Manufacturing & Prototyping

Access our comprehensive library of technical briefs on manufacturing and prototyping, from engineering experts at NASA and government, university, and commercial laboratories.

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Technology has been developed for a class of self-contained, long-duration power sources called beta batteries, which harvest the energy contained in the...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Magnetic Shield for Adiabatic Demagnetization Refrigerators (ADR)

A new method was developed for creating a less expensive shield for ADRs using 1018 carbon steel. This shield has been designed to have similar performance to the expensive vanadium permen dur shields, but the cost is 30 to 50% less. Also, these shields can be stocked in a variety...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The harmful properties of lunar dust, such as small size, glass composition, abnormal surface area, and coatings of imbedded nanophase iron, lead to a unique coupling of...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Development of a Centrifugal Technique for the Microbial Bioburden Analysis of Freon (CFC-11)

NASA Procedural Requirement 8020.12C entitled “Planetary Protection Provisions for Robotic Extraterrestrial Missions” states that the source-specific encapsulated microbial density for encapsulated organisms (div(0)) in nonmetallic materials ranges...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Advanced Materials and Manufacturing for Low-Cost, High-Performance Liquid Rocket Combustion Chambers

A document describes the low-cost manufacturing of C103 niobium alloy combustion chambers, and the use of a high-temperature, oxidation-resistant coating that is superior to the standard silicide coating. The manufacturing process involved...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The environmental conditions of the Moon require mitigation if a long-term human presence is to be achieved for extended periods of time. Radiation, micrometeoroid impacts,...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Process for Patterning Indium for Bump Bonding

An innovation was created for the Cosmology Large Angular Scale Surveyor for integration of low-temperature detector chips with a silicon backshort and a silicon photonic choke through flip-chip bonding. Indium bumps are typically patterned using liftoff processes, which require thick resist. In...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Composite With In Situ Plenums

A document describes a high-performance thermal distribution panel (TDP) concept using high-conductivity (>800 W/mK) macro composite skin with in situ heat pipes. The processing technologies proposed to build such a panel result in a one-piece, inseparable assembly with high conductance in both the X and Y...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Pneumatic System for Concentration of Micrometer-Size Lunar Soil

A report describes a size-sorting method to separate and concentrate micrometer-size dust from a broad size range of particles without using sieves, fluids, or other processes that may modify the composition or the surface properties of the dust.

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Buckyball Nucleation of HiPco Tubes

The purpose of this innovation is to enhance nucleation of single-wall nanotubes (SWNTs) in the HiPco process, selectively producing 10,10 tubes, something which until now has not been thought possible.

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The Flexible Array Concentrator Technology (FACT) is a lightweight, high-performance reflective concentrator blanket assembly that can be used on flexible solar array blankets. The FACT concentrator replaces every...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fabrication of Single Crystal MgO Capsules

A method has been developed for machining MgO crystal blocks into forms for containing metallic and silicate liquids at temperatures up to 2,400 ºC, and pressures up to at least 320 kilobars. Possible custom shapes include tubes, rods, insulators, capsules, and guides. Key differences in this...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Mars Aqueous Processing System

The goal of the Mars Aqueous Processing System (MAPS) is to establish a flexible process that generates multiple products that are useful for human habitation. Selectively extracting useful components into an aqueous solution, and then sequentially recovering individual constituents, can obtain a suite of refined...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The NASA Human Space Flight program is interested in projects where humans, beyond low-Earth orbit (LEO), can make an important and unique contribution that cannot be reasonably...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

High-precision mirrors for space applications are traditionally manufactured from one piece of material, such as lightweight glass “sandwich” or...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

The sounding rocket experiment FIRE (Far-ultraviolet Imaging Rocket Experi ment) will improve the science community’s ability to image a spectral region hitherto unexplored...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Bulk metallic glasses (BMGs), a class of amorphous metals defined as having a thickness greater than 1 mm, are being broadly investigated by NASA for use in...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping

Projects that utilize large volumes of nonmetallic materials of planetary protection concern pose a challenge to their bioburden budget, as the most...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Demonstration of Minimally Machined Honeycomb Silicon Carbide Mirrors

Honeycomb silicon carbide composite mirrors are made from a carbon fiber preform that is molded into a honeycomb shape using a rigid mold. The carbon fiber honeycomb is densified by using polymer infiltration pyrolysis, or through a reaction with liquid silicon. A chemical...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Heat Shield Employing Cured Thermal Protection Material Blocks Bonded in a Large-Cell Honeycomb Matrix

A document describes a new way to integrate thermal protection materials on external surfaces of vehicles that experience the severe heating environments of atmospheric entry from space. Cured blocks of thermal protection materials are bonded...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Single-Layer, All-Metal Patch Antenna Element With Wide Bandwidth

It is known that the impedance at the center of a patch antenna element is a short circuit, implying that a wire or post can be connected from the patch to the groundplane at this point without impacting radiation performance. In principle, this central post can be used to support...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Scanning Laser Infrared Molecular Spectrometer (SLIMS)

This prototype innovation is a novel design that achieves very long, effective laser path lengths that are able to yield ppb (parts per billion) and sub-ppb measurements of trace gases. SLIMS can also accommodate multiple laser channels covering a wide range of wavelengths, resulting in...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Next-Generation Microshutter Arrays for Large-Format Imaging and Spectroscopy

A next-generation microshutter array, LArge Microshutter Array (LAMA), was developed as a multi-object field selector. LAMA consists of small-scaled microshutter arrays that can be combined to form large-scale microshutter array mosaics. Microshutter actuation is...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Graphene Transparent Conductive Electrodes for Next- Generation Microshutter Arrays

Graphene is a single atomic layer of graphite. It is optically transparent and has high electron mobility, and thus has great potential to make transparent conductive electrodes. This invention contributes towards the development of graphene transparent...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fabrication of a Cryogenic Terahertz Emitter for Bolometer Focal Plane Calibrations

A fabrication process is reported for prototype emitters of THz radiation, which operate cryogenically, and should provide a fast, stable blackbody source suitable for characterization of THz devices. The fabrication has been demonstrated and, at the time of this...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fabrication of an Absorber-Coupled MKID Detector

Absorber-coupled microwave kinetic inductance detector (MKID) arrays were developed for submillimeter and farinfrared astronomy. These sensors comprise arrays of lambda/2 stepped microwave impedance resonators patterned on a 1.5-mm-thick silicon membrane, which is optimized for optical coupling....

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Techniques for Solution-Assisted Optical Contacting

A document discusses a “solution-assisted contacting” technique for optical contacting. An optic of surface flatness Lambda/20 was successfully contacted with one of “moderate” surface quality, or Lambda/4. Optics used were both ultra-low expansion (ULE) glass (Lambda/4 and Lambda/20)...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Processing of Nanosensors Using a Sacrificial Template Approach

A new microsensor fabrication approach has been demonstrated based upon the use of nanostructures as templates. The fundamental idea is that existing nanostructures, such as carbon nanotubes or biological structures, have a material structure that can be used advantageously in order...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fabrication of a Cryogenic Bias Filter for Ultrasensitive Focal Plane

A fabrication process has been developed for cryogenic in-line filtering for the bias and readout of ultrasensitive cryogenic bolometers for millimeter and submillimeter wavelengths. The design is a microstripline filter that cuts out, or strongly attenuates, frequencies...

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