be secured to a mating carrier by use of screws or epoxy; this mounting scheme helps the housings and their contents to withstand severe vibrations and ensures thermal conduction for dissipation of heat generated during operation of the contained circuitry. The circuits contained in the housings communicate with the external world via standard RS-485 interfaces. Multiple units comprising housings and their contents can easily be electrically connected together in a daisy chain arrangement, within which individual units are addressable via the RS-485 bus. Hence, a single master computer connected to the bus can program, or read data from, any or all such units. Examples of such units include small motor drives, programmable thermostats, data loggers, and programmable controllers. There are numerous potential uses for these units in medical equipment, automotive electronics, manufacturing equipment, and robots.

This work was done by David E. Howard, Dennis A. Smith, and Dean C. Alhorn of Marshall Space Flight Center. For further information, access the Technical Support Package (TSP) free on-line at www. under the Electronics/ Computers category.

This invention is owned by NASA, and a patent application has been filed. For further information, contact Sammy Nabors, MSFC Commercialization Assistance Lead, at sammy. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Refer to MFS-32000-1

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the June, 2006 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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