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Power Week: IRF Only One of Many Rumored Infineon Targets
News & Analysis  
8/21/2014   Post a comment
Prior to this week's big announcement of Infineon's agreement to buy International Rectifier, speculation swirled over several other chipmaker names as possible acquisition targets.
Infineon Buys International Rectifier
News & Analysis  
8/21/2014   8 comments
Infineon Technologies will buy International Rectifier for about $3 billion in cash. Through the merger, the German chip company is pushing toward leadership in the power semiconductor market.
ARM Stressed in Server Bid
News & Analysis  
8/20/2014   4 comments
ARM servers will come more slowly and perhaps to fewer applications than previously thought, according to server executives at Dell and Alibaba.
Power Tip 74: Interleaving Gets More Power From a Flyback
Power Tips  
8/18/2014   3 comments
In his final Power Tip, Robert Kollman looks at the number of benefits to be gained from interleaving a flyback power supply design.
Bitcoin ASIC in Chips-to-$ Race
News & Analysis  
8/14/2014   5 comments
Startup Cointerra described its bitcoin mining ASIC at Hot Chips, painting a picture of the headlong race to virtual money -- and logic power density -- that the emerging bitcoin economy has spawned.
Power Week: FAA - Lithium Batteries Pose More Danger Than Thought
News & Analysis  
8/14/2014   3 comments
New FAA tests on lithium batteries show that the devices pose more dangers to planes than previously thought.
Internet of Things: Batteries Not Required
News & Analysis  
8/11/2014   14 comments
Researchers at the University of Washington have developed WiFi Backscatter, a technology that culls energy from existing radio, TV, and wireless signals to connect low-energy devices to the Internet without the need for batteries.
Acer Chromebook Breaks New Ground
News & Analysis  
8/11/2014   12 comments
Acer on Monday announced the Chromebook 13, a family of laptops meant to tempt the budget- and performance-minded buyer. The Chromebook 13 is among the first to use a Tegra K1 processor under its hood.
Qi Won’t Go for Distance
News & Analysis  
8/7/2014   2 comments
The Wireless Power Consortium announced an update to its wireless charging spec Qi and while it may seem like an incremental change, officials say the new resonant option is on the right track for the safest method of charging.
Power Week: Student-Designed EV a Tesla Beater?
News & Analysis  
8/7/2014   1 comment
This week, a student-designed hybrid solar electric car has moved a step closer to becoming the world's first street-legal solar-powered vehicle.
What Next? Robot Cemeteries?
Blog  
8/6/2014   15 comments
Japan daily discovers more unintended consequences associated with the aging population of pet robots. It's hard enough to see your parents age. It's equally hard to see your pet robot grow old.
Wireless Charging Startup Taps RF
News & Analysis  
8/4/2014   11 comments
As products using coil-based wireless charging standards roll out, Bay Area-based startup Energous hopes radio frequency charging will take hold in the burgeoning wearables market targeting devices with relatively modest needs up to 10 Watts.
Is Tesla's Gigafactory a Gigablunder for Panasonic?
News & Analysis  
7/31/2014   27 comments
Panasonic signed a deal with Tesla on a large-scale battery plant, known as Gigafactory. The question inside and outside the Japanese company is this: how big an albatross might the Gigafactory become for Panasonic.
Power Week: Google's $1M Power Inverter Challenge – How Small Is Possible?
News & Analysis  
7/31/2014   6 comments
This week, Google, along with the IEEE, is offering a $1 million prize to anyone who can build a kilowatt-scale power inverter roughly the size of a laptop. A full list of technical requirements is available.
GM's Powermat Deal Falls Short
Blog  
7/29/2014   6 comments
General Motors will include multimode wireless charging in its 2015 Cadillacs and several other models. Adding standard wireless charging (to a luxury vehicle) is a step in the right direction, but an inductive-based system may not be as forward thinking as GM would hope.
IoT Spec Taps Internet Protocol
News & Analysis  
7/29/2014   1 comment
The IPSO Alliance will release a reference architecture for an IoT software stack based on the Internet Protocol, along with a list of smart objects for functions such as lighting control.
Power Tip 73: Synchronizing Makes for Well-Behaved Power Supplies
Power Tips  
7/28/2014   1 comment
Synchronizing your power system offers a number of benefits, including reduced filtering costs and lower EMI.
Freescale, with Solid Q2 Growth, Milks Auto IC Boom
News & Analysis  
7/25/2014   3 comments
Revenues of Freescale’s five key product groups grew across the board by double digits during the first half of 2014. Freescale’s CEO said, “We are growing our business at twice the speed of the market.”
