Electronic Design

Electronic Design Update: July 2, 2008

Electronic Design UPDATE e-Newsletter |   July 2, 2008
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Microwaves & RF Video Coverage from Atlanta
Catch up on what you may have missed at the recent IMS 2008/MTT-S conference in Atlanta. View our video interviews with Emerson, Tektronix, Rhode & Schwarz and others.
Click here for more info.


scope |
"Friend" Your Picture Frame
By Richard Gawel, Managing Editor

We’re barely catching our breath, keeping up with the social networking technology that Web 2.0 applications require. Yet already, designers and marketers alike are buzzing about Web 3.0, even though nobody seems to be able to specifically define what that means. Nonetheless, most experts predict high-speed, wide-bandwidth applications that will be able to deliver content wherever and whenever you want it, regardless of format or platform. Web 3.0 will even come to devices as mundane as, say, picture frames.

Read the full article...


editor's view |
MEMS Motion Sensors Lead The Way At Sensors Expo 2008
By Roger Allan, Contributing Editor

Some of the biggest advances revealed at Sensors Expo 2008, held June 9-11 in Rosemont, Ill., involved some of the smallest technology. A host of companies was on hand and eager to display their hottest developments in microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) motion sensors.

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viewpoint |
A Mid-Year Check On The Optimism Meter
By Lauro Rizzatti, General Manager
EVE USA, San Jose, Calif.


Six months ago, I predicted that emulation would be a bright spot within the EDA industry in 2008. Who could have guessed back then that our little world would be upended with the announcement of an astonishing attempt to merge two industry giants, both of whom have emulation products? My optimism remains intact, however.

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design solution |
Smart Optics Push Camera Phones Out Of The “Dark” Ages
By Eran Kali and Giles Humpston
Tessera Technologies


Since their introduction in 2001, cell-phone cameras have transitioned from added features to standard items. Today, more than 80% of cell phones have at least one camera. Camera-enabled phones offer the convenience of having a camera that’s permanently on and, quite literally, on-hand for every occasion.

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engineer's resource |
Your Ideas For Design Can Win $500

Send us your Ideas for Design and we'll pay you $150 for every Idea for Design that we publish. In addition, the year's top design as selected by our readers will earn an additional $500, with two runners-up each receiving $250. You can submit your Ideas for Design via e-mail to [email protected], or you can mail your material to:
Ideas for Design
Electronic Design
45 Eisenhower Dr., Suite 550
Paramus, NJ 07652
Click here for our guidelines on Ideas for Design.

PLX Read Pacing Webcast
A new feature called Read Pacing is now available on Gen 2 PCI Express switches. Read Pacing is a technology that opens up new avenues for enhancing performance in systems with multiple I/O streams. To learn more about Read Pacing from our friends at PLX Technology, please click on the link. (NOTE: This webcast contains audio, so please hit the mute button on your volume control if you cannot listen to audio at this time.)

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Rev up fuel efficiency and win $10,000
Design an energy-saving solution for automotive applications

Infineon and Auto Electronics invite you to participate in the “REV UP FUEL EFFICIENCY” design contest. Take “the green challenge” and design a solution using Infineon products that enables or improves energy efficiency for automotive applications. You could win a grand prize of $10,000, a second prize of $5,000 or a third prize of $2,000.
The three winners will get an all-expenses-paid trip to the Infineon and Auto Electronics Contest Award Ceremony at Convergence 2008. In addition, your winning design will be featured at the Infineon booth during the show. Submit your entry by August 15, 2008.
See you at CONVERGENCE 2008, Booth 409.
For complete contest rules or to take the design challenge, go to http://autoelectronics.com/contest/rev-up



IFD of the week |
Trick A BJT-Based Converter Into Starting At Only 250 mV DC
By Louis Vlemincq, Transmission Specialist
Belgacom, Evere, Belgium


The converter described below, based on a silicon bipolarjunction transistor (BJT), can operate at as low as 250 mV, which is probably a record for a converter not based on a JFET or germanium transistor. How is this possible? The VBE threshold is not clear-cut, depending on current density and other factors. But 250 mV is way below the lowest accepted values. There has to be a trick and there is, sort of.

Read the full article...


focus on embedded hardware |
16-Bit ADC Teams With Low Jitter Clock

Delivering the highest SNR and SFDR and lowest jitter for communications, defense, and test and measurement applications, according to Texas Instruments, the ADS5483 16-bit, single-channel, 135-Msample/s analog-to-digital converter pairs with the CDCE72010 clock synthesizer to provide what the company describes as unmatched dynamic system-level performance.

Read the full article...


Pease Porridge |
Bob's Mailbox
By Bob Pease

Electric cars are a hot topic.
Check out analog & power guru Bob Pease's responses to some recent reader commentary.

Read the full article...


Engineering TV |
Evonik's Lotus Exige

How can cars be designed to be more attractive, environmentally friendly, efficient, and safer? Enter Evonik Industries. The car of the future doesn’t fly yet, but its lightweight construction owes something to aircraft design anyway. The rear spoiler of the RED Motorsport Lotus Exige weighs next to nothing thanks to Rohacell, an extremely rigid, but lightweight, structural foam made from PMI (polymethacrylimide). Other innovations include "green" tires that produce less rolling resistance (which translates into greater fuel economy); a specialty catalyst that makes it possible to convert canola oil into biodiesel; and Evonik’s methacrylates, which are monomers that act both as a base for pigment and as a clear scratch-resistant finish.

Read the full article...


news from the editors |
Sun-Based Distiller Wins Green Design Contest

The Digital Sun Distiller, a device that allows a person to purify and reuse household water, has won America’s division of Freescale Semiconductor’s first green FTF Design Challenge. The distiller was developed by Jose Luis Rojas of iluxon S.A. de C.V. of San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

Read the full article...

Plextronics Works With USDC To Boost OLED Performance

Plextronics has completed a $590,000 project with the U.S. Display Consortium (USDC) to enable broad commercialization of high-performance, low-cost, organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays.

Read the full article...

Solar Cell Investments Will Climb To Semiconductor Levels By 2010

By 2010, a booming demand for solar energy will increase worldwide investments in the production of photovoltaic (PV) cells to the same level as those for semiconductor manufacturing, according to iSuppli.

Read the full article...

International Experts Will Judge 2008 Green Design Contest

Premier Farnell, an international multichannel electronics distributor, has chosen its judging panel for Live EDGE competition (Electronic Design for the Global Environment). This competition allows engineers and students to compete by designing electronic products that are environmentally friendly.

Read the full article...

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If you haven't seen our video coverage, you don't know DAC
Editor David Maliniak chatted with leading companies like Mentor, Agilent, Synopsys plus the latest from CoFluent, OneSpin and CLK. More than 20 video segments are available to fill you in on what you missed!
Click here.



quick poll |
Speedo and Ansys used computer modeling software to develop a new record-breaking swimsuit. What effect will this and other technology have on the upcoming Olympics?

  • Technology gives too large an advantage to wealthy nations.
  • Technology levels the playing field for all athletes.
  • Technology is irrelevant, as the athletes still have to perform.
  • Technology diminishes the significance of the athletes' performance.

Click here to take the poll. Remember to scroll down. The poll is at the bottom of the page.


product picks online |
SD Video Amps Trim Power Consumption



2U MIL/COTS Chassis Supports 32-Gbyte SHBs



Digitally Controlled DC-DC Converters Crank Up Power Density



High-Density Matrix Module Packs Automatic Surge Protection



Insulated 9-V Battery Straps Offer Series Or Parallel Connection




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Our editors have been busy! Come read their commentaries and check out exclusive videos from the Design Automation Conference (DAC), International Electronics Forum (IEF), and Display Week (SID)exhibitions and see the technology of tomorrow from major players in the electronics industry.

upcoming industry events |
SEMICON West 2008
San Fransisco, Calif.
July 14-17




LinuxWorld Conference & Expo
San Franscisco, Calif.
July 4-7




NIWeek 2008
Austin, Tex.
August 5-7




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