Browse Publications Technical Papers 2003-01-2636

An On-line Technology Information System (OTIS) for Advanced Life Support 2003-01-2636

An On-line Technology Information System (OTIS) is currently being developed for the Advanced Life Support (ALS) Program. This paper describes the preliminary development of OTIS, which is a system designed to provide centralized collection and organization of technology information.
The lack of thorough, reliable and easily understood technology information is a major obstacle in effective assessment of technology development progress, trade studies, metric calculations, and technology selection for integrated testing. OTIS will provide a formalized, well-organized protocol to communicate thorough, accurate, current and relevant technology information between the hands-on technology developer and the ALS Community.
The need for this type of information transfer system within the Solid Waste Management (SWM) element was recently identified and addressed. A SWM Technology Information Form (TIF) was developed specifically for collecting detailed technology information in the area of SWM. In the TIF, information is requested from SWM technology developers, based upon the Technology Readiness Level (TRL). Basic information is requested for low-TRL technologies, and more detailed information is requested as the TRL of the technology increases. A comparable form is also being developed for the wastewater processing element. In the future, similar forms will also be developed for the ALS elements of air revitalization, food processing, biomass production and thermal control. These ALS element-specific forms will be implemented in OTIS via a web-accessible interface, with the data stored in an object-oriented relational database (created in MySQLTM) located on a secure server at NASA Ames Research Center.
With OTIS, ALS element leads and managers will be able to carry out informed research and development investment, thereby promoting technology through the TRL scale. OTIS will also allow analysts to make accurate evaluations of technology options. Additionally, the range and specificity of information solicited will help educate technology developers of programmatic needs.


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