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What is the Metaverse and why is it important right now?

ELE Times - Thu, 04/04/2024 - 10:35

Courtesy: Arrow Electronics

The term “metaverse” was coined 30 years ago. Until recently, it has been part science fiction and part speculation. American science fiction writer Neal Town Stephenson coined the term “metaverse” in his 1992 novel, “Snow Crash.”

At the time, Stephenson was already talking about some of the technologies that could make the metaverse a reality today: augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). What he couldn’t imagine was the explosion of big data, ultra-fast networks, and artificial intelligence (AI) that we are experiencing, where everything is being connected, stored, and analyzed.

Developing the metaverse and mixed realities

Thirty years after the first mention of the metaverse, the concept of a virtual world available to everyone could become a reality by combining several technologies, such as AI, blockchain, VR, and AR.

Many companies are now trying to develop metaverse technology or different versions of mixed reality environments. Microsoft, Bentley, Imagine 4D, Lockheed Martin, Ricardo, Willow, and over a hundred more are now members of the Digital Twin Consortium, an industry group working on developing AR and XR technologies for industrial applications.

Today, billions of sensors are installed in almost everything: appliances, cars, trains, factories, machines, traffic lights, etc. The data collected from those sensors can help to provide preventive and predictive maintenance for many assets, assist in simulations for better designs and deployment, and help technicians to identify potential problems. Simulations such as a digital twin make it possible to visualize the data in a more direct and comprehensive way, making it easier to arrive at better decisions and results.

Microsoft’s HoloLens 2 is probably the best example of an augmented reality device for professional applications. These ergonomic, untethered self-contained holographic smart glasses are now used in manufacturing, healthcare, engineering, and education. Apple and Google are also working on the next generation of smart glasses, which will feature an augmented reality and could be used both as an extension of the smartphone and a standalone product for many applications.

In October 2021, Facebook decided to change its corporate name to “Meta.” A few days later, in a conversation with entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk, Mark Zuckerberg talked about it, saying, “The metaverse to me today feels like the next frontier in social connection in much the same way that social networking did when I was getting started back in 2004. That’s a big reason why we wanted to change the brand of the company.”

What is the purpose of the metaverse?

The metaverse could be considered the realization of Web 3.0, wherein technologies such as blockchain and NFTs finally create a truly decentralized digital world.

Depending on who you ask, the metaverse could be just a digital representation (twin) of physical assets that can be used for monitoring and simulating different scenarios. Other versions now focus on virtual reality applications for various industries such as retail, real estate, product testing, or manufacturing.

“From attending virtual classrooms to buying digital land and constructing virtual homes, these activities are currently conducted in separate environments. Eventually, they will take place in a single environment the metaverse,” says Gartner, defining it as “a collective virtual shared space, created by the convergence of virtually enhanced physical and digital reality.” It will be powered by “a virtual economy enabled by digital currencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).”

Is Web 3.0 the internet enabling the metaverse?

Some critics believe that the Metaverse and Web 3.0 are little more than a rebranding for crypto and convincing people that blockchains are the natural next phase of computing. Social media platforms such as MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, created Web 2.0. Before, the World Wide Web was just a place for people to browse static pages and communicate by email. Web 2.0 opened the way for real-time interaction and participation.

Indeed, the next generation of the World Wide Web, Web 3.0, will mark a leap in the internet experience to a new level, where the physical world and the virtual world will interact as mirrors of the same reality. The term has been around for several years but only started to get attention in the past year. Packy McCormick, an investor who helped popularize Web 3.0, has defined it as “the internet owned by the builders and users, orchestrated with tokens.”

Matt Levine, a Bloomberg columnist, put it this way: “A basic premise of Web3 is that every product is simultaneously an investment opportunity.”

Web 3.0 won’t arrive at once. It will require many different services and stakeholders to cooperate and establish new standards. Meanwhile, many internet companies are experimenting with the building blocks of the new frontier, such as blockchain, AI, and extended reality (XR).

One of the first exciting examples of the possibilities of these technologies is the Digital Twin.

Digital twins in the metaverse

Digital twins represent physical assets that utilize IoT data, enabling use cases such as predictive maintenance when combined with AI.

A digital twin could become part of a larger metaverse and be used for specific applications. Industrial digital twins have been around for many years, especially in the automotive, rail, and aerospace industries. Running simulations on expensive rockets and airplanes is very costly and dangerous. That’s why the aerospace industry has been building digital copies of those for decades.

The advances in miniaturization, sensors, and connectivity allow for installing thousands of sensors in each asset, such as a vehicle, a factory, or a solar farm. Those sensors, continuously transmitting data to a cloud system, enable real-time visualization of the conditions of every asset, its performance, and the potential problems associated with components and the environment.

Furthermore, using advanced analytics and machine learning makes it possible to use the data to simulate different scenarios without changing the physical asset.

“As edge computing and AI give visibility into entire environments, and as more and more of these assets and products are being connected, companies are connecting entire environments — be those smart factories, be those smart cities, be those energy generation and distribution networks,” said Sam George, corporate vice president of Azure IoT at Microsoft. “You need a system that can create, monitor, and maintain digital replicas of that entire environment. That’s what we developed Azure digital twins to enable.”

Spain has the second-largest high-speed rail network globally, with over 4,900km (3050 miles) of high-speed railway lines. And Renfe, the rail operator, promises on-time arrival on all its AVE (Alta Velocidad) trains across the country. Using thousands of sensors, edge computing, and digital twins, Siemens, which builds and maintains most trains, can predict potential breakdowns and determine the best time for maintenance or component replacement. Because of this razor-edge technology, delays caused by technical failures of more than 10 minutes occur on average only every 1.5 million kilometers. The trains are available for operation 99.94% of the time, the highest average worldwide.

According to a study from Juniper Research, the global market for digital twin technology has not been severely affected by the pandemic. The research predicted that manufacturing would be the single most significant sector for digital-twin deployment, accounting for 34% of total spending in 2021, followed by energy and utilities at 18%.

“Digital Twins are really the hot potato, I think, in the industry at the moment, and it’s fascinating. I believe Digital Twins will be one of the factors that will bring the entire industry together, because the built industry is known to be very fragmented due to different decision-makers along the life cycle of the static building.” says Elisa Rönkä, Business Development Manager, Europe at Siemens. “I really think Digital Twins are one of the pivotal aspects of changing the entire industry.”

