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Analog

Steve Taranovich
Editor
Latest design tips and clever circuit architectures that analog design engineers must have to keep up with fast-paced developments in the analog world of interface, timing, and RF advancements. Industry innovations and processes that enhance analog performance are some of the many topics to be explored in great technical depth as they happen.

Photodiodes and other Light Sensors, Part 1

This article has been written to answer a number of questions that the author has encountered, as an analog applications engineer, concerning the characteristics of photosensors and photosensor interface circuitry – both for AC and DC applications. Read More...

Linear Technology 92mW direct conversion I/Q modulator

Linear Technology’s latest I/Q modulator is an energy saver for battery-powered transmitters operating in the 30MHz to 1.3GHz frequency bands. Read More...

Transistor and PWM-Switch Analogs

The transistor and the PWM-switch, the core circuit of power converters, have interesting analogs. Both have three terminals, hence three configurations. They are active devices, and each has a key parameter. Read More...

View noisy signals with a stable oscilloscope trigger

Without a stable trigger, oscilloscope displays can become nearly useless for measurements, documentation, and analysis. Read More...

ULP wireless: over-the-air software upgrades

Revising an ultra low power (ULP) wireless chip’s software in the field has been difficult. But new technology will make it routine - to developers’ and consumers’ benefit alike Read More...

Ternary modulation for Class-D amps

An inherent problem with Class-D amplifiers is the noise generated by the harmonics of the signal. This paper discusses a software-centric noise reduction technique for a single tone which is required when a clean, single frequency is desired when driving an antenna. Read More...

Book Excerpt: Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers, Chapter 9, Part 3

This chapter excerpted from Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers describes the balun as a subset of transmission line transformers with an in-depth treatment of most used types. Schematics and design /build information details are shown and are well described. Read More...

Heave your heat sinks! Bergquist's "Thermal Management for LEDs" solutions guide shows you how.

One of the ugly truths of the SSL industry is that conventional heat sinks often account for a shockingly high percentage of many LED products' BOM and assembly costs. That's why I was so intrigued when I stumbled on a copy of Bergquist's solutions guide for using their T-Clad thermal substrates in LED designs Read More...

Bluetooth v4.1: What developers need to know

Here’s how the newest chips can take advantage of the latest version of Bluetooth technology’s new functionality Read More...

Integrated display power and LED driver IC for Smartphones

Bravo Intersil! What designer could say no to a device which saves them precious board space while adding much-needed slack to their power budget? And the hybrid dimming capability is icing on the cake. Read More...

How-to design LED signage and LED matrix displays (Part 2)

In Part 2 of this 3-part series, we'll look at the remaining steps necessary to complete a basic LED display driver system. This will lay the groundwork for Part 3 which will introduce several important features becoming commonly available on advanced LED display driver ICs, as well as tips on how to make best use of them. Read More...

The inner workings of the three-op-amp INA

Instrumentation amplifiers can sometimes throw you a curve ball for even the easiest applications. Read More...

The EE consultant who despises engineering fraud

From time domain vs. frequency domain to NRZ vs. PAM4 to EE luminary Steve Weir shares insight into the electronics design industry, some movie suggestions, and fraud technologies. Read More...

Mini sensor enables accurate fluid-temperature sensing

Offered in a stainless-steel housing for permanent contact with fluids, the NTCAIMME3 miniature immersion sensor from Vishay BCcomponents provides a fast response time of 1.5 s, a low thermal gradient of less than 0.02 K/K, and a high base-temperature accuracy of ±1.5°C. Read More...

LDO regulator boasts ultralow-noise operation

The LT3062 low-noise, low-dropout-voltage linear regulator from Linear Technology delivers up to 200 mA continuous output current with a 300-mV dropout voltage at full load, while providing a noise specification of only 30 µVRMS across a bandwidth of 10 Hz to 100 kHz. Read More...

Is a shark biting your product?

In the category of unexpected hazards, sharks are biting into undersea optical-fiber cables. Are the sharks sensing the electric field, or just checking out what's new in their play area? Read More...

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555-based class-D headphone driver makes great practice amp

This class-D audio amp “plays” to the 555’s strengths. Read More...

LTC Design Note: Robust 10MHz reference clock input protection circuit and distributor for RF systems

Design a protected 10MHz reference input without degrading phase noise. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: Isolated current sensing with ∑-∆ optoisolators

Sigma-delta optocouplers make for accurate isolated sensing, and can trade off speed for ENOB. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: Fast analog isolation with linear optocouplers

Implement isolated analog signals and current loops with linear optocouplers. Read More...

