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Nano-MEMS Testbed

Problem: Vehicle health and status indications are limited by the resources that the Shuttle has available to it. Furthermore, acquisition of new avionics is costly and, generally, results in the addition of systems based on older technology.
Solution: Better vehicle knowledge can be achieved through a systematic upgrade program that begins with the early evaluation of basic technology. A Shuttle technology testbed for both crew compartment and Orbiter systems is needed.
Initial Operation Date: Date:12/3/98
Shuttle mission STS-93
Phase II Upgrade
Technology Goal: Micro/nanotechnology is a multi-billion dollar commercial industry that utilizes advanced processing methods to produce submicron and submillimeter scale devices. These devices are low weight, low volume, low power, highly reliable, low cost sensors and instruments that enable a kind of vehicle knowledge that has been unavailable in the past.

Fiber optics can carry more data, the rate is increased 20 times over the conventional MIL 1553 copper system, not to mention the potential weight savings.

Once performance is validated in the Space Shuttle environment, standardization of telemetry interfaces located throughout the PLB will reduce Shuttle reconfiguration time.

Goals Supported: 1) Fly Safely
3) Improve Supportability
4) Reduce Cost


Curator: Kim Dismukes | Responsible NASA Official: John Ira Petty | Updated: 04/07/2002
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