New Resin Enables Micro-Sculpting of Conductive 3D Structures

Combined with state-of-the-art micro-sculpting techniques, a new resin holds promise for making customized electrodes for fuel cells or batteries, as well as biosensor interfaces for medical uses.

Researchers Turn Smartphone into Handheld Biosensor

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign researchers have developed a cradle and app for the iPhone that uses the device’s built-in camera and processing power as a biosensor to detect toxins, proteins, bacteria, viruses and other molecules.

Advanced Paper Repels Liquids

By modifying the underlying network of cellulose fibers, etching off surface “fluff” and applying a thin chemical coating, researchers have created a new type of paper that repels a wide variety of liquids, including water and oil.

Question of the Week
Do Social Tools Make Employees More Productive?

According to a recent Microsoft survey conducted by research firm Ipsos, nearly 50% of employees believe social tools make them more productive while more than 30% of companies restrict the use or undervalue them. Typical professional uses for social networks include communicating with...

New Light-Controlled Hydrogel Has A Future in Soft Robotics

Inspired by the way plants grow toward the sun and light sources, researchers from the University of California, Berkeley have created a hydrogel that is controllable by light.

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Cloud Absorption Radiometer Autonomous Navigation System — CANS

CAR (cloud absorption radiometer) acquires spatial reference data from host aircraft navigation systems. This poses various problems during CAR data reduction, including navigation data format, accuracy of position data, accuracy of airframe inertial data, and navigation data...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Hyperspectral Imager-Tracker

The Hyperspectral Imager-Tracker (HIT) is a technique for visualization and tracking of low-contrast, fast-moving objects. The HIT architecture is based on an innovative and only recently developed concept in imaging optics. This innovative architecture will give the Light Prescriptions Innovators (LPI) HIT the...

Briefs: Information Technology
Software Method for Computed Tomography Cylinder Data Unwrapping, Re-slicing, and Analysis

A software method has been developed that is applicable for analyzing cylindrical and partially cylindrical objects inspected using computed tomography (CT). This method involves unwrapping and re-slicing data so that the CT data from the cylindrical...

Briefs: Information Technology
Discrete Data Qualification System and Method Comprising Noise Series Fault Detection

A Sensor Data Qualification (SDQ) function has been developed that allows the onboard flight computers on NASA’s launch vehicles to determine the validity of sensor data to ensure that critical safety and operational decisions are not based on faulty sensor...

Briefs: Software
Web Application Software for Ground Operations Planning Database (GOPDb) Management

A Web application facilitates collaborative development of the ground operations planning document. This will reduce costs and development time for new programs by incorporating the data governance, access control, and revision tracking of the ground operations...

A compact, low-cost laser communications transceiver was prototyped for downlinking data at 10 Gb/s from Earth-orbiting spacecraft. The design can...

Briefs: Software
Application Program Interface for the Orion Aerodynamics Database

The Application Programming Interface (API) for the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) Aerodynamic Database has been developed to provide the developers of software an easily implemented, fully self-contained method of accessing the CEV Aerodynamic Database for use in their analysis...

The Digital Beamforming Synthetic Aperture Radar (DBSAR) is an eight-channel phased array radar system that employs solid-state radar transceivers, a microstrip patch antenna, and a...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Software Defined Radio With Parallelized Software Architecture

This software implements softwaredefined radio procession over multicore, multi-CPU systems in a way that maximizes the use of CPU resources in the system. The software treats each processing step in either a communications or navigation modulator or demodulator system as an...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Phase Change Material Thermal Power Generator

An innovative modification has been made to a previously patented design for the Phase Change Material (PCM) Thermal Generator, which works in water where ocean temperature alternatively melts wax in canisters, or allows the wax to re-solidify, causing high-pressure oil to flow through a hydraulic...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
The Thermal Hogan — A Means of Surviving the Lunar Night

A document describes the Thermal Hogan, a new shelter concept that would be used on the Moon to moderate the extreme nighttime temperatures, allowing survival of equipment with minimal heater power. It is lightweight, has few mechanical parts, and would be relatively easy to deploy on...

A design of an Active Magnetic Regenerative Refrigeration (AMRR) system has been developed for space applications. It uses an innovative 3He cryogenic...

Briefs: Materials
Nano-Ceramic Coated Plastics

Plastic products, due to their durability, safety, and low manufacturing cost, are now rapidly replacing cookware items traditionally made of glass and ceramics. Despite this trend, some still prefer relatively expensive and more fragile ceramic/glassware because plastics can deteriorate over time after exposure to...

Briefs: Materials
Preparation of a Bimetal Using Mechanical Alloying for Environmental or Industrial Use

Following the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act ban on their manufacture, PCBs remain an environmental threat. PCBs are known to bio-accumulate and concentrate in fatty tissues. Further complications arise from the potential for contamination of commercial...

Briefs: Materials
Phase Change Material for Temperature Control of Imager or Sounder on GOES Type Satellites in GEO

An imager or sounder on satellites, such as the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES), in geostationary orbit (GEO) has a scan mirror and motor in the scan cavity. The GEO orbit is 24 hours long. During part of the orbit, direct...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Dual-Compartment Inflatable Suitlock

There is a need for an improvement over current NASA Extravehicular Activity (EVA) technology. The technology must allow the capacity for quicker, more efficient egress/ingress, allow for “shirtsleeve” suit maintenance, be compact in transport, and be applicable to environments ranging from planetary...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Piezoelectrically Initiated Pyrotechnic Igniter

This innovation consists of a pyrotechnic initiator and piezoelectric initiation system. The device will be capable of being initiated mechanically; resisting initiation by EMF, RF, and EMI (electromagnetic field, radio frequency, and electromagnetic interference, respectively); and initiating in...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Folding Elastic Thermal Surface — FETS

The FETS is a light and compact thermal surface (sun shade, IR thermal shield, cover, and/or deployable radiator) that is mounted on a set of offset tape-spring hinges. The thermal surface is...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Genesis Ultrapure Water Megasonic Wafer Spin Cleaner

A device removes, with high precision, the majority of surface particle contamination greater than 1-micron-diameter in size from ultrapure semiconductor wafer materials containing implanted solar wind samples returned by NASA’s Genesis mission. This cleaning device uses a 1.5- liter/minute...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Modular Connector Keying Concept

For panel-mount-type connectors, keying is usually “built-in” to the connector body, necessitating different part numbers for each key arrangement. This is costly for jobs that require small quantities. This invention was driven to provide a cost savings and to reduce documentation of individual parts.

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Environmental Qualification of a Single- Crystal Silicon Mirror for Spaceflight Use

This innovation is the environmental qualification of a single-crystal silicon mirror for spaceflight use. The single-crystal silicon mirror technology is a previous innovation, but until now, a mirror of this type has not been qualified for spaceflight use. The...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Multi-Pass Quadrupole Mass Analyzer

Analysis of the composition of planetary atmospheres is one of the most important and fundamental measurements in planetary robotic exploration. Quadrupole mass analyzers (QMAs) are the primary tool used to execute these investigations, but reductions in size of these instruments has sacrificed mass resolving...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Lunar Sulfur Capture System

The Lunar Sulfur Capture System (LSCS) protects in situ resource utilization (ISRU) hardware from corrosion, and reduces contaminant levels in water condensed for electrolysis. The LSCS uses a lunar soil sorbent to trap over 98 percent of sulfur gases and about twothirds of halide gases evolved during hydrogen...

The purpose of this development was to validate the use of the external Rover Ultra High Frequency (RUHF) antenna for space under extreme thermal environments to be...

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