Keyword: Spacecraft

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Program Simulates Flights of Advanced Aerospace Vehicles

Marshall Aerospace Vehicle Representation in C (MAVERIC) is a C-language computer program developed for use in performing high-fidelity simulations of flights and analyses of the guidance and control performances of the X-33 aerospace vehicle and the VentureStar reusable launch vehicle...

Briefs: Information Technology
Program for Parallel Distributed Processing

A software system has been devised to manage automatically (1) the distribution of mutually independent computing tasks to computer workstations in NASA's Flight Design and Analysis System (FADS) network and (2) the execution of those tasks on those workstations. This program parallelizes serial tasks,...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Spacecraft Solar-Wind Trim Panels for Pointing

A report proposes that spacecraft assigned to orbits distant from the Earth be equipped with trim panels that would intercept the solar wind to generate small torques to correct for disturbance torques and thereby help to maintain the spacecraft pointed in the required directions. Paired panels...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Program for Computing Dynamics of Multiple Bodies

Symbolic Generator-Based Efficient Multibody Dynamics Algorithm (SOMBAT) is a program that enables speedy and accurate computations that solve equations of motion of multiple bodies. Originally intended for space-based applications (i.e., solving equations for the dynamics of a cluster of...

Briefs: Motion Control

The gaseous hydrogen flow control vale (GH2FCV; see Figure 1) is a critical space shuttle component that controls the pressure of the hydrogen external tank during launch and ascent...

Briefs: Information Technology

A class of finite-impulse-response (FIR) digital filters has been developed to perform certain frequency-limiting, decimation, and differentiation (with respect to time) functions on a time...

Briefs: Energy
Composite Graphite Anodes Containing Cyclic Ether Additives

Scientists have developed a type of composite graphite anode that will benefit the U.S. space program and private industry by increasing the rechargeability of lithium-ion batteries. Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, which are used on the space shuttle and Space Station, are also used...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Using Electromagnetic Drag on Tethers To De-Orbit Spacecraft

Two papers propose the use of electrically conductive tethers to remove spent or dysfunctional spacecraft from orbit around the Earth in order to reduce the hazard of orbital debris. In comparison with onboard rockets, these tethers would be more cost-effective, more reliable, and...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
High-Power Laser Illuminator

A laser illuminator system has been developed for use in automated tracking of objects. In its original application, the system illuminates a 5° conical region expected to contain a small satellite at a distance up to 750 m from the space shuttle. If the satellite comes within this region, then a receiving...

Briefs: Materials
Molecular-Sieve Type 3Å

The term "Molecular-Sieve Type 3Å" denotes a clay-based, zeolite material that revolutionizes a fluid-purification process by removing trace water and iron from nitrogen tetroxide/nitric oxide (MON-3) mixtures used as oxidizer components of spacecraft propellants. Older processes of this type removed only water or iron...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Pneumatic cushions have been proposed for protecting the afterbodies of two-body instrumented soil-penetrator projectiles. These cushions would be, essentially, doughnut-shaped...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

An optoelectronic apparatus and a technique for its operation have been developed to facilitate and accelerate the measurement of distances of the order of tens of feet to within...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

A method of processing phase measurements in an unequal-arm laser Michelson interferometer makes it possible to detect phase effects much smaller than the laser phase noise. In...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

The Integrated Test and Operations System (ITOS) is a generic system of software for controlling spacecraft and components of spacecraft during development, testing, and operation in orbit. The ITOS...

Briefs: Materials
Protective Shells for Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessels

White Sands Test Facility (WSTF) scientists have developed an energy-absorbing laminated shell that is a prototype of lightweight, inexpensive, and removable covers to shield and otherwise protect carbon-composite overwrapped pressure vessels (COPVs). Although COPVs are superior to...

Briefs: Medical
Urine-Sample-Collection Device for Use on the Space Shuttle

The in-flight urine collection absorber (IUCA) is a Johnson Space Center (JSC) breakthrough. It features a lightweight, compact design and is easy to use for collection of urine samples by male and female space shuttle crewmembers. The IUCA is superior to currently available hardware...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

NASA has developed a system of hardware and software that can accommodate all necessary interfaces between (1) space-station flight computers and (2) a simulation host computer...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Lightweight Reflector Dishes Would Be Made by Spin Casting

Lightweight reflector dishes for radio antennas would be mass-produced cheaply by spin casting of polymers, according to a proposal. These reflector dishes were conceived for compact stowage followed by deployment and operation aboard spacecraft, but might also be useful on Earth in...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Retroreflective Communication Systems

A retroreflective communication system (RCS), is a state-of-the-art system that provides (1) two-way optical communication using only one transmitter and (2) multipath communication among remote locations. RCSs were conceived for use in communication among stations on the ground and aboard spacecraft in...

Briefs: Motion Control

A commercial version of the NASA plasma-contactor hollow-cathode assembly (PC HCA) has been developed. The NASA PC HCA is a highly reliable hollow discharge cathode that is the most thoroughly...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics

Miniature, single-aperture optoelectronic instruments called "multi-function telescopes" are being developed for use in both scientific observations and laser communications aboard...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

Improved thermoelectric converter units (TCUs) and radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs) that contain them have been undergoing development for use as small, lightweight...

Briefs: Software
Software for Environmental Monitoring in a Large Facility

Four computer programs enable the nearly real-time distribution, analysis, and display of data on temperature, relative humidity, and particle fallout measured by sensors in the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF) and the Launch Pad Payload Changeout Room (PCR) at Kennedy Space Center. The...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Circuit Detects Pyrolysis of Polyimide Insulation on Wires

An electronic circuit has been designed as a prototype of a device that determines whether critical electrical systems have been compromised because of pyrolysis of polyimide-insulated wires. This circuit can be modified to prevent further pyrolysis and to check for indications of...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

Dc-to-dc power-converter modules that operate with input potentials from 60 to 140 V and generate various output potentials up to 15 V are undergoing development. Designed specifically for...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers

An M-JPEG video compression system has been modified to satisfy the unique requirements of space-based applications. ["M-JPEG" signifies the still-image-data-compression method of...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Two-Spacecraft Laser Tracking for Detecting Gravitational Waves

A paper proposes a method of mutual coherent laser tracking of two spacecraft for detecting gravitational radiation. Each spacecraft would transmit a laser beam to, and receive a similar laser beam from, the other spacecraft. Each spacecraft would also coherently transpond a laser...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics

A spectrometer/radiometer now undergoing development is designed to be used aboard a spacecraft to measure the heights of cloud tops on Earth. The spectrometer/radiometer performs...

Briefs: Software

The Generic Spacecraft Analyst Assistant (GenSAA) computer program enables the rapid development of expert-system software for intelligent real-time monitoring and detection of...

Top Stories

Articles: Photonics/Optics

Breakthrough Lightweight AR Eyeglasses

Articles: Transportation

Manufacturing Advances in Solid-State Batteries

Articles: Semiconductors & ICs

Forecast 2022 for Sensors/MEMS

INSIDER: Electronics & Computers

New Silicon Nanowires Could Speed Up Computer Processors

5 Ws: Manufacturing & Prototyping

5Ws of the Green Submarine

Articles: Materials

Keeping the Bugs at Bay