ESC

Medical

Michael Dunn
Editor, Design Ideas, IC/FPGA, PCB, and Medical Design Centres
This site is especially for the savvy biomedical electronics design engineer who wants to be at the forefront of medical technology advancements from sensors to signal conditioning circuitry to data converters, microcontroller and interfaces and more. Wireless communication and wireless data transfer are among the key topics of discussion.

A healthy dose of data

The role of the Internet of Things is driving health and wellness. Read More...

Noncontact sensors monitor respiration and movement

Novelda offers two noncontact sensor modules—one for monitoring respiration and the other for detecting human presence at a range of up to several meters— for use in home automation, sleep monitoring, baby monitoring, and elderly care applications. Read More...

PCB future is lightweight, low-cost, and flexible: Product how-to

Low-cost flexible additively printed circuit “boards” are enabling new technologies and markets. Read More...

Simplified kurtosis computation detects signal interference

The statistical kurtosis operation, reinterpreted and implemented on an FPGA for this Design Idea, can detect various forms of interference in RF and other signals. Read More...

Medical devices: Where wireless charging has real impact

A very different implementation of consumer-product wireless power transfer may allow easier recharging of deeply implanted, tiny medical devices. Read More...

Medical maker aims implant at congenital scoliosis

Here's an example of engineering to improve lives from one inspiring young maker. Read More...

Apple's ResearchKit: Is open source good for your and Apple's health?

ResearchKit has potential for Apple's customers and for the computing and communications world more generally, but there are also a few concerns. Read More...

Handle SEUs with C-slow retiming

Using C-Slow Retiming to generate a time-redundant digital design results in significantly reduced area and less power consumption, as compared to traditional techniques. Read More...

Product how-to: Build your own designs on flexible circuit boards

Flexible PCBs are becoming low-cost and accessible even to hobbyists. Read More...

Wearable sensor measures UV index

The latest addition to STMicroelectronics’ portfolio of environmental sensors, the UVIS25 provides a direct digital output of UVI (ultraviolet index)—the international measurement of the strength of ultraviolet radiation, primarily from the sun, at a given place and time. Read More...

Swimmers’ heads-up display delivers real-time feedback

Mounted on any pair of swim goggles, a heads-up display monitor from Instabeat tracks, stores, and projects key information, including heart rate and swimming speed, on the goggle lens to give swimmers real-time feedback of their performance. Read More...

Ultra-low power medical sensing devkit & IC/IP

A sophisticated yet low-power medical monitoring devkit could help you differentiate your new products. Read More...

Integrating safety into connected medical devices

Using ARM virtualization modes to facilitate safe and secure code. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: 5MBd Digital optocouplers targeting low power/low supply voltage applications

Digital optocouplers provide high voltage insulation and noise rejection for data transmission, with very low power usage. Read More...

GaN technology will transform the future

If we will look out 5 to 10 years we can easily see how a transformative change in semiconductor technology can transform our everyday world. Read More...

Power-entry module affords Class II protection

A compact power-entry module with a built-in line filter, the DC12 from Schurter, meets the IEC 60601-1-11 safety standard for home healthcare equipment to minimize the risks for at-home users. Read More...

Designer's Notebook: Signal Isolation

A quick overview of signal isolation techniques. Read More...

Series-connected MOSFETs increase voltage & power handling

A constant-current charger for a high-energy capacitor bank uses multiple MOSFETs to increase voltage and power-handling capabilities. Read More...

Implantable, transparent sensors give researchers a better view of brain activity

Flexible, see-through sensors made with graphene allow neural researchers to monitor brain activity even when it is taking place beneath an implant. Read More...

LED-based sensors for wearable fitness tracking products

The surge in bio-sensing armbands, smartwatches, smartphones, and other fitness-oriented wearable products that employ optical sensing technologies would not have been possible without the dramatic reductions in cost and power brought by LEDs. Read More...

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Simplified kurtosis computation detects signal interference

The statistical kurtosis operation, reinterpreted and implemented on an FPGA for this Design Idea, can detect various forms of interference in RF and other signals. Read More...

Schmitt trigger adapts its own thresholds

If you need to condition a widely-varying signal, a simple Schmitt won’t work, but this DI will. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: 5MBd Digital optocouplers targeting low power/low supply voltage applications

Digital optocouplers provide high voltage insulation and noise rejection for data transmission, with very low power usage. Read More...

Series-connected MOSFETs increase voltage & power handling

A constant-current charger for a high-energy capacitor bank uses multiple MOSFETs to increase voltage and power-handling capabilities. Read More...

