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: Energy
LED Display Engineering

The primary objective of this project was to develop and implement a method that compensates for the inefficiency of the green light-emitting diode (LED). The proposed engineering solution was to use RGBW...

Phosphors are useful in numerous applications including lighting. Tantalates are very promising materials because they are especially robust and resistant to chemical degradation. Studies have...

An enhanced algorithm has been developed that builds on a previous innovation of fuel-optimal powered-descent guidance (PDG) for planetary pinpoint landing....

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Miniature, Variable-Speed Control Moment Gyroscope

The Miniature Variable-Speed Control Moment Gyroscope (MVS-CMG) was designed for small satellites (mass from less than 1 kg up to 500 kg). Currently available CMGs are too large and heavy, and available miniature CMGs do not provide sufficient control authority for use on practical satellites....

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
NBL Pistol Grip Tool for Under water Training of Astronauts

A document discusses a lightweight, functional mockup of the Pistol Grip Tool for use during underwater astronaut training. Previous training tools have caused shoulder injuries. This new version is more than 50 percent lighter [in water, weight is 2.4 lb (≈1.1 kg)], and can operate...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
HEXPANDO Expanding Head for Fastener-Retention Hexagonal Wrench

The HEXPANDO is an expanding-head hexagonal wrench designed to retain fasteners and keep them from being dislodged from the tool. The tool is intended to remove or install socket-head cap screws (SHCSs) in remote, hard-to-reach locations or in circumstances when a dropped fastener...

Traditional azimuth-elevation (“az-el”) stages are used to point a variety of devices ranging from large optical telescopes to tank guns. Such a stage typically has...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Improvements in Speed and Functionality of a 670-GHz Imaging Radar

Significant improvements have been made in the instrument originally described in a prior NASA Tech Briefs article: “Improved Speed and Functionality of a 580-GHz Imaging Radar” (NPO-45156), Vol. 34, No. 7 (July 2010), p. 51. First, the wideband YIG oscillator has been...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
IONAC-Lite

The Interplanetary Overlay Networking Protocol Accelerator (IONAC) described previously in “The Interplanetary Overlay Networking Protocol Accelerator” (NPO-45584), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 32, No. 10, (October 2008) p. 106 (http://www.techbriefs.com/component/content/article/3317) provides functions that implement the Delay...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Large Ka-Band Slot Array for Digital Beam-Forming Applications

This work describes the development of a large Ka Band Slot Array for the Glacier and Land Ice Surface Topography Interferometer (GLISTIN), a proposed spaceborne interferometric synthetic aperture radar for topographic mapping of ice sheets and glaciers. GLISTIN will collect ice...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Router Agent Technology for Policy-Based Network Management

This innovation can be run as a standalone network application on any computer in a networked environment. This design can be configured to control one or more routers (one instance per router), and can also be configured to listen to a policy server over the network to receive new...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Development of a 150-GHz MMIC Module Prototype for Large-Scale CMB Radiation

HEMT-based receiver arrays with excellent noise and scalability are already starting to be manufactured at 100 GHz, but the advances in technology should make it possible to develop receiver modules with even greater operation frequency up to 200 GHz. A prototype...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Coupling Between Waveguide-Fed Slot Arrays

Coupling between two waveguide-fed planar slot arrays has been investigated using full-wave analysis. The analysis employs the method-of-moments solution to the pertinent coupled integral equa- tions for the aperture electric field of all slots. In order to compute coupling between two arrays, the input...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Multiple-Beam Detection of Fast Transient Radio Sources

A method has been designed for using multiple independent stations to discriminate fast transient radio sources from local anomalies, such as antenna noise or radio frequency interference (RFI). This can improve the sensitivity of incoherent detection for geographically separated stations...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
PCB-Based Break-Out Box

Break-out boxes (BOBs) are necessary for all electrical inte- gration/cable checkouts and troubleshooting. Because the price of a BOB is high, and no work can be done without one, often the procedure stops, simply waiting for a BOB. A less expensive BOB would take less time in the integration, testing, and troubleshooting...

