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∆Vbe differential thermometer needs no calibration

EDN Network - Втр, 02/06/2024 - 17:17

Differential temperature measurement is a handy way to quantify the performance of heatsinks, thermoelectric coolers (TECs), and thermal control in electronic assemblies. Figure 1 illustrates an inexpensive design for a high-resolution differential thermometer utilizing the ∆Vbe effect to make accurate measurements with ordinary uncalibrated transistors as precision temperature sensors. 

Here’s how it works.

Figure 1 Transistors Q1 and Q2 perform self-calibrated high resolution differential temperature measurements.

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Diode connected transistors Q1 and Q2 do duty as precision temperature sensors driven by switches U1and U1c and respective resistors R2, R3, R13, and R14. The excitation employed comprises alternating-amplitude current-mode signals in the ratio of (almost exactly):

10:1 = (100 µA via R3 and R13):(10 µA via R2 and R14).

With this specific 10:1 excitation, most every friendly small-signal transistor will produce an AC voltage signal accurately proportional to absolute temperature with peak-to-peak amplitude given by:

∆Vbe = Absolute Temperature / 5050 = 198.02 µV/oC.

The temperature-difference-proportional signals from Q1 and Q2 are boosted by ~100:1 gain differential amplifier A1a and A1d, synchronously demodulated by U1b, then filtered by R11, C2, and C3 to produce a DC signal = 20 mV/oC. This is then scaled by a factor of 2.5 by A1c to produce the final Q1–Q2 differential temperature signal output of 50 mV/oC, positive for Q1 warmer than Q2, negative for Q2 warmer than Q1.

Some gritty design minutiae are:

  1. Although the modulation-current setting resistors are in an exact 10:1 current ratio, the resulting modulation current ratio isn’t quite…The ∆Vbe signal itself subtracts slightly from the 100 µA half-cycle, which reduces the actual current ratio from exactly 10:1 to 9.9:1. This cuts the ∆Vbe temperature signal by approximately -1%.
  2. Luckily, the gain of the A1a/d amplifier isn’t exactly the advertised 100 either but is actually (100k/10k + 1) =101. This +1% “error” neatly cancels the ∆Vbe signal’s -1% “error” to result in a final, acceptably accurate 20mV/oC demodulator output.
  3. The modulating/demodulating frequency Fc generated by the A1b oscillator is deliberately set by the R4C1 time constant to be half the power mains frequency (30 Hz for 60 Hz power and 25 Hz for 50 Hz) via the choice of R4 (160 kΩ for 60 Hz and 200 kΩ for 50 Hz). This averages a couple mains-frequency cycles into each temperature measurement and thus improves immunity to stray pickup of power-line coupled noise. It’s a useful trick because some differential-thermometry applications may involve noise-radiating, mains-frequency-powered heaters. For convenience, the R5/R6 ratio was chosen so that Fc = 1/(2R4C1).
  4. Resistor values adorned with an asterisk in the schematic denote precision metal-film types. Current-ratio-setting R2, R3, R13, and R14 are particularly critical to minimizing zero error and would benefit from being 0.1% types. The others are less so and 1% tolerance is adequate. No asterisk means 5% is good enough.

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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Faraday to manufacture 64-bit Arm processor on Intel 1.8-nm node

EDN Network - Втр, 02/06/2024 - 16:16

The paths of RISC processor powerhouse Arm and x86 giant Intel have finally converged after they signed a collaboration pact to manufacture chips on Intel’s 1.8 nm process node in April 2023. Hsinchu, Taiwan-based contract chip designer Faraday Technology will manufacture Arm Neoverse cores-based server processors on Intel Foundry Services (IFS) using the Intel 18A process technology.

Chip design service provider Faraday is designing a 64-core processor using Arm’s Neoverse Compute Subsystems (CSS) for a wide range of applications. That includes high-performance computing (HPC)-related ASICs and custom system-on-chips (SoCs) for scalable hyperscale data centers, infrastructure edge, and 5G networks. Though ASIC designer won’t sell these processors, it hasn’t named its end customers either.

Figure 1 Faraday’s chip manufactured on the 18A process node will be ready in the first half of 2025. Source: Intel

It’s a breakthrough for Arm to have its foot in the door for large data center chips. It’s also a design win for Arm’s Neoverse technology, which provides chip designers with whole processors unlike individual CPU or GPU cores. Faraday will use interface IPs from the Arm Total Design ecosystem as well, though no details have been provided.

Intel, though not so keen to see Arm chips in the server realm, where x86 chips dominate, still welcomes them to its brand-new IFS business. It will likely be one of the first Arm server processors manufactured in an Intel fab. It also provides Intel with an important IFS customer for its advanced fabrication node.

Intel’s 18A fabrication technology for 1.8-nm process node—boasting gate-all-around (GAA) RibbonFET transistors and PowerVia backside power delivery—offers a 10% performance-per-watt improvement over its 20A technology for 2-nm process. It’s expected to be particularly suitable for data center applications.

Figure 2 The 18A fabrication technology is particularly considered suitable for data center chips. Source: Intel

Intel has already got orders to manufacture data center chips, including one for 1.8-nm chips from the U.S. Department of Defense. Now, a notable chip designer from Taiwan brings Intel Arm-based chips, boosting IFS’ fabrication orders as well as its credentials for data center chips.

The production of this Faraday chip is expected to be complete in the first half of 2025.

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IBASE Technology Inc. Launches AMI240 Fanless System with Exceptional Connectivity and Performance

ELE Times - Втр, 02/06/2024 - 13:01

IBASE Technology Inc. has introduced its latest innovation in the realm of computing solutions – the AMI240 fanless system. This cutting-edge system, powered by the IBASE MBE240AF motherboard, promises unparalleled performance and connectivity options, catering to diverse applications across various industries.

Designed to accommodate 14th and 13th Gen Intel Core processors, including the Intel® i9-14900T processor with 24 cores and 36M cache, the AMI240 system offers exceptional processing power while maintaining energy efficiency. With a 35W TDP, it ensures optimal performance for demanding tasks, making it suitable for a wide range of applications.

