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Modular Embedded Intelligent Sensor Network, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Remote sensing, when combined with real-time processing, provides instant feedback on safety, mission success and system health. Being able to combine embedded sensing with distributed networks gives us the additional potential to further benefit many systems and sub-systems in the aerospace industry including launch vehicles, ground test equipment and spacecraft. These remote distributed sensor networks need to be flexible to the needs of different types of data, environments and configurations. Highly flexible solutions will support the widest variety of sensors, power methods, communication protocols and real-time processing algorithms. Angstrom Designs proposes a modular, embedded, intelligent sensor network comprised of a network of sensor nodes, to maximize flexibility. Each system node contains three modules: sensor, communications and power. We propose to develop sensor modules to gather and condition signals including heat flux, acoustics and electric fields to compliment existing temperature, pressure and strain measurement hardware. Communications modules will transmit sensor data via high-frequency, high-bandwidth, low-power network technologies. Power modules will supply power to the node through the use of battery, solar or scavenged power. Phase I prototype system nodes will be smaller than 5 cubic centimeters (cc), and after miniaturization, nodes will likely be smaller than 0.5 cc. Additionally, radiation hard versions of many of the components will be available for possible flight missions. A central processing gateway receives data from the sensor network, provides real-time processing of the data and reports raw and processed data to test engineers and software via standard network interfaces. Research partner, the Pennathur lab at UCSB, adds expertise and capability in advanced power harvesting, micro- and nanofluidic based sensors. More »

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