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latest product and technology information from electronics companies in India
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Veira Group to manufacture India’s first 75″ Mini LED Google TV with Nano cell technology

Fri, 03/24/2023 - 17:26

Veira Group, India’s largest ODM for Smart TVs, has obtained the Mini LED TV Nano-cell technology to manufacture large Size 75″ Google TV screens for the Indian market and internal. The move marks yet another step forward in Veira’s journey to incorporate cutting-edge features and technologies into all its products, achieving numerous firsts in the Indian market. The innovation aims to create an intuitive TV experience that caters to the new Indian customer. The Smart TVs will be manufactured in its new expansive manufacturing facility in Phase 2, Noida, which will include a specialised assembly line for this technology.

Veira proposes manufacturing over 10,000 Mini LED Google TVs in India using Nanocell technology. The Mini LED TVs have a 4K nanocell resolution and a brightness of more than 700 Nits. Furthermore, the Nanocell TVs include the most recent Dolby solutions like Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. The smart TV will deliver multidimensional immersive sound at 40W. Overall, a powerful combination that provides a more realistic movie-watching experience.

The first 75″ Mini LED Google TV in India raises the bar for Smart TVs. Sharan Maini, Director of Operations at Veira Group, said, “As one of the largest & oldest ODMs for manufacturing smart TVs, we at Veira understand the pulse and needs of the evolving Indian audience. The Indian market is shifting towards premium content paired with a premium viewing experience on a larger screen, with digital content and OTT becoming increasingly appealing to Indian consumers. Recognising this, we are pleased to be the first ODM to obtain Mini LED TV Nano-cell technology to the Indian Consumer.

“Veira is preparing its infrastructure and R&D facilities to fulfil the requirement apart from making Indian manufacturers at par with the international ones to compete at the global stage.” he further adds.

Veira recently announced that it had begun producing and manufacturing Web OS Hub 2.0 Smart TVs for the Indian Smart TV market, as well as Linux-based Coolita 2.0 solutions.

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Videotex to exhibit its Smart TV Solutions at the Convergence India Expo, Delhi

Fri, 03/24/2023 - 17:10

Over four decades old, Videotex International, India’s leading ODM/OEM for manufacturing Smart TVs and the first licensed webOS Hub Smart TVs manufacturer in India, to participate and exhibit in India’s largest Tech & Infra expo to be held from 27th March to 29th March 2023, Pragati Maidan, Delhi. Shri. Nitin Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Govt of India to grace the occasion with his presence as the Chief Guest.

Videotex has consistently worked to bring cutting-edge solutions to the Indian smart TV industry, and will showcase the entire range of 32 to 75-inch smart TVs available in HD, Full HD, and 4K. The company will focus on the webOS TV solutions, which already has more than 15 leading TV brands onboarded for manufacturing. Videotex booth will bring an experiential experience to the visitors.

“We are thrilled to participate in the 30th edition of the Convergence India expo. It is the perfect place to discover, connect and explore. We are looking forward to network with the industry players and give them a first-hand experience of Videotex technologies and offerings.” says Arjun Bajaj, Director, Videotex International.

The Convergence India 2023 expo expects 1,000 participants from 40 countries, over 200 start-ups from across India, 100 senior speakers from government and industry, and 50,000 visitors over a period of three days. The expo will also be graced by the presence of Ministers and senior dignitaries from the Government of India, along with industry leaders, Smart City CEOs, city planners, Mayors, Ambassadors and stakeholders from India and around the globe.

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Rohde & Schwarz launches new EMI test receiver for emission measurements up to 30 MHz at the EMV 2023 in Stuttgart

Fri, 03/24/2023 - 17:00

The R&S EPL1000 is a compact, complete and CISPR 16-1-1 compliant test receiver for quick and precise EMI measurements up to 30 MHz. The additional spectrum analyzer and signal and tracking generator make the R&S EPL1000 ideal for various lab applications. The new EMI test receiver will be shown at EMV 2023 Stuttgart for the first time.

Rohde & Schwarz demonstrates the new R&S EPL1000 EMI test receiver for reliable certification measurements with minimum test times at EMV 2023 Stuttgart. The R&S EPL 1000 is CISPR 16-1-1 compliant and suitable for certification measurements. The instrument also reduces uncertainty in pre-compliance measurement tasks. The very fast time domain scan lets the R&S EPL1000 check all frequencies in CISPR bands A or B in a single shot for quick and seamless measurements over extended periods of time whenever desired or necessary. A user friendly GUI helps EMC engineers quickly find infrequent emissions and gain a good overview. Reproducible and standard compliant test results enable ensure high product quality.

The R&S EPL1000 has a pulse protected input. An autoranging function prevents the overloading of the signal processing chain to ensure correct measurement results. Built-in preselection ensures a high dynamic range and enables the acquisition of short pulses. For detailed signal analysis, the R&S EPL1000 has spectrogram and IF analysis functions. Automation simplifies measurements and ensures exact reproducibility of test sequences. For example, all lines connected to a Rohde & Schwarz LISN can be checked for CISPR bands A and B at the push of a button. Results are automatically compared with configured limit values and the R&S EPL1000 displays the result for the entire measurement as PASS/FAIL. The integrated report generator allows the result and measurement details to be easily saved and printed.

The additional spectrum analyzer functions help with a detailed EMI analysis. An optional integrated continuous wave signal generator with a tracking generator function characterizes used accessories and cables without the need to use an external signal generator. In addition to the standard mains supply, the compact test receiver can be run on 12/24 V DC or battery, making it very flexible and portable.

The R&S EPL1000 is ideal for conducted voltage and current emission measurements. The frequency range to 30 MHz is ideal for testing commercial products against ISO, EN, CISPR and FCC standards. The R&S EPL1000 supports product certification, precertification, measurements during product development phases and market surveillance.

The R&S EPL1000 can be used with the R&S ELEKTRA EMC test software. R&S ELEKTRA helps minimize test times and simplifies configuring test systems and running test procedures in line with the EMC standards. The instrument speeds up test execution and provides comprehensive and customizable test reports.

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Renesas’ New RZ/T2L Industrial MPU Enables Fast and Accurate Real-Time Control with EtherCAT Communication

Fri, 03/24/2023 - 16:44

Software Compatibility with Other Renesas MPUs/MCUs Allows Developers to Seamlessly Implement Scalable Design

Renesas Electronics, a premier supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, announced a new industrial microprocessor (MPU) that supports the EtherCAT communication protocol, achieving high-speed, accurate real-time control for industrial systems. The RZ/T2L MPU inherits the hardware architecture of its higher-end product, the RZ/T2M, and provides optimized solutions for the fast-growing EtherCAT communication market. The new MPU delivers high-speed and accurate real-time processing performance required for AC servo drives, inverters, industrial robots, collaborative robots and others, while reducing the chip size by up to 50% compared to the RZ/T2M. The new device is ideal for factory automation (FA) and a broad range of applications such as medical equipment and building automation (BA), where EtherCAT is increasingly becoming adopted.

“Accurate real-time control is essential to improving productivity and product quality in industrial systems,” said Hitoshi Shirakabe, Vice President of Renesas’ Industrial Automation Business Division. “Our RZ/T2L can make this a reality, and with its support for the rapidly expanding EtherCAT market, it will elevate the performance to the next level and accelerate the automation of factories and buildings, as well as medical devices.”

“For decades we are committed to providing engineers with the best in class development tools for the latest Renesas MCUs and MPUs to enable their embedded innovations of tomorrow,” said Norbert Weiss, Managing Director of Lauterbach GmbH, leading supplier of debug and trace tools. “Thanks to our great partnership with Renesas, industrial customers of the RZ/T2L MPU will also get highly reliable tools and excellent support from the beginning.”