One of the standout features of the AMI240 system is its compatibility with Sierra 5G modules, providing high-speed connectivity for advanced networking needs. Additionally, the system boasts a compact and space-efficient design, measuring just 210mm(W) x 285mm(D) x 77mm(H), making it suitable for installations where space is limited.

The system’s robust construction allows it to operate reliably in temperatures ranging from -20°C to 70°C, making it ideal for environments with extreme thermal conditions. This feature ensures that the system maintains its performance and functionality even in challenging operating environments.

Key features of the AMI240 fanless system include:

  • Fanless design featuring the IBASE MBE240AF motherboard
  • Support for 14th and 13th Gen Intel Core processors (i9/i7/i5/i3) with a 35W TDP
  • Dual SIM slots for WWAN redundancy (5G/4G/LTE)
  • Four RJ45 Ethernet ports (dual 2.5GbE + dual PoE+ supporting 802.3at)
  • Three M.2 slots (B-Key/E-Key/M-Key), iAMT (16.1), TPM (2.0)
  • Single 24V DC input with voltage protection (over/under/reverse)
  • Wide operating temperature range (-20°C to 70°C)

Furthermore, the AMI240 system offers comprehensive connectivity options, including dual SIM slots for WWAN redundancy, four RJ45 Ethernet ports with dual 2.5GbE and dual PoE+ support, and multiple M.2 slots for additional expansion. It also includes features such as iAMT (16.1), TPM (2.0), and PCI-E slots for further customization and expansion capabilities.

Overall, the AMI240 fanless system from IBASE Technology Inc. stands as a testament to the company’s commitment to delivering cutting-edge computing solutions with unparalleled performance, reliability, and connectivity options.

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element14 incorporates new, industry leading resistors from KOA Corp. into portfolio

ELE Times - Втр, 02/06/2024 - 09:04

Exceptional power and reliability at the core of the new resistor range adds new capabilities, temperature tolerance and space-saving options for developers.

element14 is now stocking a range of special flat chip resistor solutions from KOA Corporation (KOA).

Important to design engineers in a wide range of demanding markets, KOA resistors are an ideal choice for designers working in automotive, industrial, aerospace, medical, instrumentation and power conversion sectors.

Among the new resistors featured is the RN73R, a high-precision, high-reliability thin film resistor, that replaces the RN73 series with improved electrolytic corrosion resistance and higher stability.

The RN73H resistor in the series is designed for tough environments and is ideal for high-precision circuits for automotive, aerospace and other challenging applications. Despite their ultra-thin film, these resistors have excellent moisture resistance due to an additional inner protective layer.

A high-precision resistor now carried by element14 that uses thick film technology is the RS73, which makes it ideal for long-term stability when designing high-accuracy sensing or voltage detection circuits in automotive, industrial and measuring applications where ESD sensitivity is an issue.

The SG73P is an endured pulse power thick film resistor that has approximately seven times the pulse handling capability of standard flat chip resistors. Its special trimming gives it a higher power rating, which means that a SG73P device can be dropped onto the pads of a similar-sized conventional part, thus increasing the power capability without changing the PCB layout.

For designers who need to conserve board space, the new WK73R wide termination thick film resistor offers several advantages. For example, the 0612 chip size allows a 6x power rating compared to standard 1206 parts, which saves board space by improving heat dissipation. The larger terminals also enhance terminal strength and the smaller distance between the terminals reduces expansion stress.

element14’s new stock of KOA resistors also includes:

  • Flat chip resistors for high voltage applications, represented by KOA’s HV73(V)-series, designed for voltages up to 3 kV (2512 size with special coating and trimming insulation to ensure that higher voltages can be applied at operating temperatures up to +155 °C.
  • TLR low-ohm, high-power metal plate shunt resistors are offered in the ultra-low 0.5mΩ…20mΩ resistance range. Special trimming gives the device low inductance and removes any hotspots from the design.
  • The TLRZ series metal plate zero-ohm jumpers handle high currents in very small sizes. These low-profile jumpers are the perfect replacement for thick film devices in existing designs.
  • UR73 resistors are low resistance, low TCR thick film resistors that offer a cost-efficient approach for current sensing in the power range from 0.125 to 1 Watt and are available in sizes from 0402 to 2512.
  • KOA’s UR73V low resistance, low TCR thick film resistors for automotive applications cover the 10mΩ – 1Ω range and are a highly cost-effective approach to current sensing in automotive, power supply, motor control and many other industrial automation applications.

element14 Product Segment Leader, Resistors, Euan Gilligan, said, “KOA is known for the quality and reliability of their resistors and other products. We are delighted to make the benefits of their capabilities readily available to developers worldwide.”

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Defence Scenario in India & Role of Indian Startups in Defence Exports & Imports of India

ELE Times - Втр, 02/06/2024 - 08:28

Author: Capt. Nikunj Parashar, Founder & CMD, Sagar Defence Engineering Pvt. Ltd. 

In recent times, the Indian Defence sector has emerged as a focal point for the ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ initiative, emphasizing self-reliance and indigenous manufacturing. With a strong commitment from the government, the Defence and Aerospace sector is witnessing a transformative phase. Recognizing the significance of a robust domestic defence industry, the vision of the government that is steering towards transparency, predictability, and ease of doing business has led to the establishment of an indigenous manufacturing infrastructure, supported by a robust research and development ecosystem, that is at the forefront of this transformative journey.

Capt. Nikunj Parashar, Founder & CMD, Sagar Defence Engineering Pvt Ltd

In the quest for self-reliance, the Indian defence manufacturing industry has seen a surge in innovation driven by a vibrant ecosystem of startups. Contributing to the development of cutting-edge technologies that empower and support the country’s defence efforts, such startups have become key players in the larger goal of reducing dependency on external sources for defence procurement. To foster the growth of the domestic defence industry, the government has implemented various initiatives and measures such as de-licensing, de-regulation, export promotion, and liberalization of foreign investments aimed at creating a conducive environment for startups. The ‘Make in India’ and ‘Startup India’ initiatives, supported by other policy measures, have modernized the armed forces and boost indigenous manufacturing.