Three-transistor current source covers wide range

This Design Idea is a two-wire current regulator that strikes a good balance between performance and parts count, and can deal with low voltage & medium to high currents. Read More...

Differential amp has 6dB lower noise, twice the bandwidth

Differential/instrumentation amp topologies possess varying trade-offs. Here’s one that improves noise & BW at the expense of input resistance. Read More...

Exclusively select 1 of N relays

Simple elegance reigns in this 1-of-N selector. Read More...

High-power shunt regulator uses BJT & reference IC

This circuit provides much better performance and higher power handling than a Zener diode. Read More...

Safety flasher warns of high voltage

A low power circuit warns the user that high voltage is present. Read More...

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Linear Technology 92mW direct conversion I/Q modulator

Linear Technology’s latest I/Q modulator is an energy saver for battery-powered transmitters operating in the 30MHz to 1.3GHz frequency bands. Read More...

DAC converts PWM inputs to voltage outputs

Linear Technology’s LTC2645 quad-channel DAC with an integrated 10-ppm/°C reference converts PWM input signals to 12-bit accurate, stable, buffered voltage outputs in less than 8 µs, eliminating the ripple and delay typically associated with analog filters. Read More...

Keithley power supply measures, too

The 2280S Precision Measurement, Low Noise, Programmable DC Power Supplies provide power, measure output current and voltage and, can graph them. Read More...

Low-noise op amps boast wide supply range

The LTC6090 family of precision operational amplifiers from Linear Technology operates over a supply range of ±4.75 V to ±70 V (140 V) and provides a low-frequency noise specification of 3.5 µV pk-pk from 0.1 Hz to 10 Hz. Read More...

DecaWave DWM1000 module: Precise indoor location

Fabless Ireland semiconductor company, DecaWave, announced their first module, DWM1000, based on what the company claims is the industry's most precise indoor location and communication CMOS chip, the DW1000 Read More...

WaveSurfer oscilloscopes land on MAUI

Easy-to-use interface now appears in the Teledyne LeCroy WaveSurfer 3000 series of oscilloscopes. Read More...

Microchip Bluetooth Low Energy smart module

Microchip Technology Inc. announced its first Bluetooth® 4.1 Low Energy module Read More...

PCIe board generates two independent sine waves

Generate signals to 800 MHz, programmed through a GUI, C program, or hardware. Read More...

Maxim Integrated PIXI: How to make a highly functional Field Programmable Analog Array (FPAA)

The Maxim Integrated design team knew the FPAA history and wisely designed a solution that stayed away from all the other supplier designs that failed to live up to their potential. Read More...

Digital pots operate at 36 V

Supporting wide signal swings, these DigiPots also feature high terminal/wiper current support and an extended temperature range. for industrial, automotive and audio applications. Read More...

iPad app from NI runs accurate SPICE simulations

Multisim Touch simulates circuit designs anywhere, anytime, says National Instruments; students, hobbyists and engineers can use the iPad app to design and simulate circuits using high-fidelity SPICE simulation with results identical to the desktop. Read More...

SiTime enters wearables, IoT markets with 32 kHz MEMS TCXO

32 kHz TCXO (temperature compensated oscillator) which they claim to be the smallest, lowest power device in the industry. With its tiny footprint and ultra-low power consumption Read More...

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Teardown: Maxwell's equations

If Maxwell's Equations were a piece of hardware, most of us would be eager to see what's inside the box. But you won't find the literary equivalent of a physical teardown because the subject is basically mathematical and as such, requires a certain amount of rigor to explain and understand. If you're willing to trade mathematical rigor for readability, this article may be the refresher you've been looking for. Read More...

Teardown: The Engineer’s Mind

For this teardown episode, the recent Mind of the Engineer Study provides a view of your perception of the engineering mind: What you think of you, and what you think others think of you. There are some surprises, some affirmations, and of course some fun twists. Read More...

Teardown: The nuances of variable-frequency drives

Get an inside view of induction-motor control by varying frequency using PWM. Read More...

The Scrubbing Bubbles power sprayer

A brilliant design costs you only pennies per spritz. Read More...

The 24V, 300W, BLDC Kollmorgen motor integrated controller

A motor mixes mechanical and electrical beauty with questionable thermal design. Read More...

The Tektronix 1101 oscilloscope-probe power supply

A mechanical design is at once a masterpiece and an expensive expedient. Read More...

Bulldog Security RS82B remote-vehicle-starter system

Microprocessor-controlled relays let you start your car 100 yards away. Read More...

The 15W Fender Squier guitar amplifier

Replacing all of the potentiometers makes a scratchy old amp sound great again. Read More...