Single-Chip Solution for Accurate Real-time Control and EtherCAT Communication

The RZ/T2L is equipped with an Arm Cortex-R52 CPU with a maximum operating frequency of 800 MHz and a proven EtherCAT slave controller designed by Beckhoff Automation for Ethernet communication. All internal RAM of the RZ/T2L is equipped with the ECC (Error Correction Code) function as required by industrial applications. Additionally, the large (576 KB) memory directly connected to the CPU reduces unpredictability in execution time that can be caused by cache memory and enables reliable, deterministic processing. The RZ/T2L also offers peripheral functions such as multi-protocol encoder interfaces for angle sensors, Sigma-Delta interfaces, and A/D converters. These are arranged on a dedicated low-latency peripheral port (LLPP) bus directly connected to the CPU to achieve fast and accurate real-time control capabilities.

Scalable Product Deployment for a Wide Range of End Systems  

The RZ/T2L uses the same architecture including the CPU, peripheral functions, and internal bus, as Renesas’ most high-end motor control MPU, RZ/T2M to realize the same performance level. In addition, Renesas offers the Flexible Software Package (FSP) and software development environment that are compatible with other RZ Family MPUs and RA Family MCUs, allowing engineers to preserve their software assets. This reduces development efforts and costs and facilitates scalable development of a wide array of products.

Functional Safety and Security Function Support for Industrial Equipment

The RZ/T2L can be used as a functional safety MPU to meet the growing processing requirements to realize functional safety in industrial equipment. Renesas will provide self-diagnostic software and SIL3 system software kits in Q4/2023, which allow customers to reduce development efforts and costs to develop functional safety systems. In addition, the RZ/T2L supports various security functions such as secure boot, secure firmware update, JTAG authentication, unique ID, and cryptographic accelerator to reduce the risk of data breach and tampering of user programs. Renesas will offer the security software package as part of a security solution in May 2023.

RZ/T2L Winning Combinations

Renesas has showcased the capability and features of the RZ/T2L by combining with various Renesas devices such as power management ICs, photocouplers, Sigma-Delta modulators, and EEPROM to provide an optimized AC Servo Solution with integrated high-precision motor control and EtherCAT. This solution comes with reference circuits, Gerber files, and sample program code to accelerate product development for applications such as AC servos, industrial gateways, and remote I/O. Renesas’ Winning Combinations are built on technically vetted system architectures of mutually compatible devices that work together seamlessly to create an optimized, low-risk design for a faster time to market. Renesas offers more than 300 Winning Combinations with a wide range of products.

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Infineon AIROC CYW20829 Bluetooth LE SoC ready with latest Bluetooth 5.4 specification

Fri, 03/24/2023 - 16:39

Infineon Technologies announced its AIROC CYW20829 Bluetooth LE system on chip (SoC) is ready with the newly released Bluetooth 5.4 specification. With the right combination of low power and high performance, AIROC CYW20829 is designed to support the entire spectrum of Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) use cases including smart home, sensors, medical healthcare, lighting, Bluetooth Mesh networks, remote controls, human interface devices (mouse, keyboard, VR and gaming controllers), industrial automation, and automotive.

The recently released Bluetooth Core Specification 5.4 adds several significant capabilities to the existing specification, including PAwR (Periodic Advertising with Response), Encrypted Advertisement Data (EAD) and LE GATT Security Levels Characteristic. PAwR enables energy-efficient, bi-directional communication in a large-scale one-to-many or star topology. EAD provides a standardized approach to the secure broadcasting of data in advertising packets.

With PAwR, thousands of Bluetooth 5.4-enabled Electronic Shelf Labels (ESL) and sensors will have bidirectional communication with a single access point. Messages can contain commands, sensor data values, or other data, as defined by the application layer. EAD enables the encrypted data over-the-star network to be authenticated and decrypted only by devices that have shared the session key previously. Additionally, LE GATT Security Levels Characteristic enables devices to identify the security mode and level for all their GATT functionality. The combination of these features enable ultra-low power, efficient radio usage and secure star networks that can be deployed in large scale ESL and sensor applications.

“With Infineon’s AIROC CYW20829 Bluetooth LE SoC, our customers can achieve great RF performance, the latest Bluetooth features, built-in security, rich set of peripherals, and low power, all in one device,” said Shantanu Bhalerao, Vice President of the Bluetooth product line at Infineon. “This device will enable our customers to enjoy the full benefits of Bluetooth 5.4 and get products faster-to-market.”

Infineon’s AIROC CYW20829 device has best-in-class RF link budget with an integrated power amplifier providing 10 dBm of transmit output power and receive sensitivity of -98 dBm for LE 1Mbps and -106 dBm for LE Long Range 125 Kbps. CYW20829 is a dual-core Arm® M33 device where one M33 core is reserved as the Bluetooth controller, and the second Arm® Cortex-M33 is available for customer applications. The CPU subsystem provides 256 K RAM, XIP interface for external flash, and a rich set of peripherals including CAN to enable a diverse set of applications. Built-in security features include secure boot, secure execution environment, a TRNG, eFuse for custom keys and cryptography acceleration.

The AIROC CYW20829 is supported by the ModusToolbox development environment which enables developers to accelerate time-to-market for Bluetooth-enabled IoT solutions.

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Renesas to Acquire Panthronics to Extend Connectivity Portfolio with Near-Field Communication Technology

Thu, 03/23/2023 - 09:46

Enhanced Connectivity Portfolio to Capture Growing Market Opportunities for Fintech, IoT, Asset Tracking, and Wireless Charging 

Renesas Electronics, a premier supplier of advanced semiconductor solutions, announced its wholly owned subsidiary has entered into a definitive agreement with the shareholders of Panthronics AG (“Panthronics”), a fabless semiconductor company specializing in high-performance wireless products, under which Renesas will acquire Panthronics in an all-cash transaction. The acquisition will enrich Renesas’ portfolio of connectivity technology, extending its reach into high-demand Near-Field Communication (NFC) applications in fintech, IoT, asset tracking, wireless charging, and automotive applications.

NFC has emerged as a de facto standard in the digital economy and touches many aspects of daily life. Fintech, such as mobile point-of-sale (mPoS) terminals and contactless payment, IoT, asset tracking, and wireless charging are highlights of NFC’s increasing presence. Headquartered in Graz, Austria, Panthronics has been offering advanced NFC chipsets and software that are easy to apply, innovative, small-in-size, and highly efficient for payment, IoT, and NFC wireless charging. Renesas and Panthronics have been addressing the rising demand of NFC as partners since 2018. Acquiring Panthronics’ competitive NFC technology will provide Renesas with in-house capability to instantly capture growing and emerging market opportunities for NFC.

Combining Panthronics’ NFC technology with Renesas’ broad product portfolio and security functions in microcontrollers (MCU) / microprocessors (MPU) will provide Renesas’ wide customer base with a multitude of options to create innovative, ready-to-market NFC system solutions. Renesas and Panthronics have already launched four joint designs of NFC system solutions to date. These include solutions catering for mPoS terminalswireless charging, and wall box smart metering platforms. The companies have also developed an NFC connectivity board that is fully integrated into the Renesas Quick-Connect Studio ecosystem, which allows customers to add features quickly and easily to MCU development boards. This enables a “plug and play” addition of full-featured, high-end NFC connectivity. Several more systems for PoS, IoT, wireless charging, and mobile are in development. Furthermore, the merits of Panthronics’ technology are also expected to be leveraged for Renesas’ automotive solutions, such as digital key management.

“Connectivity has been a priority area of ours, expanding and differentiating the realm of solutions we offer,” said Hidetoshi Shibata, President and CEO of Renesas. “We see tremendous opportunities for Panthronics’ NFC connectivity technology to benefit our customers in growing areas that span across fintech, IoT, and automotive spheres.”

The acquisition has been unanimously approved by the board of directors of Renesas and is expected to close by the end of the calendar year 2023, subject to required regulatory approval and customary closing conditions.