Juniper Research co-author Nick Maynard said, “Digital twins are only as valuable as the quality of data that enters the platform. As such, the most successful vendors in the market will be those that use partnerships to pair existing platform ecosystems with innovative digital-twin solutions”.

Could existing cloud data centers handle the metaverse?

Realizing the metaverse, digital twins, and XR are already fueling heavy investment in cloud data centers.

The massive amount of data that the metaverse will require will put a lot of pressure on the networks that internet service providers run and the ability of data centers to process and transmit the information.

Last year, just after Facebook (Meta) announced a plan to raise its capex by about 66% in 2022, in large part to invest in the metaverse, the shares of both NVIDIA and AMD surged 30% and 20%, respectively, in four weeks.

NVIDIA could be one of the biggest beneficiaries of the surge of data center investment. NVIDIA has just announced its new ARM-based Grace CPU aimed at high-performance servers. This new superchip design can hold up to 144 ARM v9 CPU cores and move 900-GB/s coherent interfaces, 7× faster than PCIe Gen 5.

Apart from designing the new processors for data centers, NVIDIA is also turning increasingly to software to push its technology into broader use. The NVIDIA Omniverse™ platform facilitates real time creation and collaboration with 3D assets. These 3D assets could include the creation of the digital worlds of the “metaverse,” digital replicas such as digital twins, and simulation of autonomous driving. The platform, which NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang calls the “operating system of AI,” could open a new software market for the company worth $300 billion.

All the cloud infrastructure needed for the metaverse won’t be there overnight. New data centers will require significant investments in computing, storage, communications, and sustainable power.

Is 5G ready for the metaverse?

Most cellular service providers have been deploying the fifth generation of cellular connectivity (5G) in the past three years.

5G promises fast connectivity, reliability, and ultra-fast latency. It will provide a new level of functionality and programmability, enable features such as Network Slicing, critical IoT, mmWave spectrum, and gigabit broadband speeds. The full functionality of 5G will take time to be available everywhere.

However, 5G won’t be enough for a full mobile metaverse. Even with the upcoming 5G Advanced, which could appear in 2024, the network won’t be able to offer the latency required for virtual worlds connecting without significant lag.

Many organizations are already doing advanced research on the next generation of cellular networks. 6G is expected to provide the structure necessary for things that right now seem like science fiction, such as totally immersive, 3D virtual reality on phone calls and meetings over wireless.

The “true” metaverse will require almost zero-latency, massive bandwidth and processing power. Today’s mobile devices, including the 5G enabled ones, can’t exchange and process the information fast enough. Furthermore, we’ll need new processors and materials to reduce power consumption or today’s batteries will last minutes instead of hours.

Metaverse technology and protecting users

As the metaverse technology leads to an almost-always–connected world, protecting users’ privacy and securing the applications will be an enormous challenge for developers, device manufacturers, and governments.

Organizations and governments are taking steps to regulate the platforms, give more control to the users, and stop corporations from taking advantage of data collection and algorithms to influence people’s decisions and beliefs.

The metaverse needs solid gatekeepers and regulation. Surveillance in the virtual worlds could escalate exponentially.

Over the years, Europe has been the spearhead of new regulations curbing the power of internet companies and protecting users. Legislations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in effect since 2018 and the upcoming Digital Services Act provide frameworks for service providers and greater user protection. Today, the GDPR has become the blueprint for many other legislations in different markets, including the U.S.

Some vendors are stepping in. Apple’s decision of giving control of the app’s data collection to the users, something that Google is mimicking this year, is already making a dent in the profits of social networks and online advertising firms.

“If the metaverse really is what comes next after mobile—and just before we all get brain implants and fuse with our technology completely—then whoever controls the metaverse will either be an even richer version of one of the world’s trillion-dollar tech companies, or a new giant that disrupts them.” wrote Christopher Mims, a technology columnist at The Wall Street Journal. “As for the rest of us, the lowly users of this metaverse, we’ll all be living by their rules.”

Investing in the future of the metaverse

All the big internet companies are investing in the potential future of the metaverse in one form or another. Microsoft’s recent announcement of the acquisition of Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion is a clear example of the current investments in gaming and virtual reality.

Investment firm Grayscale, for example, estimates that global revenue from virtual gaming alone could surpass $400 billion by 2025 from $180 billion today, an increase of 122%. “The metaverse is still taking shape, but Web 3.0 open-virtual–world crypto networks are offering a glimpse of what the future of the internet may hold,” says David Grider, head of research at Grayscale. “The market opportunity for bringing the metaverse to life may be worth over $1 trillion in annual revenue and may compete with Web 2.0 companies worth ~$15 trillion in market value today.”

NVIDIA is working with designers, game developers, engineers, and different industries to enable real use cases of the “omniverse”. Their Omniverse Avatar, for example, targets different markets, including automotive. NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang imagines 3-D virtual agents becoming commonplace in cars in the future, and many more opportunities in retail stores and warehouses.

“The work around Omniverse went into light speed in the last couple of years because we needed it. Instead of being able to come into our labs to work on our robots, or go to the streets and test our cars, we had to test in virtual worlds, in digital twins.” said Jensen Huang during a press event last month, “We found that we could iterate our software just as well in digital twins, if not better. We could have millions of digital twin cars, not just a fleet of 100.”

Every company is trying to shape the metaverse according to its strengths and strategies, each using the same word to articulate different visions. Big internet companies such as Meta, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and others are working on developing the metaverse. All those corporations are pouring billions of dollars into development and capital expenditure, and it is not surprising that they want to get a significant return on their investment.

However, without clear standards, infrastructure, and attractive services for consumers and businesses, the metaverse might not reach its full potential as a global community.

“We’ve gone from desktop to web to phones, from text to photos to video, but this isn’t the end of the line,” Mr. Zuckerberg said in unveiling his vision for Meta. “The next platform and medium will be even more immersive and embodied internet where you’re in the experience, not just looking at it.Over the next decade, these new platforms are going to start to unlock the kinds of experiences that I’ve wanted to build since before I even started Facebook.”

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The Challenges of Modern Design: Why Requirements Management Is Essential

ELE Times - Thu, 04/04/2024 - 10:04

Navigating the world of modern design is complex. It’s filled with new challenges and fast-paced changes in technology. You need a robust requirements management process to manage these challenges successfully to ensure your design intent communication stays clear and organized. Read on to explore the crucial connection between well-managed requirements and today’s design.

What Are Requirements?

Requirements are the must-have features and functions your product needs to be successful. They guide you step by step, ensuring that what you build will meet the expectations and needs of the people who will use it.