Circuit discriminates & recovers noisy pulses

Noisy pulse trains with widely-varying amplitude are recovered with this DI circuit. Think transducers… Read More...

Simple pulse oximetry for wearable monitor

Use this circuit as the “heart” of a pulse oximeter and oxygen saturation monitor. Read More...

Avago Tech Note: 14.2mm wide Creepage and clearance optocouplers for high-voltage applications

Not any optocoupler will do for applications requiring extra-high-voltage isolation. Read More...

Inductive sensing with left-handed antenna for biomedical applications

Could an inductive sensor help assay biological and other substances? Read More...

Elastomer-assisted inductive sensing

Embedding inductive coils under an off-the-shelf mattress pad creates a multi-point position and pressure sensing system for sleep-posture analysis. Robotic applications also beckon. Read More...

Water & vandal-proof keypad uses piezoelectric disc as sensor and buzzer

An ingenious and low-cost method to create a rugged “UI”. Read More...

Linearize thermistors with new formula

Optimize thermistor performance at any preferred temperature. Read More...

Best Design Ideas of 2013Q3

We present the best Design Ideas of the last quarter! Read More...

Single-cycle logarithms & antilogs

Here are some very fast log (and antilog) blocks well-suited to FPGA implementation. Read More...

Adaptive Schmitt trigger tames unruly signals

Some biomedical, sensor, and other signals can be almost impossible to derive a clean trigger from. This circuit could help. Read More...

∑-∆ Isolation amplifier transfers low frequencies across barrier

Running a ∑-∆ stream over the barrier makes for an inexpensive analog isolator. Read More...

Filter quashes 60-Hz interference

This circuit filters 60-Hz interference from low-frequency, low-level signals. Read More...

Quartz crystal-based remote thermometer features direct Celsius readout

Although quartz crystals have served as temperature sensors, designers haven't taken advantage of the technology because few manufacturers offer the sensors as standard products (references 1 and 2). In contrast to conventional resistance- or semiconductor-based sensors, a quartz-based sensor provides inherently digital-signal conditioning, good stability, and a direct digital ou... Read More...

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Noncontact sensors monitor respiration and movement

Novelda offers two noncontact sensor modules—one for monitoring respiration and the other for detecting human presence at a range of up to several meters— for use in home automation, sleep monitoring, baby monitoring, and elderly care applications. Read More...

LEDs battle ebola and climate change while boosting the economy

This week's Semi-Coherent Emissions top story: The LED lighting industry's performance provides compelling evidence that strong economic growth and high environmental quality aren't mutually-exclusive. Read More...

Processor and radio module makes BLE design a snap

This self-contained module already has all its qualifications and approvals, making BLE a drop-in feature. Read More...

MCUs bring high-performance graphics to IoT devices

Leveraging STMicroelectronics’ Chrom-ART Accelerator and a MIPI Display Serial Interface (DSI), the STM32F469/479 series of microcontroller chips delivers smart phone-like graphics and intuitive user interfaces to wearable devices, smart appliances, and other Internet of Things applications. Read More...

30-W medical supplies occupy small footprint

XP Power offers the EML30 series of 30-W single-output AC/DC power supplies—open-frame, board-mount units that have dimensions of 2.96x1.36x1.05 in. (75.2x34.6x26.7 mm) to achieve a power density of 7.1 W per cubic inch. Read More...

High-speed RAM leverages HyperBus interface

High-speed, low pin-count RAM suits pin-limited microcontrollers Read More...

Wearable sensor measures UV index

The latest addition to STMicroelectronics’ portfolio of environmental sensors, the UVIS25 provides a direct digital output of UVI (ultraviolet index)—the international measurement of the strength of ultraviolet radiation, primarily from the sun, at a given place and time. Read More...

Swimmers’ heads-up display delivers real-time feedback

Mounted on any pair of swim goggles, a heads-up display monitor from Instabeat tracks, stores, and projects key information, including heart rate and swimming speed, on the goggle lens to give swimmers real-time feedback of their performance. Read More...

Power-entry module affords Class II protection

A compact power-entry module with a built-in line filter, the DC12 from Schurter, meets the IEC 60601-1-11 safety standard for home healthcare equipment to minimize the risks for at-home users. Read More...

EDN Hot 100 products of 2014

Of the many thousands of products announced during the past year, these are 100 that especially caught the attention of our editors and our readers. Read More...

