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posted in December 2011
Top 10 automotive electronics stories of 2011
Design How-To  
12/23/2011   3 comments
The top stories of the year underscore the great interest Automotive Designline readers have in hybrid and electric vehicles.
Lead-free auto power MOSFETs come in standard TO packages
Product News  
12/22/2011   2 comments
Diffusion-soldering die-attach approach permits producing lead-free packages.
Compact 1.5 W DC/DC converters target high-vibration applications
Product News  
12/21/2011   Post a comment
An enclosed BPA package houses the transformer, control circuitry, and power switches for interconnect reliability.
SerDes technology allows single wire pair control channel
Design How-To  
12/19/2011   6 comments
Unique SerDes application permits encrypted HD video/audio with full-duplex bi-directional control over a single wire pair interface.
First 3-D IC spec set for release
News & Analysis  
12/16/2011   13 comments
JEDEC which announced a broad set of 3-D IC standards development earlier in 2011 is set to release what is touted as the first 3-D IC interface standard which will releases as early as late December.
Balance hybrid/EV battery packs to extend operational lifetime: Pt. 2—Algorithm and lab tests
Design How-To  
12/16/2011   1 comment
Charge imbalance can reduce a battery pack’s total capacity and potentially damage the pack. Imbalance prevents batteries from tracking from the charged state to the discharged state and if not closely monitored can cause batteries to be overcharged or over-discharged—which will permanently damage the cells.
Optimize SDR performance
Design How-To  
12/15/2011   2 comments
Hands-on example using AWR Visual System Simulator: This article explains the attributes of SDR, the design challenges, and it includes hands-on examples of how AWR’s Visual System Simulator (VSS) software for system simulation of RF end-to-end architecture design can be used to address these challenges.
Intel announces mobile and wireless reorganization
News & Analysis  
12/15/2011   13 comments
In a bid to tighten and hone its mobile technology focus, Intel Corp. has confirmed it has reorganized several business units to form a new mobile and communications group which will be responsible for all the firm’s smartphone, tablet and wireless communication efforts.
Globalfoundries announces 20-nm chip tape out
News & Analysis  
12/14/2011   4 comments
ARM and Globalfoundries have announced the tape out of a 20nm chip and have demoed a Cortex-A9 SoC operating at more than 2.5GHz on 28nm technology.
Workstation market sees Q3 growth, offers hope
News & Analysis  
12/13/2011   1 comment
The workstation market could be seeing a slow but meaningful comeback, according to recent analyst numbers.
Three-phase BLDC fan-motor driver employs resistor-programmable, sensorless sinusoidal architecture
Product News  
12/13/2011   Post a comment
Microchip Technology claims industry first for MTD6505 motor driver for PC fans, in ultra-thin, 3×3 mm UDFN package
Op amps respond to the general-purpose call
Product News  
12/13/2011   Post a comment
STMicrolectronics' LMV82x, LMV82xA, TSV85x, & TSV85xA are LMV321 upgrade; meet performance and price points for signal-conditioning applications
Nvidia's Tegra 3 chip to be used in experimental moon rover
News & Analysis  
12/13/2011   2 comments
Nvidia’s mobile Tegra platform may be about to take one small step for man, and a giant leap for mankind, with news that team Synergy Moon plans to use the chip in its bid to win the $30 million Google Lunar X-Prize challenge.
Differential op amp tackles CMV to +275V, offers CMRR of 100 dB
Product News  
12/12/2011   Post a comment
INA149 diff amp from Texas Instruments offers precision with high common-mode rejection, common-mode-voltage tolerance
Broadcom launches connected-car Ethernet portfolio
Product News  
12/12/2011   1 comment
Portfolio designed specifically for automotive to cut connectivity cost and cabling weight.
Processors enable global software defined radio platforms
Design How-To  
12/12/2011   1 comment
Moving radio functions from hardware into software opens up cost benefits for global car production. Secondly, it affords producers flexibility when making decisions about future innovations in the pipeline—such as car-to-X. But what is needed is the right mix of specialized and flexible function blocks.
Top "Medical Designline" articles for 2011 (Part 2 of 2)
Design How-To  
12/11/2011   Post a comment
See what your fellow engineers were reading this past year
Surface-mount micro thermo-generators challenge batteries
Product News  
12/11/2011   1 comment
Micropelt has launched a compact thermo-generator package (TGP), which makes thermal energy harvesting ready for mass production.
Power Tip 42 (Part 1): Discrete devices—a good alternative to integrated MOSFET drivers
Power Tips  
12/9/2011   8 comments
The humble, inexpensive discrete transistor can be a cost- and performance-effective choice, and better in some ways than a more-highly integrated component.
LED driver ICs feature diagnostics and protection features
Product News  
12/9/2011   1 comment
AEC-Q100 Grade 0 qualified devices can drive upwards of 15 LEDs at 1A or higher.
