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.

A method and apparatus for mapping between the positions of fibers at opposite ends of incoherent fiber-optic bundles have been invented to enable the use of such bundles to transmit images in...

Theoretical analysis and some experiments have demonstrated that siliconon- insulator (SOI) 4-gate transistors of the type known as G4FETs could be efficiently...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Radiation-Tolerant Dual Data Bus

An architecture, and a method of utilizing the architecture, have been proposed to enable error-free operation of a data bus that includes, and is connected to, commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) circuits and...

Briefs: Software
Program Merges SAR Data on Terrain and Vegetation Heights

X/P Merge is a computer program that estimates ground-surface elevations and vegetation heights from multiple sets of data acquired by the GeoSAR instrument [a terrain-mapping synthetic-aperture radar (SAR) system that operates in the X and P bands]. X/P Merge software combines data from...

Two algorithms for processing the digitized readings of electronic noses, and computer programs to implement the algorithms, have been devised in a continuing effort to increase the utility...

Briefs: Software
General-Purpose Front End for Real-Time Data Processing

FRONTIER is a computer program that functions as a front end for any of a variety of other software of both the artificial intelligence (AI) and conventional data-processing types. As used here, "front end" signifies interface software needed for acquiring and preprocessing data and making...

Briefs: Semiconductors & ICs
Cumulative Timers for Microprocessors

It has been proposed to equip future microprocessors with electronic cumulative timers, for essentially the same reasons for which land vehicles are equipped with odometers (total-distance-traveled...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Nanocomposite Photoelectrochemical Cells

Improved, solid-state photoelectrochemical cells for converting solar radiation to electricity have been proposed. (In general, photoelectrochemical cells convert incident light to electricity through electrochemical reactions.) It is predicted that in comparison with state-of-the-art photoelectrochemical...

Whenever a data acquisition (DAQ) system is moved from the controlled environment of the laboratory to validation testing or the manufacturing floor,...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Ultracapacitor-Powered Cordless Drill

The figure depicts a portable, handheld power drill with its attached powersupply unit, in which ultracapacitors, rather than batteries, are used to store energy. This ultracapacitor-powered drill is a...

Photocatalytic/ magnetic composite particles have been invented as improved means of exploiting established methods of photocatalysis for removal of chemical and biological pollutants from air and...

A special double-wall container and a process for utilizing the container are being developed to enable (1) acquisition of a sample of material in a "dirty" environment that may...

The figure schematically depicts a system of electronic hardware and software that noninvasively tracks the direction of a person’s gaze in real time. Like prior commercial noninvasive...

Briefs: Medical
Detergent-Specific Membrane Protein Crystallization Screens

A suite of reagents has been developed for three-dimensional crystallization of integral membranes present in solution as protein-detergent complexes (PDCs). The compositions of these reagents have been determined in part by proximity to the phase boundaries (lower consolute boundaries)...

Railguns, which propel a projectile using electromagnetic forces instead of chemical explosions, promise to revolutionize projectile launchers. Such guns have...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Plasmonic Antenna Coupling for QWIPs

In a proposed scheme for coupling light into a quantum-well infrared photodetector (QWIP), an antenna or an array of antennas made of a suitable metal would be fabricated on the face of what would...

Suits cooled by evaporation of water have been proposed as improved means of temporary protection against high temperatures near fires. When air temperature exceeds 600 °F (316 °C)...

Electronic tongue 2 (E-tongue 2) represents the second generation of the apparatus described in "Electronic Tongue for Quantitation of Contaminants in Water" (NPO-30601), NASA Tech...

Briefs: Information Technology
Improved Heat-Stress Algorithm

NASA Dryden presents an improved and automated site-specific algorithm for heat-stress approximation using standard atmospheric measurements routinely obtained from the Edwards Air Force Base weather...

Briefs: Information Technology
A Method of Partly Automated Testing of Software

A method of automated testing of software has been developed that provides an alternative to the conventional mostly manual approach for software testing. The method combines (1) automated...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Rover Wheel-Actuated Tool

A report describes an interface for utilizing some of the mobility features of a mobile robot for general-purpose manipulation of tools and other objects. The robot in question, now undergoing conceptual development for use on the Moon, is the All-Terrain Hex-Limbed Extra-Terrestrial Explorer (ATHLETE) rover, which is...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Second-Generation Electronic Nose

A report discusses the second generation of the JPL Electronic Nose (ENose), an array of 32 semi-specific chemical sensors used as an event monitor to identify and quantify contaminants released into breathing air by leaks or spills. It is designed to monitor the environment for changes in air quality, and is...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Automated Aerial Refueling Hitches a Ride On AFF

The recent introduction of uninhabited aerial vehicles [UAVs (basically, remotely piloted or autonomous aircraft)] has spawned new developments in autonomous operation and posed new...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Cobra Probes Containing Replaceable Thermocouples

A modification of the basic design of cobra probes provides for relatively easy replacement of broken thermocouples. [Cobra probes are standard tube-type pressure probes that may also contain thermocouples and that are routinely used in wind tunnels and aeronautical hardware. They are so named...

Briefs: Physical Sciences
Radar Interferometer for Topographic Mapping of Glaciers and Ice Sheets

A report discusses Ka-band (35-GHz) radar for mapping the surface topography of glaciers and ice sheets at high spatial resolution and high vertical accuracy, independent of cloud cover, with a swath-width of 70 km. The system is a single- pass, single-platform...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Miniature Intelligent Sensor Module

An electronic unit denoted the Miniature Intelligent Sensor Module performs sensor signal conditioning functions and local processing of sensor data. The unit includes four channels of analog input/output circuitry, a processor, volatile and nonvolatile memory, and two Ethernet communication ports, all housed...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
“Smart” Sensor Module

An assembly that contains a sensor, sensor signal conditioning circuitry, a sensor-readout analog-to-digital converter (ADC), data-storage circuitry, and a microprocessor that runs special-purpose software and...

A small, lightweight, portable apparatus based on an electrochemical sensing principle has been developed for monitoring low concentrations of ethylene in air. Ethylene has long been...

Briefs: Electronics & Computers
Flight Qualified Micro Sun Sensor

A prototype small, lightweight micro Sun sensor (MSS) has been flight qualified as part of the attitude- determination system of a spacecraft or for Mars surface operations. The MSS has previously been...

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