Imaging

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

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Web-Based Search Service to Support Imaging Spectrometer Instrument Operations

Imaging spectrometers yield rich and informative data products, but interpreting them demands time and expertise. There is a continual need for new algorithms and methods for rapid firstdraft analyses to assist analysts during instrument operations. Intelligent data...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Hermetic Phototube Housing

This innovation is a hermetically sealed case or very small chamber. A photomultiplier tube (PMT) is mounted inside the chamber. The circuit board is also installed inside the chamber with appropriate feedthroughs for signals. An adapter/floating mount called the phototube to light pipe system mount (PLPSM) allows the...

Briefs : Imaging
Design, Fabrication, and Test of WFIRST/AFTA GRISM Assembly

This work originated with the Wide Field InfraRed Survey Telescope (WFIRST) slitless spectrometer design (GRISM assembly), which attempted to follow the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) method of employing a singleelement GRISM as a slitless spectroscope. However, WFIRST’s field of view...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Spinal Ultrasound Just-in-Time Training Tool

Back pain and injury are recognized risks that can affect the well-being and performance of crewmembers during missions, as well as their long-term health. Spine elongation is a documented effect of microgravity, back pain is a common occurrence in early flight, and the post-flight incidence of spinal...

Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Wide-Spectrum Organic Mass Spectrometer Using Far-Ultraviolet Ionization

Two-step laser desorption/photoionization mass spectrometry (L2MS) represents a powerful tool for the organic analysis of astromaterials. The technique has high sensitivity and requires little to no sample preparation.

Imaging Technology : Imaging
Stereoscopic Planar Laser-Induced Fluorescence Imaging for Time-Resolved 3D Movies in Hypersonic Flow

Understanding and predicting transition from laminar to turbulent flow in hypersonic boundary layers is an active and important field of research because transitional and turbulent heating can be four or more times higher than laminar heating on...

Imaging Technology : Imaging
Modified-Wolter-Schwarzschild X-ray Telescope

X-ray survey missions require nested grazing incidence telescopes with a large field of view (1° or larger) and moderately high resolution across the field of view. This cannot be accomplished using flat focal plane detectors. The telescopes have excellent on-axis resolution, but unacceptable...

Imaging Technology : Imaging
Machine Vision-Based Pose Estimation System

During on-orbit servicing of non-cooperative satellites, the relative position of the satellite with respect to the servicing vehicle is needed. Non-cooperative satellites do not have devices to assist the pose estimation (such as markers or reflector), so a system that uses the natural features of the...

Imaging Technology : Imaging
Solar Doppler Shift-Based Solar Tracker

This solar tracker integrates a camera with a field of view (FOV) large enough to easily image the entire solar disc — co-boresited with a narrow-band spectrometer that measures the frequency of a Doppler shifted line — with an algorithm designed to drive zero Doppler shift rotation axis of the...

Imaging Technology : Imaging
Beam Shaping for CARS Measurements in Turbulent Environments

Taking measurements in a scramjet engine is particularly challenging because of the harsh testing environment. Any probe inserted in the flow would generate shock waves, strongly perturbing the flow. Coherent Anti-Stokes Raman spectroscopy (CARS) is a non-intrusive laser-based...

Briefs : Imaging
Image Processing Software Environment (QuIP)

The QuIP interpreter is a software environment for QUick Image Processing that features an interactive scripting language designed to facilitate use by non-expert users through features such as context-sensitive automatic response completion. The package includes a number of script packages that...

Briefs : Imaging
CubeSat-Compatible, High-Resolution, Thermal Infrared Imager

A small, adaptable, and stable thermal imaging system was developed that can be flown on an aircraft, deployed on the International Space Station as an attached payload, launched on a ride-share as an entirely self-contained 3U CubeSat, flown on a small satellite, or be a co-manifested...

Briefs : Imaging
Fabrication and Imaging Method for Microstructured Photonic Belt Resonator

Frequency combs derived from optical microresonators are required to reach an octave in span. This is required for self-referencing a comb. Presently, the frequency comb span produced by whispering gallery microcavities and other types of cavities is limited mostly by...

Briefs : Imaging
NASA Vision Workbench (VWB) v3

VWB is a modular, extensible computer vision framework that supports tasks including automated science and engineering analysis, large satellite image processing, and 2D/3D environment reconstruction. The framework provides a rapid C++ development environment as well as a flexible, multi-platform system to deploy...