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Infineon and Delta Electronics to collaborate on electromobility; MoU extends long-term partnership from industrial to automotive applications

Thu, 03/23/2023 - 09:43

Infineon Technologies, global leader in automotive semiconductors, and Delta Electronics, Inc., the world-leading power and energy management company based in Taiwan, are expanding their long-term cooperation from industrial to automotive applications. Both companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will deepen their joint innovation activities to provide more efficient and higher-density solutions for the fast-growing market of electric vehicles (EV). The agreement covers a wide range of components such as high-voltage and low-voltage discretes and modules as well as microcontrollers to be used in EV drivetrain applications such as traction inverters, DC-DC converters and on-board chargers.

In addition, both parties agreed to set up a joint innovation lab for automotive applications. The Delta-Infineon Automotive Innovation Center will be co-managed by both companies. It is scheduled to be set up in Pingzhen, Taiwan in the second half of 2023.

“Infineon and Delta share the common goal of developing increasingly energy-efficient and CO2-saving solutions that support global decarbonization efforts,” said Peter Schiefer, President of Infineon’s Automotive division. “We want to further advance the energy efficiency of electromobility together by combining Infineon’s comprehensive automotive product portfolio and application know-how with Delta’s expertise in integration and system optimization. Ensuring the energy efficiency of automotive applications is of paramount importance in our time and we are committed to further improving it.”

“Infineon is a trusted partner of Delta. Over the past 25 years we have successfully collaborated in the area of industrial products. We are now looking forward to extending this partnership to electromobility,” said James Tang, Corporate Vice President of Delta Electronics. “We see a growing demand in the automotive industry for innovative, clean and energy-efficient solutions. Together with Infineon, we are committed to support the global transition to electromobility with our products and solutions and to bring electromobility to a whole new level.”

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Videotex to exhibit its Smart TV Solutions at Convergence India Expo, Delhi

Thu, 03/23/2023 - 09:38

Over four decades old, Videotex International, India’s leading ODM/OEM for manufacturing Smart TVs and the first licensed webOS Hub Smart TVs manufacturer in India, to participate and exhibit in India’s largest Tech and Infra expo to be held from 27th March to 29th March 2023, Pragati Maidan, Delhi. Shri. Nitin Gadkari, Minister for Road Transport and Highways, Govt of India to grace the occasion with his presence as the Chief Guest.

Videotex has consistently working to bring cutting-edge solutions to the Indian smart TV industry, and will showcase the entire range of 32 to 75-inch smart TVs available in HD, Full HD, and 4K. The company will focus on the webOS TV solutions, which already has more than 15 leading TV brands onboarded for manufacturing. Videotex booth will bring an experiential experience to the visitors.

“We are thrilled to participate in the 30th edition of the Convergence India expo. It is the perfect place to discover, connect and explore. We are looking forward to network with the industry players and give them a first-hand experience of Videotex technologies and offerings.” says Arjun Bajaj, Director, Videotex International.

The Convergence India 2023 expo expects 1,000 participants from 40 countries, over 200 start-ups from across India, 100 senior speakers from government and industry, and 50,000 visitors over a period of three days. The expo will also be graced by the presence of Ministers and senior dignitaries from the Government of India, along with industry leaders, Smart City CEOs, city planners, Mayors, Ambassadors and stakeholders from India and around the globe.

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Seco Tools 3D manufacturing creates new opportunities

Wed, 03/22/2023 - 11:28

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, allows Seco Tools to create products that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to manufacture. The advantages include shorter lead times, improved tool life and increased sustainability.

The development and manufacture of prototypes for metal-cutting machining by means of additive manufacturing (AM) is becoming increasingly commonplace in the operations of Seco Tools. One of the main strengths of this manufacturing method is the possibility of making specialized customer-specific tools and solutions that are difficult to achieve through conventional manufacturing. Above all, AM technology will come into its own when producing tools that must be designed in a special way. This may involve complex geometries or other customizations to customer-specific needs.

Examples of such customizations include making the tools lighter, which improves the vibration-dampening properties, or provide them with better cooling possibilities. “By directing the coolant to hit the cutting edge at just the right place, we can significantly extend the tool’s useful life. With AM technology, coolant can be guided to locations that would otherwise have been impossible,” explains Ingemar Bite, R&D Specialist at Seco Tools, who also believes that AM technology is helping to shorten lead times. “AM allows for us to produce geometries that require less manufacturing steps, which often results in shorter lead times and thereby, faster deliveries.”

Increased sustainability
AM technology will also open up the possibility of repairing broken tools in the future, by removing dysfunctional components and printing them anew. This could, for example, involve tool components or the reuse of different types of machine-side connections. This is particularly a good idea in terms of the environment and sustainability. Another advantage with AM technology, compared with traditional manufacturing in this context, is that there is less waste of materials. Overall, not as much material is used for AM manufacturing and any leftover powder can be reused.

Additive manufacturing could thus be a time-efficient and cost-efficient method for one-of-a-kind production and prototype development. However, it could also work excellent for large-scale manufacture of standard products. Seco Tools is already manufacturing cooling clamps for its Jetstream tools through 3D printing. “The cooling clamps have a complex form with curved cooling channels and are thus well-suited to this type of manufacture,” says Ingemar Bite.

Continuous improvements
The R&D department at Seco Tools works continuously to improve the use of AM technology for the development and manufacture of new and existing products. The company is constantly looking into ways to improve its products and how to best utilize AM technology. “We like to collaborate with our customers on these efforts and to conduct tests together with them,” says Ingemar Bite, who is of the opinion that even the materials can be

developed. “The materials that are currently used in AM are no different in nature than those being used in conventional manufacturing, and the technology works well with many different metals. In the future, we will add even more and superior materials, while regularly adapting our equipment and upgrading hardware and software as needed,” he concludes.

Different methods can be used for additive manufacturing; the one that Seco Tools uses is called SLM (Selective Laser Melting). Here, lasers and a bed of metal powder are used to construct the products. In an SLM machine, a roughly 20–60 µm layer of powder is spread, and then processed by a laser. This process is repeated, layer by layer. Once all the layers are in place, the excess powder is removed and the product goes into post-processing for its final form.

Finishing Hybrid AM Tool on HSK100

Coolant Clamp Mounted in Turning Tool

With its origins in Fagersta, Sweden and present in more than 75 countries, Seco Tools is a leading global solution provider of metal cutting solutions for indexable milling, solid milling, turning, holemaking, threading and tooling systems. With the hands-on application advice of Seco Tools, the company drives excellence for more than 80 years throughout the entire manufacturing process of manufacturers by ensuring high-precision machining and high-quality output.

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Rohde & Schwarz Oscilloscope Days 2023 deliver expertise for day-to-day testing challenges

Wed, 03/22/2023 - 11:21

Engineers across the globe will once again have the opportunity to attend online theoretical and practical sessions and interactive discussions during the two-day Oscilloscope Days event, hosted by Rohde & Schwarz in April 2023. Experts will present the latest challenges in the industry and dive into how next-generation oscilloscopes meet daily testing needs, as well as educational sessions about oscilloscope fundamentals.

Following increasing global interest from electronics engineers, the popular Rohde & Schwarz Oscilloscope Days event will continue in 2023. The two-day event is scheduled for April 18 and 19 and will present a series of webinars from Rohde & Schwarz oscilloscope experts and specialists along with others from event partners Würth Elektronik and PE-Systems. The sessions will address the real-world challenges engineers face in a range of measurement applications.

Besides practical demonstrations of oscilloscope fundamentals, webinar attendees can meet experts from Rohde & Schwarz and partners. The Oscilloscopes Days event is free of charge with live webcasts streamed in English, German, French, Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese.

Over the two days, attendees can learn about best practices for oscilloscope use as well as the latest on testing fundamentals. Each session lasts about 90 minutes with four sessions covering: Oscilloscope and probing fundamentals; Best practices on power electronics filter design and verification; How does power integrity affect signal integrity and which tools can be used for debugging; and Application based testing for power electronics and EMC debugging on flyback converters.

