I know the readers of the EDA Designline like book reviews and excerpts and I have recently finished doing one over on EDN that I think you may be interested in. The book is “Analog Design and Simulation using OrCAD Capture and PSpice” written by Dennis Fitzpatrick. While the complete review can be read here, I will provide the main points in this blog.
In the EDA sector, there are a lot of books about research and new techniques, or how to learn and use new languages, but there are not many how-to, practical books that enable you to come up to speed with a tool. We tend to rely on the tool vendor and their user guides or tutorials, but often these are not the most helpful of texts as they are not written by real users who have struggled with learning it from scratch and as such often assume a lot of knowledge that isn’t there or go to the trivial end and almost teach you how to use a graphical interface.
So, who is Dennis Fitzpatrick? Well, first he is a Brit, and when you hear a British accent, you know he should be believed at all times – except you can’t get the accent from the book. Well, Dennis has also worked in the electronics industry for over 15 years with experience of analogue (yup that is a British accent right there) and digital IC design. He gained experience using the Cadence EDA software tools and ultimately ended up working for OrCAD and then Cadence as a Senior Lead Engineer specializing in the IC and board level analog, digital simulation and Signal Integrity tools before becoming an expert in PSpice. Dennis worked at Cadence for eight years providing support and delivering Cadence EDA software training courses. He joined the University of West London in 2007 as a senior lecturer teaching a wide range of electronic engineering subjects and now is a Reader in the University’s Institute for Practice, Interdisciplinary Research and Enterprise (INPSIRE) conducting Biomedical research and heads the Biomedical engineering and DSP research group.
Three chapters were provided. Chapter 5 talks about parametric sweep. Similar to chapter 3, this chapter looks at varying parameters of the design for AC analysis and is performed by varying a parameter in the design. This chapter is very heavy on the practical exercises. Chapter 7 is where you really start to learn about PSpice simulation and the notion of the timestep. Several exercises help you to understand the basics and how to create files with discrete time and voltage data. Finally, Chapter 10 is on the subject of Monte Carlo analysis. PSpice simulation, while a very efficient simulator for what it does, can take a long time for complex designs or for those that contain many variables that could be varied as part of the simulation process. Instead of simulating all of them, a statistical process is usually used called Monte Carlo analysis.
This is a great introduction to a complex subject and is very reasonably priced at $69.95 or cheaper from either the Elsevier store or from places such as Amazon. I highly recommend it for anyone looking at this subject for the first time.
- Chapter 1 Getting Started
- Chapter 2 DC Bias Point Analysis
- Chapter 3 DC Analysis
- Chapter 4 AC Analysis
- Chapter 5 Parametric Sweep
- Chapter 6 Stimulus Editor
- Chapter 7 Transient Analysis
- Chapter 8 Convergence Problems and Error Messages
- Chapter 9 Transformers
- Chapter 10 Monte Carlo Analysis
- Chapter 11 Worst Case Analysis
- Chapter 12 Performance Analysis
- Chapter 13 Analog Behavioral Models
- Chapter 14 Noise Analysis
- Chapter 15 Temperature Analysis
- Chapter 16 Adding and Creating PSpice Models
- Chapter 17 Transmission Lines
- Chapter 18 Digital Simulation
- Chapter 19 Mixed Simulation
- Chapter 20 Creating Hierarchical Designs
- Chapter 21 Magnetic Parts Editor
- Chapter 22 Test Benches
– keeping you covered
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