May 2019

From this Issue...

0-5V analogue output module

This column covers a project involving thirteen analogue input modules and seven analogue output modules for a 5V microcontroller’s ADC/DAC channels.

IP softcore for a bubbling convolutional accelerator in a neural network

The development of neural network algorithms has gathered significant pace these days, as they become widely implemented in a variety of real-time image- and pattern-recognition applications.

The tunnel diode – a forgotten switching-speed champion

Tunnel diodes were extensively used in 70s amplifiers, high-speed pulse circuits and oscillators. In later years, the tunnel diode could no longer compete with other devices, such as bipolar junction transistors that offered better speed and low power.

Transparent conductive films and materials transition from old to new

The market landscape for transparent conductive films (TCF) and materials (TCM) has not shifted dramatically for some years. It is heavily reliant upon select markets such as flat consumer small-to-medium-sized touchscreens, with lack of new applications.

Thermal simulation of IT systems

To design and simulate any piece of electronic equipment, first you must understand the environment in which it will operate. For IT equipment, particularly servers, this is inside a datacentre, which people assume are carefully-controlled, homogenous environments.

Optimising the Android platform for power efficiency

Optimising an operating system consist of re-writing or modifying the main source code, whilst taking into consideration each system’s unique set of parameters. With Android, using the source code is not entirely possible in most cases, since many companies that provide Android devices keep their systems closed. Still, most of these systems are built using the main source code.

Selecting appropriate current-sense resistor for motor control with reinforced isolation

Current-sense resistors are readily found in motor control system design to benefit from new digital isolation technologies. These technologies offer higher reliability, based on the component-level standard IEC 60747-17, which specifies the performance, test and certification requirements for capacitive and magnetically-coupled isolators.

Using the boost circuit in consumer electronics applications

In the past, due to technical constraints, the only way to change the voltage level was by using multiple resistors to divide it. However, this method is inefficient for two main reasons: one, it only reduces the voltage but does not increase it; and two, much of the energy dissipates in resistance during the change.

Q&A with Chris Bartram, Crystal Display Systems (CDS) Managing Director, who discusses transparent display technology

Q: Tell us more about transparent displays A: Interestingly, despite their name, transparent displays don’t go clear when they are powered off;they are dark – somewhat transparent. For them to become transparent, they need a voltage across the display, …

High time for IR sensor 2.0

The IR sensor is a crucial component in many products, ranging from medical equipment to mobile phones. However, the technology is 50 years old and in serious need of an upgrade. The next-generation IR sensor 2.0 for IoT will be much thinner than the old sensors, and cheaper to make.

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