Electronic Design

Electronic Design Automation

Life Expectancy Of Rugged Batteries Rises To 15 Years
EnerSys Inc.
(800) 538-3627; fax (610) 372-8613; www.enersysinc.com

The life expectancy of the REL-B valve-regulated, lead-acid family of batteries has been expanded to up to 15 years. The extended life of the REL-B battery results in fewer replacements and change-outs during the product's cycle life, yielding significant cost savings.

The industry-standard footprint of the REL-B battery is the same as that of the company's NP series of VRLA batteries. Thus, no costly redesigns or product substitutions are necessary. The internal design of the REL-B battery incorporates advanced alloy and grid technologies. This configuration reduces the rate and impact of positive plate corrosion on the battery. The reduction of positive plate corrosion results in less grid distortion and better contact between the grid and active material. Also, this configuration optimizes the battery's operating performance and greatly increases life expectancy over the typical three- to five-year industry standard.

REL-B batteries are available from 15 to 65 Ah at the 20-hour rate. At the one-hour rate, capacities range from 9 to 39 Ah. Members of the battery series suit telecom and UPS applications with distributed power or reliable backup requirements. Bolt termination enables better contact and higher capacity. The 15-Ah version can incorporate a 0.250-in. tab termination option for less demanding, quick-connect applications. Safety features include a flame-retardant housing, a low-pressure rubber safety valve, and an explosion-arresting ceramic filter.

Pricing begins at $250 for the 65-Ah battery.



Battery Retainer Enables Automatic Placement In SMT Applications
Keystone Electronics Corp.
(800) 221-5510; fax (718) 956-9040; www.keyelco.com

A low-profile, surface-mount, coin-cell battery retainer features automatic placement in SMT applications. This coin-cell retainer has a top-loading design for high-density pc-board packaging. The solder tails are located outside of the insulator material to support inspection by vision systems. This lightweight, rugged device uses highly reliable spring tension to ensure low contact resistance. Battery polarity is clearly designated. A version of the coin-cell retainer is also available for through-hole applications.

The SMT battery retainer functions for all major manufacturers' coin-cell lithium batteries. It is safe for most soldering and reflow applications. The device is available in bulk (Part #3010) or on tape and reel (Part #3010TR). The tape-and-reel packaging is compatible with most vacuum and pick-and-place assembly systems. Part #3011 is the optional through-hole retainer version.

The SMT battery retainer is available immediately. For pricing and availability information, contact the company.



Li Coin Cells Designed To Withstand High Temperatures
Panasonic Batteries
(877) 726-2228; fax (847) 468-5750; www.panasonic.com/batteries

Two BR (polycarbon monoflouride) Li coin cells are designed to withstand high temperatures and harsh operating environments. They also are designed to endure the harsh conditions of use inside a rotating tire. An improved design ensures that the batteries can meet the growing worldwide concern for greater tire safety. The BR2777A and BR2450A coin batteries feature the highest levels of pressure, leakage, temperature, and moisture resistance in the industry.

These coin batteries feature vastly improved leakage resistance, which is three times greater than the company's previous battery products. The new batteries counter the sharp fluctuations in temperature and pressure within the spinning tire. Such fluctuations can potentially damage or render a battery and the sensor that depends on it ineffective. The critical working temperature of the batteries has been improved from 85°C to 125°C. This feature provides an effective safeguard against the rapid increases in temperature that can occur inside tires when braking or driving on slopes. While the nominal capacity of the BR2777A is 1000 mAh, that of the BR2450A is 550 mAh. Both devices feature a nominal voltage of 3 V. The BR2777A and BR2450A feature diameters of 27.5 and 24.5 mm, respectively.

For pricing and availability information, contact the company.



Lithium Manganese Dioxide Coin Cell Provides Cell-Phone Memory Backup
Maxell Corporation of America
(800) 533-2836; fax (201) 796-8790; www.maxell.com

The ML614 is a lithium/manganese-dioxide (Li/MnO2) coin cell that provides cell-phone memory backup for telephones that utilize a real-time clock (RTC). Since the ML614 is recharged from the main cell-phone battery, it is not consumer replaceable. The coin cell is expected to operate for the full life of the telephone.

The coin cell measures 6.8 by 1.4 mm. Producing 3 V with a nominal capacity of 4 mAh, the device weighs just 0.16 g. The cell is capable of up to 1500 shallow charge and discharge cycles. It's rated to operate over the temperature range of −20°C to 60°C. The company has redesigned the internal components of the ML batteries and reversed the negative materials, providing better utilization of space and higher capacity in a small cell size. To simplify cell installation, the company can provide custom-made cell holders for the ML614 coin cells.

The ML614 cells cost $1.50 each.



Small Module Protects Rechargeable Single-Cell Li Batteries
EM Microelectronic-Marin SA
+41 32 75 55 111; fax +41 32 75 55 403; www.emmarin.ch

The miniature Panther module protects rechargeable single-cell Li batteries against overcharge and overdischarge, including short circuit. These features help to increase the life of the battery. This module is based on the Li battery-protection chip EM6180. This ultra-low-power CMOS circuit guarantees low impedance, an essential property for high-power applications like GSM or CDMA systems.

