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Dennis Feucht
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Units, Pseudo-Units, Scaling Factors, and Units Conversion
Dennis Feucht  
2/16/2018   Post a comment
The additional connection between numbers and the physical world is achieved through the use of units
High-Efficiency Analog Amplifiers, Part 3: Optimal Parallel-Segmented Voltages
Dennis Feucht  
2/5/2018   Post a comment
Optimal parallel-segment amplifier voltages are derived so that for either resistive or constant-current loads, the power dissipation in the parallel transistors is the same.
High-Efficiency Analog Amplifiers, Part 2: Series and Parallel Segmented Amplifiers
Dennis Feucht  
1/6/2018   3 comments
Segmented amplifiers are analog amplifiers that switch on different transistors over the input-waveform voltage range, thereby limiting the voltages across them and hence their power dissipation.
High-Efficiency Analog Amplifiers, Part 1: The Efficiency-Linearity Tradeoff
Dennis Feucht  
1/2/2018   Post a comment
Switching amplifiers, like switching power supplies, are more efficient than linear or analog amplifiers. However, the analog amplifier is not obsolete just yet; new circuit ideas improve its efficiency to be comparable to switching amplifiers. This article presents some of those ideas
Case Study: Medical Laser System; Part 4: Laser System Design
Dennis Feucht  
12/13/2017   Post a comment
In this fourth part, the design of the whole laser loop is completed, beginning with the dynamics
Case Study: Medical Laser System; Part 3: Laser Loop Dynamic Design
Dennis Feucht  
12/2/2017   Post a comment
In this third part, the goal is to design the dynamic compensation of a NdYAG laser power control loop to achieve stability within the static error (accuracy) requirements.
Engineering Home-Schooling
Dennis Feucht  
11/27/2017   2 comments
Is the ordinary college education the best route to become an engineer?
Case Study: Medical Laser System; Part 2: Photodiode Amplifier
Dennis Feucht  
11/13/2017   2 comments
The redesign goal was to make the original PDA design less noisy, simpler, less costly, and extended at the low end of the linear dynamic range to zero volts.
Case Study: Medical Laser System; Part 1: Stabilizing a Laser Feedback Control Loop
Dennis Feucht  
11/6/2017   2 comments
A medical laser company was having some technical problems with their NdYAG (neodymium yttrium aluminum garnet) laser development.
Alternative Uses of Packaging in Electronics
Dennis Feucht  
10/3/2017   Post a comment
In an era of collapsing economies, waning affluence, and too much garbage amid scarcity, a characteristic that is part of the engineering character - resourcefulness - is due to come back in vogue, as we are challenged to optimize the use of limited resources.
The Shape of Electronics Expertise
Dennis Feucht  
9/11/2017   2 comments
As we progress in our acquisition of electronics skills, we occasionally reflect on the “shape” that our knowledge and skills are taking. This article is an overview of basic decisions that “sculpt” our know-how and some of the consequences of the shape of it.
Sams Photofacts: A Needed Service Today
Dennis Feucht  
9/1/2017   2 comments
From a half century ago comes a “book” - or, more like a manual - one of a large set that became an electronics institution for decades: the Sams Photofacts
The Miller Effect, Part 4: The Inverse Miller-Effect Paradox
Dennis Feucht  
8/14/2017   Post a comment
There is a paradoxical “inverse Miller effect” that occurs in transistor amplifiers.
The Miller Effect, Part 2: The Generalized Single-Stage Amplifier
Dennis Feucht  
7/10/2017   4 comments
In the undergraduate active-circuits course in electronics engineering, the analysis of circuits is simplified, as it must be for introductory presentation.
Potentiometer Loading
Dennis Feucht  
6/5/2017   7 comments
Lead-Lag Pole-Zero Frequency Compensators, Part 2: Dual Passive and Active Compensators
Dennis Feucht  
5/6/2017   Post a comment
Part 2 continues with pole-zero compensators of feedback loops and presents some methods not usually found in textbooks
Complementary BJT Configuration
Dennis Feucht  
4/1/2017   4 comments
Popular Electronics Magazines and Books - Where Are They?
Dennis Feucht  
12/10/2016   13 comments
In the 20th century there have been three main American publishers of popular electronics books and magazines. All were founded by individuals who published material that bridged the hobbyist-technician-engineer gap
Electronics Lingo & Slang
Dennis Feucht  
11/15/2016   9 comments
Seemingly Simple Circuits: The TL431 Voltage Regulator, Part 6
Dennis Feucht  
11/1/2016   1 comment
Thin out your breathing mixture as we take the final plunge into TL431 dynamics and consider the output impedance. More strange creatures are sighted at this depth, yet all ends in a good dive
Seemingly Simple Circuits: The TL431 Voltage Regulator, Part 5
Dennis Feucht  
10/17/2016   7 comments
In this part, we go to greater depths to look at TL431 dynamics. Adjust your air regulator for the deeper dive. What is seen in the data sheet plots of gain and output resistance for some manufacturers is at first hard to believe.
