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: Information Technology
Data Quality Screening Service

A report describes the Data Quality Screening Service (DQSS), which is designed to help automate the filtering of remote sensing data on behalf of science users. Whereas this process often involves much research through quality documents followed by laborious coding, the DQSS is a Web Service that provides data...

Briefs: Software
Visiting Vehicle Ground Trajectory Tool

The International Space Station (ISS) Visiting Vehicle Group needed a targeting tool for vehicles that rendezvous with the ISS. The Visiting Vehicle Ground Trajectory targeting tool provides the ability to perform both realtime and planning operations for the Visiting Vehicle Group. This tool provides a...

Briefs: Software
Mobile Thread Task Manager

The Mobile Thread Task Manager (MTTM) is being applied to parallelizing existing flight software to understand the benefits and to develop new techniques and architectural concepts for adapting software to multicore architectures. It allocates and load-balances tasks for a group of threads that migrate across...

Briefs: Software
Workflow-Based Software Development Environment

The Software Developer’s Assistant (SDA) helps software teams more efficiently and accurately conduct or execute software processes associated with NASA mission-critical software. SDA is a process enactment platform that guides software teams through project-specific standards, processes, and...

Global Positioning System (GPS) meteorology provides enhanced density, low-latency (30-min resolution), integrated precipitable water (IPW) estimates to NOAA NWS...

Briefs: Information Technology
Spatial Statistical Data Fusion (SSDF)

As remote sensing for scientific purposes has transitioned from an experimental technology to an operational one, the selection of instruments has become more coordinated, so that the scientific community can exploit complementary measurements. However, technological and scientific heterogeneity across...

Briefs: Information Technology
Spatial Statistical Data Fusion (SSDF)

As remote sensing for scientific purposes has transitioned from an experimental technology to an operational one, the selection of instruments has become more coordinated, so that the scientific community can exploit complementary measurements. However, technological and scientific heterogeneity across...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Cryogenic Liquid Sample Acquisition System for Remote Space Applications

There is a need to acquire autonomously cryogenic hydrocarbon liquid sample from remote planetary locations such as the lakes of Titan for instruments such as mass spectrometers. There are several problems that had to be solved relative to collecting the right amount of...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Integrating a Microwave Radiometer into Radar Hardware for Simultaneous Data Collection Between the Instruments

The conventional method for integrating a radiometer into radar hardware is to share the RF front end between the instruments, and to have separate IF receivers that take data at separate times. Alternatively, the radar and radiometer...

Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Rapid Detection of Herpes Viruses for Clinical Applications

There are eight herpes viruses that infect humans, causing a wide range of diseases resulting in considerable morbidity and associated costs. Varicella zoster virus (VZV) is a human herpes virus that causes chickenpox in children and shingles in adults. Approximately 1,000,000 new cases...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
High-Speed Data Recorder for Space, Geodesy, and Other High-Speed Recording Applications

A high-speed data recorder and replay equipment has been developed for reliable high-data-rate recording to disk media. It solves problems with slow or faulty disks, multiple disk insertions, high-altitude operation, reliable performance using COTS hardware,...

Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Datacasting V3.0

Datacasting V3.0 provides an RSS-based feed mechanism for publishing the availability of Earth science data records in real time. It also provides a utility for subscribing to these feeds and sifting through all the items in an automatic manner to identify and download the data records that are required for a specific...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Stacked Transformer for Driver Gain and Receive Signal Splitting

In a high-speed signal transmission system that uses transformer coupling, there is a need to provide increased transmitted signal strength without adding active components. This invention uses additional transformers to achieve the needed gain. The prior art uses stronger drivers...

Heterodyne receivers at submillimeter wavelengths have played a major role in astrophysics as well as Earth and planetary remote sensing....

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Wireless Integrated Microelectronic Vacuum Sensor System

NASA Stennis Space Center’s (SSC’s) large rocket engine test facility requires the use of liquid propellants, including the use of cryogenic fluids like liquid hydrogen as fuel, and liquid oxygen as an oxidizer (gases which have been liquefied at very low temperatures). These fluids...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Fabrication Method for LOBSTER-Eye Optics in Silicon

Soft x-ray optics can use narrow slots to direct x-rays into a desirable pattern on a focal plane. While square-pack, square-pore, slumped optics exist for this purpose, they are costly. Silicon (Si) is being examined as a possible low-cost replacement. A fabrication method was developed for...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Compact Focal Plane Assembly for Planetary Science

A compact radiometric focal plane assembly (FPA) has been designed in which the filters are individually co-registered over compact thermopile pixels. This allows for construction of an ultralightweight and compact radiometric instrument. The FPA also incorporates micromachined baffles in order...

Previously, it was difficult to fabricate deformable mirrors made by piezoelectric actuators. This is because numerous actuators need to be precisely assembled to control the surface shape...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
A Kinematic Calibration Process for Flight Robotic Arms

The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) robotic arm is ten times more massive than any Mars robotic arm before it, yet with similar accuracy and repeatability positioning requirements. In order to assess and validate these requirements, a higher-fidelity model and calibration processes were...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Magnetostrictive Alternator

This innovation replaces the linear alternator presently used in Stirling engines with a continuous-gradient, impedance-matched, oscillating magnetostrictive transducer that eliminates all moving parts via compression, maintains high efficiency, costs less to manufacture, reduces mass, and eliminates the need for a...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
High-Precision Encoders for GEO Space Applications

High-precision encoders are used by earth observation instruments and in mechanisms for laser communication terminals (LCTs). A micro-radian resolution encoder for the LCT was designed for...

This product is an efficient concrete waterproofing solution. The crystalline, anti-corrosive material features a patented eka-molecular-sieve structure. The cement-based material...

Aqueous Superabsorbent Coating (ASC) technology is a liquid polymer solution that dries to form an absorbent film. It can absorb up to 40 g/g by weight of water, depending on...

Mechanisms are used widely in engineering applications due to their ability to translate force and movement. They are found in kinematic pairs, gears, cams, linkages,...

Briefs: Medical
Detection of Only Viable Bacterial Spores Using a Live/Dead Indicator in Mixed Populations

This method uses a photoaffinity label that recognizes DNA and can be used to distinguish populations of bacterial cells from bacterial spores without the use of heat shocking during conventional culture, and live from dead bacterial spores using...

Briefs: Medical
Intravenous Fluid Generation System

The ability to stabilize and treat patients on exploration missions will depend on access to needed consumables. Intravenous (IV) fluids have been identified as required consumables. A review of the Space Medicine Exploration Medical Condition List (SMEMCL) lists over 400 medical conditions that could present...

Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Slowing Light Via Beam Coupling in Dye-Doped Chiral Nematics

Apart from the fundamental interest of discovering the physical effects that are behind the light-matter interaction processes that make it possible, slowing and storing light currently attracts a lot of attention because the ability to control the propagation speed of optical pulses,...

Using thousands of nanometer-scale wires, researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a sensor device that converts mechanical pressure – from a signature or...

Commercial uses for ultraviolet (UV) light are growing, and now a new kind of LED under development at The Ohio State University could lead to more portable and low-cost...

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