Power Week: Thermoelectric Energy Harvesting's Bright Future
News & Analysis  
7/24/2014   9 comments
This week, the future of sub-watt thermoelectric energy harvesting as a battery replacement in various markets -- including infrastructure, transportation and consumer -- is looking promising.
Energy Harvesting Chip Demonstrated
News & Analysis  
7/24/2014   8 comments
Imec and Omron have collaborated on a tiny 5x6 cm energy harvester for sensors in hard-to-reach locations.
Smartwatches Suck, Says Pebble Backer
News & Analysis  
7/23/2014   30 comments
There are only two significant platforms in the smartwatch arena and neither are up to snuff, according to Pebble’s Myriam Joire. The chief project evangelist discussed the past, present, and future of smartwatches at Wearable Tech Expo.
Power Week: Solar Roadways – Sci-Fi or Future Reality?
News & Analysis  
7/17/2014   30 comments
This week, the concept of roadways paved with solar panels recently received a boost after a crowdfunding campaign in support of one such project raised more than double its $1 million goal.
Tiny GPU Targets IoT, Android Wear
News & Analysis  
7/16/2014   4 comments
Imagination Technologies announced a new Android-compatible graphics core for wearables and the Internet of Things. The PowerVR Series5XE GX5300 core is 0.55mm2 - what Imagination dubs the smallest chip in the industry - and designed for low-cost, area constrained applications.
Another Tool in the Box to Deliver Better Energy Efficiency
Blog  
7/16/2014   1 comment
An increasingly interesting approach now evolving in the industry is the use of adaptive voltage scaling (AVS), which is a powerful technique to optimize supply voltages and minimize energy consumption in modern high-performance microprocessors.
Power Week: TSA – Say No to Powerless Devices
News & Analysis  
7/10/2014   8 comments
This week, the Transportation Security Administration announced a controversial new rule banning powerless electronic devices aboard flights to the US; and a wireless network-on-a-chip technology promises reduced energy consumption at datacenters.
Inductive Charging Takes Shape at BMW & Daimler
News & Analysis  
7/9/2014   9 comments
BMW plans to launch series production for inductive charging schemes for electric vehicles. The project is conducted along with competitor Daimler. Each company plans to provide a uniform charging technology for the garage at home.
Slideshow: Inside Google's Modular Phone
Slideshow  
7/9/2014   5 comments
A top Google tech exec gave a deep dive into the challenges -- and promises -- behind the company's Ara modular phone initiative.
Power Week: $80 Billion Wasted on Power by Connected Devices
News & Analysis  
7/3/2014   10 comments
This week, a report blames inefficient technology in networked electronic devices for wasting $80 billion in energy costs worldwide in 2013. Also, Agilent introduces the first power device capacitance analyzer that automatically characterizes junction capacitances using real operating voltages.
Power Tip 72: Select the Right Rectifiers for Multiple Output Flybacks
Power Tips  
7/2/2014   Post a comment
The output rectifiers influence cross regulation over load and temperature, efficiency, and transformer design, so their choice is an important design aspect.
Google Boots Up Project Ara
News & Analysis  
6/27/2014   9 comments
Project Ara is literally up and running, as members of Google’s Advanced Technology and Projects team demonstrated a prototype modular phone at the company’s developer conference. Although the smartphone prototype, froze while booting up, project leads were excited about the device’s potential.
Intel Future Showcase Is Solar, Secure, 3D
Slideshow  
6/26/2014   3 comments
The Intel Future Showcase looked at how the intersection of hardware for mobile devices and the IoT will power innovation. From advanced tablets to connected prototyping boards and smart cars, the company hopes the future will be a more secure and immersive experience.
Power Week: Cheap, Organic Battery for Power Grid; Paper-Thin Battery for IoT & SiC News
News & Analysis  
6/26/2014   4 comments
This week scientists announce a battery for grid electrical storage, German researchers demonstrate efficiency improvements in power electronics, and STMicroelectronics introduces a paper-thin lithium battery suited for ultra-low-profile applications.
A Safe Level of Isolation
Blog  
6/25/2014   Post a comment
Given the significantly increasing deployment of PoE in communication installations with power supply lines that traverse outside environments, could this mean the isolation voltage for telecom power generally increasing to 2250Vdc?
Power Week: Superconducting Secrets Revealed, 660°F Circuits & Power Transistor Rebound
News & Analysis  
6/19/2014   Post a comment
This week, a breakthrough in high-temperature superconductivity, a positive forecast for power semis, SiC circuits that can operate at 660°F, a shock-and-vibration resistant 3,400 F supercap, and more.
