An update has been performed to software designed to do very rapid automated measurements of craters created in sandy substrates by rocket exhaust on liftoff. The previous software was optimized for pristine lab geometry and lighting conditions. This software has been enhanced to include a section for manual measurements of crater parameters; namely, crater depth, crater full width at half max, and estimated crater volume. The tools provide a very rapid method to measure these manual parameters to ease the burden of analyzing large data sets.

This software allows for rapid quantization of the rocket crater parameters where automated methods may not work. The progress of spreadsheet data is continuously saved so that data is never lost, and data can be copied to clipboards and pasted to other software for analysis. The volume estimation of a crater is based on the central max depth axis line, and the polygonal shape of the crater is integrated around that axis.

This work was done by Philip Metzger of Kennedy Space Center and Christopher Immer of ASRC Aerospace Corp. KSC-13386

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the January, 2012 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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