TI, Altera cut Q4 sales targets on weak demand
News & Analysis  
12/9/2011   3 comments
Chip makers Texas Instruments and Altera lowered fourth quarter sales targets, citing broadly weak demand across most markets they serve.
Balance hybrid/EV battery packs to extend operational lifetime: Pt. 1—Hardware and strategy
Design How-To  
12/9/2011   2 comments
Charge imbalance can reduce a battery pack’s total capacity and potentially damage the pack. Imbalance prevents batteries from tracking from the charged state to the discharged state and if not closely monitored can cause batteries to be overcharged or over-discharged—which will permanently damage the cells.
Developer hits back at Intel's Android fragmentation claims
News & Analysis  
12/8/2011   5 comments
In response to Intel’s claims that he was fragmenting the Android operating system, Chih-Wei Huang has hit back at what he calls “prejudiced” PR tactics to discredit his work.
Analog Devices 20-bit AD5790 and 18-bit AD5780 D/A converters
Product News  
12/8/2011   2 comments
Analog Devices' 20-bit AD5790 and 18-bit AD5780 D/A converters provide stability and ultra-low noise needed to increase accuracy of instrumentation equipment.
TI engineers elected as IEEE Fellows
News & Analysis  
12/7/2011   2 comments
Three engineers from Texas Instruments have been elected as IEEE Fellows for “extraordinary accomplishments” in the semiconductor space and their contributions to the electrical engineering community.
Standalone and wireless MCUs sip electrons; target smart meters, monitoring, medical apps
Product News  
12/7/2011   Post a comment
C8051F96x and Si102x/Si103x from Silicon Labs draw 40% less than nearest rivals, implement patented ultra-low-power techniques
Video: Challenges on the path to Exascale computing
News & Analysis  
12/6/2011   1 comment
Like the race to put man on the moon back in the 1960’s, the race to achieve exascale computing is becoming a pressing, global ambition.
Nvidia: ARM supercomputer to be more efficient than x86
News & Analysis  
12/6/2011   39 comments
An ARM CPU is inherently more efficient than an x86 CPU and therefore best suited toward the high performance computing needs of the future, according to Nvidia.
AMD offers Fusion APUs as alternative accelerators for supercomputing
News & Analysis  
12/6/2011   3 comments
While Intel and Nvidia engage in a war of words over which architecture best suits high performance computing –graphics cards or many integrated cores—rival chip designer AMD is offering up its own Fusion architecture for consideration, and some vendors are already taking the bait.
Qualcomm unveils health subsidiary, cloud hub
News & Analysis  
12/5/2011   5 comments
Qualcomm has announced the spin-off of its wireless health division into a wholly owned subsidiary called Qualcomm Life. The firm said Qualcomm Life would be in charge of a $100 million fund, managed by Qualcomm Ventures, to invest in wireless health technologies.
Infrared emitters offer high current drives with low thermal resistivity
Product News  
12/5/2011   1 comment
Compact package also features high radiant intensity and optical power.
Component integration paces EV, hybrid power electronics efficiency
Design How-To  
12/5/2011   1 comment
To achieve maximum power density, electric losses and thermal resistances must be kept to a minimum—thus maximum component integration is required.
Using SystemVue to overcome 4G challenges
Design How-To  
12/5/2011   Post a comment
Recent updates to mobile communications standards create baseband and RF design challenges. While EDA tools offer a viable resolution to some of the problem…
October global chip sales fell back, says WSTS
News & Analysis  
12/4/2011   4 comments
Global chip sales in October were $23.41 billion down 20.5 percent from the preceding month and down 4.1 percent on the $24.40 billion recorded for October 2010, according to figures published by the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics.
Intel, Google don't support Android to PC port
News & Analysis  
12/3/2011   26 comments
A developer in Taiwan has been making internet waves with his new but unauthorized release of a Google Android Ice Cream source code for x86 devices, aimed specifically at PCs.
Shunt charger ICs harvest energy, protect batteries
Design How-To  
12/2/2011   Post a comment
Energy harvesting ICs can convert a transducer's output into an electric current for a battery charger. Here are application options for a charger IC designed for embedded automotive applications.
Integrated transceivers save space in LIN, CAN applications
Product News  
12/1/2011   Post a comment
Automotive-qualified compact integrated circuits also target cost in vehicle comfort and convenience, and industrial designs.
LEDs tailor automotive lighting, improve safety
Design How-To  
12/1/2011   5 comments
Lighting used to be purely functional but has evolved into an element of design: Every vehicle can be given an individual appearance thanks to characteristic lighting.
Intel bounces back in 2011 chip company ranking
News & Analysis  
12/1/2011   20 comments
Intel is set to be a nearly $50 billion company and have enjoyed 23 percent growth in 2011 as it increases its lead of the top 20 chip company ranking produced by market research firm IHS.

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