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 : Medical
Experimental Modeling of Sterilization Effects for Atmospheric Entry Heating on Microorganisms

The objective of this research was to design, build, and test an experimental apparatus for studying the parameters of atmospheric entry heating, and the inactivation of temperature-resistant bacterial spores. The apparatus is capable of controlled,...

Briefs : Medical
Saliva Preservative for Diagnostic Purposes

Saliva is an important body fluid for diagnostic purposes. Glycoproteins, glucose, steroids, DNA, and other molecules of diagnostic value are found in saliva. It is easier to collect as compared to blood or urine. Un for tunately, saliva also contains large numbers of bacteria that can release enzymes,...

Briefs : Software
POSTMAN: Point of Sail Tacking for Maritime Autonomous Navigation

Waves apply significant forces to small boats, in particular when such vessels are moving at a high speed in severe sea conditions. In addition, small highspeed boats run the risk of diving with the bow into the next wave crest during operations in the wavelengths and wave speeds...

Briefs : Software
Aerosol and Surface Parameter Retrievals for a Multi-Angle, Multiband Spectrometer

This software retrieves the surface and atmosphere parameters of multi-angle, multiband spectra. The synthetic spectra are generated by applying the modified Rahman-Pinty-Verstraete Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF) model, and a...

Briefs : Software
LogScope

LogScope is a software package for analyzing log files. The intended use is for offline post-processing of such logs, after the execution of the system under test. LogScope can, however, in principle, also be used to monitor systems online during their execution. Logs are checked against requirements formulated as monitors expressed in...

Briefs : Software
TraceContract

TraceContract is an API (Application Programming Interface) for trace analysis. A trace is a sequence of events, and can, for example, be generated by a running program, instrumented appropriately to generate events. An event can be any data object. An example of a trace is a log file containing events that a programmer has found...

Briefs : Software
AIRS Maps From Space Processing Software

This software package processes Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) Level 2 swath standard product geophysical parameters, and generates global, colorized, annotated maps. It automatically generates daily and multi-day averaged colorized and annotated maps of various AIRS Level 2 swath geophysical...

Briefs : Information Technology
Social Networking Adapted for Distributed Scientific Collaboration

Sci-Share is a social networking site with novel, specially designed feature sets to enable simultaneous remote collaboration and sharing of large data sets among scientists. The site will include not only the standard features found on popular consumer-oriented social networking...

Briefs : Information Technology
3D Drop Size Distribution Extrapolation Algorithm Using a Single Disdrometer

Determining the Z-R relationship (where Z is the radar reflectivity factor and R is rainfall rate) from disdrometer data has been and is a common goal of cloud physicists and radar meteorology researchers. The usefulness of this quantity has traditionally been limited...

Briefs : Information Technology
Iterative Transform Phase Diversity: An Image-Based Object and Wavefront Recovery

The Iterative Transform Phase Diversity algorithm is designed to solve the problem of recovering the wavefront in the exit pupil of an optical system and the object being imaged. This algorithm builds upon the robust convergence capability of Variable Sampling...

Briefs : Information Technology
Space Operations Learning Center

The Space Operations Learning Center (SOLC) is a tool that provides an online learning environment where students can learn science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) through a series of training modules. SOLC is also an effective media for NASA to showcase its contributions to the general public....

Briefs : Information Technology
Projection of Stabilized Aerial Imagery Onto Digital Elevation Maps for Geo-Rectified and Jitter-Free Viewing

As imagery is collected from an airborne platform, an individual viewing the images wants to know from where on the Earth the images were collected. To do this, some information about the camera needs to be known, such as its position...

Briefs : Information Technology
Large Eddy Simulation (LES) of Particle-Laden Temporal Mixing Layers

High-fidelity models of plume-regolith interaction are difficult to develop because of the widely disparate flow conditions that exist in this process. The gas in the core of a rocket plume can often be modeled as a time-dependent, high-temperature, turbulent, reacting...

Briefs : Information Technology
OVERSMART Reporting Tool for Flow Computations Over Large Grid Systems

Structured grid solvers such as NASA’s OVERFLOW compressible Navier-Stokes flow solver can generate large data files that contain convergence histories for flow equation residuals, turbulence model equation residuals, component forces and moments, and component relative...