Micro DC/DC converters fit wearable devices

With a 6-MHz power switch embedded in its miniature PCB, the TDK EPCOS B30000P80 ultra-compact DC/DC converter module saves up to 35% of space compared to conventional discrete solutions for use in wearable devices and cameras, as well as WLAN, GPS, and Bluetooth applications. Read More...

Tiny piezoelectric sounder fits portable healthcare devices

With dimensions of just 9x9x1.7 mm, the lightweight PKMCS0909E4000-R1 surface-mount piezoelectric sounder from Murata offers a combined weight and area reduction of 44% compared to previous Murata sound components. Read More...

Wearable MEMS gyroscope tracks up to ±4000 dps

Housed in a 3x3x0.75-mm QFN package, the ITG-3701 three-axis MEMS gyroscope from InvenSense offers small size, low power, and a full-scale range of up to ±4000 dps (degrees per second) for high-impact wearable applications, such as sports and concussion analysis. Read More...

Processor integrates sensing, wireless for wearable apps

Toshiba's TZ1001MBG application processor is aimed at wearable devices of all shapes and usages, including activity monitors, wrist-worn electronics and head-mounted computers. Read More...

Disposable and rugged BP sensor

Merit's BP sensor uses piezoresistive technology. Read More...

Ada comes to ARM Linux

Ada support is now available on embedded ARM processors running Linux for safety critical code development. Read More...

V-Lock compatible power connector integrates 10A fuses

Schurter’s KEA series power entry module, with 1- or 2-pole fuseholder, now mates with V-Lock cord sets. Read More...

Renata shrinks size of Li-ion polymer batteries

The Renata Batteries division of the Swatch Group has added three new models to its ICP series of rechargeable lithium-ion polymer battery packs to give design engineers more form factors and capacity ratings from which to choose for their portable medical, industrial, and consumer electronic devices. Read More...

Mission-critical RTOS available for Renesas MCUs

The Wittenstein High Integrity Systems real-time operating system for mission-critical systems is now available for Renesas RX631/RX63N microcontrollers. Read More...

Digital UV index sensors add health monitoring to smartphones, wearables

Silicon Labs' single-chip Si1132/4x optical sensors track UV exposure, ambient light and other biometrics to add health-monitoring functions to smartphones and wearable computing products. Read More...

12-V, 750-mA DC/DC nano-size buck regulator

With a pre-set switching frequency of 2.1 MHz, designers will really like the small surface mount capacitors and inductor external to this tiny buck regulator. Read More...

PSU packs 310W without skimping on MTBF

Emerson PSU rated for non-patient contact and industrial usage. Read More...

60W world medical PSU is fully burned-in

Australian firm Powerbox manufactures for the domestic and world market. Read More...

Chip amalgamates many functions needed for healthcare devices

This combination data acquisition chip and computational engine addresses the requirements of health devices, fitness meters, wearable monitors, and more. Read More...

60W medical PSU fits into small spaces

SL Power's newest internal PSU fits into tight spaces, like a 1U chassis. Read More...

Medical USB modem

When the only way to communicate medical data is via phone line, a modem is still the solution. Read More...

Transformers work with TI power driver for isolated supplies

Wurth Electronics Midcom offers a series of four transformers for the Texas Instruments SN6501 oscillator/power driver, a push-pull device that is intended for small-form–factor isolated power supplies used in CAN, RS-232, RS-485, SPI, I2C, and low-power LAN interface applications. Read More...

A gaggle of ultrasound components

Supertex introduces a trio of chips for ultrasound designs. Read More...

External medical PSU reaches 250W

This new external, medical qualified supply sports high power output. Read More...

Medical PSUs up to 500W are compact and efficient

Qualified open-frame medical supplies cover 300-500W. Read More...

Medical LED improves operating-room lighting

The Osram Ostar Medical combines a high color-rendering index (CRI) of 95 and the ability to adjust the temperature of the color white. Read More...

DSP-based system-on-chip targets hearing aids and hearing implant devices

ON Semiconductor's Ezairo 7100 series of integrated circuits and packaged hybrids are aimed at hearing aids and hearing implant devices. Read More...

Ultrasound transceiver is highly integrated

Maxim's new octal ultrasound transceiver greatly simplifies equipment design. Read More...

TI unveils smallest 2.5-kVrms digital isolation devices

Texas Instruments (TI) has introduced the industry’s first family of digital isolation devices to offer the highest isolation rating, at 2.5 kVrms, in a small, 5- by 6-mm QSOP package. Read More...