One significant step towards fostering innovation in the Defence and Aerospace ecosystem is the Innovations for Defence Excellence (iDEX) program. By providing a platform for collaboration between startups and the defence forces, iDEX accelerates the integration of innovative technologies into the country’s defence capabilities. In addition to iDEX, the government has implemented various supportive schemes to encourage innovation within the Defence and Aerospace sector. These schemes provide financial support, mentorship, and resources to startups, nurturing a culture of innovation and research. The ‘Make in India’ initiative is not just a slogan but a strategic move to reduce external dependency for defence procurement by promoting indigenous manufacturing, the government has enhanced the self-sufficiency of the Indian Defence sector. Startups, with their agility and innovation, play a crucial role in this process, contributing to the development of state-of-the-art technologies and products.

While the journey towards self-reliance in the defence sector is promising, it is not without challenges. Indian startups face obstacles such as funding constraints, regulatory hurdles, and the need for skilled manpower. However, the opportunities are immense. The government’s commitment to simplifying regulations, promoting exports, and encouraging foreign investment presents a favourable environment for startups to thrive. The role of Indian startups in defence exports is gaining prominence on the global stage with a focus on creating innovative solutions, these startups are well-positioned to cater to the evolving needs of the global defence market. Collaborations with foreign partners, facilitated by the government’s export promotion measures, have opened avenues for Indian startups to showcase their capabilities and contribute to global security. With continued support from the government and collaborative efforts, Indian startups are poised to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the country’s defence industry. The journey towards an Atmanirbhar Bharat is not just a vision but a collective effort, with startups leading the way into a new era of self-sufficiency and technological prowess.

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Project showcase - DIY wearable with HRM, IMU, and more

Reddit:Electronics - Втр, 02/06/2024 - 07:52
Project showcase - DIY wearable with HRM, IMU, and more

Work in progress project I’ve been working on !!!

submitted by /u/tinkerEE
[link] [comments]

M27C512 eprom

Reddit:Electronics - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 21:53
M27C512 eprom

Found another one of these lil guys from the agfa msc100 printer. Looks kinda "futuristic" even tho obsolete, but still cool...

submitted by /u/r_410a
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Walmart’s Mobile Scan & Go: Who it’s For, I really don’t know

EDN Network - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 17:47

During Amazon’s annual Prime Day (which is two days, to be precise, but I’m being pedantic) sale mid-July last year, Walmart coincidentally (right) ran a half-off promotion for its normally $98/year competing Walmart+ membership service in conjunction with its competing Walmart+ Week (four days—I know, pedantic again) sale. Copy-and-pasted from the help page:

Walmart+ is a membership that helps save you time and money. You’ll need a Walmart.com account and the Walmart app to access the money and time-saving features of membership.

 Benefits include:

  • Early access to promotions and events
  • Video Streaming with Paramount+
  • Free delivery from your store
  • Free shipping, no order minimum
  • Savings on fuel
  • Walmart Rewards
  • Mobile Scan & Go

Free shipping absent the normal $35 order minimum is nice, as is free delivery from my local store. Unfortunately, for unknown reasons, only three Walmarts in all of Colorado, none of them close to me, offer fuel service. Truth be told, though, my primary signup motivation was that my existing Paramount+ streaming service was nearing its one-year subscription renewal date, at which time the $24.99/year (plus a free Amazon Fire Stick Lite!) promotional discount would end and I’d be back to the normal $49.99/year price. Walmart+ bundles Paramount+ as one of its service offerings, and since the Walmart+ one-year promo price was the same (minus $0.99, to be pedantic) as I’d normally pay for Paramount+ standalone, the decision was easy.

But none of these was the primary motivation for this writeup. Instead, I’ll direct your attention to the last entry in the bullet list, Walmart’s Mobile Scan & Go:

Here’s the summary from Walmart’s website:

Shop & check out fast with your phone in-store. Just scan, pay, & be on your way!

  • Get Walmart Cash by easily claiming manufacturer offers as you scan
  • Check out fast at self-checkout without having to rescan each item
  • See the price of items as you go

 It’s easy in 3 simple steps!

  • Open your Walmart app: Select Scan & go from the Store Mode landing page. Make sure your location access is enabled.
  • Scan your items as you shop: Once your items are scanned, click “View cart” to verify that everything is correct.
  • Tap “Check out”: Tap the blue “Check out” button in the app & head over to self-checkout. Confirm your payment method. Scan QR code at register.

Sounds good, right? I’d agree with you, at least at first glance. And even now, after using the service with some degree of regularity over the past few months, I remain “gee-whiz” impressed with many aspects of the underlying technology. Take this excerpt, for example:

Open your Walmart app: Select Scan & go from the Store Mode landing page. Make sure your location access is enabled.

To elaborate: if you’ve enabled location services for the Walmart app on your Android or iOS device, it’ll know when you’re at a store, automatically switching the user interface to one more amenable to helping you find which aisle (and region in that aisle) a product you’re looking for can be found (to wit, “Store Mode”), versus the more traditional online-inventory search. And if you’re also logged into the app, it knows who you are and will, among other things, auto-bill your in-store purchases to the credit card associated with your account.

Keep in mind, however, that (IMHO) the fundamental point of the app (as well as the broader self-checkout service option) is to reduce the per-store employee headcount by shifting the bulk of the checkout labor burden to you. Which would be at least somewhat OK, putting aside the obvious unemployment rate impact, if it also translated into lower consumer prices versus just higher shareholder profits. Truly enabling you to just “Scan & Go” would also be nice. Reality unfortunately undershoots the hype, at least in the current service implementation form.

