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Why is my signal so distorted when I’m doing everything right (I think)?
Steve Taranovich  
9/3/2015   Post a comment
High speed converters have made many performance gains over the years, particularly in linearity, and therefore distortion. But to realize the performance, you need clean signal sources. Every once in a while I get an inquiry about having a clean setup, but still not meeting the distortion specifications
3 IoT-Based Myths about Analog Electronics
Steve Taranovich  
9/2/2015   Post a comment
The hype surrounding the Internet of Things (IoT) has been nothing short of monumental. The reality is that, by some estimates, only 4 percent of current IoT proposals will actually be of use once they come to fruition. Despite this disparity, the electronics industry is excited about those few products that will succeed and in turn be profitable
Planet Analog and EDN Electronics exclusive: Cree Announces Wolfspeed
Steve Taranovich  
9/2/2015   Post a comment
I spoke to John Palmour, Cree co-founder and CTO of its Power and RF business yesterday about the decision to put CREE’s Power and RF businesses under a new name. CREE announced in May that it would separate the businesses into a standalone company in anticipation of an upcoming IPO in 2016
Feedback Circuits and Two-Port Blocks, Part 2: Feedback Circuit Misconceptions
Dennis Feucht  
9/1/2015   Post a comment
Typical circuits textbooks tell us that there are four basic feedback topologies. The impression is given (if not stated) that a given feedback circuit will conform to one of these four topologies. This is misleading. One of the tasks of feedback analysis, it would seem, is to identify to which of the four basic topologies a given feedback circuit conforms. This article attempts to clarify and correct this misconception.
Developing Prototype Circuits from Home: Part 2, Schematic Capture
Scott Deuty  
9/1/2015   Post a comment
As you progress into developing a circuit from home, schematic capture is an important part of the process. However it requires a little forethought especially if you are planning to transfer the schematic to a board layout software.
How to Increase Your Engineering Value in Just 20 Minutes a Day
Scott Deuty  
8/28/2015   5 comments
My goal is to increase your value in only twenty minutes a day.
Orion in the belly of the “Beast”
Steve Taranovich  
8/25/2015   5 comments
Just as in the biblical account of the prophet Jonah in the belly of the “Great Fish”, I witnessed today in the Yuma, AZ desert, Orion in the belly of a C-17 military aircraft, poised for a test of its parachutes at 35,000 feet
Analog Is More Important Than Digital – Scientific Proof
Paul Pickering  
8/24/2015   6 comments
My first job out of college was testing and debugging control loading systems on flight simulators for 747 and the "new" 767 airliners.
NASA’s new deputy administrator: Dava Newman from MIT
Steve Taranovich  
8/24/2015   1 comment
I think it is a real plus to have an experienced MIT professor as the agency’s second-in-charge. Dava Newman seems like a good technological innovator and should bring fresh new energy and ideas to NASA. As the former Apollo Program Professor of Aeronautics at MIT in Cambridge, she has expertise in multidisciplinary research that includes aerospace biomedical engineering.
SIGNAL CHAIN BASICS (Part 104): Understanding noise in ADCs
Signal Chain Basics  
8/24/2015   1 comment
As a data converter supplier, we are sometimes asked, which is our lowest noise analog-to-digital converter (ADC)?
Figure Of Merit Based Selection Criteria Is Not Always the Best Choice
Brandt Braswell  
8/24/2015   Post a comment
The fact that you’re reading this has sparked interest and I am sure you are wondering what this means or you have picked a position to either defend your beliefs or want a different opinion. So, let me say that this topic and what I say applies to choices of circuit blocks and or architectures for many different applications from analog to digital.
Space Center Houston slideshow: STEM on steroids
Steve Taranovich  
8/23/2015   Post a comment
I had the pleasure of visiting the Space Center after a visit to NASA Johnson Space Center for a behind-the-scenes view of Orion and the talented team at NASA behind the Deep Space endeavor. NASA is right next door to the Space Center Houston and fully supports their educational mission with loaner exhibits and technical support.
The top 8 best Blogs of Planet Analog: Oldies with Spunk
Steve Taranovich  
8/18/2015   8 comments
What was your favorite Planet Analog blog of all time?
