I2C stands for “Inter-integrated circuit,” or “inter-IC,” and is a simple, 8-bit, serial communication bus protocol that uses just two bus wires; a serial data wire (SDA) and a serial clock wire (SCL). I2C is integrated into many ICs and allows devices to communicate directly with each other, avoiding CPU cycles. I2C operates on a […]
Temperature is a parameter that often needs measuring. It may be within an enclosure, on a PCB, remotely or even “wirelessly”. Wireless, in this case, does not necessarily mean a remote sensor communicating using radio frequencies, it can mean a pyroelectric sensor. Pyroelectric sensors are very long wavelength detectors which measure radiation in the 6-15μm […]
Because our work depends so much on the technologies we utilize, one of our year-end reviews covers a post-mortem summary of all failures related to our equipment use. The summary includes system failures, which are thankfully rare, and also encompasses use-model failures such as our discovery that the RF data-link receivers we use on location […]
If this sounds too good to be true, it is not: read on. Abe Lincoln was one of those guys that didn’t have a college education but made it to the top as a self-educated man. Back then, you didn’t have to have a 4-year college degree to get a decent paying job. Nearly everyone […]
Here, we review some common specifications for successive approximation register (SAR) and sigma delta analog to digital converters (ADCs.) For converters, resolution is the number of bits per conversion cycle that the converter is capable of processing. For example, a converter with 12 bits of resolution is often referred to as “12 bits wide,” since […]
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A bus is a pathway for digital signals to rapidly move data. There are three internal buses associated with processors: the data bus, address bus, and control bus. Together, these three make up the “system bus.” The system bus is an internal bus, intended to connect the processor with internal hardware devices, and is also […]
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We went into our article archives to uncover the most widely read posts on powerelectronictips.com over the past 12 months. Here for your reading (or re-reading?) pleasure are the top 10 stories: Teardown: What’s inside a Phillips Sonicare electric toothbrush? How and when MOSFETS blow up Gallery: Scenes from Texas Instruments’ power supply design seminar […]
Temperature doesn’t change very quickly, and temperature sensors match that characteristic. Environmental temperature changes are generally slow, on the order of less than 0.1 sec/°C. Typical temperature sensors used in circuits are resistance temperature devices (RTDs), thermocouples, thermistors or integrated silicon sensors. Trade-offs amongst these devices include cost, cost to operate, response time, noise immunity, […]
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Schottky diodes are useful in some power-converter topologies, especially for shunting the body diode in a half-bridge’s low-side MOSFET. In this position, the Schottky diode prevents the body diode from turning on, particularly when driving inductive loads common in power converters, because it’s forward voltage drop is smaller than that of the body diode’s PN […]
Cable types abound, available with different types of conductors for different purposes. Is fiber optic the best route or will copper conductors suit your task? Is your application requiring data, networking or power transmission? How will EMI effect my application? All these questions make cable selection tricky. So it’s no surprise that our most viewed […]