Test & Measurement

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

Motion Design : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Sensor-Packed Glove Learns Signatures of the Human Grasp
Sensor-Packed Glove Learns Signatures of the Human Grasp

Wearing a sensor-packed glove while handling a variety of objects, researchers compiled a dataset that enables an AI system to recognize objects through touch alone. The information...

Sensor-Packed Glove Learns Signatures of the Human Grasp
Briefs : Motion Control
Lunar Surface Manipulation System
Lunar Surface Manipulation System

NASA's Langley Research Center offers a novel lifting and precision positioning device with hybrid functional characteristics of both crane-type lifting devices and robotic manipulators. The design of the...

Lunar Surface Manipulation System
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Deployable Emergency Shutoff Device Blocks High-Velocity Fluid Flows

NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center has developed a device and method for blocking the flow of fluid from an open pipe. The device plugs, controls, and meters the flow of gases and liquids. Anchored with friction fittings, spikes, or explosively activated fasteners, the device...

Briefs : Nanotechnology
Microneedles Extract Fluid for Wearable Sensors
Microneedles Extract Fluid for Wearable Sensors

Interstitial fluid is clear, colorless, and similar to blood plasma. Continual sampling of important biomarkers in interstitial fluid could help monitor and diagnose many diseases and...

Microneedles Extract Fluid for Wearable Sensors
Briefs : Test & Measurement
More Sensitive Measurement of Semiconductor Material Quality
More Sensitive Measurement of Semiconductor Material Quality

Accurately measuring semiconductor properties of materials in small volumes helps engineers determine the range of applications for which these materials may be suitable in the...

More Sensitive Measurement of Semiconductor Material Quality
Briefs : Internet of Things
Smartphone Test Spots Poisoned Water Risk

Researchers have developed a biosensor that attaches to a smartphone and uses bacteria to detect unsafe arsenic levels. The device generates easy-to-interpret patterns similar to volume-bars that display the level of contamination.

Briefs : Wearables
Noninvasive Device Tests Sweat Continuously for Hours
Noninvasive Device Tests Sweat Continuously for Hours

A continuous-testing device was developed that samples sweat as effectively as blood but in a noninvasive way and over many hours. After examining the use of saliva, tears, and...

Noninvasive Device Tests Sweat Continuously for Hours
Briefs : Test & Measurement
High-Throughput Friction and Wear Tester
High-Throughput Friction and Wear Tester

There is a need for high-volume material testing/qualification but industry and researchers are currently limited by commercially available testing devices. Most wear testers can only handle one...

High-Throughput Friction and Wear Tester
Briefs : Test & Measurement
Automated Guided Wave System for In-Process Cure Monitoring of CFRP Composite Laminates
Automated Guided Wave System for In-Process Cure Monitoring of CFRP Composite Laminates

In the polymer composites industry, cure cycles are typically developed from trial-and-error or a more effective processing science approach to reduce...

Automated Guided Wave System for In-Process Cure Monitoring of CFRP Composite Laminates
Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Graphene Lid Extends Photoemission Electron Microscopy to Liquids
Graphene Lid Extends Photoemission Electron Microscopy to Liquids

By capping liquids with graphene (an ultrathin sheet of pure carbon), researchers can easily image and analyze liquid interfaces and the surface of nanometer-scale objects...

Graphene Lid Extends Photoemission Electron Microscopy to Liquids
Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
New Technique Tests for Viral Infections

Currently, most U.S. medical offices and hospitals use the ELISA (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) test to determine whether or not a person has a viral infection. It’s a common test but ELISA’s sensitivity is relatively low, so clinicians need a fairly high number of antibodies in a person’s...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Integrated Silicon Photonic Switch Demonstrates Lowest Signal Loss Ever in High-Speed Data Transmission
Integrated Silicon Photonic Switch Demonstrates Lowest Signal Loss Ever in High-Speed Data Transmission

Experimental photonic switches developed at UC Berkeley have shown promise toward the goal of fully optical, high-capacity switching for...

Integrated Silicon Photonic Switch Demonstrates Lowest Signal Loss Ever in High-Speed Data Transmission
Briefs : Wearables
Stretchable Power Source for Wearables
Stretchable Power Source for Wearables

Researchers have created highly stretchable supercapacitors for powering wearable electronics that consist of crumpled carbon nanotube (CNT) forests. The supercapacitors demonstrated solid performance...

Stretchable Power Source for Wearables
Briefs : Imaging
Revolutionary Camera Allows Scientists to Predict Evolution of Ancient Stars
Revolutionary Camera Allows Scientists to Predict Evolution of Ancient Stars

Scientists at the University of Sheffield have been working with HiPERCAM, a high-speed, multicolor camera, which is capable of taking more than 1,000 images per...

Revolutionary Camera Allows Scientists to Predict Evolution of Ancient Stars
Briefs : Test & Measurement
Calculating the Estimated Fatigue Life of a Disc Spring
Calculating the Estimated Fatigue Life of a Disc Spring

In discussing fatigue life, it is important to distinguish between disc springs and conical spring washers, as they differ by design and intended usage. Conical spring washers are...

Calculating the Estimated Fatigue Life of a Disc Spring
Briefs : Communications
Monitor Babies in the NICU Without Wires
Monitor Babies in the NICU Without Wires

An interdisciplinary Northwestern University team has developed a pair of soft, flexible wireless sensors that replace the tangle of wire-based sensors that currently monitor babies in hospitals’...