75W supply provides dual BF & CF outputs

BEAR's latest medical supply has BF & CF outputs. Read More...

Medical PSU reaches 180W

XP Power's latest approved power supplies are rated 180W. Read More...

Analog Devices 5 Msps 18-Bit SAR ADC

SAR converters seem to be pushing the envelope due to digitally enhanced analog circuitry, higher number of transistors per chip and better matching capability on chip---these are some reasons why SAR converters are achieving higher dynamic ranges and speeds than ever before. Read More...

85W external medical PSUs meet latest standards

Protek's latest external supplies are suited to medical uses. Read More...

Flexible conformal coating meets ISO 10993-5

A conformal coating that's flexible enough for flex circuits. Read More...

Sensor-enabled RFID tags extend wireless data-logging beyond ID

ams AG has introduced next-generation sensor-enabled RFID tags which claim to offer breakthroughs for medical, automotive safety and other applications where temperature, physiological or environmental data is required. Read More...

Medical-grade chip capacitors are surge-tested

Surface-mount molded solid-tantalum capacitors in the TM3 series from Vishay aim to improve performance and reliability in a wide variety of non-life-support medical monitoring and diagnostic instruments for both in-home and hospital use. Read More...

CUI high isolation, 105 degrees C DC-DC converters

CUI Inc introduced a family of low-power board mount dc-dc converters that provides 3,000 Vdc I/O isolation and a wide operating temperature range of -40~105°C. Read More...

TI introduces SafeTI Compiler Qualification Kit to ease functional safety development for automotive and medical

Designers of functional safety applications can use the kit to assist in qualifying their use of the TI ARM Compiler to IEC 61508 and ISO 26262 functional safety standards. Read More...

COTO claims RedRock is industry’s smallest MEMS magnetic reed switch

Coto Technology Inc., announced at the Design West Conference the availability of its RedRock™ RS1-A-2515 MEMS-based magnetic reed switch. Based on its unique high aspect ratio, MEMS design and manufacturing processes, the switch provides all of the advantages of conventional magnetic reed switch technology, including zero power operation and high-power hot switching. Read More...

Grayhill’s Instinct 2.0 gesture recognition library for 3D image manipulation

Grayhill, Inc. released the latest version of its Instinct™ Gesture Recognition Library. Instinct is a software tool that converts multi-touch sensor data into gestures, giving any device functionality similar to the iPhone®. Read More...

Freescale Healthcare AFE reference platform

Freescale’s Healthcare AFE reference platform is able to integrate a full set of solutions for portable medical and personal healthcare applications. Read More...

Compact low profile “green” 225 W power supply for IT, industrial and medical applications

XP Power announced the ECP225 series of efficient low profile AC-DC power supplies. Delivering up to 150 W by convection cooling alone, the units deliver a maximum of 225 W when a forced air flow of only 10 CFM is applied. Read More...

Cephasonics ultrasound API software version 3.0

API incorporates multiple features based on user feedback that simplify end-product development Read More...

365W AC/DC single-output power supply for ITE and medical

LHV Power Corporation (www.lhvpower.com) has added an AC/DC single-output power supply series that provide up to 365 watts of continuous power at typical efficiencies of 90 percent. The LVOM-365 series is for use in medical equipment and ITE switching applications and has received full medical, ITE, EN60601-1 and EMC safety approvals. Read More...

Vocia 1.5 for voice evacuation and public address systems

Biamp Systems, a provider of networked media systems, announced the launch of five new products in its Vocia 1.5 release. Read More...

Low-noise, energy-efficient chokes for MRI scanners

SMP Sintermetalle Prometheus (SMP) has developed chokes for use in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). These inductive components are exceptionally quiet in operation as well as being low-loss and energy-efficient. Read More...

High-density single output 160W AC/DC medical power supplies

LHV Power Corporation introduced a family of ultra high-density AC/DC single output power supplies that provide up to 160 watts of continuous power at typical efficiencies of 90 percent. Read More...

Non-magnetic combination D-subminiature connectors for medical imaging equipment

CONEC, a manufacturer of high-quality connectors, has developed a series of non-magnetic combination D-subminiature connectors for advanced medical imaging equipment. Read More...

TI lowest-power octal, 100-MSPS ADC for medical, industrial imaging applications

Texas Instruments introduced an octal, 12-bit, 100-MSPS analog-to-digital converter (ADC) that provides the lowest power consumption in its class. Read More...