Note, for example, the “scan your items” phrase. For one thing, scanning while you’re shopping is only relevant for items with associated UPS or other barcodes. The app won’t auto-identify SpaghettiOs if you just point the smartphone camera at the pasta can, for example:

not that I’m sure you’d even want it to be able to do that, considering the potential privacy concerns in comparison to a conceptually similar but fixed-orientation camera setup at the self-checkout counter. Consider, for example, the confidentiality quagmire of a small child in the background of the image captured by your smartphone and uploaded to Walmart’s servers…

The app also can’t standalone handle, perhaps obviously, variable-priced items such as per-pound produce that must be weighed to determine the total charge, and which therefore must instead be set aside and segregated in your shopping cart for further processing at checkout. And about that self-checkout counter…it unfortunately remains an essential step in the purchase process, pragmatically ensuring that you’re not “gaming the system”. After you first scan a QR code that’s displayed on your smartphone, you then deal with any remaining items (such as the aforementioned produce) and pay. And then, as you exit the self-checkout area, there’s a Walmart employee parked there who may (or may not) double-check your receipt against the contents of your cart, including in your bags, to ensure you haven’t “forgotten” to scan anything or “accidentally” scanned a barcode for a less expensive alternative item instead.

Still, doesn’t sound too bad, does it? Well, now consider these next-level nuances, which I’m conceptually aware of from a comparative standpoint versus the Meijer Shop & Scan alternative offered back in Indiana, the state of my birth.

In upfront fairness, at least some of what follows may be specifically reflective of my relatively tiny local Walmart versus the larger stores “down the hill” in Denver and elsewhere (against which I haven’t yet compared), versus a more general comparative critique:

  • There’s no way to get a printed receipt at self-checkout; you can only view it online post-transaction completion. This one’s utterly baffling to me, given that conventional self-checkouts offer it. And speaking of which…
  • At my store, at least, you’re forced to route through the same self-checkout lines as folks who are tediously doing full self-checkouts (thereby neutering the “Go” promise), versus also offering dedicated faster “Mobile Scan & Go” lines as Meijer does with Shop & Scan.
  • Meijer also offers self-weighing stations right at the produce department, linked to the store’s app and broader service, further speeding up the final checkout step. There aren’t any at Walmart, at least at my local store, where I instead need to weigh and accept the total per-item prices at checkout.
  • Not to mention the fact that “Mobile Scan & Go” is only available to subscribers of the paid-for-by-consumer Walmart+ service! You’d think that if the company was mostly motivated to reduce headcount costs, it’d at least offer “Mobile Scan & Go” for free, as it does with conventional self-checkout. You’d think…but nope. Pay up, suckers.

First-world “problems”? Sure. Rest assured that I haven’t lost sight of my longstanding big-picture perspective. But nonetheless irritating? Absolutely.

Service “upgrades” that seemingly benefit only the provider, not also the user, are destined for rapid backlash and a speedy demise. Consumers won’t use them and may even take their entire business elsewhere. While this case study is specific to grocery store shopping, I suspect the big-picture issues it raises may also resonate with related situations in your company’s existing and/or under-consideration business plans. Don’t listen solely to the accountants, who focus predominantly-to-completely on short-term cost, revenue and profit targets, folks!

Reader thoughts are as-always welcomed in the comments!

Brian Dipert is the Editor-in-Chief of the Edge AI and Vision Alliance, and a Senior Analyst at BDTI and Editor-in-Chief of InsideDSP, the company’s online newsletter.

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The profile of a power simulation tool for SiC devices

EDN Network - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 14:06

Power electronics design is a critical aspect of modern engineering, influencing the efficiency, reliability, and performance of numerous applications. Developing circuits that meet stringent requirements while considering manufacturing variations and worst-case scenarios demands precision and sophisticated tools.

At the same time, the landscape of power electronics design is rapidly evolving, ushering in an era of high-speed, high-efficiency components. Amidst this evolution, simulation tools need to redefine the way engineers conceptualize, design, and validate power systems. Take Elite Power Simulator and Self-Service PLECS Model Generator (SSPMG), which allows power electronics engineers to reduce time-to-market. Collectively, these tools offer a precise depiction of the operational behavior of the circuit when using EliteSiC line of silicon carbide (SiC) products.

Figure 1 Elite Power Simulator and Self-Service PLECS Model Generator provides a precise depiction of the operational behavior of power circuits. Source: onsemi

This simulation platform aims to empower engineers to visualize, simulate, and refine complex power electronic topologies with unparalleled ease. It does that by offering engineers a unique digital environment to test and refine their designs. Here, the underlying PLECS models and their accuracy are a critical component to the effectiveness of the Elite Power Simulator. The simulator allows engineers to upload custom PLECS models that are generated with the SSPMG.

The heart of this simulation tool is its ability to accurately simulate a wide array of power electronic topologies, including AC-DC, DC-DC, and DC-AC converters, among others. With over 40 topologies available, it provides engineers with an extensive library to explore and fine-tune their designs. For instance, in industrial applications, it supports critical systems such as fast DC charging, uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), energy storage systems (ESS), and solar inverters. Similarly, the tool is suited for onboard chargers (OBC) and traction inverter systems serving the automotive industry.

Figure 2 Engineers can select application and topology in Elite Simulator. Source: onsemi

Challenges in creating PLECS models

The traditional method of creating PLECS models in the industry relies on measurement-based loss tables aligned with manufacturer datasheets. However, this approach faces several key challenges:

  • Dependency on measurement setups: The switching energy loss data is influenced by the specific parasitics of the application layouts and circuits used, leading to variations and inaccuracies.
  • Limited data density: Conduction and switching energy loss data are often insufficiently dense, hindering accurate interpolation within PLECS and often necessitating extrapolation, which can compromise accuracy.
  • Nominal semiconductor conditions: Loss data typically represents nominal semiconductor process conditions, potentially overlooking variations and real-world scenarios.
  • Validity for hard switching only: Models derived from datasheet’s double-pulse-generated loss data are applicable only to hard switching topologies. They become highly inaccurate when applied to soft switching topology or for synchronous rectification simulations.

These challenges associated with the conventional approach of depending on measurement-based loss tables for PLECS model generation are addressed by introducing the SSPMG. It optimizes models by considering specific passive elements’ impact on energy losses, providing denser and more detailed data for accurate simulations.