Andreas Grimm, Sales Director Global Oscilloscopes at Rohde & Schwarz, said, “Oscilloscopes are fundamental measurement tool for electronics engineers. As a manufacturer of state-of-the-art oscilloscopes, we aim to help engineers make the most of these universal instruments. Our popular Oscilloscope Days event offers interesting topics for everyone. Educational presentations look at the fundamentals for those new to the profession while other sessions examine the latest techniques and technologies. The event will give engineers the in-depth knowledge they need to meet an ever wider range of measurement challenges.”

For further information and to register for the Oscilloscopes Days event, please visit: https://www.rohde-schwarz.com/oscilloscope-days

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Quantum materials will power the electronics of the future

Wed, 03/22/2023 - 11:17

A research group has designed new quantum materials that can control the dynamics of electrons by curving the fabric of space in which they evolve.

The researchers, from the universities of Salerno, Utrecht and Delft, concluded that developing new information and communication technologies poses challenges in the industry. Designing these new quantum materials is the most promising way to meet these challenges.

These properties are of interest for next-generation electronic devices, including future optoelectronics.

How will these materials work in modern electronics?

Future telecommunications will require compelling electronic devices. They must be capable of processing electromagnetic signals in the picosecond range at unprecedented speeds, such as one-thousandth of a billionth of a second.

Current semiconductor materials, such as silicon – used in the electronic components of our telephones, computers, and game consoles – cannot produce these signals. Therefore, the scientists focused on a new set of quantum materials.

Thanks to their unique properties – such as the collective reactions of the electrons that compose them – these quantum materials have been developed to capture, manipulate and transmit information-carrying signals within new electronic devices. Moreover, they can operate in electromagnetic frequency ranges that have not yet been explored, opening the way to high-speed communication systems. This is a huge advance for quantum technology.

“One of the most fascinating properties of quantum matter is that electrons can evolve in a curved space. Due to this distortion of the space inhabited by the electrons, the force fields generate dynamics totally absent in conventional materials. This is an outstanding application of the principle of quantum superposition,” explained Andrea Caviglia, a professor at the Department of Quantum Matter Physics in the Faculty of Science of the UNIGE.

Controlling the curvature of the space fabric

After an initial theoretical study, the team designed a set of quantum materials in which the curvature of the space fabric is controllable.

“We have designed an interface hosting an extremely thin layer of free electrons. It is sandwiched between strontium titanate and lanthanum aluminate, which are two insulating oxides,” said Carmine Ortix, professor at the University of Salerno and coordinator of the theoretical study. This combination allows us to obtain particular electronic geometrical configurations which can be controlled on demand.

The research team used an advanced system for fabricating materials on an atomic scale to achieve this. Using laser pulses, each layer of atoms was stacked one after another.

In their paper, the researchers stated: “This method allowed us to create special combinations of atoms in space that affect the behaviour of the material.”

While the prospect of using these quantum materials in technology is still far off, this new material opens up new avenues in the exploration of very high-speed electromagnetic signal manipulation. These results can also be used to develop new sensors. The next step for the research team will be to observe further how this material reacts to high electromagnetic frequencies to determine, more precisely, its potential applications.

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ArkX Labs Touchless Voice Solutions Expands Distribution with EDOM Technology in Asia and India

Wed, 03/22/2023 - 11:10

ArkX Laboratories, a leading provider of advanced far-field voice capture and speech recognition technology, has added EDOM Technology to its expanded global distribution and sales network. Headquarters located in Taipei, EDOM represents ArkX Labs’ portfolio of production-ready EveryWord touchless voice technologies in the greater China, Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, and India regions.

“We are excited to welcome EDOM Technologies to the ArkX Network,” said Tom Huffman, VP of Channel Sales for ArkX Labs. “With EDOM’s deep technical expertise and experienced management team, they are an ideal partner for our advanced voice capture and control product line.”

“EDOM is pleased to introduce ArkX Labs’ EveryWord portfolio to our clients,” said Wayne Tseng, Chairman of EDOM Technology. “Their advanced far-field voice technology is a great addition to our offerings. We look forward to cooperating with ArkX and providing clients with advanced voice control solutions for smart home and industrial applications.”

Featuring Cirrus Logic’s SoundClear FlexArray and Sensory technologies, the EveryWord portfolio includes an Audio Front End (AFE) Module, a Voice Module (System-on-Module + AFE), Development Kit, and Sensory Voice Control.

ArkX’s production-ready voice capture solutions outperform existing solutions in far-field voice capture and deliver a far-superior voice experience to consumers by capturing voice commands from three times the standard distance, around corners, in noisy and reflective environments, and without lowering playback volume.

Additionally, EveryWord technology provides a unique ability to identify and suppress speech from T.V. or other single-point noise sources.

EveryWord voice solutions can be customized for a company’s eco-system and applied to various products, including speakers, soundbars, televisions, appliances, voice controllers, and gadgets. The modules can be installed in hubs, ceilings, and in-wall for smart home or office applications.

EveryWord technology does not require source-ducking for reliable interaction, provides linear, circular, square, triangular, or 3-D mic array geometries, and requires fewer microphones. The technology features ultra-low power battery operation for wake-on-word, and the flexibility for placement of microphones allows for in-wall, ceiling, or dashboard solutions. The 3D mic array (unlike others’ linear beam-forming approach) enables fewer blind spots and increased performance while incorporating fewer redundant microphone arrays for coverage.

All ArkX solutions are Alexa-compatible and meet or exceed all requirements for the Amazon Voice Services (AVS) qualifications. In addition to Alexa, EveryWord is compatible with other platforms such as Google, Siri, Cortana, AliGenie, Baidu/Kitt.ai, Tencent, and Sensory.

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Mouser Electronics Supports FIRST Robotics Competition, Nurtures Future Engineers and Innovators

Wed, 03/22/2023 - 11:06

Mouser Electronics is excited to announce its continued sponsorship of FIRST Robotics Competition, which inspires innovation and fosters well-rounded life capabilities in tens of thousands of young people every year. During the 2022-23 FIRST Robotics Competition season, nearly 100,000 high-school students on more than 3,400 teams from across the world are learning, discovering, and solving engineering challenges through a series of robotics events.

“Since our founding, education has been a main facet of Mouser’s mission,” said Kevin Hess, Mouser’s Senior Vice President of Marketing. “We are very honored to once again be a sponsor of FIRST Robotics Competition, which we have proudly supported for a decade. The organization gives students around the world a platform for innovation, a chance to learn valuable engineering skills, and an opportunity to build character and self-esteem.”

Since 2014, Mouser has been a major supporter of FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a leading youth-serving nonprofit advancing science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education through hands-on robotics programs. Mouser sponsors FIRST virtual and live competitions at the local, regional, state, and international levels. Joining Mouser in the sponsorship is valued manufacturer partner Analog Devices, Inc.

The global authorized distributor will be a major presenting co-sponsor of the FIRST® in Texas/UIL State Robotics Championships, planned for April 6-8 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, Texas. Mouser also supports FIRST teams in its community, providing grants for local high school teams.

Additionally, Mouser will continue its exclusive sponsorship of the Hall of Fame at the 2023 FIRST Championship, April 19-21 in Houston\. The Hall of Fame honors the winning FIRST Robotics Competition teams of the esteemed Impact Award, which rewards the teams who best exemplify the goals and values of FIRST.

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Mouser-Backed DS PENSKE Team Readies for First-Ever Formula E Race in Brazil

Wed, 03/22/2023 - 10:54

Mouser Electronics is excited to cheer on the DS PENSKE Formula E race team in Sao Paulo, Brazil, for round 6 of the 2022-23 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship. The race, which will be on March 25, will mark the first time the series makes a stop in Brazil.

