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Brainstorm: Military Electronics Part 2

July 15, 2009 6:18 am | Comments

What is the most pressing issue concerning the deployment of autonomous military robots?

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Brainstorm: Lighting

July 15, 2009 5:14 am | Comments

What do you think is the chief factor preventing the mainstream adoption of solid-state lighting?

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When Good Memories Go Bad – Data Recovery of Flash Media

July 2, 2009 7:55 am | by Sean Barry, Kroll Ontrack, www.krollontrack.com | Comments

Computer hard disk drive storage has an impressive history of technological advances, from the RAMAC storage systems in the 1950s to perpendicular recording introduced a few years ago. The advancement of these technologies has increased the density of today’s hard disk drives to the terabyte range. Along the way frustrations with new storage technology have been proprietary equipment formats, initial high investments, and failed expectations of reliability.

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Sensors Expo Report, 2009

July 1, 2009 2:12 pm | Comments

Energy harvesting technology took center stage at this year’s Sensors Expo in Rosemont, IL. Whether the solution obtained its power from the sun, heat, vibration, wind, RF or magnetics, there was a device at the show to take advantage of many of these or other ambient conditions. Infinite Power Solutions’ THINERGY thin micro-energy cells (MECs), in capacities of .0 mAh and 0.4 mAh initially, are positioned as the world’s most powerful batteries for their size and outperform all other micro-batteries.

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Design Talk - Harsh Environments

June 19, 2009 10:06 am | Comments

An application does not have to be in the arctic or a desert waste to be considered operating in a harsh environment.

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China expands Internet censorship with new software

June 13, 2009 11:36 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Comments

Autocratic nations rarely feel the need to justify their actions. So China’s recent defense of its new internet filtering software was extraordinary. It also rings hollow. Starting July 1, the “Green Dam Youth Escort” software must be pre-installed on all computers sold within mainland China. The net-filtering software is aimed at protecting users from “harmful content.”

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Brainstorm: New Product Development

June 11, 2009 11:53 am | Comments

What is the primary consideration when developing a new product? For this Brainstorm question we asked people at ITT Interconnect Solutions, CoActive Technologies KDM, Knight Electronics, Orchid Technologies, and AVX.

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Why MAX? – The purpose of WiMAX

June 2, 2009 9:40 am | by John Schwartz, Digi International | Comments

Whenever a new standard is adopted or starts to gain some ubiquity in the marketplace, I always have to ask, “So what? What does this new stuff give me that I don’t already have?” It’s an important question. If there is not any difference, then there is no reason not to just keep on using known and proven technologies. If there are differences, then knowing what these differences consist of can enable the appropriate business and design decisions.

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Design Talk - Chips and DIPs

June 1, 2009 11:57 am | by poe, ehternet, power, transformer, REACH | Comments

Here are some essays on design for you on Power over Ethernet (PoE), Transformer Basics, and info on the REACH chemical regulations.

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Brainstorm: Solid-State Lighting Adoption

June 1, 2009 10:59 am | Comments

This Month's Question: What do you think is the chief factor preventing the mainstream adoption of solid-state lighting?

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Silicon Oscillators Offer EMI Improvements

June 1, 2009 10:50 am | by Greg Zimmer, Linear Technology, www.linear.com | Comments

One of the most difficult electronics design challenge is to track down and eliminate electromagnetic interference (EMI). Switching regulators, a common source of EMI, continue growing in usage due to their space and efficiency advantages over linear regulators. For the designer, however, the EMI and associated regulatory requirements can present a significant challenge. To specifically address EMI in switching regulators, a multi-phase, spread-spectrum silicon oscillator is an appropriate solution.

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Fathoming the future

June 1, 2009 10:31 am | by Alix Paultre, Editor in Chief | Comments

Once upon a time, if you wanted to know the future you went to a colorful character who told you your fortune by examining bird guts, tea leaves, or other obscure random pattern generator. They were called witch doctors, clairvoyants, and fortune-tellers. Today we call them business analysts.

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New PICMG 2.30 Draft Standard for cPCI Can Extend Legacy System Life

May 22, 2009 10:14 am | by Charles Staley and Lindsay Powell, 3M Electronic Solutions, www.3m.com | Comments

To take advantage of advances in high-speed serial data transmission technologies, PICMG is releasing a new option for its popular CompactPCI standard. The new PICMG 2.30 Compact PCI PlusIO standard is based on PICMG 2.30 core specification and defines the migration path from parallel PCI to the serial PCI Express.

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The Climate is Right for Wireless Environmental Sensors

May 21, 2009 2:39 pm | by Sol Jacobs, Tadiran Batteries, www.tadiran.com | Comments

The effects of man-made climate change, once seen as a problem for future generations, is now viewed as an immediate threat, have led to significant technological investments to build a more sustainable future. From measuring the decline of snow packs in Antarctica and the North Pole, to measuring the impact of man-made dams on salmon migration patterns, to the development of systems that better predict natural disasters, remote wireless sensors are playing an increasingly critical role in advanced scientific technology.

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Wireless ICs in Automotive Security Applications

May 18, 2009 1:01 pm | by Gilles Cerede, Melexis Technologies, www.melexis.com | Comments

Let's start with a tough question: What is the difference between TPMS system and PKE system? Nothing! A TPMS system is placed inside the wheel and composed of a sensing device that measures temperature and pressure. When appropriate, for example before starting the engine, the car requests a measurement through a wireless link. If a pressure default occurs in one of the wheels, the car warns the driver through a signal on the dashboard. In PKE applications, the user carries a key fob device which contains an encoded identifier (ID). When the driver enters their car, the car requests the key fob ID through the wireless link. If the ID matches the ID stored by the car,

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