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: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Structural/Radiation-Shielding Epoxies

A development effort was directed toward formulating epoxy resins that are useful both as structural materials and as shielding against heavy-ion radiation. Hydrogen is recognized as the best element...

Integrated multilayer insulation (IMLI) is being developed as an improved alternative to conventional multilayer insulation (MLI), which is more than 50 years old. A typical conventional MLI blanket comprises...

Within a digital world, the parameters of real-world information (temperature, voltage, current, speed, flow, pressure, distance, etc.) used for process communications and control...

An apparatus that includes an array of multiple electrodes has been invented as a means of simultaneously testing multiple materials for their utility as oxygen-reduction catalysts...

A photonic instrument is proposed to boost the resolution for ultraviolet/optical/infrared spectral analysis and spectral imaging allowing the detection of narrow...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Composite Bipolar Plate for Unitized Fuel Cell/Electrolyzer Systems

In a substantial improvement over present alkaline systems, an advanced hybrid bipolar plate for a unitized fuel cell/ electrolyzer has been developed. This design, which operates on pure feed streams (H2/O2 and water, respectively) consists of a porous...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Quantum-Well Thermophotovoltaic Cells

Thermophotovoltaic cells containing multiple quantum wells have been invented as improved means of conversion of thermal to electrical energy. The semiconductor bandgaps of the quantum wells can be tailored to be narrower than those of prior thermophotovoltaic cells, thereby enabling the cells to convert...

Briefs: Information Technology
Bounded-Angle Iterative Decoding of LDPC Codes

Bounded-angle iterative decoding is a modified version of conventional iterative decoding, conceived as a means of reducing undetected- error rates for short low-density parity-check (LDPC)...

A procedure and software to implement the procedure have been devised to enable conversion from a tree representation to a graph representation of the requirements governing the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Parallel Hybrid Vehicle Optimal Storage System

A paper reports the results of a Hybrid Diesel Vehicle Project focused on a parallel hybrid configuration suitable for diesel-powered, medium-sized, commercial vehicles commonly used for parcel delivery and shuttle buses, as the missions of these types of vehicles require frequent stops. During...

Briefs: Medical
Anaerobic Digestion in a Flooded Densified Leachbed

A document discusses the adaptation of a patented biomass-digesting process, denoted sequential batch anaerobic composting (SEBAC), to recycling of wastes aboard a spacecraft. In SEBAC, high-solids-content biomass wastes are converted into methane, carbon dioxide, and compost.

Briefs: Green Design & Manufacturing
Quantum-Well Thermophotovoltaic Cells

Thermophotovoltaic cells containing multiple quantum wells have been invented as improved means of conversion of thermal to electrical energy. These cells are expected to be especially useful for extracting electrical energy from combustion, waste-heat, and nuclear sources. Conversion efficiencies more than...

An instrument measures electrical properties of relatively dry soils to determine their liquid water and/or ice contents. Designed as a prototype of instruments for measuring the...

An automated procedure has been developed to derive relevant factors, which can increase the ability to produce objective, repeatable methods for determining aerodynamic surface...

Briefs: Software
DSN Data Visualization Suite

The DSN Data Visualization Suite is a set of computer programs and reusable Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) that assist in the visualization and analysis of Deep Space Network (DSN) spacecraft-tracking data, which can include predicted and actual values of downlink frequencies, uplink frequencies, and...

A method for real-time detection of dust devils at a given location is based on identifying the abrupt, temporary decreases in atmospheric pressure that are characteristic of dust...

In a proposed coding-and-modulation scheme, a high-rate binary data stream would be processed as follows:

A prototype decoder for a serially concatenated pulse position modulation (SCPPM) code has been implemented in a field-programmable gate array (FPGA). At the time of this...

The figure shows a biasable subharmonic mixer designed to operate in the frequency range from 520 to 600 GHz. This mixer is a prototype of low-power mixers needed for development of...

An effort to develop large-aperture, wide-angle-scanning reflectarray antennas for microwave radar and communication systems is underway. In an antenna of this type as envisioned,...

Briefs: Information Technology
Presentation Extensions of the SOAP

A set of extensions of the Satellite Orbit Analysis Program (SOAP) enables simultaneous and/or sequential presentation of information from multiple sources. SOAP is used in the aerospace community as a means of collaborative visualization and analysis of data on planned spacecraft missions. The following...

Briefs: Software
Symbolic Processing Combined With Model-Based Reasoning

A computer program for the detection of present and prediction of future discrete states of a complex, real-time engineering system utilizes a combination of symbolic processing and numerical model-based reasoning. One of the biggest weaknesses of a purely symbolic approach is that it...

Briefs: Software
Spreadsheets for Analyzing and Optimizing Space Missions

XCALIBR (XML Capability Analysis LIBRary) is a set of Extensible Markup Language (XML) database and spreadsheet-based analysis software tools designed to assist in technology-return-on-investment analysis and optimization of technology portfolios pertaining to outer- space missions....

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Alternative Packaging for Back-Illuminated Imagers

An alternative scheme has been conceived for packaging of silicon- based back-illuminated, back- side-thinned complementary metal oxide/semiconductor (CMOS) and charge-coupled-device...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Diamond Machining of an Off-Axis Biconic Aspherical Mirror

Two diamond-machining methods have been developed as part of an effort to design and fabricate an off-axis, biconic ellipsoidal, concave aluminum mirror for an infrared spectrometer at the Kitt Peak National Observatory. Beyond this initial application, the methods can be expected to...

Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Laser Ablation Increases PEM/Catalyst Interfacial Area

An investigational method of improving the performance of a fuel cell that contains a polymer-electrolyte membrane (PEM) is based on the concept of roughening the surface of the PEM,...

Lightweight composites of RP46 polyimide and glass fibers have been found to be useful as extraordinarily fire-resistant electrical-insulation materials. RP46 is a polyimide of the...

Briefs: Materials
Damage Detection and Self-Repair in Inflatable/Deployable Structures

Inflatable/deployable structures are under consideration for applications as varied as expansion modules for the International Space Station to destinations for space tourism to habitats for the lunar surface. Monitoring and maintaining the integrity of the physical structure...

Ceramic strain gauges in which the strain-sensitive electrically conductive strips made from nanocomposites of noble metal and indium tin oxide (ITO) are being developed for use in gas turbine...

Webcasts

Upcoming Webinars: Materials

Protecting Power Electronics from EM and RF Interference

Upcoming Webinars: Electronics & Computers

Vehicle Electrification

Upcoming Webinars: Sensors/Data Acquisition

The Evolution of SOSA

Upcoming Webinars: Software

Next-Gen Vehicle Architectures and the Role of HPCs

Tech Talks: Medical

Testing Home Healthcare Medical Devices

Upcoming Webinars: Software

Accelerating Pre-Silicon Software Development with Next-Gen...

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