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posted in December 2006
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Top auto electronics stories of 2006
Design How-To  
12/29/2006   Post a comment
From cosmic rays damaging electronics to the FlexRay protocol's impact on auto safety, here are the stories electronic engineers thought were tops for the year.
Dual-slot, hot swap controller simplifies PCI Express connection
Product News  
12/29/2006   Post a comment
Linear Technology's LTC4242, a narrow, dual-slot PCI Express hot swap controller for mid-range networking or storage servers and embedded applications, eliminates complex software interfaces, yet provides a rugged and compact solution for independently controlling the main supplies and the auxiliary supply on two slots.
Engineer's guide to HDMI ESD protection: Part 1
Design How-To  
12/29/2006   Post a comment
Circuit manufacturers continue to decrease the minimum dimensions of the transistors, interconnections, and the insulation layers in their devices. This results in smaller structures for higher speed devices, which are more susceptible to breakdown damage at lower energy levels. An examination of system ESD protection design issues, and common misunderstandings about ESD protection components for HDMI (or other) I/O ICs.
40-amp driver-MOSFET cuts power losses by 20 percent
Product News  
12/28/2006   Post a comment
Renesas Technology's R2J20602NP 40-amp driver-MOSFET claims the industry's highest efficiency, cutting power losses by more than 20 percent compared to the company's first generation product.
Octal load-control switches simplify automotive designs
Product News  
12/28/2006   Post a comment
Providing versatile and board-efficient power distribution, Freescale Semiconductor's MC338xx and MC3399x octal serial switch ICs for automotive electronics control up to sixteen loads.
Application basics when using wideband voltage and current feedback op amps, Part 2 (of 2)
Design How-To  
12/26/2006   Post a comment
Understand the basics of current and voltage feedback op amps and where they fit, along with constraints and implications
Ripple detection control enables fast load-transient response without the bulk
Design How-To  
12/26/2006   Post a comment
Learns about a feedback control method that needs fewer external capacitors than hysteretic converter designs, maintain the output voltage, is immune to input voltage fluctuation and is suitable for applications using intermediate bus architecture.
Low-cost charge pump drives six white LEDs
Product News  
12/26/2006   Post a comment
Allegro's A8434 touts a proprietary high-efficiency, low-EMI charge pump design, which provides a well regulated output for driving up to six white LEDs.
Bidirectional video filters simplify the input-output connection
Product News  
12/26/2006   Post a comment
Eliminating the need for separate input and output connectors, Maxim says its MAX7481/MAX7482 bidirectional video filters are the first devices to use the same filter for both the record and playback modes.
How to use undersampling
Design How-To  
12/22/2006   Post a comment
Undersampling can be an extremely valuable tool, but care must be taken to ensure good performance. Here's how to make it work.
Cypress' radio-on-a-chip cuts design time
Product News  
12/22/2006   Post a comment
The PRoC LP integrates the company's 2.4-GHz transceiver with its low-cost 8-bit Flash microcontroller.
5-amp LDO powers ultralow-voltage DSPs, ASICs
Product News  
12/22/2006   Post a comment
Micrel's MIC69502 is a 5-amp low-voltage, low-dropout (LDO) regulator suited for FPGAs, microcontrollers and logic ICs in next generation optical networks, communication switches, storage networks, wireless base stations, and home entertainment systems.
Bidirectional voltage-level translators simplify connectivity
Product News  
12/22/2006   Post a comment
Texas Instruments' TXB0104 and TXS0104E bidirectional voltage-level translation devices for connecting next-generation processors and peripherals eliminate the need for direction control signals used in traditional voltage-level translators.
CCFL controllers make for low-cost inverters for LCD backlighting
Product News  
12/22/2006   Post a comment
Dallas Semiconductor touts their DS3992 two-channel, and DS3994 four-channel controllers for cold-cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFLs) as low-cost inverter solutions for LCD backlighting applications.
Low-offset buffer improves I2C reliability
Product News  
12/22/2006   Post a comment
Linear Technology's LTC4307 is an I2C bus buffer with low offset and a "stuck bus" recovery feature designed to significantly increase system reliability.
ADI sues Silicon Labs for patent infringement
News & Analysis  
12/21/2006   Post a comment
Analog Devices filed a patent infringement suit against Silicon Laboratories in U.S. District Court in Boston. ADI alleges that Silicon Labs' Si84xx family of products infringe multiple U.S. patents addressing physical construction and signaling techniques related to ADI's iCoupler digital isolation products.