Feedback Circuits and Two-Port Blocks, Part 1: From Circuits to Blocks with Ports
Dennis Feucht  
8/18/2015   Post a comment
What is hard about analyzing feedback circuits is the extraction from the circuit diagram of the simple block diagram found in active circuits and control textbooks.
Analog Devices Design Tools: ADIsimRF Part 2
Jonathan Harris  
8/18/2015   Post a comment
Before looking into the signal chain portion of the tool we began by looking at the calculator tool available in ADIsimRF.
Developing Prototype Circuits from Home: Part 1, Introduction
Scott Deuty  
8/16/2015   7 comments
The internet has made circuit development from home easier than ever before. This benefits engineers in a huge way by offering a venue for them to turn their ideas into physical working reality. Regardless of whether you are independent or employed by a company, there are many advantages to developing a prototype on your own.
Harvard's $400M Engineering Gift: Good News, Bad News, or Both?
Analog Angle  
8/14/2015   3 comments
Is this huge gift too much of a good thing, and concentrated in too small a space?
Flying Drones in all the wrong places
Steve Taranovich  
8/14/2015   11 comments
Drones are good for industry and the economy. It’s people who can use them for the wrong reasons. We need to address the operator, not the technology!
When off-the-shelf won’t do: Look what I found inside my filter! Part 3
Kendall Castor-Perry  
8/13/2015   Post a comment
Someone in the team speculated on whether we could build some sort of audio response equalizer into the system.
High speed Police pursuits: Technology needs to step in to save lives
Steve Taranovich  
8/11/2015   28 comments
Police departments around the country have advanced in many technologies over the last 15 years, but pursuit-termination devices have not kept up with those advances.
The Meetings Will Continue Until Morale Improves
Paul Pickering  
8/10/2015   2 comments
Ask any engineer about the biggest timewasters at work, and odds are meetings will be near the top of his or her list.
STEM on steroids shows hands-on engineering alive and well
Analog Angle  
8/9/2015   1 comment
Engineering is much more than just "coding", as the projects in the Texas Instruments college-level innovation challenge very clearly demonstrate
Ron Quan’s Electronics from the Ground Up: Learn by Hacking, Designing, and Inventing
Tim McCune  
8/5/2015   6 comments
Last summer, when a much-hoped-for mining industry internship for my son fell through, I looked around for something in addition to a job to occupy his time. With the help of friends, I cobbled together a basic electronics internship centering on some classic books from the 1970s and a couple of projects from friends at diyAudio
Voltage References Can Bite You, Too
Steve Taranovich  
8/5/2015   5 comments
There are three common unkindnesses which can cause your problem. Insufficient headroom, incorrect loading, and reversed output current. The first two are usually mentioned on the data sheet and should be easy to avoid, but the third is rarely mentioned and causes problems which may be hard to diagnose.
Hands Free: A Lifestyle Enabled by Engineers
Scott Deuty  
8/4/2015   5 comments
I thought it would make for an interesting subject to look back at the hands free revolution.
When off-the-shelf won’t do: the step-by-step birth of a custom digital filter, Part 2
Kendall Castor-Perry  
8/4/2015   Post a comment
Now, there’s much more to making a practical filter than just getting a transfer function that calculates out nicely.
Structural Versus Behavioral Device Models
Dennis Feucht  
8/4/2015   Post a comment
Newly-discovered physical principles are often the driving cause for the invention of new kinds of devices such as the transistor. It is one of the highlights in the history of electronics, and illustrates how device models develop in engineering and why they are often a key to technological advancement.
Good Day, Sunshine – The Amazing Solar Impulse 2
Paul Pickering  
7/30/2015   1 comment
Every now and then something new comes along that causes you to want to dig down and find out a little more information. Tearing my attention away from Caitlin Jenner for a moment, I thought I'd take a closer look at the remarkable Solar Impulse 2 – an airplane powered solely by solar energy.