Think of requirements as answers to specific questions:

  • What does it need to do?This could be anything from making calls and sending messages on the phone to the speed and mileage of a car.
  • Why is this important?This helps understand the value of each feature, ensuring that it has a clear purpose and benefit.
  • How will I know it works as it should?This part helps in testing and verifying that each feature functions correctly.

Requirements come from different places and people, like customers, partners, sales, support, management, engineering—anyone with a stake in the project. Everyone brings their own needs and expectations, and it’s crucial to listen, understand, and include these in the planning and design process. Requirements are the building blocks that help ensure the final product does exactly what it’s supposed to do, satisfying users’ needs and expectations, and ultimately becoming a success.

Types of Requirements

You can discern many different types of requirements depending on a specific need they must fulfill, for example:

  • Functional requirementsare the fundamental aspects that a product or system must possess to meet its intended purpose. They define what the product must do, outlining the necessary functions and features to meet user needs and expectations. For a washing machine, these could be that it should wash various fabrics, rinse, and spin the clothes to remove excess water.
  • Performance requirementsdictate how well a product or system performs its functions. They encompass aspects such as efficiency, responsiveness, and speed, ensuring that the product operates optimally under defined conditions. Performance requirements for a washing machine might specify that it shouldn’t consume more than 400 kWh of electricity and 40 gallons of water per cycle.
  • Constraint requirementsare the restrictions within which a product must operate. These could relate to size, cost, or technical capabilities, setting boundaries that guide the design and development process. For the washing machine in question, they could involve weighing less than 150 pounds and being at most 27 inches wide, 39 inches tall, and 34 inches deep.
  • Environmental requirementsfocus on a product’s interaction with its environment, ensuring it operates effectively under various conditions and adheres to sustainability and ecological standards. Environmental specifications for our washing machine could dictate energy efficiency and water-saving qualities.
  • Interface requirementsare centered around user experience, making sure the product is user-friendly, accessible, and easy to use. They promote a positive interaction between the user and the product or system. In our case, it could mean that the washing machine’s control panel should be user-friendly and intuitive, having buttons and dials clearly labeled with easily understandable icons and text to indicate their function.
What Is Requirements Management?

Requirements management is a set of techniques for recording, examining, ranking, and consolidating requirements, ensuring that engineering teams consistently work with up-to-date and approved specifications. Its aim is to guarantee the achievement of product development objectives. By meticulously monitoring alterations in requirements and promoting ongoing communication with stakeholders, requirements management minimizes errors, maintaining alignment and clarity from the project’s start through the entirety of the engineering lifecycle.

An essential aspect of requirements management is its ability to de-risk projects from unexpected and late-stage requirement changes. For instance, consider the complex process of car design. If a stakeholder requests an increase in the vehicle’s range, it would necessitate various adjustments, such as increasing the number of battery modules. A tool for managing compliance statuses, like the Altium 365 Requirements Manager, automatically recalculates all relevant properties, like battery mass and capacity, and adjacent properties, such as charging mass, car mass, and braking distance, ensuring full traceability of the change and its system-wide impact.

In a traditional setting, accommodating a new requirement would involve a tedious chain of meetings, emails, and manual updates, often extending over weeks. With a proficient requirements management tool, you can drastically reduce this time because every team member is aligned, informed, and working on the latest, most accurate information within seconds. All aspects of the design are consistently synchronized, and no detail is overlooked or forgotten in the fast-paced development lifecycle. You can finish your car design updates within a minute instead of weeks of disjointed, back-and-forth communication.

Update Requirements in Minutes not Weeks

The Challenges of Modern Design

While the concept of requirements is easy to grasp, the speed and complexity of modern design development complicate the overall picture. We’re witnessing an unprecedented pace of technological advancement and a surge in the intricacy of electronic designs. This evolution, while exciting, brings forth a multitude of challenges that necessitate a structured approach to requirements management.

#1 Complexity of Electronic Designs

The proliferation of smart devices has exponentially increased the complexity of electronic designs. For instance, chip usage in products has skyrocketed, with modern vehicles incorporating over 2,000 chips, a staggering increase compared to a few decades ago. Such complexity necessitates precise and well-organized requirements to navigate the intricate web of design elements, ensuring that each component integrates smoothly to function as a cohesive whole.

The more complex the product, the more critical becomes the significance of requirements management. This is because more time and budget are invested in its development. The cost of getting it wrong—be it money, time, or reputation—is too great to risk.

#2 Growing Software Interconnection

Software has become an integral part of products, with the lines of code embedded in them soaring fifteenfold over the last decade. Software acts as the communication bridge, enabling various hardware systems to exchange critical information. This intricate web of interconnectivity demands well-established communication protocols to secure the uninterrupted flow of essential data. An unexpected alteration in the requirements of one system can disrupt this harmonious interaction, leading to unforeseen complications and extensive rework. Thus, the role of requirements management becomes crucial in safeguarding the stability and reliability of these interconnected systems to maintain the integrity of the overall communication network.

#3 Reduced Production Timelines

The urgency to expedite product delivery has led to a significant reduction in production timelines. Traditional five-year cycles have been compressed to two, calling for agile methodologies that emphasize swift iterations and continuous improvement. In such a fast-paced environment, having clear and well-defined requirements is crucial to guide the design process efficiently and facilitate quick decision-making.

#4 Communication Gaps and Siloed Processes

Design processes have been plagued by communication gaps, with electronic data often existing in isolated silos. The exchange of information between these silos is a manual and inefficient process, leading to the unnecessary expenditure of valuable time and resources and compromising the overall quality of the product. A robust requirements management system acts as a unifying thread, enhancing communication and ensuring all design aspects are aligned and integrated.

#5 Lack of Traceability

It’s quite common for as many as 80% of designs to experience last-minute changes in components due to constraints related to cost or availability. The absence of traceability in such modifications can lead to confusion and errors, often derailing the entire design process. Requirements management fosters traceability and ensures that each modification is documented and aligned with the overall design objectives, thus minimizing mistakes and enhancing the design’s integrity.

7 Reasons Requirements Management Is Essential

As you see from the above analysis, requirements management is not optional. It’s essential to secure the project’s success, especially in light of the fact that poor requirements trigger 70% of project failures. Inaccurately defined requirements can lead to expanding project scopes, delayed timelines, escalated costs, and a final product that falls short of meeting customer expectations and safety standards. Adopting a structured attitude toward their management can prevent your project from becoming another failure in the quoted statistics.