Briefs: Software
Remote Asynchronous Message Service Gateway

The Remote Asynchronous Message Service (RAMS) gateway is a special-purpose AMS application node that enables exchange of AMS messages between nodes residing in different AMS “continua,” notionally in different geographical locations. JPL’s implementation of RAMS gateway functionality is...

Briefs: Software
Automatic Tie Pointer for 'In-Situ' Pointing Correction

The MARSAUTOTIE program generates tie points for use with the Mars pointing correction software “In-Situ Pointing Correction and Rover Microlocalization,” (NPO-46696) Software Tech Briefs, Vol. 34, No. 9 (September 2010), page 18, in a completely automated manner, with no operator...

Briefs: Software
Jitter Correction

Jitter_Correct.m is a MATLAB function that automatically measures and corrects inter-frame jitter in an image sequence to a user-specified precision. In addition, the algorithm dynamically adjusts the image sample size to increase the accuracy of the measurement.

Briefs: Software
MSLICE Sequencing

MSLICE Sequencing is a graphical tool for writing sequences and integrating them into RML files, as well as for producing SCMF files for uplink. When operated in a testbed environment, it also supports uplinking these SCMF files to the testbed via Chill.

Briefs: Software
EOS MLS Level 2 Data Processing Software Version 3

This software accepts the EOS MLS calibrated measurements of microwave radiances products and operational meteorological data, and produces a set of estimates of atmospheric temperature and composition. This version has been designed to be as flexible as possible. The software is controlled by a...

Briefs: Software
DspaceOgre 3D Graphics Visualization Tool

This general-purpose 3D graphics visualization C++ tool is designed for visualization of simulation and analysis data for articulated mechanisms. Examples of such systems are vehicles, robotic arms, biomechanics models, and biomolecular structures. DspaceOgre builds upon the open-source Ogre3D graphics...

Thermoelectric materials provide a means for converting heat into electrical power using a fully solid-state device. Power-generating devices (which include individual...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Solvent/Non-Solvent Sintering To Make Microsphere Scaffolds

A solvent/non-solvent sintering tech- nique has been devised for joining poly- meric microspheres to make porous matri- ces for use as drug-delivery devices or scaf- folds that could be seeded with cells for growing tissues. Unlike traditional sinter- ing at elevated temperature and...

Briefs: Materials
Separation of Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes with DEP-FFF

A process using a modified dielectrophoresis device separates single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) according to their polarizability in electric fields. This depends on the size and dielectric constant of individual nanotubes and easily separates metallic from semiconducting nanotubes....

Briefs: Materials
Self-Cleaning Coatings and Materials for Decontaminating Field-Deployable Land and Water-Based Optical Systems

This technology exploits the organic decomposition capability and hydrophilic properties of the photocatalytic material titanium dioxide (TiO2), a non-toxic and non-hazardous substance, to address contamination and biofouling...

Briefs: Materials
Li Anode Technology for Improved Performance

A novel, low-cost approach to stabilization of Li metal anodes for high-performance rechargeable batteries was developed. Electrolyte additives are selected and used in Li cell electrolyte systems, promoting formation of a protective coating on Li metal anodes for improved cycle and safety...

Briefs: Medical
Post-Fragmentation Whole Genome Amplification-Based Method

This innovation is derived from a proprietary amplification scheme that is based upon random fragmentation of the genome into a series of short, overlapping templates. The resulting shorter DNA strands (

Briefs: Medical
Microwave Tissue Soldering for Immediate Wound Closure

A novel approach for the immediate sealing of traumatic wounds is under development. A portable microwave generator and handheld antenna are used to seal wounds, binding the edges of the wound together using a biodegradable protein sealant or “solder.” This method could be used for...

Briefs: Medical
Stress-Driven Selection of Novel Phenotypes

A process has been developed that can confer novel properties, such as metal resistance, to a host bacterium. This same process can also be used to produce RNAs and peptides that have novel properties, such as the ability to bind particular compounds. It is inherent in the method that the peptide or...

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