Keyword: Rotary-wing aircraft

Articles: Robotics, Automation & Control
Tech Briefs spoke with NASA’s Keith Comeaux, Deputy Project Chief Engineer, to learn more about the helicopter heading to Mars.
Articles: Aerospace
Moghbeli has accumulated more than 150 combat missions and 2,000 hours of flight time in more than 25 different aircraft.
Briefs: Defense

By mimicking the outer coating of pearls (nacre or mother of pearl), researchers created a lightweight plastic that is 14 times stronger and eight times lighter (less dense) than steel. It could...

Briefs: Aerospace
Exhaust Plume Analyzer

Exhaust plumes emanating from smoke stacks at power plants or other industrial facilities can have adverse impacts on local aviation during periods of calm winds. Adverse impacts can be exacerbated if the temperature is low or the atmosphere is unstable. While low oxygen concentrations and elevated temperatures inside the...

Briefs: Aerospace
Device for Providing Real-Time Rotorcraft Noise Abatement Information

Rotorcraft typically operate near the ground throughout the duration of the operation. For this reason, military rotorcraft are vulnerable to acoustic detection, and public acceptance of civil rotorcraft is limited by annoyance caused by rotor noise radiation. The purpose of...

Briefs: Materials

Gas turbine blades of conventional rotorcraft turboshaft engines are optimized to operate at nearly a fixed speed and a fixed incidence angle. If the operating condition of the engine changes, then the flow...

Briefs: Materials

A technique that enables on-demand control of composite behavior could enable a variety of new capabilities for future rotorcraft design, performance, and maintenance. The focus of the research was on...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Power Line Detection System for Unmanned Aircraft Systems

Electrical power lines pose a serious crash hazard to helicopters and other air-based vehicles, especially small aerial vehicles such as unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). This is because power lines are so widespread, hard to see, and strung at roughly the same height above the ground at...

Briefs: Aerospace

Innovators at NASA’s Glenn Research Center have developed a simple, lightweight, inline, two-speed drive that can be used either as an overall transmission, or as a supplemental add-on input...

Briefs: Aerospace

A growing safety concern for pilots and aircraft passengers is laser strikes, or the aiming of high-power laser pointers at aircraft. Laser strikes pose many dangers to pilots, including...

Briefs: Aerospace

NASA Langley Research Center has developed a point sensor and piezoelectric actuator system to actively sense and reduce vibrations in flexible structures. The system uses a directional piezoelectric...

Facility Focus: Research Lab

The Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) began operations in 1923 as the United States Navy's first modern research institution, and it continues today as one of the Navy's premier R&D resources. NRL's early 20th...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics

In recent years, a host of Hollywood blockbusters, including “The Fast and the Furious 7,” “Jurassic World,” and “The Wolf of Wall Street,” have included aerial tracking shots provided by drone...

NASA Spinoff: Sensors/Data Acquisition

Spinoff is NASA's annual publication featuring successfully commercialized NASA technology. This commercialization has contributed to the development of products and services in...

Briefs: Aerospace

Some unmanned aircraft designs attempt to combine the vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) and hover capabilities of a helicopter with the increased speed and range capabilities of fixed-wing airplanes....

Briefs: Software
Acoustic Propagation and Emulation Toolset (APET)

Currently, APET includes a modified version of the Rotorcraft Noise Model (RNM, version 7). It also includes the newly developed Spectral Attenuation Method (SAM), which contains the Ray Tracing Program (RTP) and two versions of a Green's Function Parabolic Equation (GFPE) code. The third...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control

Multi-robot systems deployed in real-world applications are exposed to the same issues that computer systems face. A cybersecurity attack on a robot has the consequences of an attack on a...

Briefs: Motion Control

There are instances when items (e.g., supplies) need to be lowered from an aerial vehicle to the ground. For example, the United States military often lowers supplies from a rotary winged aircraft...

Briefs: Materials

NASA's Langley Research Center is developing an innovative self-healing resin that automatically reacts to mechanical stimuli. Current structural materials are not self-healing, making it necessary to...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a portable device to simulate low-velocity impacts on a material or structure. As composite materials are highly susceptible to damage caused by low-velocity impact, they...

Briefs: Aerospace

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed a novel design for a lightweight energy absorbing (EA) composite subfloor structure. The technology’s primary application is to increase occupant survivability in...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

NASA’s Langley Research Center has developed carbon fiber reinforced composites with self-healing properties. The initiation and propagation of damage to carbon...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

NASA’s Kennedy Space Center is seeking commercial partners for licensing or further development of a novel high-performance, flexible, low-melt polyimide film with self-healing properties. The self-healing...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Probabilistic Surface Characterization for Safe Landing Hazard Detection and Avoidance (HDA)

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has developed a probabilistic algorithm for hazard detection and avoidance (HDA) that robustly handles sensor noise. Conventional surface characterization methods use fixed hazard thresholds to determine hazardous...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Rocket Sled Parachute Design Verification

Historically, parachutes have been load-tested by various methods including release from an aircraft, deploying in a wind tunnel, dragging through water, and shooting out of an air cannon. Each type of testing has its own advantages and drawbacks. Due to the loading mechanics particular to parachutes...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control
Autonomous Micro Aerial Vehicle Flight Using Optical Flow and Inertial Cues

Micro aerial vehicles (MAVs) are agile and have unstable flight dynamics. They require a failsafe method to be navigated through areas even without GPS coverage. The approach of this work is to use only the feature matches between two consecutive images, i.e. optical...

Briefs: Imaging
Normalized Cross Correlation FPGA Implementation

A safe and precise landing system for Mars will match features seen in descent imagery against a map constructed from orbital imagery. The spacecraft attitude and altitude are known, but lateral position is known only poorly. From attitude and altitude, one can generate a mapping (homography) that...

Briefs: Aerospace
Real-Time Aerodynamic Parameter Estimation Without Airflow Angle Measurements

Accurate measurements of airflow angles are among the most expensive and difficult to obtain in flight testing because of the complexity of the airflow near the aircraft and the consequent need to carefully mount and calibrate the sensors. A novel technique was...

Briefs: Data Acquisition

Sample return missions have the ability to vastly increase scientific understanding of the origin, history, current status, and resource potential of solar system objects including...

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