Power Week: Wire/Supercap Hybrid, HV SiC & WEBENCH Power PCB Export
News & Analysis  
6/12/2014   Post a comment
This week, a wire that both transmits and stores electricity; a transparent plastic or glass layer that sorts sunlight to boost solar cell efficiency; a 30-kW dc/dc converter that uses 10-kV SiC devices; and PCB creation and layout export come to WEBENCH Power Designer.
EV Battery Maker Claims 1,000 Miles per Charge
News & Analysis  
6/12/2014   11 comments
An Israel-based battery company demonstrates an aluminum-air chemistry that it claims delivers as much as 1,000 miles per charge to electric cars.
Honey, I Shrunk the IoT Gateway
Blog  
6/12/2014   3 comments
A new class of micro-gateways is emerging to increase performance and lower power consumption, driven by advances in FDSOI process technology.
Intel Goes Wireless With Resonant Power
News & Analysis  
6/12/2014   13 comments
Intel announced a technology licensing agreement with wireless charging company WiTricity, further driving adoption of magnetic resonance technology. While consumer acceptance of wireless charging currently suffers because of a lack of standardization, Intel may provide the big name appeal to push loosely coupled coil charging.
Thin-Film Device Eyed as Power Source for Wearable Tech
News & Analysis  
6/11/2014   2 comments
Researchers are exploring ways to provide small, flexible power sources. Rice University has approached the problem by using nickel-based electrodes to develop a flexible supercapacitor that acts much like a battery without the need for lithium.
Can We All Afford the Cost of Energy-Efficient Design?
Blog  
6/9/2014   4 comments
It's easy to promote energy-saving technologies and products, but their up-front cost may be too high for many people, despite the assurance of long-term benefit.
Intel, Taiwan Target Tablets
News & Analysis  
6/5/2014   1 comment
At Computex, Intel announced the Broadwell Core M processor and a reference design as it teams up with Taiwan OEMs to grab a bigger slice of the tablet market.
Power Week: Simple Home Fuel Cell & Wireless Charging Spec Triples Power Delivery
News & Analysis  
6/5/2014   Post a comment
This week, a simple fuel cell for home use, a wireless charging spec is expanded to enable charging of tablets and laptops, and a USB power delivery controller that enables a single USB cable to deliver data and up to 100 W of power simultaneously.
Design Cars Like Planes, Use Them Like Cellphones
News & Analysis  
6/4/2014   6 comments
A Ford executive cautioned that, without tools that keep up with the automotive design challenges, a car's complexity will just keep growing. No longer will consumers be able to say: "It just works."
Haute Couture Meets High Tech
Slideshow  
6/4/2014   8 comments
According to Dutch fashion designer Anouk Wipprecht, fashion lacks microcontrollers. Using microcontrollers, sensors, and 3D printing, Wipprecht believes that the future of fashion is in technology.
Cavium Thunder Rattles Xeon
News & Analysis  
6/3/2014   24 comments
Cavium will challenge Intel's Xeon server processors with Thunder, its first server and networking SoCs based on a custom 64-bit ARM core.
Can Graphene Make Large-Scale Electricity Storage Viable?
News & Analysis  
5/29/2014   3 comments
Researchers are exploring different ways to reduce the size and weight of batteries and extend their lifespan by adding graphene as a component material.
Fire Risk Makes Panasonic Recall Laptop Battery Packs
News & Analysis  
5/29/2014   3 comments
More than 43,000 laptop battery packs have been recalled by Panasonic following three of the packs in Asia overheating and providing a fire. The company has also declared a separate recall in Europe as a safety precaution.
Power Week: Smaller EV Power Module, SiC Rectifiers & Battery Monitors
News & Analysis  
5/29/2014   Post a comment
This week, a power module from Infineon for EV inverters has a 30% smaller form factor than previous devices. Also: new SiC Schottky rectifiers from Cree and multi-cell battery monitors from Texas Instruments.
Counterfeit DC/DC Converters in the Supply Chain
News & Analysis  
5/28/2014   2 comments
Power converter maker Recom has issued an advisory that it has identified numerous counterfeit copies of its products in the market and is seeking to protect its brand value.
Supercaps Breakthrough: Phone Case to Replace Battery
News & Analysis  
5/28/2014   19 comments
Say goodbye to your phone battery and charger. A new structural material could transform a mobile device's entire case into a hybrid super-capacitor/battery, making traditional batteries obsolete.
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