Dynamic Requirements Visibility and Reuse

#1 Clarifying Objectives and Expectations

Requirement management clarifies the project’s objectives, aligning stakeholders like product managers, designers, developers, and clients towards a unified goal. It provides a clear roadmap, outlining the project’s scope, budget, and schedule, ensuring that every step is well-planned and executed according to the established objectives and expectations.

#2 Faster Delivery

Managing compliance status promotes timeliness, helping projects stay on schedule for quicker delivery while upholding quality standards.

#3 Reusability

Requirements management allows for the reuse of specific project components in subsequent projects, enhancing sustainability and efficiency throughout development.

#4 Improving Quality and Reducing Errors

A clear set of requirements minimizes errors, misunderstandings, and omissions in the design process, ensuring that the final product meets expected quality standards and fulfills its intended purpose. Requirements management enhances the alignment of the end product with customer needs and expectations, thereby improving its overall quality.

#5 Lower Cost of Development Across the Lifecycle

Lifecycle Insights reports that companies, on average, encounter 2.8 board respins, each costing approximately $46,000. Errors in requirements often necessitate extensive rework by the development team. The cost of correcting a software error escalates if the mistake is detected later in the process. The necessity to reduce these costs is beyond question, and strategies that minimize requirement discrepancies are most welcome.

Effective requirements management enhances project efficiency and accuracy. It minimizes unnecessary expenses throughout the project, leading to a more economical development process. It also aids in reducing the frequency of costly and time-consuming modifications, saving both money and months of extra work.

#6 Risk Management

Requirements management helps identify potential risks early in the project, allowing for implementing strategies to mitigate them.

#7 Facilitating Communication and Collaboration

Working with a transparent and well-managed set of requirements fosters effective communication and collaboration among team members and stakeholders. It acts as a common language, improving understanding and cooperation across various domains of expertise.

Design Faster with Fewer Errors

The complexities and rapid advancements in modern design call for a strong foundation in requirements management. A well-organized set of specifications supports the process by providing clarity, enhancing communication, and ensuring that the design evolves cohesively in the desired direction. Check it on your own using Requirements Manager. Design faster with fewer errors!

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Innovating IoT Solutions with AWS and Arduino

Electronic lovers - Thu, 04/04/2024 - 06:48

The interface of Amazon Web Services (AWS) with Arduino is a disruptive opportunity for creators, innovators and developers in the Internet of Things (IoT) realm. This hybrid of technologies enables in the development of robust, scalable, and secure IoT applications that cater to diverse applications in several industries. AWS – a global leader in cloud capabilities, and Arduino – a producer of user-friendly microcontrollers and sensors combined, make a powerful toolkit for anyone who wants to start their IoT journey. With help from professional cloud solution providers like the experts at DoiT, developers can quicken their IoT projects from idea to deployment, ensuring that their implementations are both efficient and effective

Unleashing Potential with AWS and Arduino

What Arduino has on AWS to create IoT applications is the ability to unite those two forces. AWS has a spectrum of services that could emulate the physical device performance of Arduino. AWS IoT Core is an example of this functionality. It securely facilitates devices’ communication with cloud services and each other. IoT devices can either be machine-to-machine or machine-to-service. However, AWS Lambda can run code in response to triggers from AWS IoT or other AWS services and be scalable where IoT devices demand less than one-hundredth of their CPU power.

This combination is especially for developers searching for IoT solutions that encompass potent data processing capabilities and can take good care of and make precise inferences from the large data amounts sent by devices in the current field. Through AWS cloud infrastructure with software developers, communication becomes easier; developers can take advantage of the cloud by transferring the heavy loading moss to the computer, enabling more complex algorithms and processing to be done in the cloud. Moreover, this increases the performance and the ability to scale the solutions of IoT, but it also makes the physical devices more efficient and autonomous of the batteries.

Navigating Challenges in IoT Development

Even though the combination of AWS and Arduino can be considered one of the breakthroughs for Smart IoT solutions, continuous solutions with further research and development will constantly meet new obstacles. Since interoperability is a crucial issue here, we must ensure continuous hardware-software synergy.

Creating an efficient IoT solution may require a developer with technical knowledge of the Arduino device features and the characteristics of AWS services. Safety issues related to the Internet of Things are standard among all network spheres. However challenging, protecting data privacy and communicating between devices and the cloud must be tackled effectively as devices could be deployed to various and/or remote places.

To help surmount these barriers, developers can take advantage of the resources meant to smooth the progress of creating secure and expandable IoT applications. Instead of going the old-fashioned way of having manual checks, AWS IoT Device Defender can be used to do this, e.g., by constantly auditing and looking for configurations that aren’t in line with the security best practices. On the other hand, AWS IoT Greengrass deploys AWS to the edge, where the equipment can work on the spot, like where they generate data and then go back to the cloud for management, analytics, and long-term storage.

Real-World Applications and Future Prospects

Practical applications of blending AWS and Arduino are as varied as bamboo leaves produced by the rain, and with the combination, we could have all the rainbows of IoT at our fingertips. Smarter agriculture isn’t a distant dream when soil sensors and automated irrigation systems are deployed, and the same can be said about urban development projects such as air quality monitoring and traffic management. In healthcare, IoT devices play a crucial role in monitoring patients by collecting real-time information and drawing inferences that help to evaluate patients’ health state, in some cases even predicting deterioration of the patient’s condition before they need serious care.

Given that IoT keeps changing, both AWS and Arduino’s presence in the industry of IoT will assume an even larger role in providing intense IoT developments. Cloud technologies and microcontrollers seem to be the core technology in further advancing IoT devices, and that will make them more innovative, more efficient, and more integrated into our lives.

Conclusion

The juxtaposition of AWS and Arduino facilitates the initiation of more advanced and noteworthy solutions that utilize the Internet of Things (IoT) concept. The integrated features of AWS, such as cloud services and Arduino’s talents like versatility and accessibility, allow developers to build connection depth and number of IoT applications. As good as it might be, the exploit only takes us halfway; what we need to achieve more would be a multidimensional technique that considers various issues like security, scalability, and efficiency of IoT solutions.

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The ABCs of Smart Home Integration

Electronic lovers - Thu, 04/04/2024 - 06:34

In the era of rapid technological advancement, smart homes have transitioned from being a luxury to a necessity for many. The integration of technology into our living spaces not only enhances convenience but also improves security, energy efficiency, and overall quality of life. This comprehensive guide delves into the essentials of smart home integration, offering valuable insights for homeowners looking to embrace this modern living standard.

