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GaN on GaN LED achieves world-record setting wall-plug-efficiency

February 24, 2014 12:23 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Soraa (Fremont, CA) announced today the world’s most efficient LED, which it will integrate into the market’s first full-visible-spectrum, large-form-factor lamps. Soraa’s third generation (Gen3) GaN on GaN LED achieves world-record setting wall-plug-efficiency, outperforming the nearest competitor by 20% at normal operating conditions.

Engineering Update 46: The United Arab Emirates' drone delivery service

February 24, 2014 8:52 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

Consumers who fell in love with Amazon's 30-minute drone delivery service but can't wait for the mountain of red tape and regulations standing in the way of "Amazon Prime Air" now have an alternative — move to the United Arab Emirates!

Will plug-in cars crash the electric grid?

February 21, 2014 2:24 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Selecting a Chevy Volt, Tesla Model S, Nissan Leaf — or one of many other new models — shoppers in the United States bought more than 96,000 plug-in electric cars in 2013. That's a tiny slice of the auto market, but it's up eighty-four percent from the year before.

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Magnetometer sensor outputs 13-bit data over a magnetic field range of +/- 1000uT

February 21, 2014 1:41 pm | Saelig Company, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Saelig Company, Inc. (Fairport, NY) has announced the IST8301C, a single-chip 3-axis digital magnetometer sensor, housed in a form factor of 2.5 x 2.5 x 1.0mm, a 12-pin BGA package. The IST8301C is an integrated chip containing 3-axis magnetic sensors with an ASIC controller.

Rotary encoders combine optical encoder characteristics with ruggedness and compact form factor

February 20, 2014 9:10 am | Fraba / Posital | Product Releases | Comments

POSITAL-FRABA’s (Hamilton, NJ) IXARC encoders combine the accuracy and dynamic response of optical encoders with the ruggedness and compact form factor of magnetic encoders. Building on the company’s

Obama orders new fuel standards for trucks

February 19, 2014 8:59 am | by Stacy A. Anderson, Associated Press | News | Comments

Drawing a link between reduced fuel consumption and climate change, President Barack Obama said Tuesday that his administration will issue tougher fuel-efficiency standards for delivery trucks by March 2016. Obama said helping these vehicles use less fuel would have the triple benefit of making the U.S. less dependent on imported oil....

Analog front ends offer high accuracy for 3-phase smart meters

February 18, 2014 4:50 pm | Microchip Technology Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Microchip Technology (Chandler, AZ) announced its next-generation family of energy-measurement Analog Front Ends (AFEs) with industry-leading accuracy. The MCP3913 and MCP3914 integrate six and eight 24-bit, delta-sigma Analog-to-Digital Converters (ADCs), respectively, with 94.5 dB SINAD....

The five best apps to plan your perfect Valentine’s at the last second

February 14, 2014 4:19 pm | by Daniele DeAngelis Walker, Editorial Intern | Blogs | Comments

Waited till the last second to make your Valentine’s Day plans? Forgot about the day of love entirely? Or maybe you’re snowed in and have to rethink your plans? Not to worry — these five apps, free or inexpensive for multiple operating systems, are ready to save the day. No matter what kind of day you want.

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Engineering Update Episode 45 bloopers

February 13, 2014 2:28 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

Hey, even journalists have a sense of humor! Enjoy these bumbles, stumbles, outtakes, and bloopers from the latest edition of the Engineering Update. Special thanks to Managing Editor Kasey Panetta and Technical Editor Jason Lomberg for being such good sports!

Engineering Update Episode 45: The most advanced British aircraft ever built

February 13, 2014 2:05 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

The Taranis, an unmanned combat demonstrator aircraft being billed as the most advanced aircraft ever built by British engineers took it's first 15-minute test flight under the command of test pilot Bob Fraser, a few months ago at a super top secret location.

The microcontroller as metaobject

February 13, 2014 6:28 am | by Joshua Israelsohn, Director, JAS Technical Media | Articles | Comments

Pretty much everyone in our industry is familiar with the long evolution of microcontrollers. So familiar that it’s easy to miss changes in our industry and society, both positive and negative, that accompanied that evolution just as we tend not to see daily changes in our own aging faces.

50 Watt Zener diodes provide voltage regulation protection

February 12, 2014 10:53 am | Product Releases | Comments

America Semiconductor (Union, NJ) announces the availability of a full series of power Zener diodes (part numbers: 1N3305 thru 1N3350) packaged in a DO-5 case. The robust 50 Watt devices are engineered to provide voltage regulation protection in a broad array of alternative energy....