Seemingly Simple Circuits: The TL431 Voltage Regulator, Part 4
Dennis Feucht  
10/3/2016   5 comments
We return for a second wind and to the surface for air as we catch our breath in Part 4 by considering two categories of application circuits for the TL431
How Technology Is Lost: Stories from Ancient and Recent History
Dennis Feucht  
9/13/2016   19 comments
In our time of global interaction, could technology be lost by war or other social factors? Loss need not be caused by a social event but merely by environmental factors. A trend in information technology is toward increasing fragility.
Seemingly Simple Circuits: The TL431 Voltage Regulator, Part 3
Dennis Feucht  
9/2/2016   24 comments
Now we plunge deeper in, to look at closed-loop output resistance, derive some formulas, then calculate transconductance and output resistance from manufacturer part data.
An Illustrated Guide to Transistor Amplifiers
Dennis Feucht  
8/23/2016   10 comments
The Author Explains Why Another Analog Circuits Book
Seemingly Simple Circuits: The TL431 Voltage Regulator, Part 2
Dennis Feucht  
8/12/2016   Post a comment
We submerge somewhat deeper into analysis of the seemingly simple TL431 voltage reference with transconductance amplifier to find that some useful design parameters are missing from the manufacturer specifications.
Seemingly Simple Circuits: The TL431 Voltage Regulator, Part 1
Dennis Feucht  
8/1/2016   4 comments
This six-part series not only covers the TL431 as such but also demonstrates multiple depths of analog understanding. The parts of the series proceed from snorkeling, to SCUBA diving, to pressure suits and even bathyscaphs.
The Calculator: An Important Engineering Tool
Dennis Feucht  
7/19/2016   11 comments
With the emergence of hand-sized computers, calculators have lost some of their former prominence, yet they continue to be a convenient and important engineering tool.
Common-Base Bypassing and How It Affects CB Frequency Response
Dennis Feucht  
7/8/2016   3 comments
The common-base (CB) BJT configuration is the second stage of cascode amplifiers. It is useful as a voltage translator to the high side of an amplifier with a large voltage range. This article addresses the question of how the RB, CB combination at the base node affects the frequency response.
Book Review: Linear Circuit Transfer Functions
Dennis Feucht  
6/21/2016   Post a comment
Circuits can often be compartmentalized into stages with only one or two reactances in each stage. These circuits can be formidable to analyze for engineers unaccustomed to using much math, yet Basso’s book presents higher-level circuit theorems or methods that reduce their apparent complexity.
Simple μ C-Based A/D Converters, Part 2: Σ -Δ
Dennis Feucht  
6/14/2016   Post a comment
Microcontrollers (μCs) often contain a comparator that can implement a precise analog-to-digital (A/D) converter (ADC) with the addition of only an external resistor and capacitor. It is a charge-balancing or Σ- Δ (or Δ -Σ) ADC.
Simple μC-Based A/D Converters, Part 1
Dennis Feucht  
6/3/2016   1 comment
One useful dynamic application of μCs is as analog-to-digital converters (ADCs). ADCs over the years have gone from complete DVMs as instruments to embedded subsystems, to a few components. This two-part article presents some minimalist techniques for implementing μC-based ADCs.
The Bootstrapped Astable Multivibrator
Dennis Feucht  
5/17/2016   12 comments
Some time ago, I reverse-engineered a low-cost inverter made by Vector Mfg. (now Black & Decker). It uses a classic 2-BJT astable multivibrator (AMV) but with a circuit design twist, as shown below. What is the purpose of R6?
Optimal Real-Time Microcomputer Architecture
Dennis Feucht  
5/3/2016   Post a comment
Real-time analog-oriented systems often have embedded microcontrollers (Cs), if not DSPs or some synergism of the two.
Diff-Amp Uses a Resistor Network
Dennis Feucht  
4/14/2016   3 comments
Low-cost integrated resistor networks can be used to implement a low-parts-count two-op-amp differential amplifier with low common-mode gain. Integrated onto a common substrate and processed together, resistors of integrated networks match well and are an alternative solution to discrete resistors, especially for amplifiers with a wide common-mode input voltage range.
The Benson High-School Electronics Class Rose Festival Prank
Dennis Feucht  
4/6/2016   Post a comment
Every year, a big festival is held in Portland, Oregon - the Silicon Forest - that is not quite as famous as the Pasadena Rose Parade, though its parade was carried on network television in the 1960s, when I was in high-school. In the mid-‘60s, Benson Polytechnic High School was rated nationally as number two behind the Bronx School of Science in New York
Seemingly Simple Circuits, User-Proof External Supplies: Circuit 3: The Two-BJT Current-Limited Supply
Dennis Feucht  
3/12/2016   4 comments
The improved one-BJT current-limiting supply is not much different than the primitive circuit, though its one additional resistor does change the circuit behavior
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