Understanding Smart Home Technology

At its core, smart home technology involves the automation and remote control of household appliances, systems, and devices. From smart thermostats and lighting to security cameras and voice assistants, these devices are interconnected through the internet, allowing for seamless control via smartphones, tablets, or voice commands.

Why Integrate Smart Home Technology?

The benefits of smart home integration are manifold. Energy efficiency is significantly improved through devices like smart thermostats, which adapt to your schedule and preferences, reducing unnecessary heating and cooling. Security is enhanced with smart locks and surveillance cameras, offering peace of mind through real-time alerts and remote monitoring. Moreover, the convenience of controlling your home environment with a few clicks or voice commands cannot be overstated.

Planning Your Smart Home Integration

  • Assess Your Needs: Before diving into smart home technology, identify your primary needs. Are you looking to save on energy bills, enhance home security, or simply add convenience to your daily routine? Understanding your goals will guide your choice of devices.

  • Choose an Ecosystem: Smart home devices often work within specific ecosystems (e.g., Google Home, Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit). Selecting an ecosystem that aligns with your current devices and preferences ensures compatibility and simplifies integration.

  • Start with Basics: Begin your integration with basic devices such as smart lights, thermostats, and locks. These foundational elements offer immediate benefits and ease the transition into a fully integrated smart home.

Implementing Smart Home Devices

Once you have a plan, the next step is implementation. Installation processes vary, with some devices requiring professional installation while others are DIY-friendly. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions or seek professional help if unsure. After installation, configure your devices through the corresponding app, setting up schedules, automation, and preferences to suit your lifestyle.

Advanced Integration and Automation

As you become more comfortable with your smart home setup, explore advanced integration and automation. This could involve setting up routines where multiple devices interact with each other, such as lights turning off automatically when you lock your smart door at night. The possibilities for customization and automation are virtually limitless, offering a truly personalized smart home experience.

For those interested in taking their smart home to the next level, developing a custom app can offer unparalleled control and integration. To learn how to build a app controlled smart home, thorough research and planning are essential. This process involves understanding user needs, selecting the right technology stack, and ensuring seamless device integration.

Security Considerations

With the convenience of smart homes comes the need for robust security measures. Ensure all devices are updated with the latest firmware to protect against vulnerabilities. Use strong, unique passwords for your devices and Wi-Fi network, and consider a VPN for additional security. Regularly reviewing device access and permissions can also prevent unauthorized use.

Future of Smart Home Integration

The future of smart homes is bright, with advancements in AI, machine learning, and IoT technologies paving the way for even more sophisticated and intuitive systems. From predictive maintenance to energy optimization and beyond, the possibilities are expanding rapidly.

A recent report by Forbes highlights the growing trend of AI in smart homes, emphasizing the potential for devices that not only respond to commands but anticipate needs based on user habits and preferences . Similarly, a study discussed by The New York Times explores the impact of smart home technology on energy efficiency, illustrating how these systems can significantly reduce household energy consumption .

Conclusion

Smart home integration offers a gateway to a more secure, efficient, and convenient lifestyle. By understanding the basics, carefully planning your integration, and staying informed about the latest technologies and security practices, you can create a living space that not only meets your needs today but is also prepared for the advancements of tomorrow. Embracing smart home technology is not just about keeping up with trends; it’s about enhancing the quality of life for you and your loved ones.

The post The ABCs of Smart Home Integration appeared first on Electronics Lovers ~ Technology We Love.

All About Circuits Looks Ahead at Embedded World 2024

AAC - Thu, 04/04/2024 - 03:00
Check out the technologies and products these leading companies plan to showcase at next week's Embedded World trade show in Nuremberg, Germany.

Earthquake in Taiwan—Our Hearts Go Out to Those Impacted

AAC - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 23:00
The 7.4 magnitude earthquake today in Taiwan has caused devastating loss and suffering. Our thoughts with all those affected.

How to Analyze Transmission Line Transformers: The Easy Way and the Hard Way

AAC - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 20:00
In this article, we explore two different methods for analyzing the impedance transformation ratio of a transmission line transformer.

BluGlass closes share purchase plan, adding $5.87m to $4.3m placement

Semiconductor today - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 19:23
BluGlass Ltd of Silverwater, Australia — which develops and manufactures gallium nitride (GaN) blue laser diodes based on its proprietary low-temperature, low-hydrogen remote-plasma chemical vapor deposition (RPCVD) technology — has closed its share purchase plan (SPP), raising $5.87m before costs...

No floating nodes, Part 2

EDN Network - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 16:13

Some of the commentary in response to Part 1 on this topic suggested that the two 1 pF capacitors, C4 and C5, had to be put in series for lack of availability of 0.5 pF parts.

A simulation of that presented circuit is seen as follows:

Figure 1 The circuit with a floating node and its Bode plot simulation.

Part selections differ somewhat from the original. These op-amps are virtual, the JFET is merely an available part from the simulation software and the diode represents the original photodiode. For all of that, these are all close enough. Please note the Bode plot of this configuration.

To keep using the pair of 1 pF capacitors, the following schematic is the same as above but with the addition of one more resistor, R8, in parallel with C4.

Figure 2 The circuit without a floating node (an additional resistor R8 added in parallel with C4) and its Bode plot simulation.

At 10 MΩ, resistor R8 provides a DC path for the formerly floating node to keep that node’s voltage from unpredictably shifting. Note that the Bode plot for this modified circuit is indistinguishable from the plot seen before.

Other options for tethering the formerly floating node exist as well. For example, R8 could be tied from the C4 and C5 junction to ground, again, with no visible effect on the Bode plot.

The best choice is best left to the designer.

John Dunn is an electronics consultant, and a graduate of The Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn (BSEE) and of New York University (MSEE).

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Zypp Electric registers 3X revenue growth in FY24; deploys 20,000 e-scooters across India in 2023, goes operationally profitable

ELE Times - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 14:40

Zypp Electric, India’s leading tech-enabled EV-as-a-service platform, has marked a remarkable milestone with a staggering ~3X surge in revenue in FY24. This exponential growth underscores Zypp Electric’s unwavering commitment to transforming last-mile deliveries through sustainable mobility solutions. Having emerged as the number one ranked company in the entire list of Asia-Pacific 2024’s fastest-growing businesses, Zypp Electric has achieved a remarkable 396% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2019 to 2022.

