Tech Briefs

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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: Electronics & Computers
Protocol Improves Storage Efficiency and Output Speed of Computer Systems
This approach enables computer systems to retrieve data much faster.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
A highly sensitive, CMOS-compatible, broadband photodetector was created by tailoring material defects.
Briefs: Materials
The material could enable applications such as antennas that change frequencies on the fly or gripper arms for delicate or heavy objects.
Briefs: Energy
A liquid crystal elastomer can be programmed to exhibit controllable, dynamic behavior without the need for complex electronic components.
Briefs: Energy
This lightweight and efficient mechanism enables retention, release, and deployment of solar arrays and antennas.
Briefs: Software
The method slashes battery testing times — a key barrier to longer-lasting, faster-charging batteries for electric vehicles.
Briefs: Materials
A new way of making polymers adhere to surfaces may enable better biomedical sensors and implants.
Briefs: Energy
The domino effect is used to design deployable systems that expand quickly with a small push and are stable and locked into place after deployment.
Briefs: Aerospace
This new design could conserve energy used for defrosting airplanes, appliances, and more.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
It can be used both in small, portable devices for field inspections and in very large detectors that use arrays of crystals.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
These “developable mechanisms” are built into the surfaces of structures.
Briefs: Software
This framework determines regional landslide probability in near real time.
Briefs: Medical
This gel releases short gene sequences into the heart muscle to heal it following a heart attack.
Briefs: Imaging
A new method could enable vehicles and equipment to better withstand high temperatures, loads, and speeds.
Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Next-generation devices made with a “peel and stack” method could include electronic chips worn on the skin.
Briefs: Sensors/Data Acquisition
Bandages with integrated pH and temperature sensors, and electronically triggered drug release, improve healing.
Briefs: Photonics/Optics
This method uses fiber optic probes for measurement of semiconductors, optical coatings, magnetic read/write heads, and precision machines.
Briefs: Energy
This fast, flexible tool allows researchers to quickly compare and prioritize strategies for converting biomass to fuels and products.
Briefs: Imaging
The nonlinear camera captures high-resolution images of the interior of solid objects using terahertz (THz) radiation.
Briefs: Test & Measurement
Engineers have developed a new scanning technique inspired by the natural world that can detect corroding metals in oil and gas pipelines.
Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
A team is exploring new materials for telecommunications and LIDAR applications.
Briefs: Photonics/Optics
Researchers described a new strategy of designing metamolecules.
Briefs: Motion Control
This technology could help control driverless cars and automated warehouses.
Briefs: Motion Control
Square trusses replace round for enhanced strength and robotics compatibility.
Briefs: Motion Control
This technology cancels out the vibrations of a satellite by vibrating the solar panels in the opposite direction.
Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control

Robot-assisted surgery has advanced dramatically over the past decade in almost every surgical sub-specialty. Robot-assisted surgery is usually performed using surgical robot systems that...

Briefs: Motion Control
The gyroscope is smaller than a grain of rice — about 500 times smaller than the current state-of-the-art device.
Briefs: Motion Control
The domino effect is used to design deployable systems that expand quickly with a small push and are stable and locked into place after deployment.
Briefs: Manufacturing & Prototyping
Manufacturers, medical device companies, and others can use this 3D printing software driven by artificial intelligence (AI).

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