Keyword: Spacecraft

Who's Who: Aerospace

David Mitchell is the project manager of the MAVEN mission, which will examine environmental changes on Mars. MAVEN instruments will look beyond the planet's...

Briefs: Information Technology
Measurements of Ultra-Stable Oscillator (USO) Allan Deviations in Space

Researchers have used data from the GRAIL mission to the Moon to make the first in-flight verification of ultra-stable oscillators (USOs) with Allan deviation below 10–13 for 1-to-100-second averaging times. USOs are flown in space to provide stable timing...

Briefs: Software
Gaseous Nitrogen Orifice Mass Flow Calculator

The Gaseous Nitrogen (GN2) Orifice Mass Flow Calculator was used to determine Space Shuttle Orbiter Water Spray Boiler (WSB) GN2 high-pressure tank source depletion rates for various leak scenarios, and the ability of the GN2 consumables to support cooling of Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) lubrication...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

A continuing challenge for modern instrument pointing control systems is to meet the increasingly stringent pointing performance requirements imposed by emerging...

Briefs: Information Technology
X-Ray Detection and Processing Models for Spacecraft Navigation and Timing

The current primary method of deepspace navigation is the NASA Deep Space Network (DSN). High-performance navigation is achieved using Delta Differential One-Way Range techniques that utilize simultaneous observations from multiple DSN sites, and incorporate observations...

Briefs: Information Technology
RUSHMAPS: Real-time Uploadable Spherical Harmonic Moment Analysis for Particle Spectrometers

RUSHMAPS is a new onboard data reduction scheme that gives real-time access to key science parameters (e.g. moments) of a class of heliophysics science and/or solar system exploration investigation that includes plasma particle spectrometers (PPS), but...

Briefs: Information Technology
Automated 3D Damaged Cavity Model Builder for Lower Surface Acreage Tile on Orbiter

The 3D Automated Thermal Tool for Damaged Acreage Tile Math Model builder was developed to perform quickly and accurately 3D thermal analyses on damaged lower surface acreage tiles and structures beneath the damaged locations on a Space Shuttle Orbiter. The 3D...

Briefs: Information Technology
3D Hail Size Distribution Interpolation/Extrapolation Algorithm

Radar data can usually detect hail; however, it is difficult for present day radar to accurately discriminate between hail and rain. Local ground-based hail sensors are much better at detecting hail against a rain background, and when incorporated with radar data, provide a much...

Briefs: Materials
Using Pre-Melted Phase Change Material to Keep Payloads in Space Warm for Hours Without Power

Adding phase change material (PCM) to a mission payload can maintain its temperature above the cold survival limit, without power, for several hours in space. For the International Space Station, PCM is melted by heaters just prior to the payload...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
DSP/FPGA Design for a High-Speed Programmable S-Band Space Transceiver

Traditional command uplink receivers are very limited in performance capability, take a long time to acquire, cannot operate on both uplink bands (NASA & AFSCN), and only support low-rate communications. As a result, transceivers end up on many programs’ critical paths,...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Memory Circuit Fault Simulator

Spacecraft are known to experience significant memory part-related failures and problems, both pre- and post-launch. These memory parts include both static and dynamic memories (SRAM and DRAM). These failures manifest themselves in a variety of ways, such as pattern-sensitive failures, timing- sensitive failures,...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering Using Silica Whispering- Gallery Mode Resonators

The motivation of this work was to have robust spectroscopic sensors for sensitive detection and chemical analysis of organic and molecular compounds. The solution is to use silica sphere optical resonators to provide surface-enhanced spectroscopic signal.

Briefs: Information Technology
System for Contributing and Discovering Derived Mission and Science Data

A system was developed to provide a new mechanism for members of the mission community to create and contribute new science data to the rest of the community. Mission tools have allowed members of the mission community to share first order data (data that is created by the...

Briefs: Information Technology
Estimating Torque Imparted on Spacecraft Using Telemetry

There have been a number of missions with spacecraft flying by planetary moons with atmospheres; there will be future missions with similar flybys. When a spacecraft such as Cassini flies by a moon with an atmosphere, the spacecraft will experience an atmospheric torque. This torque could...

