by Dave Rishavy @ edn.com:
Noise on a signal creates a triggering challenge for test equipment, especially oscilloscopes. Because the instrument itself also contributes noise, small signals in the millivolt range need proper instrument settings prevent noise from overwhelming the signal of interest. Even with larger-amplitude signals, noise can create a condition where a stable trigger is difficult to achieve.
Oscilloscope have built-in features to help deal with the noise. These features can sometimes be buried in menus, or not well known by infrequent oscilloscope users.
View noisy signals with a stable oscilloscope trigger - [Link]
by Glen Chenier @ edn.com:
It is often said that “the devil is in the details.” All too often those details are hidden deep within a datasheet where you can easily overlook them. When a datasheet reference circuit is copied into a product, the designer must still be fully aware of how the circuit functions and anticipate unexpected problems that might arise from slight deviations.
Take a recent case of an LT1640 hot-swap controller IC, often used in a hot-plug telecom fan tray. I was asked to reverse-engineer this so our technicians would know how to power it on the bench without a using a chassis. Nothing complicated about it, just the usual slow turn-on of a pass MOSFET in series with the load, thereby slowing the dV/dt and limiting the inrush current to the load input-filter capacitors.
Missing datasheet details can cause problems - [Link]
Very small power supply unit in the size of a cigarette box. The input voltage is 24V. Its supplied by a external switch mode AC/DC PSU. The output voltage range is 0V to 24V at 0A to 3A. A switch mode preregulator reduces the power loss. This allows a very compact design. Voltage and current are displayed on a RGB OLED display
Miniatur Power Supply Unit with 0..24V and 0..3A - [Link]
by Mike Senese @ makezine.com:
Arduino, known for creating an easy-to-use microcontroller revolution, is about to launch its own 3D printer.
The Arduino Materia 101 made its global debut earlier today on the official Arduino twitter account with a photo of a boxy white and teal FDM printer and a note that Arduino co-founder Massimo Banzi is showing the printer live on Italian TV. It also states that the printer will be presented next weekend at Maker Faire Rome.
In the image, the printer appears to have an LCD screen, a control knob, and a switch on the front plate. A filament spool holder with a matching color scheme sits attached to the right side. The mechanical bits are obscured, so details about its extruder or print bed size aren’t clear, but we’ll be looking forward to learning more shortly.
Arduino Leaks a Peek of Their Upcoming 3D Printer - [Link]
The old resistor decade boxes consisted of a bunch of rotary switches which make them little bulky and expensive. Stynus has built this microcontroller-based resistor decade box that uses one rotary encoder and 16 relay switches to switch on the various resistances. The microcontroller used in this project is PIC16F84A.
PIC Microcontroller based resistor decade box - [Link]
Featuring 3 OLED screens on a flexible circuit board, this minimalist electronic wearable is stunningly bright, likes to be touched and features a rechargeable 10 hour battery. Apologies about the hairy arms (and the dubstep)!
This is just a prototype but with a just a little more work this could easily be thinner and more attractive to wear. Be on the look out for a new version with some 3d printed parts to present a more honest take on the bracelet.
From the Makers of Arduboy: Ardubracelet - [Link]
Microduino-Joypad is … an 8-bit game console + open source + UPin27 + AVR,STM32,MSP430,51 compatible + smart controller == Awesome! by Microduino Studio:
Microduino studio launched the first kickstarter in September 2013, introducing the brand new Arduino-compatible development board—Microduino. We achieved success with the unique Upin27 interface, compact size, rich expansion boards as well as many applications. Over the past year, Microduino community has been growing rapidly. Now we have nearly 10,000 players worldwide.
At the 25th anniversary of the Gameboy console, we are now releasing Joypad – 8-bit multi-functional game console to show our respects to Gameboy–the most classic game console in the history.
With this elegantly designed little Joypad, we are hoping to bring you the greatest joy from your childhood memory. The best thing is it’s completely open source and you can even create and develop your own game to inspire your imagination. Moreover, it’s not only a game console, it’s also a remote controller for other devices, such as Quadcopter, robot and cell phone, etc.
Microduino-Joypad: an open source 8-bit game console & more! - [Link]
The most popular RTC for the Arduino is the DS1307. However, it does have some drawbacks, the most notable of which is that its operating voltage is 5v, which means it cannot be used with 3.3v projects. The Maxim DS1339 however, features a wide tolerance of voltages from 2.97V-5.5V with the typical voltage as 3.3v, a battery backup, two alarms, and a trickle charger. The breakout board here packages the DS1339 with the components and connections necessary to use with your Arduino projects easily.
MAX DS1339 RTC real time clock for arduino - [Link]
A good beginner app note (PDF) from NXP on protecting ICs from ESD.
Integrated circuits are sensitive to electrostatic discharge (a sudden and short-time flow of currents) and electromagnetic fields (at which they can be source or victim of both of it). This application note shall be understood as an introductive basic description of what electrostatic discharge is, how sensitive devices can be protected against electrostatic discharges, what electromagnetic compatibility means and how electromagnetic sensitivity can be tested.
App note: ESD and EMC sensitivity of IC - [Link]
Programme of webinar:
Linear Technology’s family of DC/DC Module products simplifies your analog design. By integrating the DC/DC controller, power switches, magnetic, and a modest amount of capacitance, uModules power products will save precious space on the PCB and reduce the solution weight, development time, BOM qualification and procurement effort.
- Product groups and parameter ranges
- uModule construction
- Reliability data
- Features: ultralow noise, output sharing, synchronizability / multi-phase operation
- Information resources
- Applications examples.
SOS Webinar – Your way to simple and efficient power supply design with Linear Technology - [Link]