Here are innovative solutions for your biggest challenges in Electronics and Software - Power Supplies and Management, Board-Level Electronics, Components and Batteries. You’ll find applications essential to military, aviation, medical and automotive design engineering.

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Overview of Tapered-Slot Antennas

A document presents a comprehensive overview of the technology of tapered-slot antennas and arrays of such antennas. The fundamental operation of tapered-slot antennas is not yet fully understood, and, for lack of established design rules, the designs of these antennas have been based primarily on empirical...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Automated Vision System Inspects a Large Surface

The figure schematically illustrates an automated electronic vision system that operates in conjunction with a scanning robot to inspect a large surface for damage. In the original application for which the system was developed, the surface comprises the panels of the space shuttle thermal...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Control System for Steerable, Rooftop-Mounted Antenna

An excerpt from JPL Document D-12104 presents additional information on the control system of a steerable microwave antenna that is mounted on the roof of a land vehicle and used to communicate with a geostationary satellite. The antenna and control system were described previously in...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Fabrication of Arrays of Large Step-Free Regions on Si(100)

When a silicon wafer is cut from an ingot, it is essentially impossible to align the cut perfectly with the crystal structure. Therefore the surface contour of the wafer will be a flat plane on which terraces consisting of additional atomic layers will be scattered. An atomic step will...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Reflective Coating System for High-Temperature Vacuum Use

A substrate of nickel coated with a thin layer of silver and further coated with a thin protective layer of silicon dioxide has been found to constitute an optically reflective substrate/coating system that is suitable for use at high temperature in vacuum. This system was developed...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Extracting Misalignments of Layers in Microfabricated Devices

Two closely related methods of optical inspection and computation yield data on misalignments between critical features in different layers of microfabricated devices. Examples of such devices containing features in different layers that are required to be aligned with each other...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Optoelectronic Oscillators Based on Brillouin Scattering

An improved type of optoelectronic oscillator is based on Brillouin amplification. An oscillator of this type converts light energy into an electro-optical oscillation, typically at a frequency of several gigahertz. It offers several advantages over other electro-optical and over...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Exploiting Brillouin Scattering in Analog Signal Processing

Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) in optical fibers can be exploited to obtain frequency conversion with amplification and frequency-selective amplification in photonic signal-transmission and signal-processing systems. SBS has been found to be particularly useful in photonic...

Briefs : Software
Program Counts Lines of Source Code

The Source Lines of Code Count (SLOCC) computer program counts the number of source lines of a computer code, as an aid in the management of software, documentation of code, estimation of cost, and satisfying miscellaneous code-metric needs. SLOCC accommodates the following programming languages: Ada, Pascal,...

Briefs : Information Technology
System for Locating Objects of Interest in Image Data Bases

A trainable software system known as JARtool 2.0 has been developed to help scientists find localized objects of interest ("target objects") in image data bases. A human expert implicitly trains the system by using a graphical user interface (see figure) to circle all examples of the...

Briefs : Information Technology
Image Compression for High-Performance Computing

A program of research on the use of wavelets for compression of data in a parallel-computing environment has led to development of a scheme for compressing image data. The purpose of the research was to determine whether one could achieve an acceptably high compression ratio with acceptably small...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Impedance-Based Cable Tester

The figure illustrates the major functional blocks of an impedance-based cable-testing apparatus that can locate an open or short circuit in a cable. There is no need to disconnect the cable from all other equipment in preparation for a test – an advantage in a system in which cable connections are located in...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Low-Frequency Signal-Pickup Cable Tester

A cable-testing apparatus has been designed for use in detecting a short or open circuit in a cable, subject to a special frequency requirement as explained in the next paragraph. This cable tester is based on the injection of a signal at one end of the cable and the use of a pickup coil placed adjacent...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Computing Limiting Voltages vs. Temperatures for Ni/Cd Cells

Curves of limiting voltage (V) as a function of temperature (T) for nickel/cadmium cells and batteries can be computed by use of a mathematical cell model based on first principles. Such curves ("V/T curves" for short) are needed as guides to rapid full charging without overcharging....