The Panther module monitors the voltage and current of the battery. It stops charging or discharging by opening its power switch if a parameter passes one of the trimmed threshold values. The switch is then closed again as soon as the parameter is back within the limits. This module does not require any external components. It comes packaged with gold contacts. Two Ni pads in two different configurations are provided for easy welding to the battery.

Contact the company for pricing and availability information.



Software Package Supports Rapid Production Of Battery-Management ICs
PowerSmart Inc.
(469) 241-0087; www.powersmart.com

PowerTool is a PC software package designed to support the rapid development and production of rechargeable batteries based on the company's Accuron family of rechargeable battery ICs. PowerTool simplifies design time by providing a high-level, menu-driven environment. The tool lets designers quickly and easily develop, calibrate, and test battery systems based upon Accuron components. It helps lower develop costs, minimize time to market, and maximize production throughput.

The wizard-driven software tool allows the PS401 Accuron to be easily configured or updated by an OEM via the SMBus interface. The battery IC can be updated during engineering evaluation, development, or production. The software package is compatible with Windows 98/ME/2000. It intuitively guides the OEM through the pack configuration process. PowerTool is designed specifically to support the company's new PowerInfo interface board and PowerCal calibration board. PowerInfo is a compact interface board that enables serial communication between a PC COM port and Accuron-based smart batteries. PowerInfo aids in the evaluation and initial development of Accuron products. PowerTool can communicate with up to eight PowerCal boards at once to address manufacturing needs.

PowerTool is offered free of charge and is available on the company's Web site. It's also included with the company's Accuron hardware development tools.



Battery-Protection IC Features Superior Accuracy For Overcharge
Seiko Instruments USA Inc.
(800) 934-9334; fax (909) 975-5699; www.seiko-usa-ecd.com

The S-8261 Li-ion battery-protection IC is the only such device to incorporate a third level of overcurrent detection for added protection. It features superior accuracy for overcharge (±25 mV), overdischarge (±50 mV), and overcurrent (±15 mV) detection voltages. Applications include handheld scanners, notebook computers, and other portable electronic devices that use Li-ion rechargeable single-cell battery packs.

The S-8261 consumes only 3.5 µA during operation. It consumes only 0.1 µ>A in power-down mode. Providing a small footprint, the S-8261 comes housed in a 6-pin SNB(B) package. It measures only 1.8 by 2.0 by 0.75 mm. The battery-protection IC also comes in an SOT-23-6 package.

In the SNB(B) packaging, pricing for the S-8261 begins at $0.35. Pricing starts at $0.30 for the SOT-23-6 package. All pricing is for 10,000-unit quantities.



Embedded Programmable Logic Core Targets ASIC SoC Designs
LSI Logic Corp.
(866) 574-5741; www.lsilogic.com

The LiquidLogic core, an embedded programmable logic technology, can be used in both ASIC and ASSP designs. This ability gives engineers the flexibility and reconfigurability of programmable logic while also enabling the low cost, low power, and high performance of ASICs and ASSPs.

This technology is available now as an addition to the company's CoreWare library of intellectual property. The ASIC is a single-chip implementation of a DSP-based subsystem for third-generation wireless base stations. The chip uses the company's ZSP digital signal processor core. The LiquidLogic core serves as a slave coprocessor to the ZSP. The main advantage of the LiquidLogic core is its inherent flexibility. By partitioning an SoC design into fixed and reconfigurable portions, various control, processing, or interface blocks can be transferred from a hardware implementation to a software implementation.

For pricing and availability information, contact the company.



Technology Provides Early Visibility Into Design Timing
Magma Design Automation Inc.
(408) 864-2020; www.magma-da.com

Blast Logic is a design-automation product that reads in a netlist and constraints and generates reports that logic designers can use to better assess the timing feasibility of their design prior to layout. This early visibility in design timing can enable designers to avoid timing-closure iterations between physical and logic design. This feature significantly reduces time-to-market.

For a limited time, the company is bundling register transfer level (RTL) synthesis capability, called Blast RTL, with Blast Logic. Licensees of Blast Logic can receive a free, one-year upgrade to Blast RTL that extends the product's capabilities to include fast, high-capacity RTL synthesis. The key benefit of Blast Logic is that it helps shorten the design cycle. In conventional flows, it is not uncommon for the prelayout netlist timing to be off by as much as 30% to 40% from the final post-layout timing. As a result, designers usually spend considerable time iterating a design to reach timing closure. Based on FixedTiming methodology, Blast Logic works by reading in a netlist and constraints. The netlist is re-optimized, and constraints are automatically translated into an internal format.

Available now for Sun Solaris and Linux, pricing starts at $29,167.;



Physical System Compiler Brings Timing Closure To Front-End IC Design
Get2Chip Inc.
(408) 501-9600; www.get2chip.com

The Topomo physical system compiler brings fully automated, accurate timing and block information to front-end IC design. It integrates and automates block partitioning, block placement, global routing, and synthesis. It's essential to model chip topology while simultaneously looking at the effects of architecture, block sizes and locations, and the impact of physical wiring for quality results. Combining physical views with synthesis early in the design process provides better design structure and ensures timing closure at the system level.

Topomo automatically partitions a multimillion-gate design into system-level blocks. Partitioning is based on actual timing and area to achieve rapid timing convergence. The compiler concurrently places blocks, calculates wire capacitances, and creates a netlist that has been driven by global interconnects. It automatically identifies long and short wires. Also, the compiler correctly triggers global synthesis and timing optimizations. This tool has been used on customer designs ranging from 500,000 to 2 million gates with frequencies in the range of 400 MHz in 0.18-µm process technology.

For pricing and availability information, contact the company.



Circuit Design Program Targets Windows 2000/NT Workstations
Advanced Microcomputer Systems Inc.
(954) 784-0900; fax (954) 784-0904; www.advancedmsinc.com

SpiceCreator Pro is a 32-bit analog, digital, and mixed-code circuit design and simulation program that works on Windows 9x, NT, and 2000 operating systems. It is a completely integrated modern user interface circuit-design environment.

This program enables designers to quickly and easily capture schematic designs and perform simulation. A powerful signal processor and a waveform viewer allow designers to view and analyze the results. The design environment is easily customized. Designers can search for, find, select, and categorize from thousands of components. An HTML-based help engine allows designers to place Web links directly into schematics. Web pages can be viewed directly in the SpiceCreator Pro environment. A powerful built-in simulator lets engineers test designs quickly. Results can be seen on the schematic and in real-time as the simulation progresses. Virtual instruments, including a multimeter, ohmmeter, volt meter, and current meter, display both real and complex numbers. A 64-channel real-time oscilloscope lets designers see the circuit in action.

Pricing is $295.00.



PC-Board Layout Solution Features Automatic And Interactive Routing
Innoveda Inc.
(800) 873-8439; fax (508) 480-0882; www.innoveda.com

The PowerPCB 200 series is an advanced design environment for pc boards. It offers a powerful, shape-based, rules-driven layout solution. PowerPCB features automatic and interactive routing and superior OLE automation functionality. This configuration enables seamless interoperability with front-end design and back-end test, repair, and manufacturing processes. This level of integration allows manufacturers of electronic products to quickly and easily complete complex designs and speed time to volume production.

The PowerPCB 200 series enables customers to complete large pc boards and save time throughout the design and fabrication processes. Included in the series are the Unlimited Database Option, which enables designers to create pc boards with a virtually unlimited number of database connections, and the Unlimited Dynamic Route Editor Option, which saves time by aiding designers in the routing of connections. A DFF audit module is available for performing detailed design-for-fabrication checks in the layout environment. A physical design reuse capability automates the duplication of replicated circuits on the pc board. The BlazeRouter, a rules-driven angle-free autorouter, is also included.

The PowerPCB 200 series, available now, costs $12,500.



Family Of PLL Analog IP Ranges From 266 MHz To 4.8 GHz
NurLogic Design Inc.
(877) NURLOGIC; www.nurlogic.com

A family of high-performance phase-locked-loop (PLL) analog intellectual property is suited for implementation into complex high-end communications, graphics, and microprocessor designs. An extensive set of predeveloped high-performance PLLs is available for leading TSMC, IBM, and UMC standard CMOS process technologies from 0.25 to 0.13 µm. Values range from 266 MHz to 4.8 GHz.

Analog PLL IP is based on the company's advanced patent-pending architecture that ensures very high speed with minimal jitter. Low jitter helps to maximize clock frequency and operating speed. The PLLs support fast data-transfer rates, high frequencies, small form factors, and increased bandwidth with low jitter. The reference input ranges from 10 to 600 MHz. Power-supply options include 1.2, 2.5, and 3.3 V. Typical power dissipation ranges from 5 to 20 mW. The PLLs feature a low SSC tracking skew. Active loop control reduces process sensitivities. The products also feature spread-spectrum compliant clocking and high power-supply rejection.

For pricing and availability information, contact the company.



Embedded Memories Reduce Network System Bottlenecks
Virage Logic Corp.
(877) 360-6690; www.viragelogic.com

The NetCAM B-128k content-addressable memory (CAM) lets designers optimize critical design factors such as speed, power, and area. It can generate binary CAMs that are 128 kbits in size—that's a fourfold increase in the maximum size of the binary CAM as compared to the company's ternary CAM, the NetCAM T-32K, product.

While a ternary CAM stores data as 0s, 1s, and "don't cares," a binary CAM stores data only as 0s and 1s. This configuration leads to smaller sizes in binary CAMs. Thus, silicon area can be used more efficiently when a binary CAM is employed. Also, a binary CAM performs more coarsely grained searches than a ternary CAM. To achieve high silicon utilization, a blend of a few ternary CAMs and mostly binary CAMs is used on-chip. By cascading binary CAMs, designers can increase the bandwidth of the CAMs. This enables searches of very wide words.

The Custom-Touch NetCAM B-128K is available now and costs $300,000.

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