
Software Supports Distributed Operations via the Internet

Multi-mission Encrypted Communication System (MECS) is a computer program that enables authorized, geographically dispersed users to gain secure access to a common set of data files via the Internet. MECS is compatible with legacy application programs and a variety of operating systems....

Briefs : Information Technology
Software Assists in Extensive Environmental Auditing

The Base Environmental Management System (BEMS) is a Web-based application program for managing and tracking audits by the Environmental Office of Stennis Space Center in conformity with standard 14001 of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO 14001). (This standard specifies...

Briefs : Information Technology
Software for Collaborative Engineering of Launch Rockets

The Rocket Evaluation and Cost Integration for Propulsion and Engineering software enables collaborative computing with automated exchange of information in the design and analysis of launch rockets and other complex systems. RECIPE can interact with and incorporate a variety of programs,...

Briefs : Materials
Treatment To Destroy Chloro-hydrocarbon Liquids in the Ground

A relatively simple chemical treatment that involves the use of emulsified iron has been found to be effective in remediating groundwater contaminated with trichloroethylene and other dense chlorohydrocarbon liquids. These liquids are members of the class of dense, non-aqueous phase...

Briefs : Materials
Process for Smoothing an Si Substrate After Etching of SiO₂

A reactive-ion etching (RIE) process for smoothing a silicon substrate has been devised. The process is especially useful for smoothing those silicon areas that have been exposed by etching a pattern of holes in a layer of silicon dioxide that covers the substrate. Applications in...

Briefs : Materials
Flexible Composite-Material Pressure Vessel

A proposed lightweight pressure vessel would be made of a composite of high-tenacity continuous fibers and a flexible matrix material. The flexibility of this pressure vessel would render it (1) compactly stowable for transport and (2) more able to withstand impacts, relative to lightweight pressure...

Briefs : Materials
Lower-Conductivity Thermal-Barrier Coatings

Thermal-barrier coatings (TBCs) that have both initial and post-exposure thermal conductivities lower than those of yttria-stabilized zirconia TBCs have been developed. TBCs are thin ceramic layers, generally applied by plasma spraying or physical vapor deposition, that are used to insulate air-cooled...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Noncircular Cross Sections Could Enhance Mixing in Sprays

A computational study has shown that by injecting drops in jets of gas having square, elliptical, triangular, or other noncircular injection cross sections, it should be possible to increase (relative to comparable situations having circular cross section) the entrainment and dispersion...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Probe Without Moving Parts Measures Flow Angle

The measurement of local flow angle is critical in many fluid-dynamic applications, including the aerodynamic flight testing of new aircraft and flight systems. Flight researchers at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center have recently developed, flight-tested, and patented the force-based flow-angle...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Predicting and Preventing Incipient Flameout in Combustors

A method of predicting and preventing incipient flameout in a combustor has been proposed. The method should be applicable to a variety of liquid- and gas-fueled combustors in furnaces and turbine engines. Until now, there have been methods of detecting flameouts after they have...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Detecting Conductive Liquid Leaking From Nonconductive Pipe

A method that can be implemented with relatively simple electronic circuitry provides a capability for detecting leakage of an electrically conductive liquid from an electrically nonconductive underground pipe. Alternatively or in addition, the method can be applied to locate the pipe,...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Hot Films on Ceramic Substrates for Measuring Skin Friction

Hot-film sensors, consisting of a metallic film on an electrically nonconductive substrate, have been used to measure skin friction as far back as 1931. A hot film is maintained at an elevated temperature relative to the local flow by passing an electrical current through it. The power...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Nulling Infrared Radiometer for Measuring Temperature

A nulling, self-calibrating infrared radiometer is being developed for use in noncontact measurement of temperature in any of a variety of industrial and scientific applications. This instrument is expected to be especially well-suited to measurement of ambient or near-ambient temperature...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
Preparation of Regular Specimens for Atom Probes

A method of preparation of specimens of non-electropolishable materials for analysis by atom probes is being developed as a superior alternative to a prior method. In comparison with the prior method, the present method involves less processing time. Also, whereas the prior method yields...

Briefs : Information Technology
Combining Multiple Gyroscope Outputs for Increased Accuracy

A proposed method of processing the outputs of multiple gyroscopes to increase the accuracy of rate (that is, angular- velocity) readings has been developed theoretically and demonstrated by computer simulation. Although the method is applicable, in principle, to any gyroscopes, it is...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Metal Side Reflectors for Trapping Light in QWIPs

Focal-plane arrays of quantum-well infrared photodetectors (QWIPs) equipped with both light-coupling diffraction gratings and metal side reflectors have been proposed, and prototypes are expected to be fabricated soon. The purpose served by the metal side reflectors is to increase quantum...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Metallized Capillaries as Probes for Raman Spectroscopy

A class of miniature probes has been proposed to supplant the fiber-optic probes used heretofore in some Raman and fluorescence spectroscopic systems. A probe according to the proposal would include a capillary tube coated with metal on its inside to make it reflective. A microlens would be...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Thermal Load Sensors for Automotive Applications

Next-generation thermal load sensors, or combo sensors, optimize climate control and lighting in "intelligent automobiles," thereby enhancing the comfort and safety of drivers and passengers. The sensors combine performance and quality with customized design to exceed the rigorous requirements of...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Inverse Tomo-Lithography for Making Microscopic 3D Parts

According to a proposal, basic x-ray lithography would be extended to incorporate a technique, called "inverse tomography," that would enable the fabrication of microscopic three-dimensional (3D) objects. The proposed inverse tomo-lithographic process would make it possible to produce...