Comparators top list of top 10 IC growth products
News & Analysis  
12/20/2006   Post a comment
Comparators, chips used to measure two different voltages, will be the fastest growing semiconductor product segment in 2006, with projected growth of 37 percent, according to estimates by market research analyst firm IC Insights.
Extracting value from integrating power-management
Design How-To  
12/20/2006   Post a comment
Management of system power is a significant issue for today's convergent devices where controlling multiple regulators is the norm. The system-on-chip is a natural for controlling multiple power needs. Here's what you need to consider to get the most from your design.
NEC's LNA targets SDARS and ISM Band
Product News  
12/20/2006   Post a comment
The UPG2310TK provides high gain, low noise, and a high intercept point all in a compact 1.5 x 1.3 x 0.55 mm package.
High frequency 400 mA step-down converter meets mobile space constraint needs
Product News  
12/20/2006   Post a comment
A step-down converter from AnalogicTech with a low profile and a small footprint inductor meets tight portable design space requirements.
Interface chips support updated HDMI v1.3 standard
Product News  
12/20/2006   Post a comment
Analog Devices has expanded its line of HDMI interface chips with multiplexers, receivers and transmitters that support the updated HDMI v1.3 standard. The latest additions to ADI's line address growing consumer demand for high-definition content in multimedia products ranging from 1080p deep-color HDTVs to low-power portable applications, including digital video and still cameras, portable media players and cell phones.
Gas gauge chipset advances Li-ion battery protection
Product News  
12/19/2006   Post a comment
Texas Instruments' bq20z90 advanced Impedance Track gas gauge chip for multicell, lithium-based battery packs, for use with the company's bq29330 analog front end (AFE) battery protection IC, uses one-third fewer components than its predecessor.
Under The Hood: TI 65-nm chip at heart of Nokia 2610
Teardown  
12/19/2006   Post a comment
Decapping the chip at the heart of Nokia's 2610 entry-level phone shows a 65-nm Texas Instruments baseband processor supported externally by Samsung memory and an Infineon RF front end.
Power factor correction IC implements interleaving to boost efficiency
Product News  
12/19/2006   Post a comment
Renesas Technology's R2A20112 is a critical-conduction mode power factor correction control IC for AC/DC power supplies, which the company says is the first device of its type to implement interleaved operation in order to boost efficiency and cut supply size.
150-volt, 35-amp DirectFET MOSFET runs cooler
Product News  
12/19/2006   Post a comment
International Rectifier's IRF6643PbF, a 150-volt, 35-amp DirectFET MOSFET for isolated DC/DC converters, touts superior thermal performance and higher efficiency in a low-profile SO-8 package.
Kleer's audio models deliver low power, robust performance
Product News  
12/18/2006   Post a comment
The Audio LP line features high quality audio, low power consumption and robust ISM band coexistence.
Assessing the dc performance and accuracy of low dropout regulators
Design How-To  
12/18/2006   Post a comment
DC performance of the LDO is critical in many applications; understand the effect of bipolar vs. MOSFET pass transistors on regulation and dropout voltage
Dual 14-bit ADC supports 3G and WiMAX basestations
Product News  
12/18/2006   Post a comment
With sample rates of up to 150 Msamples/s, ADI's latest ADC can support 3G and WiMax basestations with half the board space of typical solutions.
Temp sensors boost thermal management for 90-nm processors
Product News  
12/18/2006   Post a comment
Product Review - SMSC's temperature sensors include resistance error correction, beta compensation, and automatic diode-typing for 90-mm processors; the same technology is also a part of their fan controller ICs.
Battery gas gauge chipset taps unused energy, provides safety
Product News  
12/18/2006   Post a comment
Texas Instruments unveils battery management chips to manage and protect multi-cell, li-ion battery packs.
Non-classical MOSFET solutions for power-efficient CMOS
Design How-To  
12/17/2006   Post a comment
The electronics industry is addicted to the CMOS technology for MOSFET transistors because of the performance and density gains that come with shrinking it. Below 32 nm this becomes difficult because energy dissipation becomes critical. New materials and structures are needed — here's what you need to know to make the right power decision for your designs.
Startup tunes .11n for short-range HDTV video
Product News  
12/15/2006   Post a comment
Startup Amimon Inc. will demonstrate at the Consumer Electronics Show a prototype of its wireless high definition interface for HDTV video, using technology based on a variation of 802.11n that can deliver up to 1.5 Gbits/second.
Austrian foundry pushes 50V embedded flash process
News & Analysis  
12/15/2006   Post a comment
Chip design and foundry company austriamicrosystems is expanding its service foundry operation to include a 50V high-voltage CMOS process with embedded flash.