When off-the-shelf won’t do: the step-by-step birth of a custom digital filter, Part 1
Kendall Castor-Perry  
7/30/2015   1 comment
Some time back, I had to dig out some ancient filter design tools. I needed a special-purpose digital decimation filter for a “quite high quality” audio communication system.
Planet Analog Spotlight on Steve Sandler, CEO – Picotest
Steve Taranovich  
7/28/2015   Post a comment
Sandler has over 30 years of experience in the design and analysis of power conversion equipment for military and space applications.
Slideshow: Analog Aficionados unite at ESC Santa Clara
Steve Taranovich  
7/28/2015   3 comments
When analog engineers get together, the discussion always turns technical with a touch of fun. Laptops open up, schematics are surveyed and discussed, good hearty laughter abounds, and fond reminiscing of analog icons no longer with us brings out old stories and some good memories.
To Extend Battery Life, Look at the Big Picture
Steve Taranovich  
7/28/2015   Post a comment
It might seem counterintuitive that an active device solution consumes less power than a passive device. Every design engineer knows that a passive crystal resonator (XTAL) doesn’t draw power, so why use an oscillator in place of an XTAL in a power sensitive application? The answer becomes clear when total system power is considered.
Is Google Eddystone going to replace Apple iBeacon or just invade your privacy?
Steve Taranovich  
7/27/2015   4 comments
Google is enhancing the IoT with a technology for companies to communicate with customers. The concept: You are in a shopping mall or on a local street and there are hordes of small Bluetooth radios broadcasting marketing messages to all the Android phones in the area (8 of 10 smartphones are Android).
The Toyota Prius: An Electrical Engineering Marvel
Scott Deuty  
7/26/2015   Post a comment
The success of the Toyota Prius is a tribute to the career of Electrical Engineers. I was recently made aware of the achievements of the Prius through a wiki I wrote as well as from the feedback on my recent Planet Analog blog on regenerative braking. I learned some very interesting details about this car and how it puts a feather in the cap of Planet Analog readers and contributors. In this blog I share my findings with you.
Visualizing the Values of Energy Storage
Shaw Lynds  
7/21/2015   1 comment
In the highly technical world of energy storage, it can difficult to develop an intuitive sense of how the engineering metrics translate to final user value.
Analog Design and the Age of Digital Corrections
Brandt Braswell  
7/20/2015   10 comments
As the technologies continues to shrink the various layout affects continue to worsen. What once was not such an issue for integrated circuits is now problematic. LDE or Layout Dependent Effects are becoming worse as the technology continues to shrink. I am sure many of you have heard about well proximity affects and shallow trench isolation effects, but as the technology continues to shrink we are seeing more issues from pattern density in metal, poly, active, etc. having effects on final circuits.
Analog Devices Design Tools: ADIsimRF Part 1
Jonathan Harris  
7/19/2015   4 comments
The topic of this blog came up while at the IMS show and one of my colleagues mentioned that I should discuss the ADIsimRF tool as a part of the series. I thought this was a marvelous idea. I’ll have to precursor this discussion with the fact that I am actually an RF guy from my previous employment at an RF company which was my first position when I graduated from college.
"Ancient RF": crude but effective
Analog Angle  
7/19/2015   3 comments
Those were the "good old days", or maybe not: some RF products of a few decades ago had much simpler designs and fairly basic requirements, but also fewer components and tools resources to use.
The Corporate State Machine…
Ken Coffman  
7/17/2015   1 comment
One of my quirks is analyzing business decisions as if they came from a state machine.
4-Wire Current-Loop Sensor Transmitters
Precision Hub  
7/17/2015   3 comments
The 4-wire sensor transmitter is probably the least well-known of the current-loop sensor transmitter circuit types. These transmitters fit market needs for applications that require additional transmitter isolation options that aren’t possible with 2- and 3-wire transmitters.
Women In Engineering & "The Next MacGyver"
Paul Pickering  
7/15/2015   Post a comment
Increasing participation by women in the STEM fields has long been a goal of industry, government and academia, but progress has been slow.
Go active or stay passive?
Analog Angle  
7/13/2015   7 comments
Passive circuit functions are seeing strong competition from active devices with comparable or better performance plus desirable gain, but passives can’t be ignored either as PIM – passive intermodulation – becomes a concern in high-performance, high-frequency RF design.
