The U.S. Department of Energy today announced this year’s participants and dates for DOE’s 2009 Solar Decathlon, a competition that challenges students to design and develop houses that can provide their own energy from the sunlight – a clean, renewable source of energy. The twenty collegiate teams from the United States, Canada, Spain and Germany will each build a completely self-sufficient solar powered house
During an industry address yesterday at the Embedded Systems Conference (ESC) Boston, Microsoft Corp. launched the , a new competition designed to foster creativity and innovation among the embedded hobbyist and academic communities globally. Based on the successful Sparks will Fly competition, the embeddedSPARK 2010 Challenge encourages contestants to demonstrate innovative thinking within the theme of “Fun and Games.”
In Crossing the Chasm, Geoffrey A. Moore introduced the Technology Adoption Lifecycle. This curve highlights a chasm that exists between visionaries who are early adopters of technology and pragmatists who wait for proven technologies and products. For technologies to “cross the chasm” one key component are products with defined product specifications and system deployment guidelines.
Fusion is the power source of the future, goes the old saw. And for fifty years, it has always been "fifty years in the future." That may be changing with a number of new small fusion projects in the works or doing actual experiments. Let me mention first the ITER experiment (a tokamak design) which is the fusion project every one knows about.
The Cree LR6-DR1000 recessed downlight was awarded the Grand Prize at the 2009 Lighting for Tomorrow - Solid State Lighting Competition. A repeat winner, Cree shared the prize with Philip's Color Kinetics for its eW Cove Powercore. The Cree LRP-38, a PAR38 bulb, and the LR6-HE (high-efficiency) were also recognized with Special Focus Awards for technical innovation and high efficiency, respectively.
Panasonic has released an LED bulb that purportedly lasts 19 years. The drawback? It’s only available in Japan (for now, anyway). Could the EverLed line jumpstart solid state lighting? According to Panasonic, the screw-in LED bulb lasts 40 times longer than equivalent incandescents. Obviously, independent testing is needed, but this is an impressive figure.
The input signal is v1; the first five harmonic-distortion products are v2 through v6; and the ADC electronic noise is vn. The reciprocal of THD + Noise, the signal-to-noise-and-distortion ratio, or SINAD, is usually expressed in dB. If SINAD is substituted for the signal-to-quantizing-noise ratio, we can define an effective number of bits that a converter would have if its signal-to-quantizing-noise ratio were the same as its SINAD.
The startup Aptera was recently denied a DOE loan for its Aptera 2e electric vehicle. Their three-wheeled, *ahem*, “curiosity,” didn’t match the loan criteria, but the incident raises an important question—should the government be sponsoring products in the private sector?
When lighting applications started using solid-state sources, engineers began to understand the issues in the migration away from incandescent bulbs. It is fairly well known that LED sources lack the IR spectrum of their filament based counterparts requiring thermal management via conduction rather than emission. Driving and managing these solid-state light sources can be challenging
As applications engineers, we are constantly bombarded with a variety of questions about driving high-speed analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) with differential inputs. Indeed, selecting the right ADC driver and configuration can be challenging. To make the design of robust ADC circuits somewhat easier, we’ve compiled a set of common “road hazards” and solutions.
Europeans (like Americans) choose to buy ordinary light bulbs around 9 times out of 10 (European Commission and light industry data 2007-8). Banning what people want gives the supposed savings that are "good for them"—no point in banning what people don’t want! If new LED lights—or improved CFLs etc—are good, people will buy them—no need to ban ordinary light bulbs (little point).
With the aims of reducing energy wastage and improving distribution-network stability, regulatory authorities within the EU and US have been steadily introducing a series of measures that power-supply and equipment designers must consider. In the first instance, these measures specifically target no-load consumption and conversion efficiency for external power supplies of up to 250 W
Wireless power interoperability marked an important milestone with the 31 July 2009 release of 0.95 specifications of Qi, the Wireless Power Consortium’s “WPC” international standard in wireless power. This interoperability means that all Qi power receivers can be powered and charged with all Qi transmitters.
You can find brushless-DC motors in appliances, medical instruments, and industrial equipment because they offer advantages over their brushed-DC-motor siblings. But before you can use a brushless-DC (BLDC) motor you need to understand how it works.
Editor's note No matter how good the tech, if it addresses an industrial or other demanding environment application, it better be able to deal with its surroundings without operational compromise.
As consumers clamor for smaller, sleeker and cheaper products, the pressure for embedded designers to find space and cost effective flash memory is higher than ever. Thankfully, serial flash memory devices provide the solution. Serial flash is a small, low-power NOR flash memory that uses SPI (Serial Peripheral Interface) bus, sometimes called “four wire” serial bus, for sequential data access.
The mad scramble to obtain incandescent bulbs ahead of the EU ban highlights a controversial practice—the forced obsolescence of old technologies. R&D, combined with market forces, often collude to bury legacy tech. But should government speed up this process? How important is consumer choice?
Backlight technology continues to markedly improve, day after day, making it possible to design LCD panels as thin as a picture frame. Many thought that the use of OLED technology would be the only way to provide ultra-slim TV sets, but this year Samsung’s introduction of a new type of LED (light emitting diode) technology completely changed that thinking. Now, there are LED LCD TVs with depths as thin as 1.2 inches.
Designers of portable electronic devices have a variety of choices on types of chemistries, charger topologies and charge management solutions. Selecting the most suitable solution should be a simple task, but in most cases, it is a more complicated process. The designer needs to reach an optimal balance between performance, cost, form factor and other key requirements.
Supercapacitors are finding their way into an increasing number of applications for short-term energy storage. One such application is a power ride-through circuit, in which a backup energy source cuts in and powers the load when main power supply fails for a short time. This type of application has been dominated by batteries in the past
Recent advances in IGBT technology have given motor drive designers more options to consider for system development. Different specification conventions of various vendors complicate the design process further. Conventionally, system efficiency has been equated directly with VCEON. This metric is important for calculating the conduction losses of an IGBT but leaves out switching losses completely.
Robots that can make their own decisions have so far been confined to science fiction movies, but a child-sized figure with big eyes and a white face is trying hard to turn fiction into reality. Its name is iCub and scientists are hoping it will learn how to adapt its behavior to changing circumstances, offering new insights into the development of human consciousness.
In recent years significant advances in high-brightness LEDs (HB-LEDs) have given designers the opportunity to replace conventional incandescent, fluorescent and halogen technologies with more reliable and energy-efficient LED-based alternatives. As a result, solid-state lighting has seen considerable uptake in automotive, digital signage, and architectural applications, as well as the illumination of our city streets.
SuperSpeed USB connections — coming in 2010 — will zip data between devices at a theoretical rate of 5 Gbps, or more than 10-fold faster than a high-speed USB 2.0 connection. The faster transfers could help embedded-system developers who design video kiosks, TV recorders/players, and test-and-measurement equipment that use large quantities of information.
Is it a book? Is it a movie? Is it a website? Actually it's all three. Anthony Zuiker, creator of the "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" U.S. television series, is releasing what he calls a "digi-novel" combining all three media -- and giving a jolt to traditional book publishing.