Digital Receiver Design: Basics of Software Radio Part 1
Design How-To  
12/15/2006   Post a comment
Digital receivers have revolutionized electronic systems for a variety of applications including communications, data acquisition, and signal processing. This series shows how digital receivers, the fundamental building block for software radio, can replace conventional analog receiver designs, offering significant benefits in performance, density and cost.
PoE manager for power source equipment delivers 25 watts
Product News  
12/15/2006   Post a comment
Texas Instruments says its TPS23841 is the industry's first fully integrated power-over-Ethernet (PoE) management device for power source equipment (PSE) that allows multiport enterprise systems to deliver up to 25 watts over a standard Ethernet cable.
Motion control IC provides advanced stall-detection
Product News  
12/14/2006   Post a comment
The Magellan 55110 from Performance Motion Devices, a single-axis motion control processor IC for step motors, has advanced stall-detection features. Designed specifically for step motor applications,
FCC OKs DS-OFDM UWB modulation without waivers
News & Analysis  
12/14/2006   Post a comment
Approval was granted without waiver restrictions that are currently being applied to the WiMedia Standard UWB technology.
Single-chip comprises THD analyzer
Product News  
12/14/2006   Post a comment
Build your own test gear. Specialized IC supplier Mixed Signal Integration has a nifty CMOS chip that can measure THD. The device is a single-chip 1/6th octave-wide five-harmonic distortion analyzer.
Design of High-Performance Balanced Audio Interfaces - Part 2
Design How-To  
12/14/2006   Post a comment
High signal-to-noise ratio is an important goal for most audio systems. However, ac power connections unavoidably create ground voltage differences, magnetic fields, and electric fields. Balanced interfaces, in theory, are totally immune to such interference.
Microchip packs 18-bit delta-sigma ADC in a SOT-23 package
Product News  
12/14/2006   Post a comment
Microchip Technology says its 18-bit, delta-sigma analog-to-digital converter, for portable measurement in industrial, medical, consumer, and automotive applications, is the highest-resolution ADC available in a SOT-23 package.
DiBcom's mobile TV chipset handles DVB-H and DVB-T standards
Product News  
12/13/2006   Post a comment
The STK-7078 MD is compatible with both Windows XP and Vista and is available in the form of a USB-2.0 key.
High-side current monitors feature 8-450 volt input range
Product News  
12/13/2006   Post a comment
The HV7801 and HV7802 high-side current monitors from Supertex feature an ultrawide operating range, 8 to 450 volts, for motor controls, off-line sensors, instrumentation amplifiers, and current-sensing for high-voltage LED drivers, batteries, and switchmode supplies.
High-power PoE manager targets multi-port systems
Product News  
12/13/2006   Post a comment
Texas Instruments targets multi-port systems with an integrated Power over Ethernet (PoE) management device that allows these systems to deliver up to 25 watts of power over a standard Ethernet cable.
Chip-scale driver for LED flash delivers 1 amp
Product News  
12/13/2006   Post a comment
California Micro Devices' family of PhotonIC flash LED drivers, which includes the CM9410, delivers up to 1 amp in a package that's one-fifth the size of equivalent solutions.
Enable variable speed control for consumer appliances with digital power management
Design How-To  
12/13/2006   Post a comment
A digital power management system offers accurate and variable speed control but until recently cost has been a significant hurdle. Here is a cost-effective variable-speed universal motor control solution to help you meet your motor control challenges
Design of High-Performance Balanced Audio Interfaces
Design How-To  
12/13/2006   Post a comment
High signal-to-noise ratio is an important goal for most audio systems. However, ac power connections unavoidably create ground voltage differences, magnetic fields, and electric fields. Balanced interfaces, in theory, are totally immune to such interference.
Global mobile TV: A multi-standard tutorial
Design How-To  
12/12/2006   Post a comment
Fragmented global markets and diverse standards argue persuasively for multistandard silicon.
Dual-band chipset is 802.11n-draft compliant
Product News  
12/12/2006   Post a comment
Here's a chipset that may ease designs of wireless digital entertainment systems. Re-introduced as second-generation silicon by Metalink, the WLANPlus chipset is billed by the company as the industry's first IEEE-802.11n-draft-compliant dual-band chip-set.
Audio post-processor ICs for DTV deliver home-theatre features
Product News  
12/12/2006   Post a comment
Cirrus Logic's CS48520 and CS48540 for digital TV (DTV) applications are complete audio post-processing solutions designed to deliver home-theater-like audio quality.
JMD's WiMAX front end targets mobile phones, laptops
Product News  
12/12/2006   Post a comment
The M30001 module integrates all active and passive components required to interface WiMAX transceivers directly to an antenna.
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