Briefs : Imaging
Flight Proving a Heliophysics Soft X-Ray Imager

The interaction between the solar wind and the Earth’s magneto - sphere results in “space weather.” To determine the true nature of the solar wind-magnetosphere interaction, scientists require global measurements of processes occurring at the bow shock, in the magnetosheath, and at the...

Briefs : Imaging
Intensity Interferometry Image Recovery

This software extends the well-known error-reduction Gerchberg-Saxton method to imaging of dark objects, assuming that such an object partially shadows a well-characterized thermal light source, while the shadow cannot be used for inferring the object’s shape. These assumptions are reasonable for a wide...

Briefs : Imaging
Cameras for All-Sky Meteor Surveillance (CAMS) Version 1.3

The CAMS system comprises a deployment of multiple narrow-field, low-light video cameras that completely covers the sky in a mosaic pattern from 30° elevation and above. Two or three such camera batteries separated by many kilometers allow for large atmospheric volume coverage, high...

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 : Imaging
Advanced Rapid Imaging and Analysis for Monitoring Hazards (ARIA-MH)

Space-based geodetic measurement techniques such as Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) and Continuous Global Positioning System (CGPS) are now critical elements in the toolset for monitoring earthquake-generating faults, volcanic eruptions, landslides, glacial...

Briefs : Imaging
Next-Generation Integrated Camera (NIC)

Design and fabrication of a modern, compact, highly modular, and extreme-environment-capable replacement have been proposed for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) camera. This next-generation camera is based on a CMOS (complementary metal-oxidesemiconductor) imager rather than a CCD (charge-coupled device)...

Briefs : Imaging
Homography Warp Image FPGA Implementation

A landing system for Mars matches 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 allows the descent image...

Briefs : Imaging
Improved Hall Thrusters Fed by Solid Phase Propellant

Hall thrusters normally use Xe propellant, which is expensive and scarce in the solar system. The weight of Xe is such that typical Hall thrusters are limited in specific impulse to approximately 3,000 s. The objective of this program was to improve and demonstrate Mg Hall thruster systems....

Articles : Imaging
Researcher Spotlight: Imaging Software Improves Video Monitoring of Vital Signs

By detecting nearly imperceptible changes in skin color, emerging imaging technologies have been able to extract pulse rate, breathing rate, and other vital signs from a person facing a camera. The videography tools have struggled, however, to compensate for low...

Articles : Imaging
High Dynamic Range Imaging (HDRI) Upgrades Inspection Results

Designers and operators of automated inspection systems have long been challenged with completing accurate inspections when those tasks required high dynamic range, or when there was a need to capture critical details in objects or environments with high contrast between their...

Application Briefs : Imaging
Advanced Holography Offers 3D Fire Measurements

In a propellant fire, large molten aluminum drops form at the burning surface. The drops are lofted into the environment and can severely damage anything that they fall on. Liquid breakup must be understood to predict the scale and intensity of such fires.

Application Briefs : Imaging
Cameras Provide Critical Data for NASA Rocket’s First Flight

On March 11, NASA tested the powerful five-segment booster for NASA’s new rocket, the Space Launch System. To provide critical data for the rocket’s first flight, eight cameras with more than 40 different settings — including varying exposures — were set up near the forward...

Briefs : Data Acquisition
Detection of Carried and Dropped Objects in Surveillance Video

DARPA’s Mind’s Eye Program aims to develop a smart camera surveillance system that can autonomously monitor a scene and report back human-readable text descriptions of activities that occur in the video. An important aspect is whether objects are brought into the scene, exchanged...

Briefs : Information Technology
Visualization of fMRI Network Data

Functional connections within the brain can be revealed through functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), which shows simultaneous activations of blood flow in the brain during response tests. However, fMRI specialists currently do not have a tool for visualizing the complex data that comes from fMRI scans....

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Viewpoints Software for Visualization of Multivariate Data

Viewpoints software allows interactive visualization of multi-variate data using a variety of standard techniques. The software is built exclusively from high-performance, cross-platform, open-source, standards-compliant languages, libraries, and components. The techniques included...

Briefs : Imaging
NGDCS Linux Application for Imaging-Spectrometer Data Acquisition and Display

A simple method of controlling recording and display of imaging spectrometer data in (airborne) flight was needed. Existing commercial packages were overly complicated, and sometimes difficult to operate in a bouncing plane. The software also was required to keep up...