News: Green Design & Manufacturing
Researchers Combine Antennas and Solar Cells

Researchers have combined antennas and solar cells to work together with unprecedented efficiency. The development is a first step towards more compact, lightweight satellites. The technology could also be deployed in the autonomous antenna systems used in the aftermath of natural disasters.

For...

News: Green Design & Manufacturing
Lidar System Produces Images — One Photon Per Pixel

Researchers from MIT's Research Laboratory of Electronics (RLE) created a new lidar-like system that gauges depth when only a single photon is detected from each location.

The new scheme could enable laser rangefinders to infer depth from a hundredth as much light — and to produce images...

Podcasts
Jim Lux, Task Manager, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA

Jim Lux is task manager on FINDER (Finding Individuals for Disaster and Emergency Response), a portable radar device that detects heartbeats and breathing of victims trapped under rubble in a disaster.

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detector With Selective Polarization Coupling

A conventional low-noise detector requires a technique to both absorb incident power and convert it to an electrical signal at cryogenic temperatures. This innovation combines low-noise detector and readout functionality into one device while maintaining high absorption,...

HBM, Marlborough, MA, has introduced the GEN3i portable data recorder, part of the Genesis High Speed line of data recorders. They are designed for laboratory, power test stands, and...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Flexible Microstrip Circuits for Superconducting Electronics

Flexible circuits with superconducting wiring atop polyimide thin films are being studied to connect large numbers of wires between stages in cryogenic apparatus with low heat load. The feasibility of a full microstrip process, consisting of two layers of superconducting material...

Four application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) that provide sensing, actuation, and power conversion capabilities for distributed control in a high-temperature (over 200...

As small gasoline engines evolve to use more sophisticated electronic engine controls, new challenges will face the smallengine manufacturers, including...

Briefs: Software
Scatter-Reducing Sounding Filtration Using a Genetic Algorithm and Mean Monthly Standard Deviation

Retrieval algorithms like that used by the Orbiting Carbon Observatory (OCO)-2 mission generate massive quantities of data of varying quality and reliability. A computationally efficient, simple method of labeling problematic data points or...

Briefs: Software
CFD Extraction Tool for TecPlot From DPLR Solutions

This invention is a TecPlot macro of a computer program in the TecPlot programming language that processes data from DPLR solutions in TecPlot format. DPLR (Data-Parallel Line Relaxation) is a NASA computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code, and TecPlot is a commercial CFD post-processing tool....

Briefs: Software
RECOVIR Software for Identifying Viruses

Most single-stranded RNA (ssRNA) viruses mutate rapidly to generate a large number of strains with highly divergent capsid sequences. Determining the capsid residues or nucleotides that uniquely characterize these strains is critical in understanding the strain diversity of these viruses. RECOVIR (an...

Briefs: Software
Enhanced Contact Graph Routing (ECGR) MACHETE Simulation Model

Contact Graph Routing (CGR) for Delay/Disruption Tolerant Networking (DTN) space-based networks makes use of the predictable nature of node contacts to make real-time routing decisions given unpredictable traffic patterns. The contact graph will have been disseminated to all nodes...

Briefs: Software
Orbital Debris Engineering Model (ORDEM) v.3

A model of the manmade orbital debris environment is required by spacecraft designers, mission planners, and others in order to understand and mitigate the effects of the environment on their spacecraft or systems. A manmade environment is dynamic, and can be altered significantly by intent (e.g., the...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Hermetic Seal Designs for Sample Return Sample Tubes

Prototypes have been developed of potential hermetic sample sealing techniques for encapsulating samples in a ≈1-cm-diameter thin-walled sample tube that are compatible with IMSAH...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Thermo-Mechanical Methodology for Stabilizing Shape Memory Alloy Response

This innovation is capable of significantly reducing the amount of time required to stabilize the strain-temperature response of a shape memory alloy (SMA). Unlike traditional stabilization processes that take days to weeks to achieve stabilized response, this innovation...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Silicon Alignment Pins: An Easy Way To Realize a Wafer-to-Wafer Alignment

Submillimeter heterodyne instruments play a critical role in addressing fundamental questions regarding the evolution of galaxies as well as being a crucial tool in planetary science. To make these instruments compatible with small platforms, especially for the study of...

The LVDT linear position sensor can operate successfully over a wide range of temperatures, depending upon its design and the application in which it is operating. While...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Electric Machine With Boosted Inductance to Stabilize Current Control

High-powered motors typically have very low resistance and inductance (R and L) in their windings. This makes the pulse-width modulated (PWM) control of the current very difficult, especially when the bus voltage (V) is high. These R and L values are dictated by the motor...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Positive-Buoyancy Rover for Under Ice Mobility

A buoyant rover has been developed to traverse the underside of ice-covered lakes and seas. The rover operates at the ice/water interface and permits direct observation and measurement of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
International Space Station- Based Electromagnetic Launcher for Space Science Payloads

A method was developed of lowering the cost of planetary exploration missions by using an electromagnetic propulsion/launcher, rather than a chemical-fueled rocket for propulsion. An electromagnetic launcher (EML) based at the International Space Station (ISS)...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Advanced Hybrid Spacesuit Concept Featuring Integrated Open Loop and Closed Loop Ventilation Systems

A document discusses the design and prototype of an advanced spacesuit concept that integrates the capability to function seamlessly with multiple ventilation system approaches. Traditionally, spacesuits are designed to operate both dependently...

Briefs: Information Technology
Data Quality Screening Service

A report describes the Data Quality Screening Service (DQSS), which is designed to help automate the filtering of remote sensing data on behalf of science users. Whereas this process often involves much research through quality documents followed by laborious coding, the DQSS is a Web Service that provides data...

In today’s environment of doing more with less, designers and engineers are constantly pressured to increase productivity, especially in small- and medium-sized businesses where a...

The Cryogenic Refuge Alternative Supply System (CryoRASS), and a smaller liquid air-filled backpack under development at NASA Kennedy Space Center’s (KSC) Biomedical Lab, have the...

Application Briefs: Materials
NASA Selects “Game-Changing” Thermal Management Concept

Thermacore was recently selected by NASA Space Technology’s Game Changing Development Program to have one of its thermal management concepts evaluated for potential use in future spacecraft.

Application Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Air-Data System Detects Aircraft Icing

Michigan Aerospace Corporation (MAC) has begun work on a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract with NASA’s Langley Research Center. The contract, “RIDES: Raman Icing Detection...

It’s that time of year when we ask NASA Tech Briefs readers to vote for the annual Readers’ Choice Product of the Year Awards.

Each month, our editors choose a...

Are the shoes you’re wearing really made of leather? Is the table nearby made of wood? How can you be sure? These questions may seem trivial in everyday life, but knowing the precise...

Industries as diverse as architecture, engineering, construction, advertising, and medical have all incorporated an array of 3D visualization technologies into their design,...

Question of the Week
Will Self-Erasing Chips Catch On?

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