Environment

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Portable Acousto-Optic Spectrometers

Spectrometers are widely used for applications such as chemical analysis, remote sensing, quality control, environmental monitoring, spaceborne measurements, and optical measurements. Most spectrometers...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Bio-Renewable Process Creates “Green” Plastic

Plastics are often derived from petroleum, contributing to reliance on fossil fuels, and driving harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Nano/Micro Mechanical Environmental Test Cell

A device and method have been developed to conduct compression and tensile tests on soft materials such as flocculated sediments, biopolymers, biological materials, and food stuffs. The device...

Briefs : Energy
Water-Based Battery Stores Solar and Wind Energy

Wind and solar energy generation creates challenges, since the Sun only shines by day, and sometimes the wind doesn't blow. Another variability is surges of demand on the grid. On a hot day when air conditioning is in use, utilities must have load-balancing strategies to meet peak demand. A...

Briefs : RF & Microwave Electronics
Hyperfine Interpolated Range Finding for CW Lidar, Radar, and Sonar Using Repeating Waveforms and Fourier Transform Reordering

NASA's Langley Research Center has developed a novel fine interpolation technique that is useful in signal processing for applications in lidar, sonar, radar, and similar modalities. The interpolation technique uses...

Briefs : Test & Measurement
Real-Time Airborne Particle Analyzer

Particle analysis is useful for determining chemical compositions in a wide range of disciplines, from ascertaining the source of a petroleum sample to duplicating a fragrance. The technique is appealing...

Briefs : Energy
Hybrid Controller for Multiple Energy Storage Devices

A new hybrid energy storage controller is designed for a centralized control system that operates multiple energy storage devices (ESDs) and distributed generators to provide energy and...

Briefs : Software
OFFSET: A Global Carbon Cycle Game

The OFFSET video game was designed to teach children the basics of the carbon cycle in a fun and engaging way. The game play is a mix of Pong, Breakout, and RTS. The game has a retro-art style, and uses Game Center, so that players can compare scores with each other.

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Integrated Ultra-Wideband Tracking and Carbon Dioxide Sensing System

Recent findings indicate that frequent, short-term crew exposure to elevated CO2 levels, combined with other physiological impacts of microgravity, may lead to a...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Gas Biosensors “See” Through Soil to Analyze Microbial Interactions

Gas biosensors have been developed that “see” into soil and follow the behavior of the microbial communities in the soil. Genetically engineered bacteria was used...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Crystallization Method for Carbon Capture from Ambient Air

A method to capture carbon dioxide directly from ambient air offers a new option for carbon capture and storage strategies to combat global warming.

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Reducing Moisture in Natural Fibers

Biological transformation focuses on the sustainable use of biological resources such as plants or microorganisms. In the future, it is expected to reduce reliance on fossil fuels such as oil, coal, or gas, and help tackle major challenges such as climate change and global population growth. It offers options...

Briefs : Energy
Bi-Directional Energy Cascades and the Origin of Kinetic Turbulence in the Solar Wind

The kinetic turbulence of solar wind originates in the solar corona. The solar wind carries the fluctuations and escapes from the corona along the open magnetic field lines, and enters into the interplanetary space. The energy exchange among waves and particles...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Protein Mat Soaks Up Chemical Pollution

Despite years of effort to stabilize proteins outside of their native environments, scientists have made limited progress in combining proteins with synthetic components like fibers without...

Briefs : Materials
Recyclable Polymer Exhibits Practical Properties of Plastics

A polymer was discovered that possesses many of the same characteristics as plastics, such as light weight, heat resistance, strength, and durability. But the new polymer, unlike...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Fabrication Process Produces Nanostructures for Electronic Devices

Demands for improved computer processing power have led researchers to explore both new processes and other materials beyond silicon to produce electronic components....

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Ultra-Wide-Bandgap Power Electronics

Power electronics used for routing, control, and conversion of electrical power traditionally utilize silicon semiconductors. These systems tend to be bulky, require active cooling, and are inadequate for...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Ground-Based System Guides UAVs to Avoid Collisions

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) averages more than 100 reports a month of interactions between unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) and commercial or private planes. For UAS to fly in...

Briefs : Mechanical & Fluid Systems
Correlation Spectrometer

Correlation spectroscopy is an attractive technique for sensing and analysis applications because it combines the attributes of mechanical and optical simplicity, high selectivity, and good sensitivity. In...

Briefs : Energy
Grid Friendly™ Charger Controller

Electric vehicles are growing in popularity, and while they represent a cleaner alternative to fossil-fueled vehicles, their increased use may stress the grid if this growing load is left unmanaged. A need...

Briefs : Electronics & Computers
Nonaqueous Redox Flow Battery

Researchers have created a material that consists of carefully structured molecules designed to be particularly electrochemically stable in order to prevent the battery from losing energy to unwanted reactions....

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Cobalt Oxygen-Evolving Catalysts for Clean Solar Fuel

By splitting a water molecule into two atoms of hydrogen and one of oxygen, scientists can use the Sun’s energy to make a clean fuel. Splitting a water molecule requires a metal catalyst to get the reaction started. Recently, much scientific attention has focused on cobalt, a relatively...

Briefs : Energy
High-Voltage Power System for Hybrid Electric Aircraft Propulsion

Innovators at NASA’s Glenn Research Center have developed a variable-frequency, alternating current (AC) power system to enable turbo-electric and hybrid electric...

Briefs : Green Design & Manufacturing
Controllable Dry Adhesive for Efficient Climbing Robot

A small robot with the ability to hoist large loads could have countless applications, not only as a small, inexpensive, disposable, mobile sensor in the realms of search and rescue,...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Portable Electrochemical Sensing System

Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) have developed an inexpensive electrochemical sensing system that significantly improves the ability to rapidly and accurately detect heavy...

Briefs : Materials
Green Approach for Toughening Thermosetting Reactive Resins

Thermosetting reactive resin systems such as epoxy, bismaleimide, and polyimide classes of material are brittle. The origin of brittleness is attributed to the high crosslinking density that exists in the fully cured forms of these materials. Traditionally, the toughness of these resins...

Briefs : Materials
Composite Materials Could Improve Respirator Filters

Current gas mask filters counter current threats, but there are large gaps in knowledge about how they do so at the molecular level. Many of the filters were developed to handle a wide...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
SolidSense: Gas Analyzer on a Chip

The SolidSense sensor platform measures all EPA-regulated gas emissions (nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons), in addition to ammonia, with high accuracy and sensitivity. The chip-scale gas...

Briefs : Manufacturing & Prototyping
One-Step 3D Printing of Catalysts

While 3D printing has found applications in many areas, its use as a way to control chemical reactions, or catalysis, is relatively new. Current production of 3D catalysts typically involves various methods...

Briefs : Sensors/Data Acquisition
Solid-State Humidity Sensing Element

Researchers at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center have developed a solid-state humidity sensing element that offers ultra-high sensitivity across a wide range of humidity levels. The sensing element is based on a novel ceramic dielectric material that exhibits large changes in capacitance as a function of...