The Schauer TB10012 battery charger

A 30-year-old nonworking battery charger makes a perfect Prying Eyes candidate—and gets a new lease on life. Read More...

The West Bend No. 1 electric-frying-pan thermostat

Spray lubricant and contact cleaner save a dignified old product. Read More...

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Photodiodes and other Light Sensors, Part 1

This article has been written to answer a number of questions that the author has encountered, as an analog applications engineer, concerning the characteristics of photosensors and photosensor interface circuitry – both for AC and DC applications. Read More...

Book Excerpt: Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers, Chapter 9, Part 3

This chapter excerpted from Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers describes the balun as a subset of transmission line transformers with an in-depth treatment of most used types. Schematics and design /build information details are shown and are well described. Read More...

Book Excerpt: Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers, Chapter 9 Baluns, Part 2

This chapter excerpted from Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers describes the balun as a subset of transmission line transformers with an in-depth treatment of most used types. Read More...

Autonomous vehicles: Are they ready for road challenges yet?

There are many ongoing developments in software and electronic controls that are very promising to autonomous vehicle safety and ultimate implementation. Let’s take a look at some of these efforts. Read More...

Book Excerpt: Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers, Chapter 9 Baluns

This chapter excerpted from Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers describes the balun as a subset of transmission line transformers with an in-depth treatment of most used types. Read More...

An investigation of distortion in a voltage controlled amplifier, Part 1

One of the more common building blocks of a voltage controlled amplifier (VCA) is a differential pair amplifier. Read More...

Book review: Jerry Sevick’s Transmission Line Transformers

The following is a book review of what started out in 1987 as a compilation of research done on wideband transformers for matching vertical antennas to 50 ohm transmission lines. Read More...

Designs of small footprint audio distribution amplifiers, Part 2

Sometimes we may need to distribute audio signals to several rooms in the house or in the office. That is useful when we want to mask external noise or when we wish to create an appropriate environment. Read More...

Designs of small footprint audio distribution amplifiers, Part 1

Sometimes we may need to distribute audio signals to several rooms in the house or in the office. That is useful when we want to mask external noise or when we wish to create an appropriate environment. Read More...

Book Review: Classic analog design textbook by Professor Sergio Franco

Professor Franco has completed his Fourth Edition of “Design with Operational Amplifiers and Integrated Circuits”, a book targeted at Senior undergraduate and Graduate level university engineering courses as well as all levels of design engineers working in the field of electronics. Read More...

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Transistor and PWM-Switch Analogs

The transistor and the PWM-switch, the core circuit of power converters, have interesting analogs. Both have three terminals, hence three configurations. They are active devices, and each has a key parameter. Read More...

ULP wireless: over-the-air software upgrades

Revising an ultra low power (ULP) wireless chip’s software in the field has been difficult. But new technology will make it routine - to developers’ and consumers’ benefit alike Read More...

LISN Impedance

Line Impedance Stabilization Network or LISN has become a familiar bit of terminology for the kind of circuit that gets put to work in electromagnetic interference (EMI) testing. Read More...

Intro to LTE-Advanced

How do we achieve higher capacity mobile phone performance with the LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) specification from the 3GPP? Read More...

Synth startup looks to the cloud

A team of UK engineers is aiming to create a world-leading audio company making a new generation of cloud-connected music synthesizers. Read More...

Fairchild acquisition of Xsens

I was not too impressed with all the talk I’ve heard but not much action---until now—Learning of the Xsens acquisition significantly reinforces my faith in Fairchild’s MEMS and sensor offerings and is in tune with what they have been promising. Read More...

Power supply oscillation

In a nutshell, the power supply problem was as sketched below. When it was assembled by that first company, it worked okay. When it was assembled by my company's "Manufacturing" people, the power supply oscillated at 10 MHz. Read More...

Test power ICs to survive radiation

In space, power-management ICs can be subjected to radiation. Testing can assure that a part will still function, even if the silicon structure is altered. Read More...

Intro to airborne radar

George Stimson’s Introduction to Airborne Radar is now in its third edition. Here’s a look at how SciTech worked with a team of radar and EW engineers to update the latest version of this venerable text. Read More...

Quick & dirty cable length & impedance measurement

Can't afford a full-blown TDR? Here are a few quick & dirty measurement tips. Read More...

Cirrus to take half the audio IC market, says report

Price pressure in the growing audio IC market is leading to consolidation and will continue, according to SensiAn Research. And it is happening top-down with the acquisition of Wolfson Microelectronics by Cirrus Logic. Read More...

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