Langley Research Center

Top Secret Anti Gravity Aircraft

Research and technology play a vital role in ensuring the safety, environmental compatibility, and productivity of the air transportation system and in enhancing the economic health and national security of the Nation. Supporting NASA's Aeronautics and Space Transportation Enterprise, Langley Research Center is the Center of Excellence in structures and materials. This center draws upon some 80 years of research, a heritage dating back to 1917 when the center was established. Langley Research...

Thin Filmlhrge Phvoff

In the case for space, ultra-thin film can be tightly packaged for launch, then deployed in orbit to establish large solar concentrators and antennas for geographical surveys and communications. Lightweight, inflatable structures will soon act as huge reflectors that focus the sun's energy to heat propel-lant for thrusting payloads to high altitudes. Gossamerlike thin film might take the shape of collecting and transmitting dishes for 21st century satellites...

Stresses And Strains

More than a step saver, computerized looks at stress, vibration, and acoustical properties of structures can be seen before prototyping even begins. NASA software engineers have created thousands of computer programs over the decades. These computer tools can design, test, and analyze a broad assortment of aerospace parts and structures. Considered one of the most successful and widely-used NASA software programs is the NASA Structural Analysis Program, called for short, NASTRAN . Originally...

Eyeing The Invisible

Software tools to monitor vapor concentrations using Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy received an assist by way of a nonreimbursable Space Act Agreement between the Kennedy Space Center (KSC) and the MIDAC Corporation of Irvine, California. The agreement which was initiated in 1995, was established to encourage software improvements to an FTIR spectrometer. This vapor monitoring hardware is on duty at KSC's Space Station Processing Facility. Ammonia is called for in the current...

Pixel Paradise

Everyone has been impressed by those sharp images relayed to Earth over billions of miles, courtesy of outbound spacecraft as they reach other worlds. Each picture element of an image sent back from spacecraft is known as a pixel. If PixelVision, Beaverton, Oregon, has its way, you haven't seen anything yet Scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory JPL and PixelVision engineers have developed active-pixel technology with noise performance on a par with Charge Coupled Device CCD detectors....

Real World Rudio

Acoustic bliss an interactive, real-life audio experience by surrounding the listener with sounds in three dimensions using only a single pair of ordinary speakers or headphones. Getting an earful earns an entirely new and enjoyable meaning thanks to the audio know-how of Aureal Semiconductor, Incorporated of Fremont, California, and its subsidiary, Crystal River Engineering CRE , Incorporated of Palo Alto, California. We hear the future is a behind-the-scenes slogan that drives the work. That...

Sit Up Straight

Laying down on the job is every astronaut's starting position en route to space. Reclining crew members are on their backs for several hours awaiting launch. Bad posture or protracted activities during work, even for a space traveler, can cause strain and fatigue. One would think if a person's work was confined to the microgravity of space, such a free-floating experience would cause little worry. But astronauts in training for the Space Shuttle and space station programs receive the do's and...

Cancer Detection Deuice

Space medical specialists have long been intrigued by how and why microgravity affects the immune system. Preliminary evidence from Space Shuttle flights suggests that immunity is depressed. To help decipher this medical mystery, NASA sought hardware development of a machine that could separate and examine cells rapidly. Space engineers quickly ran into a snag. The device to do the work, a flow cytometer, was far too big and cumbersome about the size of a pool table to loft into orbit on a...