Photos of the Day: Wind farms to blink only when necessary

February 11, 2014 9:18 am | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

Like other tall structures, wind turbines use flashing lights to warn low-flying aircraft and prevent accidents. But citizens in Lower Saxony and Baden-Württemberg, Germany are complaining about the flashing red lights as an annoyance. In addition, the lights attract birds.

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What’s the biggest challenge for designs that utilize touch-enabled displays?

February 10, 2014 3:35 pm | Ocular, Inc., Applied Materials | Articles | Comments

Take a look at virtually any new smartphone or tablet device, and whatever the brand or size, they likely have one thing in common — touch screen displays. This ubiquitous level of adoption comes with challenges, particularly pricing and volume yields to meet mass market needs. The touch-enabled display represents one of the largest cost factors....

Wind farms to blink only when necessary

February 10, 2014 12:47 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Wind power has been booming in Germany since the beginning of the energy transition. However, the voices of critics have been growing along with the increasing number of wind turbines. Citizens' initiatives in Lower Saxony and Baden-Württemberg for instance have founded a umbrella association meant to provide local groups with a political say.

Flat-pack lens boosts solar power

February 10, 2014 12:22 pm | News | Comments

Micro-machining could be used to create almost flat, Fresnel lenses, that boost the electrical efficiency of solar panels, according to researchers in China. Fresnel lenses were invented by French engineer and scientist Augustin-Jean Fresnel in the early nineteenth century....

What’s a “must-have” for harsh environment equipment protection?

February 6, 2014 3:23 pm | by Editor | Blogs | Comments

There are all sorts of harsh environments where electronic components need to function perfectly regardless of the temperature, dirt, weather, or other challenges. So what's the best way to protect them? Here's a great opportunity to showcase your opinion and knowledge on the topic by answering the question below. Ready to give it a try?    

Engineering Update #44: Robots learn to taste beer

February 6, 2014 1:23 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

In this episode of Engineering Update, brought to you by Components Corporation: beer-drinking robots, Dr. Mario, and an automotive vending machine. The world of technology hasn't perfected artificial intelligence — thank god — but when it does, a new discovery will ensure....

Sensor system improves air quality while making building ventilation more energy efficient

February 4, 2014 2:16 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

A research consortium being coordinated at Saarland University is developing a novel sensor system for monitoring airborne contaminants that will provide high-quality indoor air without the energy losses typically associated with ventilation. Energy consumption levels can be halved as a result.

Engineering Update Episode #43: A 3-story, 755 passenger concept plane

January 30, 2014 11:16 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

In this week's episode of the Engineering Update: A 3-story, 755 passenger concept plane: The SkyWhale might not sound like the greatest name in the world for an airplane, but it's a pretty apt description for this flying beast. A minesweeping robot: Unfortunately, the task of clearing the mines is often prohibitively expensive or complicated....

Engineering Update #42: The GoPro-carrying Pocket Drone

January 23, 2014 3:05 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

In this week's edition of Engineering Update: The GoPro-carrying Pocket Drone: The Pocket Drone is a miniature, foldable tricopter designed to carry a GoPro camera. SeeThru smart glasses: The newest in smart glasses is called SeeThru, from French company, Laster Technologies.

Linear sensor helps prevent train derailment

January 22, 2014 1:38 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Alliance Sensors Group’s LV-45 series linear sensors is being used in the Metrom Rail LLC SafeStructure System for road and rail bridge monitoring to help prevent train derailment. Bridge expansion and contraction due to seasonal heating and cooling is a common problem found in civil engineering.

Top flops from CES 2014

January 22, 2014 10:00 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

What’s the only thing dorkier than a Segway? That’s right — Google Glass. They look like the drunken lovechild of the Borg and Jean Claude Van Damme from Universal Soldier. So naturally, they littered the CES show floor like weeds, belying the user’s fashion sense, professionalism, and any semblance of self-respect.

Embedded Tech Trends update: Five reasons to choose MicroTCA over VPX for mil-aero apps

January 22, 2014 8:59 am | by Chris Warner, Executive Editor | Blogs | Comments

When you think of bus architectures that accommodate switched fabrics for military applications, VPX usually comes to mind. However, VPX isn’t necessarily the only choice for mil-aero. During one of today’s presentations at Embedded Tech Trends, Justin Moll, director of marketing for Las Vegas-based VadaTech which specializes in industrial and rugged computing products...

Which way WiFi?

January 20, 2014 3:52 pm | by Joshua Israelsohn, Technical Contributor | Articles | Comments

WiFi users in densely populated urban locales experience signal interference from nearby unassociated WiFi networks. Additionally, significant growth in the number WiFi-enabled mobile devices has added to user dependency on WiFi channels and to the data traffic those channels carry.

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