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What is the “next big thing” in near field communications?

August 7, 2013 3:30 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Mike Kabala, ECN Reader The next advance in NFC will be in the area of multi-factor authentication.  The current forerunner in this area is the Yubikey Neo, which contains both USB and NFC interfaces. Further advancement should eliminate the need for the USB connection, allowing a contact-free way of generating a one-time password for use in authentication.

What is the “next big thing” in near field communications? (Part II)

August 7, 2013 3:27 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

V.Kadal Amutham, Reader: Already many countries are implementing mobile payment for ticketing in the bus / train and purchases at stores avoiding credit cards.Another possibility for this technology is as follows. The mobile phone will store any personal data like, size of cloth, preferred brand of many household items.

What remains as the biggest challenge for current LED technology? (Part II)

July 31, 2013 10:00 am | Articles | Comments

The biggest challenge is that LED chips are quickly approaching their theoretical limits for efficient light output. As they do, incremental improvements to the LED die are providing diminishing returns on investment. Fortunately, innovations in optical silicone packaging materials are introducing new, more cost-effective ways to enhance efficiency (lm/W), as well as cost (lm/$) and light density (lm/cm2).

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What remains as the biggest challenge for current LED technology?

July 31, 2013 9:46 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Articles | Comments

Adeline Chan, product marketing manager, Cree, Inc.: LED technology has been evolving rapidly over the years. From a performance perspective, lumen output and efficacy numbers have been improving. Other “areas” of the LED technology have also progressed such as thermal properties, substrate materials, light distribution pattern,

Advances in new material technology, according to engineers

July 15, 2013 9:42 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Here at ECN we're always looking for what's going to change the world of electrical design. This month we're focusing on new material technology. From adhesives to thermal gap pad management, we want to know what's happening in your lab and on your benches!

What feature or trend will become hot technology in automotive infotainment the next year? (Part II)

June 13, 2013 3:37 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

What feature or trend will become hot technology in automotive infotainment the next year? Tullio Cettolin: Consumers love the world of apps and instant Internet connectivity, and now they want it in their cars, too. Maybe they want to listen to their favorite Hawaiian music station via Tune-In during their daily commute on the U.S. continent.

What feature or trend will become hot technology in automotive infotainment the next year?

June 13, 2013 3:35 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

What feature or trend will become hot technology in automotive infotainment the next year? The next wave of innovation in automotive infotainment will center around connectivity and personalization. As more cars are enable to connect to cloud based applications via the internet, more features will be added allowing passengers to engage with their social network, update location and access specific content.

What's next for near field communications? Engineers speak out

June 13, 2013 3:23 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Here at ECN we're always looking for the "next big thing" and this month we're focusing on near-field communications. NFC only seems to be increasing in popularity and usage across the electronics board, but we want to know what's happening in your labs and on your benches.

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What steps are necessary to keep counterfeit components out of the supply chain?

May 21, 2013 3:36 pm | Articles | Comments

What steps are necessary to keep counterfeit components out of the supply chain? Are more industry standards needed? Stop having unrealistic pricing expectations. Understand and qualify quality vendors of all kinds. Allocations and obsolescence are part of our industry....

What improvements would you like to see from distributors in the next 12 months?

May 16, 2013 2:29 pm | Articles | Comments

We asked our industry experts and ECN readers to weigh in on our  distributors question: What improvements would you like to see from distributors in the next 12 months? Here is what they had to say about the current state of the industry and hot it needs to be improved...

An engineer's wishlist for car infotainment systems

April 5, 2013 2:51 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

With Google's self-driving car hitting the road and all sorts of driver-assistance features hitting the showroom, it's a crazy time for drivers and designers alike. Cars are practically overflowing with (good and bad) attempts to integrate outside technology (smartphones, weather apps, virtual assistants) into vehicles interfaces.

The best way to improve distributors, according to engineers

March 22, 2013 4:43 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

How do you deal with distributors? Distribution is a key aspect of the engineering process, and it's important to choose the right distributor. You need dependibility, reliability and transperency to make the relationship between distributor and manufacturer work. 

Smart grid technology of the future

March 22, 2013 2:53 pm | Articles | Comments

We asked our industry experts to weigh in on our Smart Grid question: What home energy technology do you expect to see as a breakthrough in the next 12 months?

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What home energy technology will break through in the next 12 months?

March 22, 2013 2:41 pm | Articles | Comments

Our energy and Smart technology experts weigh in to answer our smart grid question for this month: What home energy technology do you expect to see as a breakthrough in the next 12 months?

Reader's Response: What energy management technology will generate the most buzz over the next 12 months?

March 22, 2013 12:31 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Articles | Comments

We wanted the lowdown on Smart Grid and the future of the engineering, so we asked our readers to answer a question: What energy management technology will generate the most buzz over the next 12 months?

Solving the counterfeit crisis, engineers weigh in

March 11, 2013 9:57 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

How would you stop counterfeiting? One of the hottest topics in electronic components--and basically every other industry-- is how to deal with the issue of counterfeiting. So we put it to the readers to come up with the best solutions for the counterfeiting crisis.

What role will sensors and controls play in emerging solid state lighting applications? (Part II)

February 15, 2013 2:41 pm | Articles | Comments

Q: What role will sensors and controls play in emerging solid state lighting applications? Solid-state lighting technology is a natural fit in our digital, wireless world. Adaptive control and wireless sensor networks are the key to ever more sophisticated LED lighting schemes including dimming,

What role will sensors and controls play in emerging solid state lighting applications?

February 15, 2013 2:38 pm | Articles | Comments

Q: What role will sensors and controls play in emerging solid state lighting applications? Where will the Internet of Things make its big commercial debut? Probably a few feet above your head. Intelligent sensing systems — installed and configured in overhead lighting systems and combining motion, temperature and light sensors with microprocessors, imagers and LEDs

Engineers weigh in on best energy management tactics

February 13, 2013 9:28 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

We know ECN readers have varied and valuable opinions – now here’s a great opportunity to showcase them. Send us an answer to the question below and if we think yours is the best, we’ll feature your response in the April print issue. Plus, you’ll get a $15 Starbucks gift card simply for sharing your thoughts.

What technology do you expect to take the consumer space by storm in 2013? (Part II)

January 21, 2013 11:31 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

The question of, "What technology do you expect to take the consumer space by storm in 2013?" continues in part II of the February Brainstorm series as experts take on the question of what will be popular in consumer electronics and the consumer technology space in the next 12 months.

Do you have what it takes to be a Brainstorm expert?

January 21, 2013 10:36 am | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

We here at ECN love to hear what you have to say, so for our March issue we’re opening up the Brainstorm discussion to our faithful readers. We want to hear your thoughts about lighting and the future of technology.Typically, the Brainstorm is an editorial section consisting of short commentary by five or six experts in a particular vertical market. Check out the Brainstorm archive, here.

Would you like to contribute to our Brainstorm section?

January 2, 2013 4:50 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

We here at ECN love to hear what you have to say, so for our February issue we’re opening up the Brainstorm discussion to our faithful readers. We want to hear your thoughts about consumer electronics and the future of technology. Typically, the Brainstorm is an editorial section consisting of short commentary....

The challenges of miniaturization

December 20, 2012 1:16 pm | by Bruno Fauvel, Segment Manager, Portescap | Portescap | Articles | Comments

With miniaturization often comes the challenge to produce the same amount of work as in large design, thus creating more power in a smaller envelope. Engineers should look at the different impact of dimension on motor performance criteria (efficiency, power, thermal dissipation, inertia, etc.).

Significant challenges remain for miniaturization of devices

December 14, 2012 4:20 pm | by AJ Smith, Honeywell Sensing and Control | Honeywell Sensing And Control | Articles | Comments

Device miniaturization is integral to the design and development of a wide range of medical devices, including analytical test equipment, ventilators, and infusion pumps. Making devices smaller and lighter helps conserve valuable real estate in patient rooms, enabling equipment to be placed closer to the patient as well as allowing more space for medical professionals to work.

Laser-structured, high-performance polymers are ideal combination for miniaturization

December 6, 2012 4:15 pm | by Anthony Verrocchi, Technical Marketing Engineer, Ticona Engineering Polymers | Articles | Comments

As the requirements for medical devices become more demanding, accessing new technologies and materials to miniaturize components is essential. Miniaturization of medical devices is dependent upon the reliability of their assembled components, which is crucial for proper functioning devices.

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