Briefs: Information Technology
Basic Operational Robotics Instructional System

The Basic Operational Robotics Instructional System (BORIS) is a sixdegree- of-freedom rotational robotic manipulator system simulation used for training of fundamental robotics concepts, with in-line shoulder, offset elbow, and offset wrist. BORIS is used to provide generic robotics training to...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Rad-Tolerant, Thermally Stable, High-Speed Fiber-Optic Network for Harsh Environments

Future NASA destinations will be challenging to get to, have extreme environmental conditions, and may present difficulty in retrieving a spacecraft or its data. Space Photonics is developing a radiationtolerant (rad-tolerant), high-speed, multichannel...

Briefs: Software
Description and User Instructions for the Quaternion_to_orbit_v3 Software

For a given inertial frame of reference, the software combines the spacecraft orbits with the spacecraft attitude quaternions, and rotates the body-fixed reference frame of a particular spacecraft to the inertial reference frame. The conversion assumes that the two...

Briefs: Software
MER Telemetry Processor

MERTELEMPROC processes telemetered data in data product format and generates Experiment Data Records (EDRs) for many instruments (HAZCAM, NAVCAM, PANCAM, microscopic imager, Mössbauer spectrometer, APXS, RAT, and EDLCAM) on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER). If the data is compressed, then MERTELEMPROC decompresses the...

Briefs: Software
Rapid Diagnostics of Onboard Sequences

Keeping track of sequences onboard a spacecraft is challenging. When reviewing Event Verification Records (EVRs) of sequence executions on the Mars Exploration Rover (MER), operators often found themselves wondering which version of a named sequence the EVR corresponded to. The lack of this information...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Device and Container for Reheating and Sterilization

Long-duration space missions require the development of improved foods and novel packages that do not represent a significant disposal issue. In addition, it would also be desirable if rapid heating technologies could be used on Earth as well, to improve food quality during a sterilization...

Briefs: Physical Sciences

Solar System Exploration camera implementations to date have involved either single cameras with wide field-ofview (FOV) and consequently coarser spatial resolution, cameras on a movable mast, or...

Briefs: Information Technology

The current Mission Control Center (MCC) is dedicated to the execution of human spaceflight missions. As the future of NASA and human space evolves, it is clear that...

Application Briefs: Motion Control

NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, VA hired Honeybee Robotics Spacecraft Mechanisms Corp. to develop a totally mechanical tool changer for the end of what Langley’s...

Who's Who: Aerospace

Dr. Greg Chavers, test lead at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama, helped to design the “Mighty Eagle” robotic prototype lander. The vehicle,...

Briefs: Software
Visual System for Browsing, Analysis, and Retrieval of Data (ViSBARD)

ViSBARD software provides a way of visualizing multiple vector and scalar quantities as measured by many spacecraft at once. The data are displayed three-dimensionally along the orbits that may be shown either as connected lines or as points. The data display allows the rapid...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
In-Situ Wire Damage Detection System

An In-Situ Wire Damage Detection System (ISWDDS) has been developed that is capable of detecting damage to a wire insulation, or a wire conductor, or to both. The system will allow for real-time, continuous monitoring of wiring health/integrity and reduce the number of false negatives and false positives...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

There is no convenient way to demonstrate mechanically, as an outreach (or inreach) topic, the angular momentum trade-offs and the conservation of angular momentum associated with...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Seismic Imager Space Telescope

A concept has been developed for a geostationary seismic imager (GSI), a space telescope in geostationary orbit above the Pacific coast of the Americas that would provide movies of many large earthquakes occurring in the area from Southern Chile to Southern Alaska. The GSI movies would cover a field of view as long...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Low-Cost Phased Array Antenna for Sounding Rockets, Missiles, and Expendable Launch Vehicles

A low-cost beamformer phased array antenna has been developed for expendable launch vehicles, rockets, and missiles. It utilizes a conformal array antenna of ring or individual radiators (design varies depending on application) that is designed to be fed...