The track in Sao Paulo will consist of three long straights connected by tricky chicanes with a total of 14 turns and a total distance of 2.96 KM. Sharp breaking and exciting chances to pass will keep everyone on their toes. Team drivers for the Sao Paulo race are Season 8 Champion Stoffel Vandoorne and two-time Formula E Champion Jean-Éric Vergne, fresh off his second-place finish in Cape Town, South Africa.

Mouser is supporting the DS PENSKE team for the globe-trekking 2022–23 season, in collaboration with TTI, Inc. and valued manufacturers Molex and KYOCERA AVX. Mouser and Molex have been partnering to sponsor Formula E racing since 2015.

Formula E is an international, fully electric street racing series the aspires to accelerate change towards an electric future, one race and one city at a time. Using the spectacle of world-class sport, The Formula E series sends a powerful and meaningful message to help alter perceptions and speed up the switch to electric mobility. Using the very latest technology, the DS Performance Team has stretched the boundaries of efficiency and performance with the DS E-TENSE powertrain and software. Racing is all about speed and endurance, and racing sponsorships are an innovative way for Mouser to communicate its performance-driven business model and promote the newest technologies from its manufacturer partners.

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Why Expanding the Potential of MCUs Needs a New Way of Thinking

Tue, 03/21/2023 - 21:20
Brendon Slade, Director General Purpose MCU Ecosystem, NXP

Microcontrollers (MCUs) have undergone numerous technological advances, from hardware cryptography to sophisticated graphics capabilities, and yet, in all of this time, software development has struggled to keep up. In this blog, learn about the challenges engineers face when it comes to software development on MCU platforms, how NXP plans to solve these challenges and why the power of choice is an essential part of the future for MCUs.

New Hardware Capabilities, Old Software Development

As with all electronics, microcontrollers have undergone massive changes since the first MCUs were introduced in the 1970s. The first truly commercially viable MCUs, such as the ubiquitous 8051, were based on 8-bit technologies and incorporated a few timers, a UART port, ADC, and if lucky, a DAC. These devices were incredibly simple, easy to understand, had a minimal instruction set and could be used easily with low-level languages, such as assembler.

Fast forward to 2023 and MCUs have undergone massive changes, with significantly larger memories, faster CPUs and countless peripherals ranging from advanced motor control to machine learning (ML) accelerators. However, one of the most significant changes that MCUs have seen is the increase in complexity in their internal architecture, and this has made modern MCUs very challenging to code from scratch without the help of drivers to provide abstraction from the underlying hardware.

To help engineers coding modern MCUs, software solutions and tools are widely available to eliminate the need for register-level programming, including drivers and advanced configuration tools. While these tools are essential for getting projects to work, the software infrastructure used to code MCUs has not advanced to the same degree as the hardware, resulting in a significant technological gap between software and hardware.

What software challenges exist for MCUs?

No matter the platform, software development on MCUs faces a multitude of challenges, including locked platforms, limited portability, fragmentation, lack of open-source support, restrictions to developer freedom and a lack of standardization.

To start, most MCU platforms typically lock engineers to that platform because of the effort involved to port code elsewhere, making it very time consuming to move to another architecture or vendor, even if the processor core (such as Arm® Cortex-M®) used by these platforms is the same. While this may not be problematic for simpler projects that don’t utilize the full capabilities of the MCU or its peripherals, it can be devastating for projects that need to switch to a different manufacturer due to changing hardware requirements. Where OEMs have a broad range of products ranging across price and power needs, using a range of diverse MCUs may be unavoidable so the cost of maintaining what are, essentially, multiple code bases can be very high.

Another software challenge that can affect engineers is the stark differences in IDEs. It is common for engineers to work with numerous devices across various manufacturers as each device will be particularly well suited for specific applications. But with each platform, an engineer must learn how that IDE works, where tools are located and how to get projects running. Thus, it can be immensely time consuming for an engineer to keep up with new changes in each development environment.

Furthermore, it is rare for an MCU vendor to support more than one free IDE platform, and most of these are based around Eclipse, which is recognized as an industry workhorse for software development. Eclipse is a highly popular IDE and has been customized very effectively for ease of use by some vendors, but it can impose extensive CPU and memory resource requirements due to its Java-based core. By comparison, Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code (VS Code) is extremely lightweight and fast, explaining why many engineers are choosing it over other development environments.

IAR, and Arm Keil, long-established experts in the premium development tools space, offer IDEs that provide their own spin on specialist debugging capabilities, as well as high-performance optimizing compilers and safety certification. These Platinum-level NXP partners work closely with us to enable support for their tools out of the box with MCUXpresso SDK software packages. Even these development tool powerhouses have acknowledged the popularity and flexibility of Visual Studio Code by introducing support for their compilers such that a hybrid approach to editing and building with this tool can be combined with their specialized debug experiences.

Introducing MCUXpresso for Visual Studio Code

Recognizing the importance of Visual Studio Code to modern developers, NXP has now introduced MCUXpresso for VS Code, an extension that provides full support for our MCUXpresso software drivers and middleware, enabling developers to use the highly popular IDE for fast and responsive coding. In addition to more traditional MCUXpresso SDK flows, this new extension provides full support for developers working with the open-source Zephyr RTOS, providing a much-improved experience over existing solutions.

MCUXpresso for Visual Studio Code Block Diagram

MCUXpresso Hardware Abstraction Layer

To help engineers with code portability among different MCU platforms, NXP is introducing a new Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL) to provide developers with a set of APIs that are identical among i.MX RT, LPC5500 and MCX MCUs. With the introduction of this new HAL, NXP MCU code can be fully portable across this broad portfolio of devices, opening up a huge range of choices power/performance points without the barrier of code porting.

While the introduction of a HAL in itself is not new, the fact that it is based on open-source API definitions already in use with other platforms illustrates NXP’s commitment to providing power of choice. With this approach, engineers not only have the freedom to move across different NXP devices, but can even transport their code to other silicon vendors. This flexibility provides the ultimate freedom for designers who can write MCU code that is no longer locked to a single hardware platform, bringing firmware design closer to a device-agnostic future.

NXP and Open-CMSIS-Packs

The use of middleware in MCU solutions is becoming increasingly important. Because of the growing complexity of MCU design and application requirements, engineers are turning to software libraries that can provide advanced features such as graphics processing, network stacks, USB device enumeration, audio capabilities, and even ML/AI. In these cases, trying to incorporate third-party middleware sourced from another company into a project can be extremely challenging as software from one provider may differ in format and style from another. Consequently, several manual steps may be necessary to restructure the external software into the required folders as well as integrating the compilation commands, and these problems may reoccur each time a new library is delivered by the supplier.

To help engineers incorporate middleware into their projects, all the IDEs in the MCUXpresso ecosystem now offer Open-CMSIS-Pack support. These complete software products are packaged using a specific standard and format so that IDEs can automatically identify the contents, add the needed files to a project, configure build tools, and provide access to APIs. As dependencies are incorporated into Open-CMSIS-Packs, engineers do not have to spend hours downloading separate files from different locations, nor do they need to check if the versions downloaded are compatible.

Why Power of Choice Is the Future of MCU Design

Just as the computer industry evolved toward unification and open standards, MCU ecosystems can benefit greatly by following suit, creating a new environment where firmware engineers can write code that will be hardware agnostic. This doesn’t mean that hardware will become less important; if anything, hardware will continue to play a critical role in product design. What will change is that those creating firmware will be able to do so without worrying about code portability, what device is executing their software and how that software interfaces with hardware.

The use of unification and industry standards in MCUs will also enable rapid increases in the adoption of open-source software. If MCU software becomes highly portable, it becomes much easier to share MCU code as it is able to target more platforms. This will help accelerate open-source projects as engineers across different silicon vendors can all jointly develop software solutions for mutual benefit while using their own native platforms.