Figure 3 Dense loss table is one of the key SSPMG features. Source: onsemi

SSPMG includes semiconductor process variations for realistic models and creates adaptable models suited for soft switching topologies, ensuring reliability beyond hard switching scenarios. PLECS models designed with SSPMG can be seamlessly uploaded to the Elite Power Simulator or downloaded for use in stand-alone PLECS.

Figure 4 Soft switching simulation is another key SSPMG feature. Source: onsemi

Simulator capabilities

Central to the tool’s prowess is PLECS operating in the background. PLECS is a system-level simulator that makes it easier to model and simulate whole systems by using device models that are designed for speed and accuracy. It combines an easy-to-use web-based environment, simplifying things for engineers during the design process.

The significance of this tool extends beyond its simulation capabilities. It’s not merely a tool for simulating; it can also aid engineers in selecting suitable components for their applications. Engineers can seamlessly navigate through various product generations to understand performance-cost trade-offs and make informed decisions.

Moreover, PLECS is not a SPICE-based circuit simulator, where the focus is on low-level behavior of circuit components. The PLECS models, referred to as “thermal models”, are composed of lookup tables for conduction and switching losses, along with a thermal chain in the form of a Cauer or Foster equivalent network.

The simulator has an intuitive loss and thermal data plotting utility that enables engineers to visualize the loss behavior of their chosen switch. This multifunctional 3D visualization tool works with device conduction loss, switching energy loss, and thermal impedance.

Next, the simulator has a utility to design custom heat sink models, enabling users to accurately predict junction temperatures and optimize cooling solutions tailored to their specific needs.

The simulation stage within this tool is highly detailed, offering insights into various parameters such as losses, efficiency, and junction temperature in transient and steady state conditions. Furthermore, the tool has an easy mechanism to compare runs with different devices, circuit parameters, cooling designs, and loss models.

Figure 5 Loss plotting is another important feature offered by Elite Power Simulator. Source: onsemi

The simulator and SSPMG are adaptable to diverse semiconductor technologies. While initially focusing on SiC products, both tools will be expanding to other power devices. This versatility ensures that engineers can leverage the tools across various devices, tailoring simulations to their specific requirements.

Simulating beyond datasheet conditions

The utilization of simulation tools in virtual prototyping has brought about substantial transformation in design flows. Engineers and designers are now able to comprehend the performance of these electronic circuits prior to their mass production in their quest for first time right performance. Accuracy is a critical component when it comes to simulating intricate electronic circuits.

Simulating beyond datasheet conditions is key due to the access to unlimited data that normally would be difficult to acquire via physical testing. This facilitates the optimization and analysis of circuit performance virtually.

By employing precise simulations, one can prevent the underestimation or overestimation of system performances.

James Victory is a fellow for TD modeling and simulation solutions at onsemi’s Power Solutions Group.

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Semiconductor Industry Faces Revenue Downturn in 2023, Pins Hopes on AI Surge for 2024 Recovery

ELE Times - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 12:06

In 2023, the global semiconductor industry faced a significant setback with an 8.8% decline in revenue, largely attributed to sluggish enterprise and consumer spending. This decline prompted notable shifts in the industry’s landscape, with Intel reclaiming the top spot from Samsung, the latter grappling with challenges in the memory sector and smartphone business.

However, during this downturn, artificial intelligence (AI) emerged as a beacon of hope, driving content and revenue growth, particularly in the latter half of the year. NVIDIA and AMD emerged as key beneficiaries, poised to expand their AI-related ventures in the coming years.

The analysts underscored 2023 as a pivotal year for semiconductor companies to recalibrate strategies and manage inventory in anticipation of an impending AI boom. Counterpoint’s semiconductor revenue tracker revealed that only 6 out of the top 20 global semiconductor vendors reported year-over-year revenue growth, indicating the pervasive nature of the downturn.

The memory sector bore the brunt of these challenges, experiencing a staggering 43% year-over-year decline in revenue. This sector’s struggles were further exacerbated by soft demand across PC, server, and smartphone segments, coupled with oversupply issues.
Despite the decline, Intel regained its position atop the revenue rankings in 2023, despite a 16% year-over-year revenue drop attributed to shipment declines in PC and server segments. Samsung, alongside other major players like SK Hynix and Micron, faced substantial revenue declines due to challenges in the memory market.

Looking ahead, analysts anticipate AI to be a primary driver of organic growth in the semiconductor industry for 2024, alongside a projected rebound in the memory sector and growth in the automotive sector. TSMC, the world’s largest foundry player, remains optimistic about capacity expansion plans for 2024, reflecting confidence in sustained demand.

Senior Analyst William Li emphasized the significance of AI, stating, “Artificial intelligence (AI server, AI PC, AI smartphone, etc.) will continue to be a major organic growth driver in the semiconductor industry in 2024.

As the industry navigates through the end of the inventory correction cycle and solidifies support from client demand, supply constraints are poised to be a key focus area. TSMC’s robust capacity expansion plans signal confidence in meeting demand, underlining expectations of continued growth throughout the year.

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Page EEPROM in hearing aid or why smart medical devices need new memory architectures

ELE Times - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 12:02

Author : STMicroelectronics

Medical devices aren’t immune to the latest machine learning opportunities, but the existing components don’t always satisfy the new engineering needs, which is why the Page EEPROM series by ST is finding design wins in healthcare. Put simply, the new hybrid memory architecture combines an EEPROM’s robustness and power efficiency with the speed and capacity of flash memory. We currently offer modules with eight times more storage than EEPROM to reach up to 32 Mbits while keeping the write time at about 2 ms, which is about half that of an EEPROM. Let’s thus see what such a module can bring to a highly constrained product like a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid and more.

Constraints today The case of the hearing aid

A paper funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research of Germany and presented at the 48th European Solid-State Circuits Conference in 20221 looked at a modern take on the BTE hearing aid. The researchers used a Bluetooth SoC and a DSP to process audio. The purpose was to create something small enough to be usable in clinical settings over long periods while having the computational capabilities to try new algorithms. The fact that the authors specifically mention the exploration of neural networks as a reason behind their paper further emphasizes the need to bring machine learning to this industry.

