The Embedded Technology supplement to the Air Force Research Laboratory's Technology Horizons magazine features board-level electronics and COTS solutions for design engineers, as well as a variety of product offerings.


Rochester Institute of Technology and the University of Rochester recently won $847,000 from NASA's Astronomy Physics Research and Analysis program to build and test a detector that will capture sharper images and consume less power than technology currently in use. This new detector could transform imaging applications on NASA...


You're a master of the air guitar, playing along with your favorite rock band. But what if your air guitar actually made real music? A team of engineers at the Australian government's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) has created the wearable instrument shirt (WIS), a T-shirt that lets...


Computer science engineers at Washington University in St. Louis have developed wireless sensor networks with software agents that have been able to navigate a robot safely through a simulated fire, and spot a fire by seeking out heat. The sensor networks also can be used to protect containers in a manufacturing environment.


Engineers at Nippon Telephone & Telegraph (NTT, Tokyo, Japan) have developed three separate prototype devices that use a new electric field/photonics method allowing the surface of the body to be used as a safe, high-speed network transmission path. Called "RedTacton," a transmission path is formed at the moment a part of...


At Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), a team led by assistant professor Marin Soljacic is developing a method to broadcast power to devices to charge them, rather than depending on cords and cables. Instead of irradiating the environment with electromagnetic waves, a power transmitter would fill the space around...


Researchers at the University of Manchester (Manchester, UK) have devised an experimental method of virtual reality for the treatment of phantom limb pain (PLP) experienced by some amputees. Using headsets, data gloves, and other sensors, amputees used their remaining physical limbs to control the movements of a...

Searching for defects amid several thousand lines of code in mission critical software, NASA’s Independent Verification and Validating...

13-bit magnetic sensor

Renishaw, Hoffman Estates, IL, has introduced a 13-bit magnetic sensor for rotary and angular positioning control. Providing 8,192 counts per revolution, the sensors are available in chip, chip-on-board, and ready-to-mount packaged versions. The solid-state, non-contact design features an integrated circuit chip that...

Application Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Mars Exploration Rovers Use Amplifier System to Transmit Information

580412 SE 20 Power Amplifier Package
StratEdge Corp.
San Diego, CA

SpeckleCam Electronic Speckle Pattern
Interferometer (ESPI)
4D Technology
Tucson, AZ


SST (Speaker-Specific Technology) improves the performance of equalized audio systems, particularly “cone cry” found in lower-end equipment. The SST correction algorithm is based on the...

Techs for License
Turbo-Cycle Rotor Engine

An engine with a very low part count, high power density, and flexibility to operate with a constant pressure burn for high efficiency is in the concept stage. It is optimizable for power, efficiency, and high power...

Briefs: Test & Measurement
Simulator for Testing Spacecraft Separation Devices

A report describes the main features of a system for testing pyrotechnic and mechanical devices used to separate spacecraft and modules of spacecraft during flight. The system includes a spacecraft simulator [also denoted a large mobility base (LMB)] equipped with air thrusters, sensors, and...

An apparatus for positioning and holding material specimens is a major subsystem of a system for impact testing of the specimens at temperatures up to 1,500 °C. This apparatus and...

The figure shows a compact, rugged, simple sensor head that is part of an instrumentation system for making measurements to characterize the severity of aircraft-icing conditions...

A desk-sized apparatus for testing monoball bearings and their lubricants offers advantages, relative to prior such apparatuses, of (1) a greater degree of automation and (2) capability of...

Briefs: Test & Measurement
Advances in Measurement of Skin Friction in Airflow

The surface interferometric skin-friction (SISF) measurement system is an instrument for determining the distribution of surface shear stress (skin friction) on a wind-tunnel model. The SISF system utilizes the established oil-film interference method, along with advanced image-data-processing...

Articles: Communications
30 Years of Communications Technology

In celebration of the 30th Anniversary of NASA Tech Briefs, our features in 2006 highlight a different technology category each month, tracing the past 30 years of the technology, and continuing with a...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Infrared Instrument for Detecting Hydrogen Fires

The figure shows an instrument incorporating an infrared camera for detecting small hydrogen fires. The instrument has been developed as an improved replacement for prior infrared and...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Modified Coaxial Probe Feeds for Layered Antennas

In a modified configuration of a coaxial probe feed for a layered printed-circuit antenna (e.g., a microstrip antenna), the outer conductor of the coaxial cable extends through the thickness...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Detecting Negative Obstacles by Use of Radar

Because such wavelengths are comparable to the characteristic dimensions of terrain features associated with negative hazards, a significant amount of diffraction would occur at such features. In...

Briefs: Test & Measurement
Instrument for Aircraft-Icing and Cloud- Physics Measurements

The figure shows a compact, rugged, simple sensor head that is part of an instrumentation system for making measurements to characterize the severity of aircraft-icing conditions and/or to perform research on cloud physics. The quantities that are calculated from measurement data...

Briefs: Software

PixelLearn is an integrated user-interface computer program for classifying pixels in scientific images. Heretofore, training a machine-learning algorithm to classify pixels in images has been tedious and difficult. PixelLearn provides a graphical user interface that makes it faster and more intuitive, leading to more interactive...

Briefs: Software
New Software for Predicting Charging of Spacecraft

The NASA/Air Force Spacecraft Charging System Analyzer Program (Nascap-2K) is a comprehensive update, revision, and extension of several NASA and Air Force codes for predicting electrical charging of spacecraft. Nascap-2K integrates the capabilities and models included in four independent...

Briefs: Software
Conversion Between Osculating and Mean Orbital Elements

Osculating/Mean Orbital Element Conversion (C version) (OSMEANC) is a C-language computer program that performs precise conversions between osculating and mean classical orbital elements. OSMEANC can be used for precise design of spacecraft missions and maneuvers and precise calculation of...

Briefs: Software
Generating a 2D Representation of a Complex Data Structure

A computer program, designed to assist in the development and debugging of other software, generates a two-dimensional (2D) representation of a possibly complex ndimensional (where n is an integer >2) data structure or abstract rank-n object in that other software. The nature of the...

Two modern cryogenic variants of the Pound circuit have been devised to increase the frequency stability of microwave oscillators that include cryogenic sapphire-filled cavity...

Briefs: Materials
Making Activated Carbon by Wet Pressurized Pyrolysis

A wet pressurized pyrolysis (wet carbonization) process has been invented as a means of producing activated carbon from a wide variety of inedible biomass consisting principally of plant wastes. The principal intended use of this activated carbon is room-temperature adsorption of pollutant...

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