Introducing open standards for HALs among MCUs will also help encourage new manufacturers to adopt these standards, as their devices will be compatible with most (if not all) existing software solutions. Therefore, new MCUs can be rapidly adopted, thereby increasing the speed at which engineers can use cutting-edge solutions without requiring major new investments in software resources.

This power of choice ultimately will ease fragmentation in the MCU industry, and isn’t that what today’s developers want?

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How Ethernet, PCIe and ASA Combine in Tomorrow’s Software-Defined Vehicles

Tue, 03/21/2023 - 21:10

David Schellenberger, Microchip Technologies

The autonomous vehicle is a complex system that requires large amounts of real-time data, cloud connectivity and fast, safe and secure decision making—it’s like a data center on wheels.

Hardware in Next-Generation Software-Defined Vehicles

As today’s cars adopt higher levels of automation (see Figure 1), they incorporate increasingly sophisticated combinations of electronic components: Central Processing Units (CPUs), Electronic Control Units (ECUs), Graphics Processing Units (GPUs), New Acoustic Dimensions (NADs), Systems-on-Chips (SoCs), sensors, accelerators and storage devices. The architecture and communication between the electronic components must be carefully designed to meet stringent safety, reliability, performance, cost and latency demands.

Figure 1 (Source: SAE International)

Within a vehicle, there are many ECUs that combine across separate zones based on a common functionality. These zonal ECUs communicate to high-performance compute platforms using Ethernet. Within the compute platform, there is a need for high-bandwidth processing to ensure that real-time decision making happens safely. Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) technology is being used by automotive designers in a manner very similar to how a data center is designed. Connecting sensors with high-speed serial outputs to processing units is best addressed with an open standard called Automotive SerDes Alliance (ASA).

Heterogenous Architecture for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)

The figure below displays an architectural diagram showing how the three types of connectivity data flows work together in a high-performance compute platform.

Figure 2

At the top of the diagram, a video camera connects to multiple compute SoCs using the ASA Motion Link SerDes (purple) for the high-speed serial data, scaling from 2 to 16 Gbps. The width of the traffic data connections is an indication of its relative bandwidth. This ASA Motion Link standard may also be used to connect displays, separated from the Ethernet traffic. More compute SoCs can be added as higher levels of autonomy are sought and more sensors are added.

On the bottom of the diagram shown in blue are two Ethernet bridges going to the zonal ECUs within the vehicle; the symmetric point-to-point IP-based connectivity bandwidth can scale up to 10 Gbps. Each of these Ethernet bridges is carrying other sensor traffic, from various zones. Additional Ethernet to PCIe bridges may be added for new zones to support scaling for higher levels of autonomy.

Local storage is displayed as an orange box using NVMe technology. Multiple compute sources, such as SoCs and safety microcontrollers (MCUs), need to access this storage at high speeds, so the interconnect is handled through a PCIe switch (in dark blue). Using PCIe Gen4, the symmetric point-to-point connectivity can range from 16 to 64 Gbps (4 lanes) per port.

The safety MCU has low-bandwidth control signals shown by the yellow arrows inside the PCIe switch. For engineering debug purposes, there’s a green debug port shown on the left side connected to the PCIe switch.

The Advantages of Combining PCIe, Ethernet and ASA

Although the three communications technologies evolved at different times to support different needs, the heterogeneous architecture takes advantage of the strengths and tradeoffs of each of them—and PCIe pulls it all together.

The PCIe standard was created in 2003 by Intel, Dell, HP and IBM, targeting desktop and laptop devices to connect the graphics card to the CPU and main memory. It has evolved over the years to include up to 16 lanes of traffic and there are six-speed versions, so its use has now expanded into data centers and automotive systems. Packets are used in PCIe, along with error checks at multiple layers: transaction, data link and physical. The PCIe hardware guarantees error-free transactions, making for a reliable transport mechanism and well suited for mission-critical vehicle usage. Even the latency of PCIe is shorter than Ethernet, making it a great choice for inter-process communications used by ADAS.

We offer a family of PCIe switches that can be used in vehicle ADAS applications. The SwitchTec PFX Fanout PCIe Switch family is the world’s first automotive-qualified PCIe switch family and offers 28-, 36- and 52-lane versions with industry-leading features, flexibility and performance.

Ethernet was first developed in the 1970s and is an established standard used worldwide for all computer networking, so it’s a smart choice for automotive in-vehicle networking use, meeting cyber security and networking demands. The speeds of Ethernet are also much higher than previous standards like CAN, CAN FD, FlexRay and MOST technology. Multi-gig automotive Ethernet standards for 2.5 Gbps, 5 Gbps and 10 Gbps are defined by the IEEE® 802.3ch working group. With single, twisted-pair (UTP) cabling, Ethernet is both lightweight and low cost, ideal for automotive use. We offer a full line of Ethernet switches and PHYs for automotive use.

We’ve now reached an era of software-defined vehicles and it’s exciting to see all the new ADAS features being added from vendors across the globe in a competitive race to reach the goal of Level 5 autonomous driving. PCIe, Ethernet and ASA complement each other and this combination of networking standards is positioned to meet the needs of automotive designers now and in the future.

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ASIL C Safety Rated Field Current Sensor for Electric Vehicle Powertrain Systems – Allegro MicroSystems

Tue, 03/21/2023 - 21:04

Allegro MicroSystems, a global leader in power and sensing solutions for motion control and energy efficient systems, today announces the release of samples for the ACS37601, an ASIL C safety rated, high-precision, field current sensor with best-in-class accuracy for traction and auxiliary inverter systems as well as battery management systems (BMS) in electric vehicles (EVs).

Designers of inverter and battery management systems are challenged to achieve higher safety targets based on new Automotive Safety Integrity Level (ASIL) requirements.

To enable customers to meet these new safety requirements, while increasing system efficiency and extending battery life, Allegro has developed the ACS37601 programmable linear Hall-effect current sensor IC with overcurrent, overtemperature, and self-test capabilities. Designed to achieve high accuracy and resolution without compromising bandwidth, the ACS37601 is Allegro’s highest-accuracy field current sensor for applications requiring measurement capability greater than 200 Amperes.

“Allegro’s ACS37601 is enabling us to meet e-mobility functional safety and accuracy requirements in our BMS and EV traction inverter current sensor applications,” says Julio Urrea, vice president of business development at Littelfuse, a diversified industrial technology company empowering a sustainable, connected, and safer world in the electronics, transportation, and industrial markets.

To be used along with a C-core, the ACS37601 is the first ASIL C-rated field current sensor that achieves 0.8% sensitivity error and less than 5 mV offset error over the automotive temperature range, and—with 30% less noise than legacy devices—this IC is ideal for battery management applications. The high operating bandwidth from DC to 240 kHz and fast 2 μs response time enable new performance in DC battery charging and high-frequency automotive inverter applications. To support adoption of the most advanced microprocessors without requiring additional components, the ACS37601 works with 5 V or 3.3 V power supplies.

“Littelfuse has a history of excellence as an automotive supplier with a tremendous global footprint. We are excited to work with them to deliver industry-leading magnetic current sensor accuracy and safety to EV powertrain applications,” says Shaun Milano, business unit director for current sensors at Allegro.

To help designers deliver the most-advanced ASIL-compliant battery management and inverter systems, samples of the ACS37601 are currently offered in an extremely thin (1 mm-thick), 4-pin single in-line package (SIP), referred to as the KT package. The KT package is available in straight leads (suffix TN) as well as a lead-formed option (suffix TH), enabling surface-mount assembly and a high tolerance to mechanical vibrations. The package is lead (Pb) free, with 100% matte tin leadframe plating.

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Current and future trends in Conformal Coatings

Tue, 03/21/2023 - 21:00

Saskia Hogan, Global Product Manager Conformal Coatings, Electrolube

This article “Current and future trends in Conformal Coatings”, focusses on both the currently used coatings and the change in trend towards more environmentally conscious options.  The environmental element can be present in a host of different ways: for example, the use of less hazardous solvents; the reduction of solvents utilising alternative techniques or the use of conformal coatings with a higher content of bio-based materials.