Monitor Babies in the NICU Without Wires
Sensor Technology : Wearables
UCI Biomedical Engineers Develop Wearable Respiration Monitor with Children’s Toy
UCI Biomedical Engineers Develop Wearable Respiration Monitor with Children’s Toy

Researchers at the University of California, Irvine have developed a wearable, disposable respiration monitor that provides high-fidelity readings on a...

UCI Biomedical Engineers Develop Wearable Respiration Monitor with Children’s Toy
Sensor Technology : Test & Measurement
Spotting Minute Amounts of Disease in the Bloodstream
Spotting Minute Amounts of Disease in the Bloodstream

The difficulty in spotting minute amounts of disease circulating in the bloodstream has proven a stumbling block in the detection and treatment of cancers that advance stealthily with few...

Spotting Minute Amounts of Disease in the Bloodstream
Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Systems and Methods for Correcting Optical Reflectance Measurements

Optical spectroscopy can be used to determine the concentration of chemical species in samples. The amount of light absorbed by a particular chemical species is often linearly related to its concentration through Beer’s Law. For nontransparent materials such as powders,...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) of Structures Using Transient and Lock-in Thermography
Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) of Structures Using Transient and Lock-in Thermography

Researchers at NASA’s Johnson Space Center improved their Flash Thermography capabilities by incorporating transient and lock-in thermography. By...

Non-Destructive Evaluation (NDE) of Structures Using Transient and Lock-in Thermography
Briefs : Test & Measurement
Safety Analysis: The Key to a Single-Pass ISO26262 Random Fault Workflow
Safety Analysis: The Key to a Single-Pass ISO26262 Random Fault Workflow

Advanced driver-assistance systems and autonomous drive technologies increase the complexity of automotive integrated circuits (ICs), making it harder to ensure that...

Safety Analysis: The Key to a Single-Pass ISO26262 Random Fault Workflow
Briefs : Test & Measurement
Full-Spectrum Infrasonic Stethoscope for Screening Heart, Carotid Artery, and Lung-Related Diseases
Full-Spectrum Infrasonic Stethoscope for Screening Heart, Carotid Artery, and Lung-Related Diseases

Microphones and stethoscopes are regularly used by physicians to detect sounds when monitoring physiological conditions. These monitors are...

Full-Spectrum Infrasonic Stethoscope for Screening Heart, Carotid Artery, and Lung-Related Diseases
Briefs : Test & Measurement
Stretchable Interlaced-Nanowire Film for Ultraviolet Photodetectors with High Response Speed
Stretchable Interlaced-Nanowire Film for Ultraviolet Photodetectors with High Response Speed

Stretchable electronics, which can be stretched, deformed and wrapped onto nonplanar curved surfaces, have attracted much attraction due to their...

Stretchable Interlaced-Nanowire Film for Ultraviolet Photodetectors with High Response Speed
Briefs : Wearables
Wearable Ultrasound Patch Monitors Blood Pressure
Wearable Ultrasound Patch Monitors Blood Pressure

Wearable devices have been limited to sensing signals either on the surface of the skin or right beneath it. A new wearable ultrasound patch non-invasively monitors blood pressure in arteries...

Wearable Ultrasound Patch Monitors Blood Pressure
Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Ingestible, Expanding Pill Monitors the Stomach for Up to a Month
Ingestible, Expanding Pill Monitors the Stomach for Up to a Month

An ingestible pill was developed that, upon reaching the stomach, quickly swells to the size of a soft, squishy ping-pong ball big enough to stay in the stomach for an...

Ingestible, Expanding Pill Monitors the Stomach for Up to a Month
Briefs : Aerospace
In-Situ Characterization and Inspection of Additive Manufacturing Deposits Using Transient Infrared Thermography
In-Situ Characterization and Inspection of Additive Manufacturing Deposits Using Transient Infrared Thermography

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, is a rapidly growing field in which solid objects can be produced layer-by-layer. This...

In-Situ Characterization and Inspection of Additive Manufacturing Deposits Using Transient Infrared Thermography
Briefs : Photonics/Optics
Measurement Method for Radioactive Methane

Anew method for measuring radioactive methane is an optical one based on spectroscopy. Previously, radioactive methane has been measured with accelerator mass spectrometry involving expensive machines. Optical measuring could be a cheaper and more agile method.

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Radiometric Temperature Measurement Using a DLP-Based Pyrometer
Radiometric Temperature Measurement Using a DLP-Based Pyrometer

Researchers at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center have identified and evaluated recently available miniature spectrometers that enable compact and robust pyrometry...

Radiometric Temperature Measurement Using a DLP-Based Pyrometer
Briefs : Software
Fast and Accurate Simulation of Manufactured Parts with Defects
Fast and Accurate Simulation of Manufactured Parts with Defects

Unwanted porosity is typical to many manufacturing processes — from traditional casting to additive manufacturing (3D printing) — and is difficult to avoid entirely....

Fast and Accurate Simulation of Manufactured Parts with Defects
Briefs : Test & Measurement
S-Curve Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometer
S-Curve Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometer

Time-of flight mass spectrometers are commonly used in analytical chemistry and many other applications. They contain a region where ions travel toward a detector. A new geometry was developed that...

S-Curve Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometer