The single most important factor in designing a radio-based product – be it GPS, cellular or an ISM-band device – is the antenna plan. Not just the antenna itself, but the whole plan. What kinds of antennas make sense for the product based on size...
In the past few years embedded devices, including industrial controls and monitoring systems, have taken a huge leap forward in connectivity. Over half of the embedded devices released this year will be connected to the Internet, exposing them to a wide array of cyber-threats.
Imagine if all of your instruments had the ability to connect to a WiFi network or act as a WiFi router instead of a wired IO interface. Considering this, here are some ways it could make your testing life easier.
Thyristor and Bipolar Junction Transistors (BJT) were the only power switches until the MOSFET was introduced in the late 1970s. The BJT is a current-controlled device; whereas the MOSFET is a voltage-controlled device. In the 1980s, the IGBT was introduced...
The latest generations of wireless networks have been developed to provide the high-speed data services required by data-intensive smartphone applications. Yet, deployment of this infrastructure has been costly, and coverage has been notably inadequate in some areas.
Wireless charging may one day replace plugs and wires similar to how Wi-Fi and Bluetooth have modernized personal communication. Wireless charging with inductive coupling uses an electromagnetic field that transfers energy from the transmitter to the receiver.
Implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) save thousands of lives annually for patients with weak or damaged hearts who are at heightened risk of sudden cardiac arrest. The ICD is battery-powered, and when the battery’s charge depletes, it must be replaced.
IEC 60601-1 applies to all electrical and electronic medical devices and its accessories. The 3rd edition is in the process of being adopted by global regulatory authorities. But on a national level, regulatory affectivity dates are not harmonized across global jurisdictions.
Reducing the size of electronic products has become an increasingly important system design objective, especially in applications such as medical implantable devices that are used for a variety of new and emerging therapies and diagnostics.
Today’s data centers are expected to deliver more computing capacity while operating more efficiently, eliminating downtime and adapting to constant change. Infrastructure technologies are rising to the challenge by evolving to support higher density equipment...
Conventional AC-DC power supplies and DC-DC converters provide an output that is regulated to provide a “constant-voltage.” However, LEDs work most efficiently and safest with a “constant-current” drive. As a result, many new devices have been developed to provide this type of LED drive.
Current design trends have made the power delivery network (PDN) of a printed circuit board (PCB) as critical as multi-gigabit data channels. Continuous increases in clock frequencies have coupled with large increases in power, while voltage levels have trended lower and lower.
Many engineers are surprised to learn that commodity thick film chips, the most commonly specified resistor today, perform well in high moisture environments, but have some long-term reliability concerns in high-sulfur environments. In addition, certain SMD and thru-hole metal film resistors are susceptible to corrosion due to moisture. Fortunately, there are answers to both of these design challenges.
Semiconductor (IC) robustness—what is the operating temperature range? How is high electrical noise handled? What about ESD and fault protection? These issues are not necessarily the first things that a design engineer thinks about when selecting an IC.
Illuminating an LED at high brightness requires driving it with as high a current as allowed by the manufacturer, but the life expectancy of LEDs is heavily dependent on operating temperature. An increase of only 10°C can cut its useful life in half.
Is it a Harsh Environment or a “Harsh Harsh” Environment? Most connectors designed for conditions such as water spray and intermittent water submission (IP67) are considered Harsh Environment Connectors. “Harsh Harsh” environment connectors...
In many applications, data recorders collect information while being exposed to mechanical and thermal shock, vibration, high humidity, and high Electro Magnetic Interference (EMI) environments. Designing data recorders for reliable operation...
Legacy software—software of unknown pedigree (SOUP)—forms the basis of new developments which must meet modern coding standards either due to client demands or simply a policy of continuous improvement within the developer organization. The need to leverage the value of SOUP while meeting new standards and further developing functionality presents its own set of unique challenges.
When today’s communications professionals are faced with designing a system infrastructure that will be placed in a environment that is not suitable for standard cable and connectors difficult decisions must be made. Designers must look to connectors and cable that are specifically designed for harsh environments.
Despite all the warnings to avoid use of electrical devices in wet areas, it seems that designers are working at a fast pace to create devices that play well with water. Traditionally, most electronic boxes have been located in a sheltered, controlled environment.
With the industrial and instrumentation market becoming more competitive, circuit designers continually face new challenges to design products faster, with fewer iterations, and incorporating a wider range of mixed-signal technologies including analog, digital, power, and RF. In addressing these challenges, reference circuits provide
Although resistive technologies have conventionally been used to detect the position of a single touch on the screen, this article examines a new dual-touch concept that uses a resistive touch-screen controller to detect the most common two-finger gestures (zoom, pinch and rotation) using inexpensive resistive touch screens.
As signal processing requirements continue to climb in waveform-intensive applications including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), sonar, radar, signals intelligence (SIGINT) and software defined radio (SDR), the use of multiple digital signal processors (DSP) cores is a key enabler.
Electronic Health Records (EHRs) and Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) are rapidly becoming common-place in the healthcare industry. Organizations such as the Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology (CCHIT)...
Projected capacitive (p-cap) touchscreens have witnessed overwhelming success in the consumer portable space over the last few years, being specified into highly popular products such as Apple’s iPad and iPod Touch, as well as Samsung’s Galaxy and Blackberry’s Torch smartphones.