2022 has marked the year of MacDermid Alpha’s Electrolube brand working with bio-based material. Electrolube is committed to the formulation of some coatings containing a higher degree of bio-organic content, addressing sustainability targets of some manufacturers and end-users. One of the commonly asked questions, is just how well can coatings containing bio-organic content perform? The answer may surprise you; during testing it has been observed that improvements in terms of performance and reliability are present.  Sustainability is a hot topic at the moment how this integrated solutions provider is paving the way for a more sustainable future. However, for now, let’s start at the beginning of our journey for an environmentally friendlier and more sustainable future.

Do you see the future of coatings as ‘greener’ or will there always be a demand for the more traditional solvent-based coatings?

Solvent-based conformal coatings are the most used conformal coatings in the electronics market, and they have their advantages. They are easy to use, cost effective and there is a wide selection available in the market. Whilst solvent-based conformal coatings will surely stay with us for quite some time, and are still incredibly popular, we also see a shift to a more careful attitude towards our resources and to more environmentally friendly and sustainable conformal coating products.

Specifically with younger generations on the electronics consumer side, but also in the workplace as product designers, electronic design engineers, chemical engineers, marketeers, just to name a few, we are finding more and more interest in sustainability and environmentally friendlier solutions, as well as the willingness to create products and solutions that really make a difference. This feeds through the supply chain and puts pressure onto different parts of the supply chain to provide more environmentally friendly solutions to support a greener approach and ultimately a greener future.

We also see an increased demand in protection materials for electronics that withstand harsher environments than ever before. The requirements are increasing rapidly and the pressure is on! If it then turns out, as we have seen from our research, that there are natural materials and materials from food waste, for instance, that can provide similar or better properties and protection, it seems only logical to dig into these renewables for coating product development. Nature is providing us with better solutions that are sustainable, as they are efficient … So, yes, I think there is a definite future for ‘greener’ conformal coatings.

There are other conformal coatings available in addition to solvent-based options, such as UV cure, 100% solids conformal coatings. How do they compare to solvent-based materials, and what are the differences between different UV cure coatings regarding the secondary cure mechanism?

For some manufacturers, solvent-based materials may represent a problem, and a way to circumvent this would be to utilise 100% solids, solvent, and VOC free materials. The traditional UV cure materials with secondary moisture cure, do however, come with its own challenges. When we look for example at the traditional UV cure conformal coatings, we find materials that have a UV primary cure and a secondary moisture cure. This means that wherever the correct UV light wavelength reaches the coating, it will cure the material within a matter of seconds. However, the problems lie within the shadow areas; in short, the areas that are not reached by the UV light. These specific areas will require a secondary cure. High components or under component parts will require the secondary cure to ensure an even protection level is achieved.

Many common UV cure coatings use atmospheric moisture for their secondary cure, which can release by-products that produce a strong odour. In applications, where the PCB is placed in an airtight enclosure, the available moisture can be limited, potentially resulting in an insufficient cure, and limited protection of the electronics.  Therefore, it is important to leave the coated PCB until the secondary cure has fully taken place. Depending on the UV coating, the secondary cure can take days, weeks, and, in some cases, even months.

A chemical cure, functioning as a secondary cure is fundamentally different to a moisture cure. The chemical cure happens with the conformal coating, not being a single component material but a material that is consisting of a part A and a part B that will be mixed and react with each other to cure. So, after the UV primary cure has taken place, the material will go into the secondary cure phase without the need of any environmental input.

The secondary cure will happen much quicker, depending on the coating, coating thickness and temperature (normally between 16 and 24 hours). The coated PCB can be handled and, in most cases, even assembled into an enclosure straight away. As there are no requirements for moisture, the enclosure can be sealed without concern relating to uncured material.

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The Vital Role of 1.6T Networking in Emerging Technology

Tue, 03/21/2023 - 20:55

Ben Miller, PRODUCT MARKETING MANAGER, Keysight Technologies

Although warehouses filled with acres of buzzing server racks may not seem like the most likely places to find exciting new technology, data centers play a crucial role in the emerging technologies of tomorrow. Industry 4.0, artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR), metaverse, and Internet-of-Things (IoT) are all high-demand applications which rely on data centers to provide powerful computing resources.

For the last three decades, modern society has increasingly depended on data center networks. Ethernet speeds have increased dramatically, transmitting high volumes of data that the modern world uses to communicate and make complex decisions. Despite many recent innovations in the high-speed networking space, data speeds need to keep up with the exponential demand. Further innovation in high-speed networking will enable 800 gigabits per second (800G) and 1.6 terabits per second (1.6T) speeds, opening the door to a more connected world.


A significant trend in data in recent years has been offloading data processing to external servers. Hyperscale data centers have popped up globally to support cloud computing networks. Smaller data centers have now become more common for time-sensitive applications using localized edge computing . Data centers have evolved beyond the Internet, becoming “intelligence factories” that provide powerful computing resources for high-demand applications.

In an Internet application, individual computers (clients) connect to a modem or router, which sends data to a server elsewhere. Cloud and edge computing work similarly: users can log into a server that hosts more powerful programs than they can run on their own hardware. It is easy to see why so many emerging technologies could benefit from offloading processing to external servers.

Figure 1: Autonomous vehicles are a prime example of the benefits of offloading data to edge computing

Edge computing is interesting for its impact on autonomous vehicles (AVs). Safely operating an AV requires thousands of urgent decisions. Instead of hosting a supercomputer in the car to process the sensor data or sending it to a distant data center, AVs utilize smaller servers on the “edge,” closer to the client, dramatically reducing latency by processing locally. Data from other vehicles and road infrastructure are part of an ecosystem of clients which feed a central server (this technology is called “vehicle-to-everything” or V2X). The server can make the best decisions for all clients, resulting in intersections without stoplights or collisions.

Cloud computing applications are numerous and diverse, from controlling factory robots to maximize efficiency, hosting thousands of VR users in the metaverse, or hosting remote AI programs like ChatGPT and DALL-E. In most of these applications, transmitting and processing data instantly is key. Timing is essential, and latency requirements differentiate cloud and edge computing applications. Network lag in the metaverse could make users motion sick, but lag in a V2X ecosystem could cause a deadly collision.

Today’s 400G data centers can support streaming 4K video and large conference calls, but they are not yet fast enough for many emerging applications. As the sheer volume of data increases worldwide, 800G may not even be fast enough to process it. The networking industry is already looking toward 1.6T.


To understand 1.6T research and development, one first needs to understand data centers. Data centers are organized around a core router, fed by a network of switches that provide connections between each row and rack of servers. Each server rack features a top-of-rack (TOR) switch that routes data and delegates processes to specific servers. Copper or fiber optic cables connect the backplane of each server with optical modules that perform the electro-optic conversion.

Figure 2: A typical data center structure featuring core, spine, and leaf switches connecting each server.

Physical layer transceivers follow Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Optical Internetworking Forum (OIF) standards. These two groups define the interoperability of each interface, including the die-to-die connections, the chip-to-module and chip-to-chip interfaces, and the backplane cables. The most recent standards, as of this writing, are IEEE 802.3ck, which defines 100G, 200G and 400G networks using multiple 100 Gb/s lanes, and OIF CEI-112G, a collection of standards relating to the transmission of data at 112 Gb/s per lane.

Figure 3: Switch silicon, module, and backplane connections defined by OIF CEI and IEEE standards. Image courtesy Alphawave IP.


In 1983, when the first IEEE 802.3 standard was released, Ethernet speeds were only 10 Mb/s. Over the last few decades, Ethernet speeds have grown dramatically through continuous innovation, reaching 400 Gb/s aggregated by four 56 GBaud (GBd) PAM4 lanes. The industry expects to double the speed twice over the next couple of years to keep up with bandwidth demand. How can developers double Ethernet speeds twice over the next few years? Is it physically possible to send that much data over a channel that quickly?