By successfully deploying an additional fleet of electric scooters across India, Zypp Electric has expanded its presence in six major metropolitan cities of Delhi NCR, Bangalore and Mumbai. The increase from 11,000 to more than 20,000 electric vehicles showcases the company’s dedication to sustainable logistics & mobility platform.

By collaborating with quick-commerce, food delivery, bike taxi, e-commerce and other online businesses, the company has been progressively working to ensure 100% electric last-mile deliveries in India, Zypp Electric has done 45 million+ shipment deliveries via electric vehicles from Jan’23 to Feb’24 period which equates to growing 76 Lakh trees on the planet earth. Over the past year, we have empowered more than 53,000 delivery executives to adopt an electric vehicle, with an opportunity to earn more on our platform. There has also been a notable rise in their monthly average earnings per rider, amounting to more than INR 24,000/month and allows them to save 50% more than petrol bike riders. Their environmentally friendly initiatives have led to a significant reduction of 29 million kilograms of carbon emissions since the start of its operations

A few of the key drivers of Zypp Electric’s unprecedented growth have been its core focus on a technology platform encompassing the entire EV ecosystem and its strategic expansion into new markets. From being the leader in the National Capital Region (NCR), Zypp Electric has successfully penetrated additional markets, including Bangalore, Mumbai, and now in Hyderabad too. This expansion not only signifies the company’s agility and adaptability but also its ambitious vision to revolutionise electric last-mile logistics across multiple urban landscapes.

Moreover, Zypp Electric’s foray into the three-wheeler cargo business further solidifies its position as a frontrunner in the EV sector. E3W fleet has grown 6X from Feb’23 to 750+ in Feb’24 and deliveries have increased from 4,320 to 92,000+ in the same period clocking 21X growth. By diversifying its portfolio, with a fleet of soon-to-reach 1000 electric L5 loaders & expanding, Zypp Electric is poised to cater to a wider range of business needs while maximising revenue streams along with branding options on the E3W open for advertising option.

In addition to its expansion endeavours, Zypp Electric has achieved operational profitability, a testament to its robust business model and strategic foresight. With a keen focus on sustainable growth, the company is now on the verge of reaching breakeven over the next 12 to 18 months, setting a solid foundation for long-term success.

Commenting on the company’s stellar performance, Akash Gupta, Co-Founder & CEO, of Zypp Electric, remarked, “The last fiscal year has been momentous for us. We grew our revenues almost 3X vs. the last fiscal year which I am super proud of for our team to achieve this milestone amid the changing EV landscape. While ramping things up in NCR & Bengaluru by adding more hubs, we initiated our operations in Mumbai this year. Looking ahead, we’re excited to commence our services in Hyderabad & target to launch in a new city every quarter. On the fleet front, we intend to grow our current strength of 20,000 to around 100,000 vehicles in the next 12 to 18 months and then grow that to 500,000 over the following 36 to 48 months. Profitability is the next major milestone which we’re eyeing closely at Zypp along with growth.”

Recently, Zypp Electric has also entered into a partnership with Porter Enterprises to provide reliable logistics solutions. With a robust foundation, strategic expansions, a superlative EV Fleet Management technology platform and a relentless pursuit of innovation, Zypp Electric is poised to reshape the landscape of last-mile deliveries and accelerate the transition towards a sustainable future.

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Aehr receives order from new customer for FOX-NP multi-wafer test & burn-in system

Semiconductor today - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 12:15
Semiconductor production test and reliability qualification equipment supplier Aehr Test Systems of Fremont, CA, USA has received an initial customer order for a FOX-NP wafer-level test and burn-in system, multiple WaferPak Contactors, and a FOX WaferPak Aligner to be used for engineering, qualification and small-lot production wafer-level test and burn-in of their silicon carbide devices...

SemiQ opens office in Taiwan

Semiconductor today - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 12:09
SemiQ Inc of Lake Forest, CA, USA — which designs, develops and manufactures silicon carbide (SiC) power semiconductors and 150mm SiC epitaxial wafers for high-voltage applications — has officially opened its newest office in Taiwan, underscoring its commitment to providing enhanced ground support to customers in the region while solidifying its presence in the Asia-Pacific market...

Microchip Technology Introduces ECC608 TrustMANAGER with Kudelski IoT keySTREAM

ELE Times - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 10:40

Cloud-based software as a service leverages secure authentication ICs to enable self-service custom PKI, streamlined in-field provisioning and lifecycle management for IoT devices

As the world comes to rely on interconnected IoT systems—for everything from household items like smart thermostats, virtual assistant technology and digital door locks to medical and industrial applications—the need for reliable cybersecurity on embedded systems has never been greater. To increase security on IoT products and facilitate easier setup and management, Microchip Technology has added the ECC608 TrustMANAGER with Kudelski IoT keySTREAM, Software as a Service (SaaS) to its Trust Platform portfolio of devices, services and tools.

With security credentials managed and updated in the field via keySTREAM—instead of being limited to a static certificate chain implemented during manufacturing—the ECC608 TrustMANAGER allows custom cryptographic credentials to be accurately provisioned at the end point without requiring supply chain customization and can be managed by the end user. keySTREAM offers a device-to-cloud solution for securing key assets end-to-end in an IoT ecosystem throughout a product’s lifecycle.

The ECC608 TrustMANAGER relies on a secure authentication IC that is designed to store and protect cryptographic keys and certificates, which are then managed by the keySTREAM SaaS. The combined silicon component and key management SaaS allow the user to set up a self-serve root Certificate Authority (root CA), and the associated public key infrastructure (PKI) secured by Kudelski IoT, to create and manage a dynamic certificate chain and provision devices in the field the first time they are connected. Once claimed in the SaaS account, the devices are automatically activated in the user’s keySTREAM service via in-field provisioning.

“As the volume of connected devices rapidly increases and security standards and regulations tighten, IoT designers are seeking more efficient ways of managing their devices once products are in their customers’ hands,” said Nuri Dagdeviren, corporate vice president of Microchip’s security computing group. “Our partnership with Kudelski and adding keySTREAM to our ECC608 TrustMANAGER enables customers to manage, scale and update IoT ecosystems efficiently via a cloud-based security SaaS for in-field provisioning and certificate management.”