Today’s memory limitations

However, the scientists hit a pretty important limitation common to many industries: memory capacity. The researchers used 2.5 MB of memory for data and 375 KB for instructions. The obvious issue is that even the smallest neural networks will need far more than that. However, the increase in capacity cannot result in a compromise in robustness or overall power consumption. In this instance, the area behind the ear is a major constraint, and direct contact with the patient’s skin prohibits any increase in heat dissipation. Consequently, a significant bump in memory capacity can’t just come from existing devices but requires a new memory architecture.

Greater capacity also opens the door to new levels of efficiency. In this instance, instead of having external and internal modules, engineers can create one memory pool that can satisfy all their needs. It’s an increasingly common practice in embedded systems because it offers a lot of benefits. Among others, it helps simplify designs, which reduces development times and the bill of materials. It also helps optimize memory access for greater performance. Finally, companies significantly lower the risk of shortages or shipping issues since they only need one module. As memory availability can suffer from high volatility, relying on one module simplifies the sourcing and qualification process.

Architectures tomorrow The need for memory pages

At its simplest, all digital information today takes the form of zeros and ones, and each value is stored in a bit, which represents the most basic unit of computing2. Due to historical reasons, memory structures today take 8 bits to form a byte. In a traditional EEPROM, the architecture provides byte-level precision, which gives unparalleled granularity. However, erasing and writing operations take longer. Additionally, the byte-level architecture of a standard EEPROM means a bigger die. Consequently, it limits the overall capacity possible in a small component, which explains why it is difficult to significantly increase the capacity of traditional EEPROM.

To remedy this, the industry has long since adopted the notion of words, which groups bytes, and pages, which bundle words together. Thanks to this system, a memory controller can erase more cells at once, thus accelerating the process at the cost of the byte-level flexibility. For instance, serial flash traditionally has a page size of 256 bytes. Additionally, the memory is organized in sectors, which is the standard block of memory that the controller can erase at once. In most serial flash of comparable sizes to our Page EEPROM, the sector size is 4 KB. Thanks to this structure, it is possible to create significantly smaller dies. However, engineers lose the flexibility of the byte-level EEPROM.

The need for a hybrid architecture

The Page EEPROM is unique because while it uses 16-byte words and 512-byte pages to improve performance and capacity, it also enables byte-level granularity thanks to a smart page management system. More precisely, the memory controller is capable of byte-level write operations to optimize certain processes like data logging while offering efficient erase and program operations for firmware updates. Consequently, it adopts a hybrid structure to keep the flexibility of a traditional EEPROM while featuring the capacity and speed of flash. The ST architecture also checks a 17-bit error-correcting code (ECC) signature after each word to improve the overall reliability, thus enabling the correction of 2 bits within 16-byte words.

Page EEPROM: Benefits now Low power consumption of 500 µA Page EEPROM in SO8N PackagePage EEPROM in SO8N Package

As explained earlier, power consumption is a central issue for many wearables, like BTE hearing aids. In real-world operations, the Page EEPROM needs about 500 µA when reading data, which is about five times less than a serial flash, and its electrical current peak is less than 1 mA, which means fewer passive components. Additionally, ST’s Page EEPROM has a current peak control system to keep the consumption below 3 mA at all times. Comparatively, a serial flash often experiences high current peaks that lead to wide variations in power consumption. As for writing operations, the Page EEPROM needs fewer than 2 mA, which is even less than the 3 mA of some EEPROM.

Concretely, the levels of power consumption afforded by ST’s Page EEPROM mean that engineers can work with smaller batteries and smaller PCBs to fit more space-constrained applications. Indeed, 500 µA when reading data and less than 1 mA in current peak signify that, compared to a serial flash, a designer can either use a much smaller battery or use the same battery for much longer. Additionally, because the smaller current peak means fewer passive components, the PCB can shrink, which also means a bigger battery in the same case or a smaller design altogether. These are critical considerations for BTE hearing aids that were not possible until Page EEPROM.

High data rate of 320 Mbit/s

As explained, the page architecture of ST’s new memory boosts overall performance. Compared to the 20 Mbit/s of a vanilla EEPROM, the Page EEPROM clocks at 320 Mbit/s in read operations. Consequently, a microcontroller can download its firmware from the Page EEPROM in significantly less time. Additionally, our memory includes a Buffer Load feature that can program several pages at the same time, thus bypassing some of the bottlenecks inherent to the SPI protocol. In practical terms, it means that using the buffer load feature can drastically speed up the programming of hundreds of thousands of devices, thus lowering the overall manufacturing costs. The memory access time is also significantly faster for a wake-up time of 30 µs.

High endurance of 500,000 cycles

The Page EEPROM supports 500,000 read-write cycles per page over the full temperature range (from -40 ºC to +105 ºC), which is about five times better than a serial flash. A traditional EEPROM does have a higher endurance, but we’ve also found that current rates are more than acceptable for integrators since the Page EEPROM, just like the standard one, qualified for a cumulated 1 billion cycle over the entire memory capacity. Indeed, since the ST device has more capacity, developers can spread the wear over more cells, thus extending its life. In fact, many medical devices, like hearing aids, already use serial flash successfully. The endurance of our Page EEPROM thus represents an improvement, not a regression.

Next Steps

The best way to get started with a Page EEPROM is to grab our X-NUCLEO-PGEEZ1 expansion board and download the X-CUBE-EEPRMA1 package. The software bundle provides a demo application that uses the board as an external storage solution, thus showcasing how to read and write from it. It is a quick way to learn how to use a single, dual, or quad SPI interface to interact with the Page EEPROM to run a proof-of-concept or test the hybrid architecture. ST also provides technical documentation to understand the memory architecture better or be familiar with cycling endurance, among other things.

The post Page EEPROM in hearing aid or why smart medical devices need new memory architectures appeared first on ELE Times.

Any idea what this component is?

Reddit:Electronics - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 10:22

Hey guys, I’m trying to repair a 12/240v 4wd fridge, and upon pulling it apart looks like a slug got in there and shorted it out. This 4 pin coil inductor thing has blown, with one of the copper wires wrapped around it being broken.

