Mechanical/​Mechatronics

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Stay updated on advancements in mechanical components and mechatronics systems. New technologies in MEMs, fluid systems, and propulsion are driving breakthroughs in transportation, electrification, autonomous driving, and manufacturing.

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Low-Energy Interplanetary Transfers Using Lagrangian Points

A paper summarizes early findings from a continuing study of the dynamics of the transport and distribution of matter within the Solar system. In the study, the stable and unstable manifolds of the periodic and quasi-periodic orbits around the Lagrangian points L1 and L2 of the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Digital PIV Measurements of Flow in a Centrifugal Compressor

A report describes experiments in which digital particle-image velocimetry (digital PIV) was used to measure the flow field in the diffuser of a high-speed centrifugal compressor. In digital PIV, a sheet of pulsed laser light illuminates a flow field seeded with small tracer particles,...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A suite of five computational fluid dynamics (CFD) codes has been developed for analysis of flows in turbomachinery. Two of the codes are used to generate two-dimensional (2-D) or...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The P-Finite Element Integrated Thermal-Structural Program (PITS 2D) solves the equations for the combined effects of thermal expansion and elasticity in a two-dimensional or an...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Mathematical models to approximate the dynamics of aircraft are often generated by considering aircraft structures to be rigid bodies. These models may be unsuitable for evaluating...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A continuing program of research is directed toward the development of crashworthy composite-material fuselages for small aircraft. These fuselages are required not only to withstand...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Computational Test Cases for a Rectangular Supercritical Wing

A report describes wind-tunnel experiments on a rectangular supercritical wing and presents test cases that have been selected from the archived sets of experimental data for comparison with computational fluid dynamics (CFD) predictions. In the experiments, the wing was driven in...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Kinetic-energy-absorbing shrouds have been proposed to protect nearby persons and equipment against high-speed debris ejected by disintegrating machines. Examples of machines that...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Equations have been derived to describe the deflection of a circular membrane under both in-plane and transverse loads. More specifically, the equations describe the radial (in-plane)...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

"Hybrisol" denotes a proposed rocket engine that would contain hybrid and solid-propellant parts within a single combustion chamber. ["Hybrid" as used here denotes a type of rocket engine in which a solid fuel is...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A mixing apparatus combines liquid oxygen and liquid nitrogen to make liquid air in small, convenient quantities. Heretofore, equipment used to make liquid air by mixing was incapable of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Accelerations of One Airplane in Wake Vortices of Another

Accelerations of one airplane encountering a vortex or pair of vortices in the wake of another airplane were computed in a parametric study. The approach taken in the study was to systematically investigate the effects of progressively more nearly complete descriptions of the interaction...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Conservatism in Deterministic Structural Analysis

A paper discusses the excessive conservatism that has long been suspected to exist, because of the use of conventional (deterministic) safety factors, in the analysis and design of quasi-static structures. The origin of this conservatism is identified as a violation of statistical...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Experiments on Vibration and Noise in Fuselages

A paper summarizes a continuing program of vibro-acoustic testing of two aircraft fuselage structures: (1) a 12-ft (3.7-m)-long generic aluminum test-bed cylinder that contains stiffening rings and stringers and (2) the 40-ft (12.2-m)-long fuselage of a 10-passenger turboprop airplane, made of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

FoilSim is a computer program that calculates and graphically depicts information on flows of air around airfoils of various shapes. Although it is useful primarily as a teaching tool to enhance...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Current proposed shapes for single-stage-to-orbit vehicles like the Lockheed-Martin X-33 and VentureStar reusable launch vehicle have extremely large base areas when compared with...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

NASA's F-15B #836 is a two-seat version of the F-15, which is a high-performance, supersonic, all-weather fighter airplane. The F-15B is used as a test-bed aircraft for a wide variety of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Space structures in general experience free-free vibrational boundary conditions that are not readily replicable on the ground. To conduct vibration tests of such structures on Earth,...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

A change in the design of the engine inlets of the T-38 airplane significantly reduces takeoff distances while increasing safety margins. Although the newer inlet design (see Figure 1) is based on well-known...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Some changes in the design and construction of the leading edges of metal airplane wings have shown promise as means to suppress laminar-to-turbulent flow transitions. The...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The figure shows an oil tunnel and associated equipment used in experiments, using the full-flow-field tracking (FFFT) technique, to characterize flows in beds packed with poly (methyl...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

NASA Dryden Flight Research Center is supporting a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract between the U.S. Air Force Research Labs and Kelly Space & Technology (KST). KST's...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Direct measurement of aircraft-engine thrust by use of strain gauges offers several advantages over traditional model-based methods of calculating thrust, provided that care is...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The Perseus B remotely piloted vehicle (RPV) has achieved a record altitude for a single-engine, propeller-driven airplane of 60,260 ft (18,367 m) on June 27, 1998. The Perseus B is one of...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Model-Based Monitoring for Spacecraft Thruster Leakage

A report describes a method of detecting leakage in one of the 16 thrusters of the Cassini spacecraft. The detection method, implemented as part of the spacecraft flight software, is based on the fact that the three-axis rotational motion of a spacecraft is governed by the Euler's equation....

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Improved pressure-relief valves have been developed for systems that contain gases and liquids in a variety of pneumatic, hydraulic, and cryogenic applications. These valves could...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

Streamlined fairings have been invented for housing single or multiple microphones to measure noise in flowing gases and liquids. Each fairing of this type is designed to minimize the...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems

The figure depicts an improved apparatus for three- or four-point bending tests of stripe specimens. In a bending test, the specimen is subjected to tension along its top surface and compression along...

Briefs: Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Using Genetic Algorithms in Spacecraft Vibration Control

Three software products are being developed to help satisfy the needs of NASA and of private industry for reconfigurable active control systems to suppress vibrations in Reusable Launch Vehicles (RLVs) and other structures. These potentially highly marketable products are the...

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