Content posted in May 2013
Technology Coming & Going & Coming…
Derek Koonce 5/31/2013 23 comments
Designers and engineers are constantly creating new things that they hope will turn into new products. Sometimes it works out just right, sometimes not. And sometimes it almost works out right except for the issue of timing.
Time Is On My Side... Yes, It Is!
Ian Beavers 5/30/2013 10 comments
Although the distribution of clock signals would normally be considered a digital design issue, today's faster clock speeds and the need to accurately synchronize individual devices means the analog engineer will be involved in solving problems with these designs.
Interleaved ADCs: The Basics
Jonathan Harris 5/29/2013 8 comments
To achieve higher sample rates in an analog-to-digital conversion system, you can double the number of ADCs and let each one sample the input signal half of the time.
What's Your Breadboard Look Like?
Analog Angle 5/27/2013 15 comments
We've come a long way from the original implementation of the circuit breadboard; today's component, density, and speed reality precludes using anything so crude, but oh-so-accessible.
The Analog Brain
Brian Bailey 5/24/2013 28 comments
The human brain is a very effective and efficacious computer. The way it attains this efficacy differs from the digital computer.
PIC (& Software) 1, Op-Amps 0
Doug Grant 5/24/2013 25 comments
General purpose voltage references, quad op-amps, and quad comparators are almost as cheap as dirt. Is it possible that a microcontroller plus software could compete economically?
Did You Say 'Programmable Analog'?
Analog Angle 5/23/2013 19 comments
As technology evolves, the definition of "programmable" analog/mixed-signal ICs has evolved as well; most users find the change to be a very good thing, despite any limitations it may impose.
Operations per Joule
Brian Bailey 5/20/2013 45 comments
Analog computers use far less power than digital ones. They are also less accurate and less capable of producing repeatable results. Still, since they're often good enough, perhaps more attention should be paid to the analog versions.
When Are You Done With Verification?
Brian Bailey 5/17/2013 6 comments
What metrics should be established to verify analog performance in general and integrated analog performance in particular? How much testing is not enough and how much is too much?
When the Going Gets Tough...
Brian Bailey 5/16/2013 5 comments
Pushing devices to smaller geometry produces some good consequences. But those come with other aspects that are less desirable. For integrated analog, there are significant challenges.
Crack Open One of These Books, Part 2
Brad Albing 5/16/2013 13 comments
Following up on Bill Schweber's blog on technical books and Part 1 of this blog, we take a closer look at some important books that are an excellent source of information.
Reid Wender 5/10/2013 10 comments
With the right perks, an engineer's job can be fun. If the perks involve food, some engineers would probably work for free.
The Cutting Edge May Be Moving
Brian Bailey 5/9/2013 9 comments
The challenges of product design are pushing leading-edge high technology down into lower-cost commodity products. As this process continues, integrated analog will play an important role in helping to take some of the cost out and improve reliability.
Smallest, Fastest, Lowest Power…
Brian Bailey 5/9/2013 7 comments
Unless someone finds a way to make the perfect op-amp, PLL, or power supply, we will continue to be subjected to the onslaught of marketing telling us that their product is better than anyone else's.
What Are the Limits to Integration?
Dennis Feucht 5/8/2013 7 comments
Are there any more general fundamental limits to electronics integration? How much smaller can processes get, and what are the consequences? Will this be the limiting factor for integrated analog?
This article explains how the latest-generation SiC FETs are ideally suited to new inverter designs with lower losses than IGBTs and proven robustness against short circuits, even at high temperatures and under repetitive stress
There’s a further cool thing you can do with a spreadsheet that most SPICEs can’t. That’s to use the spreadsheet ‘solver’ functionality to adjust component values in the search for a better-fitting circuit – or even to find a set of component values for a circuit you can’t otherwise design.
Infineon MOSFETs have been embedded into PC boards by Schweizer Electronic AG
You now need to adjust component values to achieve some system goal, such as predefined frequency response or time behaviour, and there’s no closed method for working out those values.