Test & Measurement

Using RISC-V to Simplify Data Logging in Space

Worldwide demand for low Earth orbit satellites is increasing at an unprecedented pace, driven by diverse needs such as faster and more affordable Internet access, and faster revisit rates with finer resolution for imaging data. The satellite payload instruments performing communications or imaging functions are becoming increasingly sophisticated and capable and require the collection of increasing amounts of telemetry data to ensure the safe and reliable operation of the satellite.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Data Acquisition, Power Management, Thermal Management, Mechanical Components, Medical, Patient Monitoring, Semiconductors & ICs, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement

Streamlining EMC Solutions for Avionics Interfaces

Lightning strikes to jet airliners are common - about once every 1000 flight hours. The DO-160G standard, Environmental Conditions and Test Procedures for Airborne Equipment, is a standard for the environmental testing of avionics hardware. Many airplane manufacturers specify DO-160G Section 22, lightning induced transient susceptibility, as a requirement for critical systems like guidance, radars, communications, engine control, and heat and air controls. Aircraft fuselage, wing and tail flight controls, wing tips, fin tips, engine nacelles, and landing gear are the areas most likely to be hit by lightning strikes.

Posted in: Articles, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Communications, Electronic Components, Semiconductors & ICs, Test & Measurement

Deployable – Instrument Landing System

Thales Group
Cedex, France
+ 33(0)1 57 77 86 26

The United States Air Force's (USAF) activities to establish air superiority and support ground combat units often require the use of secure airfields in remote and challenging areas. Thales Deployable – Instrument Landing System (D-ILS), a compact and movable variant of the standard ILS, can help them accomplish this mission.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aeronautics, Aviation, Defense, Mechanical Components, Instrumentation

Pulsed Microwave Plasma Instrumentation for Investigation of Plasma-Tuned Multiphase Combustion

Strategies to control solid rocket propellant regression rate require a robust throttling technique applicable to high performance propellant formulations. Currently, several methods to control and throttle either motors or subscale propellant strands exist, including chamber pressure control (e.g. pintle nozzles or rapid depressurization quench), infrared laser irradiation of the burning surface to increase burning rates, development of inherently unstable combustion chamber geometries (producing either local pressure or velocity perturbations), and electrically sensitive hydroxylammonium nitrate (HAN)-based formulations in which burning rate is controlled by a voltage potential. However, these techniques are limited in that they either can only be used with low flame temperature (low specific impulse) propellants, result in low propulsion system mass fraction (pintle), are only capable of producing a single perturbation, or are formulation specific.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Energy, Materials, Power Transmission, Propulsion, RF & Microwave Electronics, Instrumentation

Wind Tunnel, Lasers Provide Hypersonic Proving Ground

It’s about speed, and Sandia National Laboratories, with a hypersonic wind tunnel and advanced laser diagnostic technology, is in a position to help U.S. defense agencies understand the physics associated with aircraft flying five times the speed of sound. With potential adversaries reporting successes in their own programs to develop aircraft that can be flown at Mach 5 or greater speeds, U.S. development of autonomous hypersonic systems is a top defense priority. That has made aerospace engineer Steven Beresh of Sandia’s aerosciences department and his colleagues at the hypersonic wind tunnel popular lately.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Data Acquisition, Defense, Propulsion, Test & Measurement

Missile Defense Battle Manager

Northrop Grumman Corporation
Falls Church, VA

The Northrop Grumman Corporation-developed Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) Battle Command System (IBCS) successfully demonstrated its ability to scale up and network across long distances during a recent U.S. Army-led test. The evaluation was conducted by U.S. Army soldiers over a five-week period with air and missile defense assets located at sites in New Mexico, Texas and Alabama.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Communications, Defense, RF & Microwave Electronics, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Test & Measurement

Cognitive Radio: The New Architecture of Space Communications

NASA spacecraft typically rely on human-controlled radio systems to communicate with Earth. As collection of space data increases, NASA looks to alternative radio technologies to meet demand and increase efficiency.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Aviation, Communications, Defense, Solar Power, Antennas, RF & Microwave Electronics, Software, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement

Testing Military Vehicle Steering Systems

Military vehicles play a vital role in protecting our society — and inevitably encounter many extreme conditions across their lifespan. From the varying weight, to the rough terrain, there is a lot that can go wrong. Military steering systems must therefore be engineered to take on such extremes. This begins at the design stage and ends with analysis through testing. It's here the parts are tested to their limits and validated against the original specification and real-life requirements.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Automation, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement, Transportation

Enhanced Contacts for Inverted Metamorphic Multi-Junction Solar Cells Using Carbon Nanotube Metal Matrix Composites

In order to address issues related to mechanical and vibrational stresses that are commonly experienced in mounting, launch, and deployment of spacecraft, metal matrix composite (MMC) electrodes were fabricated with carbon nanotubes (CNTs) as reinforcement. The research plans were centered on first developing and selecting appropriate processes for fabricating CNT-MMCs based on characterization of their material properties, followed by optimizing MMC designs based on electrical testing under stress. Efforts in the program were also directed toward implementing the CNT-MMCs into solar cell device processing in a process compatible with standard clean room procedures.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Energy Storage, Renewable Energy, Solar Power, Materials, Metals, Mechanical Components, Nanotechnology, Measuring Instruments, Test & Measurement

New Products: December 2018 Aerospace & Defense Technology

Round TFT LCD Displays

Data Image (Winter Park, FL) has announced new round TFT LCD color displays in two sizes: 3" and 4.2" in diameter. They can be used as digital avionics, power meters, speedometers, rpm gauges, temperature indicators, strain gauges, volt/current meters or a simple clock. The display can show a single gauge or display multiple parameters. The formats for the displays are 432 × 432 for the 3" and 720 × 720 for the 4.2". Both have a brightness of 1000 nits typical and wide viewing angles thanks to the IPS glass technology used on both versions. Both have wide temperature rating. They are available with or without capacitive touch panels for user interface.

Posted in: Products, Aerospace, Communications, Wireless, Defense, Board-Level Electronics, Computers, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Power Management, Power Supplies, Displays/Monitors/HMIs, Fastening, Joining & Assembly, Mechanical Components, Motion Control, Motors & Drives, Positioning Equipment, Lasers & Laser Systems, Photonics, Computer-Aided Design (CAD), Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE), Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM), Simulation Software, Software, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement