Electronic Design

Electronic Design Update: May 14, 2008

Electronic Design UPDATE e-Newsletter |   May 14, 2008
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National Instruments introduces Source Measure Unit (SMU) for PXI
The NI PXI-4130 Power SMU provides 4-quadrant operation on a 20V, 2A programmable channel. When combined with LabVIEW or LabVIEW SignalExpress software, this flexible module can be used to generate and measure precise voltage and current sweeps for curve tracing applications and device validation.
Click here to view specs and pricing.


analog/mixed-signal design |
Squeeze 10-Bit Performance From An 8-Bit DAC
Part 1: Additive Dithering

By Dave Van Ess, Application Engineer, MTS, Cypress Semiconductor

What’s the cost of an underused hardware resource? If you spec your microcontroller to have a 10-bit analog-to-digital converter (ADC) but only require 8 bits, you’ve paid for extra performance that just isn’t needed.

Read the full article...


blog |
International Electronics Forum (IEF) 2008
By Joe Desposito, Editor-in-Chief

Electronic Design's Editor-in-Chief Joe Desposito traveled a long way to catch IEF. Catch up with him on his journey to Dubai, where IEF was held this year, and check out his impressions of the forum.

Read the full article...


engineer's resource |
ESC 2008

There was a ton of announcements at the Embedded Systems Conference last month. Check out the highlights, exclusive commentary, and footage from the show by Electronic Design's Editor-in-Chief Joe Desposito on our Web page, sponsored by Lantronix, Xilinx, and Altium. You can also find video interviews by Electronic Design Europe's Editor-in-Chief Paul Whytock here.


focus on embedded hardware |
Software Radio PMC Packs 256 DDC Channels

Raising the density bar, the Model 7151 software radio PMC combines four 200-MHz, 16-bit ADCs that feed a proprietary FPGA IP core with 256 channels of digital downconversion (DDC). With independent frequency tuning for each DDC channel, the PMC downconverts any signal within any of four digitized, 100-MHz input bands.

Read the full article...


EiED online |
Static Source Code Analysis

Static source code analysis tools can be an invaluable tool for software developers. Technology Editor Bill Wong talks with some of the major vendors in this space.

Read the full article...

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Learn how to automate your test system using solid state switches
This application note from Agilent provides a complete overview of FET, PIN diode, and hybrid solid-state switches. It discusses the features of each type of switch, which specifications to consider and why, and gives application examples.
To learn more and download the note, click here.



Engineering TV |
Educational Autonomous Robotic Vehicle

The c-Link Systems Trak-Bot is a tabletop educational robotic vehicle used to explore and demonstrate autonomous vehicle motion. The robot is perfect for students and hobbyists to test motion programming or autonomous concepts that need to be demonstrated. The drive system was created to look and feel like its bigger brothers: bulldozers and military tanks. The tracks are of an Elastomer material that doesn't mark or mar surfaces while gaining a modicum of traction. The chassis is constructed of ABS plastic, which allows for customization and custom painting. Creation of programs for the —P robot can be handled through Cypress PSoC Express. The —C3 robot contains an Altera Cyclone-III EP3C5, a field-programmable gate array (FPGA) that can be configured with a 32-bit CPU (NIOS II). The —U robot contains a 48-pin dual-inline package (DIP) plug-in for add-on features and other vendor processors. The user’s imagination is the only real limitation to what the control cards can do. Optional add-ons increase the educational potential exponentially.

Click here to watch the video


news from the editors |
Network Processor Simplifies ZigBee Design

The ZigBee short-range wireless networking technology adds a complex stack to the IEEE 802.15.4 wireless standard, making it a bear to work with—especially for designers who aren’t so wirelessly inclined. But if you want to do mesh networking, it’s the way to go. Just be prepared for a steep learning curve and a compliance process that takes both time and money.

Read the full article...

Fast Serial 16-Bit ADC Cuts Pin Count And PCB Space

Some new wireless and communications applications like basestations require 16-bit resolution as well as high sampling speed. Devices with high sampling rates are readily available, but some analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) require transferring all that data over a 16-bit data bus with a minimum of 16 lines, and, in some cases, 32 lines.

Read the full article...

Report Sees Strong Growth For Organic Photovoltaics

The market for organic photovoltaic (PV) cells will generate nearly $1 billion in revenues by 2015, according to a report by NanoMarkets, an industry analyst firm based in Glen Allen, Va. The report notes that 2008 is the first year that organic PV products will be available commercially and that progress in the organic PV sector is attributable to the substantial venture capital and strategic investments that have been made in recent years.

Read the full article...

Nanotech Legislation Moving Through Congress

The NanoBusiness Alliance reports that the House Science and Technology Committee has unanimously reported the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI) Amendments Act (H.R. 5940). The act will update and expand the National Nanotechnology Initiative.

Read the full article...


quick poll |
Are you okay with Internet service providers (ISPs) monitoring your surfing habits?

  • Yes
  • Absolutely not
  • Only if I give prior permission

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

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Live date – Weds June 11th at 2:00pm ET
Hosted by: Electronic Design
Sponsored by: Micro Power & Panasonic

Aftermarket Battery Packs - Revelations from Product Tear-Downs

Aftermarket battery packs are available for most portable devices. Hosted by Robin Sarah Tichy, Technical Marketing Manager with Micro Power and contributor to Electronic Design's Power Design column, this webcast will present the results of several product tear-downs on aftermarket battery packs and explain how substandard aftermarket packs can cut corners on cost, safety mechanisms, and battery performance. These teardowns expose electronic & mechanical design issues, as well as good manufacturing and regulatory violations. Then, this webcast will provide solutions for OEMs to manage and control their ecosystem of aftermarket battery pack suppliers. The webcast is applicable to OEMs of consumer and industrial electronic products susceptible to aftermarket batteries, such as medical, handheld radio, and data collection devices.
Register here



product picks online |
32-V/500-mA Buck Regulator Integrates Dual-Power Monitor



4U Server Features Up To Four 64-Bit CPU Cores



500-W Open-Frame Supplies Sport Low Profile



Eclipse-Based Development Tool Accelerates Portable Designs



BLDC Motors Integrate 1-Q Speed Controller



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Our editors have been busy! Come read their commentaries and check out exclusive videos from ESC, CTIA, Mobile World Congress, APEC, and Embedded World and see the technology of tomorrow from major players in the electronics industry.



upcoming industry events |
International Symposium on Circuits and Systems
Seattle, Wash.
May 18-21




WiMAX World EMEA
Munich, Germany
May 19-21




NanoPower Forum
Costa Mesa, Calif.
June 2-4




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