Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Mechanical Components

Find multimedia resources and technical briefs covering complex mechanical components and technologies. Find the latest applications that design engineers are using to meet their design challenges.

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Simple, easy-to-use, highly effective tooling has been devised for maintaining alignment of bolt holes in mating structures during assembly and disassembly of the structures. The...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The figure presents a cross-sectional view of a supercharged, variable-compression, two-cycle, internal-combustion engine that offers significant advantages over prior such engines. The improvements...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Flexible Structural-Health-Monitoring Sheets

A generic design for a type of flexible structural- health- monitoring sheet with multiple sensor/actuator types and a method of manufacturing such sheets has been developed. A sheet of this type contains an array of sensing and/or actuation elements, associated wires, and any other associated circuit...

Briefs: Robotics, Automation & Control

The design, fabrication, and microgravity flight-testing are part of a continuing development of palm-sized mobile robots that resemble spiders (except that they have six legs apiece, whereas a...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Advanced Active-Magnetic-Bearing Thrust-Measurement System

An advanced thrust-measurement system utilizes active magnetic bearings to both (1) levitate a floating frame in all six degrees of freedom and (2) measure the levitation forces between the floating frame and a grounded frame. This system was developed for original use in measuring the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Thermally actuated hydraulic pumps have been proposed for diverse applications in which direct electrical or mechanical actuation is undesirable and the relative slowness of thermal actuation can be...

Books & Reports: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Lightweight Carbon-Carbon High-Temperature Space Radiator

A document summarizes the development of a carbon-carbon composite radiator for dissipating waste heat from a spacecraft nuclear reactor. The radiator is to be bonded to metal heat pipes and to operate in conjunction with them at a temperature approximately between 500 and 1,000 K. A goal...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Dynamic Method For Identifying Collected Sample Mass

G-Sample is designed for sample collection missions to identify the presence and quantity of sample material gathered by spacecraft equipped with end effectors. The software method uses a maximum-likelihood estimator to identify the collected sample's mass based on onboard force-sensor...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The balanced-piston relief valve with side vented reaction cavity has been proposed as an improved alternative to a conventional high- pressure, high-flow relief valve. As explained...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Using Composite Materials in a Cryogenic Pump

Several modifications have been made to the design and operation of an extended-shaft cryogenic pump to increase the efficiency of pumping. In general, the efficiency of pumping a cryogenic fluid is limited by thermal losses (the thermal energy that the pump adds to the fluid). The sources of the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Safety Modification of Cam-and-Groove Hose Coupling

A modification has been made in the mating halves of a cam-and- groove hose coupling to prevent rapid separation of the halves in the event that the cam levers are released while the fluid in the hose is pressurized. This modification can be duplicated on almost any commercially available...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
FIDO-Class Development Rover

A report describes a rover-type robotic wheeled vehicle recently built for use as a testbed for development of software for future rover-type vehicles. This vehicle is a derivative of the Field Integrated Design and Operations (FIDO) rover, which is a prototype Mars- exploration rover that also serves as a...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A variable-structure control system designed to enable a fuselage-heavy airplane to recover from spin has been demonstrated in a hand-launched, instrumented model glider airplane (see...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Axial Halbach magnetic bearings have been investigated as part of an effort to develop increasingly reliable noncontact bearings for future high-speed rotary machines that may be used in such applications as...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Tool bits that automatically collect powdered rock, permafrost, or other hard material generated in repeated hammering action have been invented. These tool bits are intended primarily for use as...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

An improved braking cable-payout mechanism has been developed. Like other such mechanisms, this mechanism can be used as a braking or shock-absorbing device for any of a variety of purposes — for...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Alignment-Insensitive Lower-Cost Telescope Architecture

This architecture features an active wavefront sensing and control scheme along with methods for measuring the relative positions of the primary to aft optics, such as the secondary mirror, and should enable larger and cheaper telescope architectures needed for future applications. This...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A miniature latching valve has been invented to satisfy a need for an electrically controllable on/off pneumatic valve that is lightweight and compact and remains in the most recently commanded open or closed state...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Micro-Resistojet for Small Satellites

An efficient micro- resistojet has been developed with thrust in the millinewton level, with a specific impulse of approximately 250 seconds and power input of 20 watts or less that is useful for applications of up to 1,000 hours of operation or more. The essential feature of this invention is a gas-...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A method denoted wireless acoustic- electric feedthrough (WAEF) has been conceived for transmitting power and/or data signals through walls or other solid objects made of a variety...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Low-Impact Mating System for Docking Spacecraft

A document describes a low-impact mating system suitable for both docking (mating of two free-flying spacecraft) and berthing (in which a robot arm in one spacecraft positions an object for mating with either spacecraft). The low-impact mating system is fully androgynous: it mates with a copy of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A lightweight, low-power camera dart has been designed and tested for context imaging of sampling sites and ground surveys from an aerobot or an orbiting spacecraft in a microgravity environment. The...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Lightweight, piezoelectrically actuated bending flight-control surfaces have shown promise as means of actively controlling airflows to improve the performances of transport airplanes. These...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
System Estimates Radius of Curvature of a Segmented Mirror

A system that estimates the global radius of curvature (GRoC) of a segmented telescope mirror has been developed for use as one of the subsystems of a larger system that exerts precise control over the displacements of the mirror segments. This GRoC-estimating system, when integrated...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Attitude and Translation Control of a Solar Sail Vehicle

A report discusses the ability to control the attitude and translation degrees-of-freedom of a solar sail vehicle by changing its center of gravity. A movement of the spacecraft's center of mass causes solar- pressure force to apply a torque to the vehicle. At the compact core of the...

Who's Who: Materials

Dr. William Farrell, a scientist with the Lunar Exploration Program at Goddard Space Flight Center, is an expert on the problem of lunar dust and its effects on astronauts and...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Tactile Robotic Topographical Mapping Without Force or Contact Sensors

A method of topographical mapping of a local solid surface within the range of motion of a robot arm is based on detection of contact between the surface and the end effector (the fixture or tool at the tip of the robot arm). The method was conceived to enable mapping of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Ultrasonic/sonic impacting penetrators (USIPs) are recent additions to the series of apparatuses based on ultrasonic/sonic drill corers (USDCs). A USIP enables a rod probe to penetrate packed soil or...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The figure depicts the main parts of a prototype miniature, lightweight, one-time- opening valve. Like some other miniature one-time-opening valves reported in previous issues of NASA Tech...

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