Security standards and upcoming regulations are increasingly requiring upgradability of security infrastructure for IoT devices. This is a difficult task with traditionally static IoT security implementations, which require physical upgrades like changing out the security ICs in each device to stay in compliance. With the ECC608 TrustMANAGER, the process is automated and highly scalable, allowing devices to be managed securely and efficiently throughout their lifecycle. It also enables easy device ownership management without needing to change hardware, as security keys are updated digitally from the cloud into the device. This approach streamlines the supply chain processes for distribution partners as well.

“The ECC608 TrustMANAGER with keySTREAM marks a pivotal moment in our quest to secure the IoT landscape and make provisioning easier. Our collaboration with Microchip is not just about bringing advanced security solutions to the market, it’s about setting a new standard for smart device security across the board,” said Hardy Schmidbauer, senior vice president of Kudelski IoT.  “By leveraging Microchip’s renowned semiconductor technologies alongside Kudelski IoT’s security services, we are poised to deliver protection and a new ease of provisioning for IoT device manufacturers.”

This type of dynamic in-field provisioning and device management meets IoT security standards and will be useful in device certificate updates needed to stay in compliance with evolving security requirements. The keySTREAM SaaS allows for ongoing updates of keys designed to prevent and protect against evolving threats and security requirements. In-field provisioning also removes the need for customization for more efficient manufacturing.

The ECC608 is the first security IC in Microchip’s TrustMANAGER series. To get started, download the Trust Platform Design Suite and test the keySTREAM use case under the ECC608 TrustMANAGER.

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Infineon and Green Hills Software present integrated platform for real-time applications for software-defined vehicles

ELE Times - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 10:09

Infineon Technologies and Green Hills Software LLC, the global leader in embedded safety and security, have launched an integrated microcontroller-based processing platform for safety-critical real-time automotive systems. The platform combines the safety-certified real-time operating system (RTOS) µ-velOSity from Green Hills with Infineon’s new generation of safety controllers AURIX TC4x. This provides OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers with a reliable, safe, and secure processing platform to develop domain and zonal controllers as well as drivetrains for electric vehicles for their next-generation software-defined vehicle (SDV) architectures.

“Green Hills’ product philosophy for tools and the matching software environment support our requirements for reliable products and solutions very well,” said Thomas Schneid, Senior Director for Software, Partnership and Ecosystem Management at Infineon. “Combined with advanced microcontroller products such as the AURIX TC4x family, our customers gain a significant advantage in meeting their critical requirements.”

“We are excited to extend our long-standing collaboration with Infineon and showcase our joint solution at embedded world 2024,” said Dan Mender, Vice President of Business Development at Green Hills Software. “The combination of Infineon’s new scalable microcontroller family AURIX TC4x and Green Hills’ µ-velOSity RTOS will enable our joint customers to develop safe and secure systems for the next generation of SDV E/E architectures.”

Enabling the development of advanced ECUs

New automotive electronic control units (ECU) are essential for the adapted vehicle E/E architecture of SDVs. To develop these ECUs, new microcontrollers are needed that also meet the requirements of safety-critical systems such as zone control, chassis, radar, electric drives, and affordable AI systems, by offering higher performance and advanced features. Infineon addresses this demand with its new family of AURIX TC4x devices that complement its TriCore multicore architecture with a safety and security accelerator suite. Moreover, to meet the stringent safety requirements, Green Hills has ported its safety-certified µ-velOSity RTOS to the AURIX TC4x family. The advanced MULTI integrated development environment is also supporting this processor family, enabling developers to shorten development times by increasing developer productivity while generating the fastest and smallest code for the AURIX TC4x.

Infineon’s AURIX TC4x family provides an upward migration path from the previous AURIX TC3x family of ASIL-compliant automotive MCUs. AURIX TC4x uses the next-generation TriCore 1.8 and a scalable accelerator suite, including the new Parallel Processing Unit (PPU) as well as several intelligent accelerators, in areas such as data routing, digital signal processing, radar processing and cryptographic computing. The AURIX TC4x family supports high-speed interfaces, including Gigabit Ethernet, PCIe, CAN-XL or 10BASE T1S Ethernet, to provide sufficient communication bandwidth for the next generation of automotive systems.

The Green Hills µ-velOSity RTOS targets the highest functional safety levels (ISO 26262 ASIL D). Based on an efficient and reliable kernel with a minimal footprint and a simple API, it also offers fast boot and streamlined execution. In addition, µ-velOSity is tightly integrated with the MULTI safety-certified tools and compilers.

Demonstration at the embedded world 2024

Green Hills and Infineon will showcase their solution at embedded world 2024, April 9-11, at the Green Hills booth 4-325.

Infineon at Embedded World

embedded world will take place in Nuremberg, Germany, from 9 to 11 April 2024. Infineon will present its products and solutions for decarbonization and digitalization in hall 4A, booth #138 and virtually.

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MIKROE Partners With Allegro MicroSystems To Introduce New Click Boards Targeting Industrial Applications

ELE Times - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 09:51

MikroElektronika (MIKROE), the embedded solutions company that dramatically cuts development time by providing innovative hardware and software products based on proven standards, has announced that the company is closely collaborating with Allegro MicroSystems, Inc. (“Allegro”), a global leader in power and sensing solutions for motion control and energy-efficient systems, to offer a broad portfolio of products that reduce development effort and accelerate time to market. Over the last quarter, MIKROE has introduced three new, compact, Click add-on boards incorporating Allegro’s technology.

“As a third-party tool provider we strive to promote our partners’ newest technologies and products, by making them simple to use in the broad market,” said Nebojsa Matic, CEO of MIKROE. “We are delighted to collaborate with Allegro and look forward to introducing many more Click boards utilizing their sensor technology in the near future.”

Hall Current 17 Click: 

A compact add-on board that contains a precise solution for AC/DC current sensing,  the Hall Current 17 Click board features the ACS37010, a high-accuracy current sensor from Allegro. This Click makes the perfect solution for the development of applications requiring a combination of high-current monitoring and high isolation voltage between the primary high-current and low-voltage sides.

Angle 9 Click:

Designed to detect the absolute position of a permanent magnet, this board features the AAS33001, Allegro’s precision, contactless angle sensor with incremental and motor commutation outputs and on-chip linearization for 0° to 360° angular position, rotation speed, and directional measurement. Support for incremental output interface (ABI) and motor commutation (UVW) is also available. On-chip EEPROM enables factory and customer calibration parameters to be stored. This Click board is the perfect solution for the development of contactless potentiometers, contactless knobs, RC servos, and other angular position measurement solutions.

