A recent conversation with engineers at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston revealed that there’s often “a world of difference” between the standards for circuit protection components for a typical Earthbound electronics engineering application, and those intended for use in spacecraft. However, for both environments, engineers have essentially the same goals: safeguarding life and protecting technology. Carlton Faller, a NASA electrical, electronic, and electromechanical (EEE) parts engineer, and Paul Delaune, Deputy Branch Chief – Command and Data Handling, shared some insights on the differing requirements associated with creating circuit designs for use in low-Earth orbit (LEO) and beyond.
Faller was a NASA contractor for Lockheed Martin prior to joining NASA as an employee in 2004. “We have a wide variety of specifications that govern the selection of micro-circuits, resistors, fuses, switches, relays, capacitors, wiring — all the component parts that go into the design of a circuit board or piece of electronics,” he said. “The requirements for each component are dependent upon the criticality of the application, the specific environment in which it will operate, and other factors relating to ensuring parts are appropriate for the application.”
The American public anticipates that the coming half-century will be a period of profound scientific change, as inventions that were once confined to the realm of science fiction come into common usage. This is among the main findings of a new national survey by the Pew Research Center and Smithsonian magazine, which asked Americans about a wide range of potential scientific developments—from near-term advances like robotics and bioengineering, to more “futuristic” possibilities like teleportation or space colonization. In addition to asking them for their predictions about the long-term future of scientific advancement, we also asked them to share their own feelings and attitudes toward some new developments that might become common features of American life in the relatively near future.
Overall, most Americans anticipate that the technological developments of the coming half-century will have a net positive impact on society. Some 59% are optimistic that coming technological and scientific changes will make life in the future better, while 30% think these changes will lead to a future in which people are worse off than they are today.
Many Americans pair their long-term optimism with high expectations for the inventions of the next half century. Fully eight in ten (81%) expect that within the next 50 years people needing new organs will have them custom grown in a lab, and half (51%) expect that computers will be able to create art that is indistinguishable from that produced by humans. On the other hand, the public does see limits to what science can attain in the next 50 years. Fewer than half of Americans—39%—expect that scientists will have developed the technology to teleport objects, and one in three (33%) expect that humans will have colonized planets other than Earth. Certain terrestrial challenges are viewed as even more daunting, as just 19% of Americans expect that humans will be able to control the weather in the foreseeable future.
Healthcare big data analytics and the Internet of Things are top strategic priorities for more than ninety percent of technology and life sciences developers, according to a new industry survey by law firm White & Case, as remote monitoring, mHealth, and analytics present massive revenue opportunities across the sector.
Ninety-three percent of technology and life science companies participating in the poll said that digital healthcare is central to their growth as they anticipate a spike in demand for Internet of Things (IoT) technologies such as wearables and smart home monitoring devices among the post-Baby Boomer generation.