My question is - how do you replace these… can I just bypass it? 😝 I only mildly understand what an inductor does, and my limited understanding makes me think it’s not necessary.

This board is to convert 240v ac to 12 or 24v dc. Fridge works fine bypassing this board and powering on dc directly.

I can whack in a 24v power supply - but I’d rather replace / bypass this part if possible.

Pics of the slug and board attached - thanks in advance for any suggestions!

https://i.imgur.com/0E8G4eM.jpg https://i.imgur.com/4STGU28.jpg https://i.imgur.com/ttTkERr.jpg

submitted by /u/AspiringExpat
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Tenstorrent collaborates with C-DAC for implementation of the Digital India futureLABS

ELE Times - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 08:39

Catalyzing the next-generation Electronics System Design

Tenstorrent Inc., a next-generation computing company building computers for AI has announced that it will be collaborating with C-DAC. This is in line with Digital India futureLABS in the area of RISC-V compute and design & innovation ecosystem. By extending their AI deep learning accelerator solution to the overall progress of the semiconductor Industry, Tenstorrent will be joining forces with the Government of India.

Keith Witek, Chief Operating Officer, Tenstorrent Inc. with Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of State for Electronics & Information Technology, Skill Development & Entrepreneurship and Jal Shakti, Govt. of India

The vision and roadmap of implementation of the Digital India futureLABS is being unveiled by Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Hon’ble Minister of State for Electronics & Information Technology, Skill Development & Entrepreneurship and Jal Shakti, Govt. of India at Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology Delhi (IIIT Delhi), New Delhi.

Speaking on the occasion, Keith Witek, Chief Operating Officer, Tenstorrent Inc. said, “India is witnessing immense growth. What India is going to do over the next five to ten years is going to set the tone for the future. Tenstorrents’ chiplet ecosystems, open hardware platforms, RISCV and artificial intelligence (AI) are a perfect match to reduce the cost of manufacturing at scale. And it is the right time for India to take advantage of the technology offerings from Tenstorrent and disrupt the status quo and incumbents as it catapults to the numero uno position. We are very happy to be part of this innovation and looking forward to the journey.”

Also, present at the moment for the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) were Aniket Saha, Vice President of Product Management, Tenstorrent Inc and Kishore Amarnath, Director of Sales and Business Development Tenstorrent Inc.

Digital India futureLABS, is conceived to move up the value-chain & fortify domestic R&D by creating a collaborative ecosystem for development of IPs, Standards and catalyzing next-generation Electronics System Design ecosystem in the country by enabling co-development opportunities & partnerships amongst Government, Startups, R&D organizations and large enterprises. Digital India futureLABS will be coordinated by C-DAC to provide the dedicated thrust to following key growth areas- Automotive, Compute, Communication, Strategic Electronics and Industrial Electronics/ IoT.

It is a tremendous opportunity and Tenstorrent is pleased to be a part of innovation and development in India. India has all the necessary ingredients that are needed to be successful such as; scale, workforce – that’s easily educated and highly skilled, educational system that can create that workforce, access to capital – significantly improving, velocity of attention and business that’s going to propel and catch up to a lot of incumbents and eventually exceed over the course of the next decade.

The post Tenstorrent collaborates with C-DAC for implementation of the Digital India futureLABS appeared first on ELE Times.

A Buyer’s Guide: Where to Shop for Electronic Components

Electronic lovers - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 03:21

Finding dependable sources for electronic components is paramount in the present day world of electronics. It is because these electronic components have become a crucial part of our lives. Computers, smartphones, and even home appliances require electronic elements to function efficiently. These are the segments used in electronic devices to work at optimum efficiency. However, buying them can often be an intimidating task. Therefore, this article aims to provide worthwhile insights regarding where to buy reliable electronic components that ensure the smooth working of your gadgets.

Top Options to Consider While Electronic Components Procurement

Consider the following essential options to make electronic component procurement hassle-free.

Local Electronics Markets

Commence your search from local electronic stores. Although online shopping is convenient and easy, you can’t underestimate the potential of local electronic shops. It is because they often have a variety of basic electronic parts. These stores may incorporate both chain retailers and smaller specialized shops. It provides a convenient option for swift and in-person purchases. Moreover, their proficient staff can also guide you about the most suitable and dependable electronic component depending on your project. Thus, check your local manuals or online navigation map to locate nearby electronic stores.

Online Marketplaces

The digital empire offers an extensive geography for electronic component procurement. Platforms such as Amazon and eBay have become online marketplaces that possess a wide variety of components from reliable manufacturers around the globe. However, pay meticulous attention to product ratings and customer reviews regarding product quality and authenticity while navigating their website. Other than these general platforms, you must consider specialized online distributors, such as Digi-Key and Mouser. These platforms concentrate solely on electronic elements to provide precise specifications, quick shipping, and outstanding products.

Electronic Component Distributors

If you are in search of a more specialized and professional approach, you should turn to electronic component distributors. Organizations like Avnet, Arrow Electronics, and Future Electronics work as licensed and certified distributors for a comprehensive variety of manufacturers. Although these distributors may deal with big orders and businesses, they give access to high-quality and specific elements. Exploring their catalogs can indicate a variety of options, making them useful resources for sourcing electronic components for miscellaneous projects. Therefore, you can also lean on electronic distributors to buy electronic components.

Salvage and Surplus Stores

Do you have a limited budget for electronic component purchases? There is no need to fret now. It is because there are many salvage and surplus stores available in the local market. These are generally known as ‘junk shops’ or ‘recycling centers’. These firms specialize in vending used electronic tools at discounted prices. This pocket-friendly alternative offers an opportunity to acquire elements for various projects without breaking the bank, making it a feasible option for hobbyists and devotees. The only thing you should be aware of is the availability of components. You never know when an element becomes out of stock. Therefore, it is crucial to keep a hawk-eye on such platforms like Craigslist and Gumtree to avoid missing any opportunity.