Briefs : Information Technology
General Methodology for Designing Spacecraft Trajectories

A methodology for designing spacecraft trajectories in any gravitational environment within the solar system has been developed. The methodology facilitates modeling and optimization for problems ranging from that of a single spacecraft orbiting a single celestial body to that of a...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Hemispherical Field-of-View Above-Water Surface Imager for Submarines

A document discusses solutions to the problem of submarines having to rise above water to detect airplanes in the general vicinity. Two solutions are provided, in which a sensor is located just under the water surface, and at a few to tens of meter depth under the water...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Quantum-Well Infrared Photodetector (QWIP) Focal Plane Assembly

A paper describes the Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS), a QWIP-based instrument intended to supplement the Operational Land Imager (OLI) for the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM). The TIRS instrument is a farinfrared imager operating in the pushbroom mode with two IR channels:...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Real-Time Remote Monitoring with Wireless Sensors

If remote sensors are to be autonomous and report their data in real time, they must have a reliable power source and a stable Ethernet connection. The United States Geological Survey (USGS), for example, monitors water conditions with a nationwide array of automated sensors, and uses their data...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Ultra-Low-Power MEMS Selective Gas Sensors

This innovation is a system for gas sensing that includes an ultra-low-power MEMS (microelectromechanical system) gas sensor, combined with unique electronic circuitry and a proprietary algorithm for operating the sensor. The electronics were created from scratch, and represent a novel design capable of...

Briefs : Information Technology
Pattern Recognition Algorithm for High- Sensitivity Odorant Detection in Unknown Environments

In a realistic odorant detection application environment, the collected sensory data is a mix of unknown chemicals with unknown concentrations and noise. The identification of the odorants among these mixtures is a challenge in data recognition. In...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Terahertz Radiation Heterodyne Detector Using Two- Dimensional Electron Gas in a GaN Heterostructure

High-resolution submillimeter/terahertz spectroscopy is important for studying atmospheric and interstellar molecular gaseous species. It typically uses heterodyne receivers where an unknown (weak) signal is mixed with a strong signal from the...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Versatile Controller for Infrared Lamp and Heater Arrays

A paper describes a modular design for new controllers for infrared heating during cruise stage solar thermal vacuum test of the Mars Science Laboratory. The controllers had to be easy to use and maintain, used with a wide variety of different control schemes, and made using commercial...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Instrument Suite for Vertical Characterization of the Ionosphere-Thermosphere System

A document describes a suite that provides four simultaneous ion and neutral-atom measurements as a function of altitude, with variable sensitivity for neutral atmospheric species. The variable sensitivity makes it possible to extend the measurements over the...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
Determining Performance Acceptability of Electrochemical Oxygen Sensors

A method has been developed to screen commercial electrochemical oxygen sensors to reduce the failure rate. There are three aspects to the method: First, the sensitivity over time (several days) can be measured and the rate of change of the sensitivity can be used to predict...

Briefs : Physical Sciences
High-Speed Scanning Interferometer Using CMOS Image Sensor and FPGA Based on Multifrequency Phase- Tracking Detection

A sub-aperture stitching optical interferometer can provide a cost-effective solution for an in situ metrology tool for large optics; however, the currently available technologies are not suitable for high-speed and real-time...

Briefs : Software
Motion-Capture-Enabled Software for Gestural Control of 3D Models

Current state-of-the-art systems use general-purpose input devices such as a keyboard, mouse, or joystick that map to tasks in unintuitive ways. This software enables a person to control intuitively the position, size, and orientation of synthetic objects in a 3D virtual...

Briefs : Software
Orbit Software Suite

Orbit Software Suite is used to support a variety of NASA/DM (Dependable Multiprocessor) mission planning and analysis activities on the IPS (Intrusion Prevention System) platform. The suite of Orbit software tools (Orbit Design and Orbit Dynamics) resides on IPS/Linux workstations, and is used to perform mission design and...

Briefs : Software
CoNNeCT Baseband Processor Module Boot Code SoftWare (BCSW)

This software provides essential startup and initialization routines for the CoNNeCT baseband processor module (BPM) hardware upon power-up. A command and data handling (C&DH) interface is provided via 1553 and diagnostic serial interfaces to invoke operational, reconfiguration, and...

Briefs : Software
Trajectory Software With Upper Atmosphere Model

The Trajectory Software Applications 6.0 for the Dec Alpha platform has an implementation of the Jacchia- Lineberry Upper Atmosphere Density Model used in the Mission Control Center for International Space Station support. Previous trajectory software required an upper atmosphere to support...

Briefs : Software
ALSSAT Version 6.0

Advanced Life Support Sizing Analysis Tool (ALSSAT) at the time of this reporting has been updated to version 6.0. A previous version was described in “Tool for Sizing Analysis of the Advanced Life Support System” (MSC- 23506), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 29, No. 12 (December 2005), page 43. To recapitulate: ALSSAT is a...