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Small Form Factor Computers Go Ultra-low Power

Agrowing number of mobile, space constrained or harsh environment applications are being designed for the military, industrial automation/HMI, digital signage and medical markets that are driving the need for ever-lower power consumption. These embedded systems have been underserved by existing SFF platforms that have not been able to offer ultra-low power operation, many times below 3 Watts, in a slim profile design. OEM developers have also been challenged to find computing platforms that deliver a flexible and scalable solution in terms of performance and rugged reliability with state-of-the-art interface and graphics support that mimics the same functionality as today’s smart consumer devices.

Posted in: Articles, Articles, Electronics & Computers, Architecture, Computer software / hardware, Embedded software, Human machine interface (HMI)
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Carbon Nanotube Technology Promises a Revolution in Electrical Cabling

While carbon nanotube technology (CNT) has generated widespread interest for applications ranging from semiconductors to medical, one area that is a focus of research at TE Connectivity is high-performance electrical cables. TE has been actively researching CNT for wire and cable, including cooperative efforts with universities and industry leaders, and has prototype samples for evaluation. While there is still much progress to be made before CNT cables become main stream, we believe the technology is sufficiently advanced to meet specific niche applications such as satellites.

Posted in: Articles, Articles, Electronics & Computers, Electric cables, Conductivity, Nanomaterials, Satellites
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High-Speed Data Converter System Evaluation Kit

Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (Dallas, TX) has introduced the industry’s first complete high-speed data converter system evaluation kit (HSDC-SEK), which reduces system evaluation costs and enables designers to get their system running in minutes. The HSDC-SEK-10 includes a pattern capture card, pattern generator card, low-jitter clock source, clean 10-MHz signal source and a multi-output regulated power supply. The HSCD-SEK-10 can significantly reduce evaluation time and costs for a host of demanding applications in which high-speed data converters, such as the dual, 14-bit, 250-MSPS ADS4249 analog-to-digital converter (ADC) and the quad, 16-bit, 1.5- GSPS DAC34SH84 digital-to-analog converter (DAC), are key system performance drivers. Examples include test and measurement, communications, defense and medical equipment.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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Digitally Tunable Capacitors

Peregrine Semiconductor Corporation (San Diego, CA), a fabless provider of high-performance radio frequency integrated circuits (RFICs), announced that it has expanded its DuNE™ Digitally Tunable Capacitor (DTC) product line with six second-generation devices for antenna tuning in 4G LTE smartphones. The PE623060, PE623070, PE623080, and PE623090 (PE6230x0) DTCs have a capacitance range of 0.6 – 7.7 pF and support main antenna power handling of up to +34 dBm. The PE621010 and PE621020 (PE6210x0) DTCs have a capacitance range of 1.38 to 14.0 pF and are optimized for power handling of up to +26 dBm, making them well suited for diversity antennas. All of the new DTCs are manufactured on Peregrine’s UltraCMOS® technology process, with HaRP™ technology enhancements that enable the devices to meet the challenging harmonic and linearity requirements of LTE. The highly-versatile devices support a wide variety of tuning circuit topologies, with an emphasis on impedance matching and aperture-tuning applications.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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PCI-104 RS-232/422/485 Serial Communication Boards

ACCES I/O Products, Inc. has released a new family of PCI-104 serial communication boards—the 104I-COM-8SM Series. These PCI-104 boards feature a selection of 8, 4, or 2-ports of field selectable RS-232, RS-422, and RS-485 asynchronous serial protocols on a port by port basis. Ports are accessed via two 40-pin IDC type right angle header connectors. The 104I-COM-8SM Series allow for the connection of multiple serial devices, making them suitable for a variety of applications such as POS, gaming systems, retail, hospitality, automation, kiosks, defense industries, high-density networking, or any other application requiring the connection of RS-232/422/485 serial devices to a PCI-104 compatible system. Each RS-232 port is capable of supporting data communication rates up to 921.6 kbps and implement full modem control signals to ensure compatibility with a broad variety of serial devices. RS-422 and RS-485 modes support data communication speeds up to 1.8432 Mbps.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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Eurocard Subrack Enclosures

