Briefs: Information Technology
Evaluating Performance of Components

Parallel Component Performance Benchmarks is a computer program developed to aid the evaluation of the Common Component Architecture (CCA) — a software architecture, based on a component model, that was conceived to foster high-performance computing, including parallel computing. More specifically, this...

A computationally efficient algorithm for minimizing the flight time of an aircraft in a variable wind field has been invented. The algorithm, referred to as...

Briefs: Materials
Fuels Containing Methane or Natural Gas in Solution

While exploring ways of producing better fuels for propulsion of a spacecraft on the Mars sample return mission, a researcher at Johnson Space Center (JSC) devised a way of blending fuel by combining methane or natural gas with a second fuel to produce a fuel that can be maintained in liquid...

Mats of free-standing manganese oxide (MnxOy ) nanowires have been fabricated as experimental electrode materials for rechargeable electro- chemical power...

Briefs: Materials
Personal Radiation Protection System

A report describes the personal radiation protection system (PRPS), which has been invented for use on the International Space Station and other spacecraft. The PRPS comprises walls that can be erected inside spacecraft, where and when needed, to reduce the amount of radiation to which personnel are exposed....

A new software equipped with novel image processing algorithms and graphical-user-interface (GUI) tools has been designed for automated analysis and processing of...

Briefs: Software
Prioritizing Scientific Data for Transmission

A software system has been developed for prioritizing newly acquired geological data onboard a planetary rover. The system has been designed to enable efficient use of limited communication resources by transmitting the data likely to have the most scientific value. This software operates onboard a...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Estimating Basic Preliminary Design Performances of Aerospace Vehicles

Aerodynamics and Performance Estimation Toolset is a collection of four software programs for rapidly estimating the preliminary design performance of aerospace vehicles represented by doing simplified calculations based on ballistic trajectories, the ideal rocket equation,...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Bubble Eliminator Based on Centifugal Flow

The fluid bubble eliminator (FBE) is a device that removes gas bubbles from a flowing liquid. The FBE contains no moving parts and does not require any power input beyond that needed to pump the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Inflatable Emergency Atmospheric-Entry Vehicles

In response to the loss of seven astronauts in the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, large, lightweight, inflatable atmospheric-entry vehicles have been proposed as means of emergency descent...

The upper part of Figure 1 shows a small-scale prototype of a developmental class of lightweight, deployable structures that would support panels in precise alignments. In this case,...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Compact Motors Provide Motion Control for Explosive Ordnance Disposal Robot

A remote-controlled, compact Explosive Ordnance Disposal Robot (EOD) has been deployed in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other worldwide locations to secure and transport hazardous, dangerous, or suspicious materials to a safe location where it can be disarmed or destroyed. The...

Briefs: Test & Measurement
Small Active Radiation Monitor

A device, named small active radiation monitor, allows on-orbit evaluations during periods of increased radiation, after extravehicular activities, or at predesignated times for crews on such long-duration space missions as on the International Space Station. It also permits direct evaluation of biological doses, a...

Briefs: Test & Measurement
Portable Electromyograph

A portable electronic apparatus records electromyographic (EMG) signals in as many as 16 channels at a sampling rate of 1,024 Hz in each channel. The apparatus (see figure) includes 16 differential EMG electrodes...

The Video Guidance Sensor (VGS) system is an optoelectronic sensor that provides automated guidance between two vehicles. In the original intended application, the two vehicles would be...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Ka-Band Autonomous Formation Flying Sensor

A Ka-band integrated range and bearing- angle formation sensor called the Autonomous Formation Flying (AFF) Sensor has been developed to enable deep-space formation flying of multiple spacecraft. The AFF Sensor concept is similar to that of the Global Positioning System (GPS), but the AFF Sensor would...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
CMOS VLSI Active-Pixel Sensor for Tracking

An architecture for a proposed active pixel sensor (APS) and a design to implement the architecture in a complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) very-large-scale integrated (VLSI) circuit provide for some advanced features that are expected to be especially desirable for tracking pointlike...

Lightweight, deployable antennas for a variety of outer-space and terrestrial applications would be designed and fabricated according to the concept of cold hibernated elastic memory (CHEM)...

Microstrip-patch-style antennas that generate monopole radiation patterns similar to those of quarter-wave whip antennas can be designed to have dimensions smaller than those...

Although the preponderance of electronic equipment in our professional environment makes work more convenient, these devices complicate demands on...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
A 2-to-48-MHz Phase-Locked Loop

A 2-to-48-MHz phase-locked loop (PLL), developed for the U.S. space program, meets or exceeds all space shuttle clock electrical interface requirements by taking as its reference a 2-to-48-MHz clock signal and outputting a phaselocked clock signal set at the same frequency as the reference clock with transistor-...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Some Improvements in Signal-Conditioning Circuits

Two documents present wide-ranging discussions of some issues in the design and operation of signal-conditioning circuits. The first document focuses on active low-pass filter circuits that contain resistors, capacitors, and operational amplifiers. It describes design and operational problems...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Part 1 of a Computational Study of a Drop-Laden Mixing Layer

This first of three reports on a computational study of a drop-laden temporal mixing layer presents the results of direct numerical simulations (DNS) of well-resolved flow fields and the derivation of the large-eddy simulation (LES) equations that would govern the larger scales of a...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Selected Papers on Protoplanetary Disks
Three papers present studies of thermal balances, dynamics, and electromagnetic spectra of protoplanetary disks, which comprise gas and dust orbiting young stars. One paper addresses the reprocessing, in a disk, of photons that originate in the disk itself in addition to photons that originate in the stellar...

A module that dissolves oxygen in water at concentrations approaching saturation, without generating bubbles of oxygen gas, has been developed as a prototype of improved oxygenators for...

Arrays of multiple, nominally identical sensors with sensor-output-processing electronic hardware and software are being developed in order to obtain accuracy, reliability, and lifetime...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Integrated-Optic Oxygen Sensors

Compact optical oxygen sensors with self-calibration capabilities are undergoing development. A sensor of this type features a single-chip, integrated-optic design implemented by photolithographic fabrication of optical waveguides in a photosensitive porous glass. The porosity serves as both a matrix for retention...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Hybrid Piezoelectric/Fiber-Optic Sensor Sheets

Hybrid piezoelectric/fiber-optic (HyPFO) sensor sheets are undergoing development. They are intended for use in nondestructive evaluation and long-term monitoring of the integrity of diverse structures, including aerospace, aeronautical, automotive, and large stationary ones. It is anticipated that...

Briefs: Information Technology
Hybrid Image-Plane/Stereo Manipulation

Hybrid Image-Plane/Stereo (HIPS) manipulation is a method of processing image data, and of controlling a robotic manipulator arm in response to the data, that enables the manipulator arm to place an...

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