Hall Current 16 Click:

A precise solution for AC/DC current sensing, this board is based on the ACS37002, a 400kHz high-accuracy current sensor from Allegro that features pin-selectable gains that can be used to configure the device to one of the four defined sensitivities and

corresponding current ranges, increasing design flexibility. In addition, an adjustable overcurrent fast fault provides short-circuit detection. This Click board facilitates the development of applications requiring a combination of high-current monitoring and high isolation voltage between the primary high-current and low-voltage sides.

“We are thrilled to partner with MIKROE as they release three new easy to use development tools that incorporate our industry-leading magnetic current and angle sensors,” said Ram Sathappan, Senior Director, Applications Marketing at Allegro. “We anticipate a very strong interest, as these sensor Click boards enable our customers to quickly develop innovative end products requiring high accuracy and reliability, without having to develop their own hardware.”

Like all Click boards from MIKROE, the solutions featuring Allegro’s sensor technology are packaged with mikroSDK software and a library with all the functions. The Clicks come fully tested and approved prototype, making them reliable devices ready to use on the development board. This can cut months from the development cycle and save considerable expense.

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Anritsu Enhances Protocol Test Solution Supporting NTN NB-IoT Devices for GEO Satellites

ELE Times - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 08:41

Anritsu Corporation introduces the protocol test[*1] solution for Non-Terrestrial Network (NTN)[*2] devices for GEO[*3] satellites, which extends the functionality of the Signalling Tester MD8430A to support the NTN NB-IoT[*4] defined in 3GPP Release 17.

Anritsu has been providing solutions for protocol tests, RF tests, protocol conformance tests, and RF conformance tests over the years for 3G/LTE/5G. With this functionality enhancement, Anritsu will help to improve the quality of NTN devices and contribute to the realization of a prosperous network society.

Development Background

Previously, individual satellite operators have offered their proprietary unique satellite communication services. Since the standardization of NTN communications in 3GPP Release 17, however, the satellite communication service market has rapidly grown, and various verifications based on the standard specifications have become necessary. For GEO satellites, NTN device vendors need test environments that can simulate the communication delay and transmit information to the device for delay compensation, because the distance between the satellite and the device is approximately 36,000 km. To support these test requirements, Anritsu has developed a protocol test solution that boasts high reliability built on test experiences with market-leading customers and high flexibility in condition settings.

Product Outline

The MD8430A is a base station simulator that can build a simulated network necessary for the development of chipsets and devices. With its software option NTN NB-IoT (GEO) MD8430A-043 and its control software option NTN over IoT Framework for RTD MX800050A-070, the MD8430A can be connected to an NTN device for GEO satellites, which makes it possible to test the connection with the NTN network and roaming between the terrestrial network and NTN network, among others.

Technical Terms

[*1]: Protocol test
Protocol sequence test (location registration, call placement, incoming call reception, mobile device/network disconnection, handover, etc.)

[*2]: NTN
Abbreviation for Non-Terrestrial Network. It refers to a communication network system that provides multi-layered connections among mobile devices on the ground as well as in the sea, skies, and outer space. The NTN can efficiently cover locations that are difficult for radio signals from terrestrial base stations to reach, such as remote islands, oceans, and mountains, thus delivering Internet access to underserved areas.

[*3]: GEO
Abbreviation for Geostationary Earth Orbit

[*4]: NB-IoT
Abbreviation for NarrowBand Internet of Things. It refers to a technology that enables a host of IoT devices to connect to the network with low power consumption. NTN NB-IoT is an IoT communication service for areas that terrestrial base stations cannot cover and is used in such fields as maritime shipping, logistics, mining, and automobiles.

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MCU Roundup: 3 New MCUs Push Performance at the Edge

AAC - Wed, 04/03/2024 - 02:00
From small appliances to edge AI, the latest MCUs from Renesas, Ambiq, and Nuvoton provide higher performance and efficiency.

Microchip Expands Its Serial SRAM Devices to 2 Mb and 4 Mb

AAC - Tue, 04/02/2024 - 20:00
With speeds up to 143 MHz, the new 2-Mb and 4-Mb serial SRAM devices can be a lower-cost alternative to traditional parallel SRAM products.

A groovy apparatus for calibrating miniature high sensitivity anemometers

EDN Network - Tue, 04/02/2024 - 16:54

Anemometers are an important category of environmental sensor. Articles about their design, data capture, and linearization have comprised topics featured in EDN Design Ideas, several quite recently.

Less well covered, however, has been the topic of accurate, inexpensive, (even improvisational) methods for their testing and calibration.

Wow the engineering world with your unique design: Design Ideas Submission Guide

The calibration method shown here is suited for sensitive, low air speed, miniature, solid-state thermal airflow sensors with full-scale ranges up to 250 fpm (2.8 mph), two of which are illustrated in Figure 1 and Figure 2. This type is particularly useful in applications like HVAC setup and forced-convection cooling airflow distribution measurement and monitoring.

Figure 1 GO/NOGO thermal low speed airflow sensor, ON/OFF airspeed threshold is set by R4.

Figure 2 Linearized battery powered low speed thermal anemometer.

 The airspeed measured by any anemometer is relative to the instrument. Whether it’s the air or the anemometer (or both) that’s actually moving is irrelevant. This simple calibrator consists of a repurposed phonograph turntable capable of accurate operation at the traditional rotational speeds of 33.3, 45, 78 rpm, and of course, zero. See Figure 3.

Figure 3 “Groovy” anemometer calibrator built from salvaged phonograph.

 Conveniently, the diameter of a standard phonograph record is one foot. So, an airspeed sensor mounted on the periphery of an ordinary discarded vinyl record will be moved through the air at:

Air speed (feet per minute) = π * RPM
33.3 rpm = 105 fpm
45 rpm = 141 fpm
78 rpm = 245 fpm

 Connections between the rotating anemometer sensor, external (stationary) power supply, and instrumentation are easily provided by a simple slipring commutator improvised from standard 3.5-mm 4-circuit audio jack and plug. The former is supported by an inverted plastic funnel glued to the record while the latter is affixed to the tone arm. Some light lubrication on the plug may be beneficial in minimizing potentially problematic drag on the turntable motor.

A suitable counterweight positioned diametrically opposite to the sensor under test can help balance the turntable against static (weight) and dynamic (centripetal) forces acting on the rotating circuitry.

Stephen Woodward’s relationship with EDN’s DI column goes back quite a long way. Over 100 submissions have been accepted since his first contribution back in 1974.

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