Figure 4: Ethernet speeds timeline, from the first 10 Mb/s IEEE 802.3 standard to the upcoming 800G/1.6T IEEE 802.3df standard.

Now you understand how important data centers are to emerging technologies and why the IEEE and OIF are continuously working on increasing networking speeds to meet demand. In Part Two: Challenges and Innovations for 1.6T Data Center Networks, I’ll discuss the research and development on 800G and 1.6T networks. We’ll look at options that the industry is considering to increase data network speeds and the technical tradeoffs of each. I will also share some insights on when we might see these ultra-fast hyperscale data centers become a reality.

To learn more, take the 1.6T Ethernet in the Data Center course on Keysight University to get exclusive insights from a variety of industry experts from across the networking ecosystem.

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The development of EV charging infrastructure and technology

Tue, 03/21/2023 - 18:46
EV Charging Infrastructure

Electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure, often referred to as electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE), is at the core of the EV ecosystem. Essentially, it describes infrastructure for charging EVs. Similar to mobile network infrastructure that supports a comprehensive communication system for mobile telecommunications, EVSE is a comprehensive power supply and control system that supports charging piles for EVs.

The simplest EV charging station is an electronic device, usually in the form of wall-mounted or piles, that draws from the power grid to safely charge vehicle batteries. Different types of chargers offer varying current and voltage levels to satisfy the specific battery requirements of various vehicles, ranging from 500 watts (W) to 500 kilowatts (kW).

Most vehicles are equipped with on-board charger systems that convert alternating current (AC) from the power grid to the direct current (DC) required to charge batteries. On-board charger systems allow vehicles to directly charge using standard household plugs (slow alternating current) or dedicated AC chargers (medium speed alternating current) in the home, at the workplace, or in public places. Chargers that bypass converters and provide DC charging to vehicle batteries, known as DC chargers or DC fast chargers, are capable of providing faster charging speeds.

Charging equipment often has some level of smart capabilities, enabling it to offer user verification, vehicle communications, data collection and monitoring, and payment. Various models may be capable of 2-way control under some circumstances, adjusting the power level entering the batteries via a control system based on price signals or other control factors. Other chargers are sometimes called “dumb” chargers that lack any control of communication functionality. They simply adjust electricity from power grids to the current and voltage required by the receiving batteries.

Hardware Infrastructure of EV Charging Systems

Standard charging systems include the following basic hardware components:

  • Power electronic components are at the core of charging stations. They provide power to the on-board battery chargers on EVs.
  • Charging controllers, the smart equipment in charging stations, manage basic charging functions such as activating or deactivating the charger, monitoring power use, and saving critical real-time data for incidents.
  • Network controllers offer broader network connectivity to charging stations. They allow charging stations to utilize telecommunications equipment and conduct network communications so that systems administrators can monitor, review and control the use of equipment. They can also manage user access to charging stations.
  • Cables and connectors known as charging guns are inserted into vehicles to establish a safe physical connection between chargers and vehicles. Charging guns or connectors generally comply with specific standard formats of car OEMs (such as CCS, CHAdeMO, SAE J1772, IEC 60309).

  • Data Management

EVs and EV chargers constantly generate important data related to battery charging status such as the charge rate of the battery, kilowatt-hour (kWh) used during charging, the power grid’s price signal, and requested response signals from management systems. Charging management software aims to manage and operate charging stations and their networks with efficiency and accuracy. Network software utilizes the 2-way data process between charging stations and their network control centers to effectively promote the rapid deployment and configuration of EV charging systems while explaining the remote configuration, management, and software updates performed by operators. Charging management software can set up and control drivers’ charging permissions, set prices, manage billing, and generate usage reports.

  • Maintenance and Service

Like any piece of equipment subjected to continuous public usage, EV chargers require a degree of service and maintenance. Public charger services are generally the responsibility of their owners or operators, not the power companies that supply their power. However, power companies that own public charging stations are of course responsible for the regular service and maintenance of their property.

Development of EV Charging Technology

Before EVs, the expression “range anxiety” was unheard of. Today, you hear it mentioned in almost every conversation about EVs and their charging systems. While some people still worry that EV batteries lack the power required to reach their destinations, recent technological advances have greatly relieved “range anxiety”. These advances are empowering EV batteries with the charging capacity to charge faster, for longer.

Let’s look at recent developments in EV charging technology.

  • Battery Storage

Household charging is relatively simple, since the costs incurred are simply added to homeowners’ energy bills and paid as usual. However, charging costs can be challenging for many employees who need to charge their vehicles at work, and for companies that rely on a large number of vehicles. The good news is, battery storage technology offers a solution that charges and stores energy during off-peak hours. During these periods of lower demand, tiered pricing is at a lower level. During peak periods of energy use, such as during work hours, the energy subsequently stored in batteries during off-peak hours effectively relieves the pressure on the power grid and on the user’s pocket, when load and prices are at their highest. Hence electricity costs are significantly reduced.

  • Wireless Charging

It sounds almost too good to be true – the ability to charge vehicles wirelessly, similar to the way in which we can charge smartphones. Technological advances offer all kinds of possibilities. Massive objects like cars require a huge amount of charging power, which is obviously very different from directly placing a smartphone on a wireless charger. Among the many challenges are space and cost issues. For starters, wireless EV charging requires:

  • An additional charger integrated into the vehicle, which increases vehicle cost
  • Wireless chargers integrated into public places, which is extremely costly
  • A shorter distance between chargers and vehicles for increased efficiency

Many vehicle and EVSE manufacturers such as Genesis/WiTricity, DKE, Project STILLE (Germany), and CATARC (China) are all pushing the limits of wireless EV charging technology.

  • Megawatt Charging System (MCS)

Another advance in EV charging technology is high-performance charging that allows massive EVs such as heavy trucks and public transport vehicles to operate over longer distances. This is known as high-power megawatt charging. Like wireless RV charging, there are many barriers to overcome before widespread adoption will be possible. High-power megawatt charging systems (MCSs) require:

  • High-capacity EV batteries and thicker cables to increase charging power
  • Elevated safety standards due to higher charging loads
  • Further increases in speed and efficiency (truly fast charging should complete 1MW of power within 15 to 20 minutes)
  • Fast charging stations capable of simultaneously charging multiple vehicles

Megawatt charging technology is currently being applied to light electric aircraft, ferries, and some other ships. With the adoption of megawatt charging technology, battery storage will become critical for handling peak electricity demand in power grids.

  • Mobile EV Charging

Mobile EV charging systems include portable chargers, charging cars or trailers, and temporary chargers. The advantage of mobile charging systems is that they eliminate the need for permanent charging infrastructure, and provide the flexibility of moving charging devices to wherever they are needed. This charging technology and solution is highly effective in specific scenarios such as charging EVs in car dealerships, or providing mobile charging via rescue vehicles for EVs that have run out of power on the road.

  • Automatic EV Charging

While automatic and wireless charging are interchangeable to a certain extent, they differ in that wireless charging usually requires driver intervention, such as parking on a charging plate. Automatic charging, as its name implies, happens automatically without any driver input.

Imagine installing charging plates under road asphalt so that electric buses can charge on the move, or installing autonomous charging plates under the asphalt of parking lots or home garages. Automatic charging is especially important for self-driving cars, to allow them to be charged in diverse situations without human driver intervention. While it will still be several years before self-driving cars can operate on public roads, they are already in use in the loading zones of some container ports. Self-driving EV charging technology is being developed to keep pace with the growing demand.


Given the current focus on carbon emissions, carbon neutrality, and the electrification of roads, the development of EV charging infrastructure will undoubtedly accelerate. It is quite possible that automatic and wireless charging equipment will become relatively commonplace in the near future – allowing us to break free from our reliance on fossil fuels and embrace bluer skies, a cleaner environment, and better lives.

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