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October 23, 2009 3:28 pm | Comments

X-Files fans, conspiracy theorists, and the tinfoil hat crowd were right all along! Sorta… In the 1950s, the US government really was building a flying saucer. But it didn’t involve little green men, human-alien hybrids, or David Duchovny; this isn’t what you’d call a "smoking gun."

What Automotive Engineers are Missing When it Comes to Power Sources

October 16, 2009 7:41 am | by Chad Hall, COO of Ioxus | Comments

The demand for better and more efficient power sources in the automotive industry has been a driving force behind research in battery technology, capacitor technology, and electronic power supply design. In order to utilize energy as efficiently as possible, automotive engineers began by reducing the gross weight of an automobile

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Comparing motor-control techniques

October 13, 2009 7:10 am | by Daniel Torres, Applications Engineer, Microchip | Comments

The majority of motor-control designers are consistently and continuously looking for methods to improve efficiency while reducing system cost. These are the two main factors that are driving the efforts to improve existing motor designs and motor-control techniques. A good example of this trend is the Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motor (PMSM).

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Designing an EMC-Compliant Automotive Switching Buck Regulator

October 12, 2009 6:31 am | by John Rice and Sanmukh Patel, Texas Instruments | Comments

The automobile is changing and so, too, are the electronics that make them run. The most radical example is the plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) where a 300-400V Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) battery replaces the gas tank

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Tech Advances Impact Motion Control

October 8, 2009 6:09 am | by Chuck Lewin, Founder & VP of Engineering, Performance Motion Devices | Comments

There are a number of technology trends that are profoundly changing how engineers are designing machines with motion control. Two among these stand out for their potential impact on cost, ease of assembly, and serviceability. These are the continual reduction of the size of the motion amplifier, and the advent of low cost, high-speed digital networks.

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Driving 3-Phase Induction Motors

October 6, 2009 5:57 am | by Dr. Stephan Chmielus, Fairchild Semiconductor, Germany | Comments

Although an increasing interest and use of Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSM) can be observed during the last decade, the standard 3-phase Induction Motor (IM) is still the most widely used electrical motor. The simplest way to start an IM is to connect the motor directly to the 3-phase main supply.

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RF Thin film Passive Devices

October 6, 2009 5:16 am | by Bharat Rawal and Chris Reynolds, AVX | Comments

An RF designer’s wish list for an ideal high frequency capacitor would include extremely high temperature stability, a sharp self resonance (high Q) free from harmonics, extremely tight capacitance tolerance, low ESR (equivalent S\series R\resistance), low ESL (equivalent series inductance), complete reproducibility

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Kits for Kids, November 2009

October 5, 2009 11:17 am | by Jon Titus, Senior Technical Editor | Comments

Young people with an interest in electronics still have a cornucopia of kits to start with. As a youngster I had a crystal radio that picked up several local stations I listened to with a small headphone. You can still buy crystal-radio kits and many cost under $20.

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PID Loops in Software applications

October 5, 2009 5:34 am | by M. Simon, retired Aerospace electronics consultant | Comments

I want to take a look at PID loops and how they are typically handled in software. I'm going to contrast how the motor control folks do things vs. how the chemical industry folks do things. Now there are all kinds of things you can control with such a loop (in a motor control context).

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The Role of Pressure Sensors in Medical Devices

October 5, 2009 5:16 am | by Robert Guziak, Sr. Engineering Manager & Lori Appel-- Manager, Marketing Communications, Kavlico | Comments

The current state of healthcare today in the US is one which focuses upon cost containment, while at the same time, providing the advancements of modern technology to an aging population.  Finding effective treatment methods at affordable levels, while at the same time providing patients with high quality care is certainly a tightrope act many healthcare providers walk.

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Successful PCB Design, Engineering, and Production Considerations for Medical Electronic Assemblies

October 5, 2009 5:04 am | by Pratish Patel, President and CEO, Electronic Interconnect | Comments

Medical electronic assemblies have unique requirements that set them apart from other types of electronic devices, such as consumer electronic products. Often, thermal management issues must be anticipated in the design, and assemblers must conform to certain quality standards such as ISO 13485.

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Low-Energy Wireless: Just what the doctor ordered

October 2, 2009 12:40 pm | by Raman Sharma, Freescale Semiconductor | Comments

The medical market, while on the frontier of human sciences, has always been conservative and cautious when it comes to analyzing the market’s technology adoption rate. While the rest of the industrial and consumer markets were immersed in the potential of wireless connectivity, networking and the Internet, the medical market continued to build devices with tried and tested technology.

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Brainstorm: Medical Electronics

October 2, 2009 10:17 am | Comments

What future technologies will reduce healthcare costs?

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Brainstorm: Optoelectronics

October 2, 2009 9:47 am | Comments

In 10 years, which display technology will dominate the TV marketplace?

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Isolated CAN Transceiver Assures Robust Fieldbus Design

October 2, 2009 8:08 am | by Thomas Kugelstadt, Senior Applications Engineer, Texas Instruments | Comments

The controller area network (CAN) bus has gained popularity in applications such as process control, automation, medical, and manufacturing due to high immunity to EMI and its ability to find and repair data errors. Because a CAN bus often runs over long distance interconnecting multiple systems, isolation between the bus and the systems connected to it becomes crucial.

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