As the business days of November waned, EDN's Test & Measurement Design Center posted the finalists for the 2014 Best-in-Test Awards and Test Engineer of the Year award. We selected up to six finalists on each of the ten product categories and four finalists for Test Engineer of the Year. For the first time, we have a double nominee as someone nominated two people for one test engineer award. Voting will be open through December 31, 2013.
Michael Dunn's A practical take on FFTs
, is just that. Dunn explains the three major factors that produce the frequency-domain plots your oscilloscope can display:
- Record size
- Ratio of signal period to record time
- Windowing function
Kenneth Wyatt likes to review low-cost, sometimes obscure, test equipment. In November, he reviewed a $599 miniature RF generator in Review: Windfreak Technologies SynthNV RF generator (Part 1)
coming at the end of January, EDN featured three articles about high-speed digital signals with two focusing on bit jitter. In Jitter separation: Where science meets art
, Brig Asay breaks down jitter into its components, showing you how to derive them from total jitter. Then, Daniel Chow explores sinusoidal jitter using animated graphics in Jitter: Measurement references matter
. Finally, Colin Warwick summarizes a DesignCon 2013 paper titled "Tips and Advanced Techniques for Characterizing a 28Gbit/s Transceiver" in Characterize a 28Gbit/s Transceiver
. Warwick shows how to use de-embedding to cancel losses in cables, connectors, and PCB traces.
At high frequencies, PCB traces act like transmission lines and Eric Bogatin quizzes you on your transmission-line knowledge in So you think you understand transmission lines. If you really know transmission lines, then go ahead, solve the puzzle.
PCB traces can also be the source of EMI emissions, but how do you know? Simulation software can help, but not always. Bruce Archambeault tells you why in EM simulation tools only go so far.
Most electrical engineers have used scientific calculators through college and their careers. Today's calculators can do far more than those you may have used in school. Chris Grachanen learned a thing or two about modern calculators when his son asked for help with an algebra problem. He realized that his son's newer calculator is just Not Your Father's Calculator.
Have you ever automated your test equipment? If you have, then you've likely sent SCPI commands to your equipment. SCPI solved many programming problems, helping to standardize test-automation software. But SCPI isn’t perfect, as Larry Desjardin explains in SCPI programming: Strengths and weaknesses.
Don't forget our live chat about all things DesignCon tomorrow, December 3 at 10:00 a.m. PST, 1:00 p.m. EST, 1800 GMT. See you there.
— Martin Rowe, Senior Technical Editor