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Lightning Detection and Ranging System

The Lightning Detection and Ranging (LDAR) system is a network of lightning-monitoring stations at Kennedy Space Center. The LDAR system contains equipment for measuring and indicating the three-dimensional locations and times of lightning flashes that have occurred within distances up to tens of...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
In-Process Monitoring and Analysis of Thermal-Spray Processes Using Machine Vision

The LaserStrobe Optical Probe is an advanced laser-augmented video-imaging system that observes and measures particle behavior in the harsh environment of a plasma-spray chamber. The need for a reliable diagnostic and feedback control system during thermal-spray...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Computation of Characteristics of a Helical TWT Slow-Wave Circuit

A computational study has been performed to show that one can accurately compute the cold-test electromagnetic characteristics of the helical slow-wave circuit of a traveling-wave tube (TWT).

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Glove Senses Angles of Finger Joints

A glove has been instrumented to sense the angles of finger joints via the electrical resistances of strips of an electrically conductive elastomer on the backs of the fingers, including the thumb (see figure). The conductive elastomer is a urethane-based synthetic rubber filled with conductive carbon...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Discriminator-Stabilized Superconductive/Ferroelectric Oscillator

An oscillator circuit that contains superconductive and ferroelectric resonator elements is undergoing development. This circuit is designed to serve as a frequency-locked local oscillator in a communication system in which digital data are conveyed via phase modulation on a...

Briefs : Software
Quick and Unusually Easy Repository Search Software

The Quick and Unusually Easy Repository Search computer program simplifies the search for information contained in a repository of documents at Marshall Space Flight Center. Searching for information on the basis of general subjects can be very time-consuming and frustrating: The repository at...

Briefs : Information Technology
LTI Approach to Adaptive Narrow-Band Feedforward Control

A unified theory of linear time-invariant (LTI) representations has been developed for use in the analysis and design of adaptive, narrow-band, feedforward controllers for systems characterized by harmonic regressors (the term "harmonic regressor" is defined below). Such controllers are...

Briefs : Information Technology
Training of Neural Networks by Modified Taguchi Techniques

Modified Taguchi techniques of robust design optimization are used in an innovative method of training artificial neural networks — for example the network shown in the figure. As in other neural-network-training methods, the synaptic weights (strengths of connections between neurons)...

Briefs : Information Technology
Software for Assessing Effects of Designs on Operations

The Operations Impact Assessor (OIA) computer program facilitates rapid assessment of the effects of designs of spacecraft on spacecraft-processing operations at a launch site. OIA is a user-friendly, object-oriented, artificial-intelligence application program that features model-based...

Briefs : Information Technology
Improved Design of Adaptive Feedforward Tracking Systems

An improved method of analysis and design offers the potential to enhance the performances of adaptive feedforward tracking systems. The method can, in principle, make it possible to increase such performance measures as rates of convergence and noise-cancellation ratios, without need for...

Briefs : Information Technology
Expressing Object-Oriented Concepts in Fortran 90

A methodology for object-oriented programming in Fortran 90 has been developed. The methodology provides for emulation of the most important object-oriented concepts of C++; namely, classes (including abstract data types, encapsulation, and function overloading), inheritance, and dynamic...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Induced-Eddy-Current-Sensor Measurement of Semiconductor Performance

Recombination lifetime and minority-carrier lifetime are key performance parameters of semiconductor wafers used for microelectronics and solar cells. They are also particularly valuable for identifying low levels of impurities in wafers used for high-density integrated...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Radiative Measurement of Temperature in a MESFET Channel

A technique based on infrared-emission spectroscopy has been found to be useful for noncontact measurement of the temperature of a hot spot in the gate channel of a GaAs metal/semiconductor field-effect transistor (MESFET). Temperature measurements are important for the development of...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Rechargeable Microbatteries With Li Anodes Formed In Situ

Rechargeable, thin-film, lithium-based microbatteries of the proposed type would be manufactured in the discharged condition, and lithium anodes would be formed in situ during subsequent charging. In contrast, state-of-the-art rechargeable, thin-film, lithium-based microbatteries are...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Automated Cable-Analyzer System – ACAS

An instrumentation system automates the detection and location of faults in multiconductor electrical cables. It can accelerate diagnoses of aircraft, automotive, or industrial cables, while reducing the incidence of errors and of damage caused by test probes.

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Dual-Channel Precision Signal-to-Noise Ratio Generator

During the development and testing of signal processing systems, it is useful to generate test signals in the laboratory in order to quantify system parameters such as dynamic range, processing gain, or frequency resolution. Furthermore, it is convenient to have two test signals that are...