A comprehensive library of technical briefs from engineering experts at NASA and major government, university, and commercial laboratories covering all aspects of innovations in electronics, software, photonics, imaging, motion control, automation, sensors, test, materials, manufacturing, mechanical, and mechatronics.

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Potential Commercial Applications From Microgravity Combustion Research

The paper entitled "Potential Commercial Applications From Combustion and Fire Research in Space" reviews the status of potential commercial applications derived from research on combustion in microgravity environments encountered in orbiting spacecraft. Such research...

Laser Doppler velocimetry (LDV) systems have been used for a number of years in field and laboratory applications. The normal LDV system consists of a two-color, four-beam...

Experiments have shown that nonreactive ion-beam sputtering can be used to deposit a transparent film of aluminum oxide on a polycarbonate, silicon, or fused-silica substrate....

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Proximity Measurement of Pressure and Temperature

Inexpensive, high-performance, optically coupled temperature and strain gauges based on a combination of advanced optoelectronic and microelectromechanical concepts have been proposed. The sensors would contain vibrating beams with submillimeter dimensions, made primarily of silicon by...

Weightless Environment Training Facility Inertial Training Spheres (WETFITSs) are proposed neutrally buoyant training tools that would be used in NASA's Weightless Environment...

Passivation by coating with OCG285 (or equivalent) polyimide at critical steps of fabrication has been found to enhance the quality of tapered edges in high-critical-temperature...

Briefs: Software
Virtual-Reality Platform-Independent Software for Access to Mars Data

The Virtual Reality Mars Atlas User Interface (VR-MAUI) provides an atlaslike interface for access to Mars data. This access is provided via the World Wide Web, using JAVA. Within VR-MAUI, images are organized as maps. These maps provide a natural coordinate system, which...

A newly developed instrument, designed at Marshall Space Flight Center, uses the resistance to alternating current running through a device to measure the variances in...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Reducing Surface Leakage Currents in FPAs of QWIPs

Chemical surface treatments during fabrication have been proposed to reduce surface leakage currents in focal-plane arrays (FPAs) of quantum-well infrared photodetectors (QWIPs). For reasons explained below, if most or all of the surface leakage currents could be eliminated by such treatments,...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Image-Matching System Highlights Changes in Skin Lesions

A video imaging and image-data-processing system for use in dermatological examinations acquires and processes images of patients' skins. The system processes a current image of a selected area of a patient's skin along with an image of the same area acquired previously, generating a...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
A Multicolor Imaging Pyrometer

Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) designed, constructed, and delivered a prototype passive imaging pyrometer capable of accurately measuring and controlling the temperature distribution across a specified surface. The device was originally designed, under a NASA SBIR contract (solicitation year 1985) monitored by Jet...

PS300 is a self-lubricating solid coating material for use in sliding contacts at temperatures up to 800°C. PS300 is a composite of metal-bonded chromium oxide with barium...

An integrated thin-film device has been designed to constitute the sensory element of a miniature instrument for measuring the concentration of an atomic or molecular species that exhibits...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Applying Controlled Pressure Distributions to Complex Curved Surfaces

A technique for applying controlled test pressures to curved surfaces is based on a principle similar to that of a compartmented pilot's or astronaut's pressure suit. The technique involves the use of airbags that accommodate geometric complexity in both the surface under...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Equations for Failure Modes of Mechanical Systems

A report presents information compiled from a search of the literature on failure modes of mechanical systems. The report was written to provide a reference base for the application of first-order reliability methods to mechanical systems in the development of a system-level design methodology....

A diagnostic signal-analysis technique, called the Phase Synchronized Enhancement Method (PSEM), has been developed. This method allows NASA engineers to retrieve any unique...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Friction Stir Weld System for Welding and Weld Repair

A friction stir weld (FSW) system for welding and weld repair can be used on the manufacturing floor, as well as in the laboratory environment. This FSW system can be used in a wide...

Briefs: Information Technology
WAN DBMS Search Engine for Scientific Data Formats

A software interface between scientific data formats (SDF's) and wide-area data-base search-engine software has been developed to provide seamless access to data used in support of NASA projects. Most SDF's are known or understood by only a select audience. These SDF's are also only searchable...

Briefs: Software
Software for Modeling Dynamics of Optical Interferometers

The Single Mode Acquisition Code (SMAC) computer program mathematically models the optical, mechanical, and electronic dynamics of high-finesse, long-baseline, multiple-cavity optical interferometers like those used in gravity-wave detectors. Dynamical situations that can be simulated...

A method of computational filtering enables the removal of distortions from flight-test data. The method is built upon and adapts the methods of wavelet-transform analysis to the...

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