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Dryden Fiber Optic Sensor Work Honored
October 6, 2011

A single fiber optic cable, seen in yellow, replaces the need for all of the white bundle of wires.A single fiber optic cable, seen in yellow, replaces the need for all of the white bundle of wires. (NASA Photo)
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Dryden's work with fiber optic sensor systems has garnered agency-wide attention. The following are awards earned by Dryden researchers:

  • Jaiwon Shin, Aeronautics Research mission directorate associate administrator, named Dryden researcher Allen Parker a 2010 recipient of an honorable mention in the technology innovation category for his fiber optics work.

    "An expert in fiber-optic instrumentation, Parker has led the development of miniaturized fiber-optic based strain measurement technology that can be used in flight capable systems, and that provides sample rates appropriate for research data gathering and for possible use in aircraft control systems and other non-aerospace technologies," the wording of the award reads.

    "His work on miniaturizing the system's electronics and streamlining algorithms running on those electronics resulted in small suitcase-sized systems that can acquire data from thousands of individual sensors. NASA is exploring these systems for active control of extreme lightweight airframe structures. The medical device industry is exploring use of this technology in advanced medical instruments."
  • Parker also was part of the NASA Composite Crew Module Non-Destructive Evaluation and Test team, which also included Patrick Chan, Anthony Piazza and Lance Richards. The group was recognized with a group achievement award at the 2010 NASA Engineering and Safety Center Honor Awards.

    The honor was in recognition of outstanding contributions in the field of Non-Destructive Evaluation and test execution on the Composite Crew Module Project at Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va. The crew module was instrumented with fiber optic sensors along the hatch and windows to monitor high-strain areas during a loading test on the structure.
  • The NASA Composite Crew Module Non-Destructive Evaluation and Test team also received a NASA Group Achievement Award "for achieving excellence through design and fabrication of a full-scale composite crew module."
  • Dryden's Fiber Optic Shape Sensing team, which included William Ko, Parker, Piazza and Richards, captured a NASA Group Achievement award.

    In 2009, the group won the team award for successfully demonstrating fiber optic wing shape sensing on the Ikhana unmanned aerial system. The citation reads, "For the development and flight testing of fiber-optic strain measurement systems and algorithms that enabled lightweight deformation measurement of flight vehicles."
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