Pixus Technologies (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada) offers Eurocard subracks for 3U and 6U boards in multiple configurations. The subrack enclosures can house backplanes or special modules for industrial, mil/aero, communications, medical, energy, and test/measurement industries. The Pixus subrack line features a modular design, with extrusions and tapped strips in standard intervals allowing a wide range of configurations without customization. The EMC version features gasketing and optional EMC covers. Compact versions of the enclosures are available in 42 HP and 21 HP sizes standard. The Mobile Rugged industrial subrack features reinforced components and has been used in European railway applications. The standard and EMC subracks also come in 4U and 7U sizes, with 1U of spacing below the card cage for fan implementation.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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DC/DC Converter

Green Watt Power, a division of Calex Mfg. Co., Inc. (Concord, CA) has announced the 450 Watt EVD-89-S-450-G3201 DC/DC converter. The EVD is a ruggedized DC/DC converter suitable for electric vehicle, marine, industrial and other applications which draw power from a bank of batteries or another high voltage DC power source. The input range of the EVD is 50 to 125 VDC. The output voltage range is 13.6 VDC to 14 VDC, making the unit ideal for powering onboard accessories, lights, instruments, etc. The output current rating of the EVD is 33A with output surge capability up to 45A. The EVD-89- S-450-G3201 is isolated input to output. The isolation voltage is 1500 VAC. Overall output voltage accuracy is +/- 3%. Line and load regulation is +/- 0.02% and 5% respectively. Output ripple is 130mV peak to peak. The efficiency of the unit is 90%. The ambient operating range is -40 to +55°C. The EVD-89-S-450-G3201 measures 6.22” x 6.69” x 1.97” high. The converter is fully encapsulated for rugged reliability.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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System-on-Chip

Ultra low power (ULP) RF specialist Nordic Semiconductor ASA (Oslo, Norway) has announced the availability of a lower cost variant of its nRF51822 Bluetooth® low energy and proprietary 2.4GHz SoC (System-on-Chip) that will offer an identical feature, peripherals, and performance set but half the flash memory at 128kB (instead of 256kB) and be based on the same nRF51 Series technology platform. This means it will offer the same multiprotocol radio and a 32-bit ARM Cortex-M0 based processor optimized for ultra-low power wireless applications and deliver -92.5dB RX sensitivity in Bluetooth low energy mode; up to +4dBm output power in all modes; up to 9.5dBm improvement in link budget compared to previous generations of class-leading Nordic chips, and sub-10mA peak currents running off a 3V coin cell battery for months or years of battery life (depending on the application).

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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PC/104 CAN Module

WinSystems (Arlington, TX) has introduced their PCM-CAN-2-ISO, a PC/104- compliant, dual channel, isolated Controller Area Network (CAN) module with Windows and Linux drivers available. The board employs high-speed isolated data couplers and power supplies to provide 1000V protection between the two NXP SJA1000 CAN controllers and the network interface. Each CAN channel can provide isolated +5 VDC power or receive isolated +5 to +12 VDC power from the interface for additional flexibility. The +5 VDC power supply includes overvoltage, overcurrent, and short-circuit protection. The PCM-CAN-2-ISO is compliant with CAN specifications 2.0A (11-bit ID) and 2.0B (29-bit ID). The PCM-CAN-2-ISO supports transfer rates to 1 Megabits per second and has jumper selectable termination resistors so it can be used in various topology systems.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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Media Processing Accelerator

Emerson Network Power (Tempe, AZ) has announced a performance breakthrough for adding voice and video to network server applications. Where a typical commercial Host Media Processing solution is limited to 2000 ports per server, a single Emerson Network Power PCIE-8120 PCI Express media processing acceleration card is capable of transcoding over 7000 bidirectional voice channels from G.711 to G.729A, and multiple cards can be added to a single server for even higher performance. Featuring up to 12 low power Octasic digital signal processors (DSPs) with embedded voice or video firmware, the Emerson Network Power PCIEe-8120 can also transcode over 300 mobile video streams at CIF resolution, and offers support for high definition video resolutions up to 1080p. It enables users to add high density, highly scalable voice and video processing to network applications, while using less space, less power and at lower cost than the alternative of adding more servers or suffering significantly reduced application performance.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers
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