Visit to NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston, a slideshow: Orion
Steve Taranovich  
7/10/2015   2 comments
On July 7, Chuck Murray, Senior Technical Editor for Design News and myself, Steve Taranovich, Editor-in-chief, Planet Analog visited the behind-the-scenes operations of the Orion program at NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston. Orion, a new spacecraft that will carry man into a new era of space exploration.
SIGNAL CHAIN BASICS (Part 103): Integer Boundary Spurs
Signal Chain Basics  
7/9/2015   Post a comment
The phase-locked loop (PLL) in Figure 1 works by starting with a stable input frequency (fOSC). It is divided down by R to get the phase detector frequency (fPD), then multiplied by N to get the voltage-controller oscillator (VCO) frequency (fVCO). Finally, it is divided down by D to get the output frequency (fOUT). The output divider, D, is typically an integer, but it is possible for the N divider to be fractional. Devices can exist with multipliers on the input path, effectively making R fractional.
What’s All This Regenerative Braking Stuff?
Scott Deuty  
7/9/2015   2 comments
The late Bob Pease came up in a recent blog response so I decided it was time to pay a tribute to him.
The Ingenious Gentleman and the Mysterious Paddle
Steve Taranovich  
7/9/2015   3 comments
In a village of La Mancha, the name of which I have no desire to recall, there lived not long since one of those gentlemen that keep a lance in the lance-rack, an old buckler, a lean hack, and a greyhound for coursing.
BNO055: A Sensor for the Makers Community
Divya Thukkaram  
7/9/2015   Post a comment
Anybody can create anything in the Maker Community, a concept that would be entirely impossible a decade ago. The world has changed dramatically in the past 10 years since the foundation of Arduino, an open source hardware and software company, in 2005.
The Floating Differential Source, Part 2: Specifications and Capabilities
Dennis Feucht  
7/6/2015   Post a comment
The Floating Differential Source (FDS), introduced and explained in the previous article segment, was designed for use in manufacturing test of analog circuits
The Floating Differential Source, Part 1
Dennis Feucht  
7/5/2015   Post a comment
A few years ago, I was working on the design of a data acquisition system (DAS) that would eventually need to be tested when manufactured. It had both high-side current sensing and floating diff-amp input channels. I could either recommend to the client that some expensive equipment be bought and configured for such testing or else design and build some prototypes of a Floating Differential Source (FDS) which would cost much less. I did the latter.
Differential-Amplifier Common-Mode Rejection Measurements, Part 2: Differential Amplifier CM Principles
Dennis Feucht  
7/5/2015   Post a comment
The Innovatia Floating Differential Source (FDS) was designed to measure diff-amp differential and CM gains for voltage or current-input diff-amps.
Page 1 / 2   >   >>




latest blogs
High speed converters have made many performance gains over the years, particularly in linearity, and therefore distortion. But to realize the performance, you need clean signal sources. Every once in a while I get an inquiry about having a clean setup, but still not meeting the distortion specifications
The hype surrounding the Internet of Things (IoT) has been nothing short of monumental. The reality is that, by some estimates, only 4 percent of current IoT proposals will actually be of use once they come to fruition. Despite this disparity, the electronics industry is excited about those few products that will succeed and in turn be profitable
I spoke to John Palmour, Cree co-founder and CTO of its Power and RF business yesterday about the decision to put CREE’s Power and RF businesses under a new name. CREE announced in May that it would separate the businesses into a standalone company in anticipation of an upcoming IPO in 2016
Typical circuits textbooks tell us that there are four basic feedback topologies. The impression is given (if not stated) that a given feedback circuit will conform to one of these four topologies. This is misleading. One of the tasks of feedback analysis, it would seem, is to identify to which of the four basic topologies a given feedback circuit conforms. This article attempts to clarify and correct this misconception.
As you progress into developing a circuit from home, schematic capture is an important part of the process. However it requires a little forethought especially if you are planning to transfer the schematic to a board layout software.
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