Community and Online Forums

Community engagement plays a critical role in the world of electronics. Therefore, you must join local maker spaces, and electronics clubs, or engage yourself in online forums to get a wealth of collective understanding. Enthusiasts within these communities, like Reddit, and Stack Exchange, regularly share insights and suggestions regarding dependable sources for electronic components. This cooperative approach not only extends your knowledge but also allows you to discover new and trusted suppliers. This is how it promotes a sense of harmony within the electronic enthusiasts’ community.

Manufacturer Websites

For those desiring specific or proprietary components, manufacturer websites are the finest resources. They maintain their website in a user-friendly way and showcase their product records. Directly visiting the official websites of component manufacturers provides insights into direct sales options and lists of official distributors. It ensures the authenticity of the elements and provides access to proprietary or specialized elements suggested by the manufacturer. Moreover, you acquire a more in-depth knowledge of the components’ origins and specifications by examining the manufacturer’s websites. This is how it contributes to a more knowledgeable and strategic process for electronic component sourcing.

Local Electronic Markets

If you want to have a unique and fascinating shopping experience, venture into local electronic markets. These markets act as hubs for electronic lovers that have a diverse variety of components. Navigating through the bustling stalls and shops gives the possibility to locate not only common components but also unique or hard-to-find ones, enabling a rich and engaging exploration of the electronic world.

Final Thought!

The shopping of electronic components requires a blend of online and offline resources. By exploring local stores, online marketplaces, specialized distributors, and community recommendations, you can create a miscellaneous network of trustworthy sources for all your electronic component requirements. Remember to prioritize quality, authenticity, and customer reviews to ensure a prosperous and pleasurable shopping venture.

The post A Buyer’s Guide: Where to Shop for Electronic Components appeared first on Electronics Lovers ~ Technology We Love.

Sustainable Practices in PCB Production For Greener Electronics

Electronic lovers - Пн, 02/05/2024 - 03:10

The trending movement and its campaign for worldwide sustainability have reached almost every industry in the past few years. In electronics, the pressure is even more intense as e-waste comprises 70% of the world’s total waste.

As the production processes such as PCB manufacturing tiptoe under a scope, companies do their best to transition to a more eco-friendly approach without sacrificing their integrity. 

Sustainable practices in PCB production are a nod towards greener electronics and a necessary step forward in aligning the electronics industry with global sustainability goals. We will discuss more about these changes in PCB production, in their aim to enter an era of greener electronics.

The Environmental Challenge of PCB Production

PCB manufacturing involves several processes that traditionally have negative environmental impacts. Some of them are etching and plating, which use hazardous chemicals. PCB processes also consume significant amounts of water and generate waste materials that are hard to recycle.

As electronic devices become ubiquitous, the environmental implications of these manufacturing practices have drawn increasing scrutiny.

Transitioning to Greener PCB Manufacturing

Here are the steps PCB brands take to become a green PCB company.

Adopting Lead-Free and Halogen-Free Materials

One of the earliest steps towards sustainable PCB production was the shift towards lead-free solder and halogen-free laminates. Their traditional counterparts pose serious environmental and health risks. Getting rid of these elements reduces the toxicity of PCB waste, making recycling easier and safer.

Utilizing Water-Based Processes

The PCB manufacturing process traditionally relies heavily on organic solvents, especially in the cleaning and etching stages. These solvents contribute to VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) emissions. Water-based processes, which use water as a solvent, seriously reduce the use of harmful chemicals and emissions, contributing to a cleaner environment.

Implementing Waste Reduction Strategies

Waste reduction is a cornerstone of sustainable PCB production. This includes minimizing offcuts through efficient layout planning and recycling waste materials whenever possible. Manufacturers are increasingly adopting closed-loop systems, where they reuse and recycle in every applicable operation, minimizing overall waste output.

Energy Efficiency in Manufacturing

Energy consumption is another critical aspect of PCB production. Sustainable practices involve optimizing manufacturing processes for energy efficiency, such as using lower-temperature soldering processes and investing in energy-efficient machinery. Renewable energy sources are tapped to work with manufacturing facilities to reduce carbon footprints.

Advanced Manufacturing Techniques

Technological advancements have paved the way for more sustainable PCB manufacturing methods. Digital and additive manufacturing techniques, such as laser direct structuring and 3D printing of PCBs, reduce waste and chemical use. These methods allow for more precise material deposition, reducing the need for subtractive processes and their associated waste.

Sustainable Packaging and Logistics

Sustainable practices extend beyond the manufacturing process itself to include packaging and logistics. Biodegradable or recyclable packaging materials are increasingly used to reduce plastic waste. Additionally, optimizing logistics for lower emissions, such as consolidating shipments and choosing eco-friendly transportation options, contributes to the overall sustainability of PCB production.

The Role of Industry Standards and Certifications

Various industry standards and certifications support the push for sustainable PCB production. These include ISO 14001 for environmental management systems, which helps manufacturers identify and control their environmental impact, and the RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) directive, which regulates hazardous materials usage in electronic equipment. Compliance with these standards ensures a lower environmental impact and signals to consumers and partners a commitment to sustainability.

Challenges and Opportunities

While the transition to sustainable PCB production is underway, challenges remain. The initial cost of implementing greener technologies and processes can be high, and the availability of sustainable materials is not always consistent. However, these challenges also present opportunities for innovation and leadership in the electronics industry. Companies that invest in sustainable practices can differentiate themselves in the market, meet the growing demand for eco-friendly products, and contribute to a more sustainable future.

The post Sustainable Practices in PCB Production For Greener Electronics appeared first on Electronics Lovers ~ Technology We Love.

Couldn't wait for the custom breakout board

Reddit:Electronics - Ндл, 02/04/2024 - 16:39
Couldn't wait for the custom breakout board

The breakout board gets here in a week, but i was bored this weekend and wanted to try something. 0.65mm pitch x 28 pins, and it worked!

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Prototype lightning detector.

Reddit:Electronics - Ндл, 02/04/2024 - 12:59
Prototype lightning detector.

Still testing and tinkering. By the way hello this my first post here.

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