Useful for parallel testing of multipin semiconductor devices, the PXIe-4143 SMU (source- measure unit) from National Instruments provides four channels in a single-slot 3U PXI Express module. It also features NI SourceAdapt technology, which allows engineers to custom-tune the SMU response for any DUT load.
The PXIe-4143 offers four-quadrant operation to source or sink up to ±24 V at ±150 mA. In addition, the unit achieves a sample rate of up to 600 ksamples/s to measure fast transient responses. Four current-measurement ranges are available—10 µA, 100 µA, 1 mA, 10 mA, and 150 mA—with a sensitivity of 10 pA for accurate characterization of idle currents.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.