MCU design with communications protocol stack for remote medical systems

Energy Micro announced a partnership with Lamprey Networks Inc. (LNI) to provide energy friendly, secure and certified remote monitoring medical electronic systems. Read More...

Medical device to help seniors stay independent

The Sonamba well-being status monitor/medical alert system integrates Freescale technology for processing, power management, and wireless connectivity. Read More...

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Teardown: Inside Given Technology's Pillcam Colon 2

Low-power wireless and sensor experts from Zarlink-Microsemi and Aptina helped Given Imaging optimize the Pillcam Colon 2, a gentler alternative to conventional endoscopy and colonoscopy. Read More...

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PCB future is lightweight, low-cost, and flexible: Product how-to

Low-cost flexible additively printed circuit “boards” are enabling new technologies and markets. Read More...

Powering LED Lighting & Other Illumination Devices: Part 3

This third installment of a multi-part series on design issues in LED lighting explores the capabilities of the LT3799, a high-power factor, self-isolated, TRIAC-compatible LED driver. It includes several practical examples of how these properties can be used to solve common design issues for LED applications in a simple, cost-effective manner. Read More...

Product how-to: Build your own designs on flexible circuit boards

Flexible PCBs are becoming low-cost and accessible even to hobbyists. Read More...

An insider's guide to designing near-eye displays

Carlos Lopez and Dan Morgan from Texas Instruments' DLP Pico Products group take an in-depth look at some of the top challenges for designing a compelling see-through near eye display solution that “seamlessly” blends the digital world with the physical world. Read More...

Integrating safety into connected medical devices

Using ARM virtualization modes to facilitate safe and secure code. Read More...

LEDs for liquid crystal display (LCD) backlighting – Part 1

The first installment of this two-part series introduces the types and structures of LED LCD backlight units. This is followed by a dive into the technological developments and market trends which are driving the evolution of LED displays. Read More...

LED-based sensors for wearable fitness tracking products

The surge in bio-sensing armbands, smartwatches, smartphones, and other fitness-oriented wearable products that employ optical sensing technologies would not have been possible without the dramatic reductions in cost and power brought by LEDs. Read More...

Improve device reliability via PCB cleanliness

Today’s electronic assemblies require better cleaning than ever to ensure reliability uncompromised by PCB contamination. Read More...

Product how-to: Achieving STARC and DO-254 compliance using HDL Coder-generated code

Learn how to transform models into standards-compliant, high-reliability HDL. Read More...

Cable material design criteria for the medical industry

This paper examines the particular design and fabrication challenges of medical cables, including the design parameters, material choices and manufacturing requirements that medical device manufacturers need to know to ensure that medical device interconnection is precise, reliable and durable – and protect them from liability. Read More...

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Beware: Llama dung

A cautionary tale of trying to solve the wrong problem. Read More...

A healthy dose of data

The role of the Internet of Things is driving health and wellness. Read More...

7 lessons for embedded developers from ESC Boston 2015

Back from ESC Boston, Jacob reflects on seven key lessons gleaned from the conference. Read More...

7 takeaways on embedded security

Jacob reveals some lessons learned from attending the reverse-engineering security session at ESC Boston. Read More...

Dean Kamen says tech needs superstars

In a keynote address at MassMEDIC this week, the renowned inventor and founder of FIRST commented on the US educational system and highlighted some new and famous inventions. Read More...

First three rules of IoT security

Security for an IoT design involves a myriad of decisions and actions, but these three form the foundation of a successful design effort. Read More...

7 tips for designing a robust Bootloader

Today's embedded systems often need field updates. A properly-designed bootloader is the answer. Read More...

Medical devices: Where wireless charging has real impact

A very different implementation of consumer-product wireless power transfer may allow easier recharging of deeply implanted, tiny medical devices. Read More...

Confessions of a low power addict

Figuring out how to triple battery life using only software changes can get you hooked on low-power design techniques. Read More...

Medical maker aims implant at congenital scoliosis

Here's an example of engineering to improve lives from one inspiring young maker. Read More...

10 Questions to ask during code reviews

Large companies and small all seem to run into the same problems in code development. These questions to ask during code review can help catch a lot of problems. Read More...

FTC sets watch on the Internet of Things

A new division within the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Consumer Affairs has been established to keep an eye on the IoT. Read More...

Apple's ResearchKit: Is open source good for your and Apple's health?

ResearchKit has potential for Apple's customers and for the computing and communications world more generally, but there are also a few concerns. Read More...

7 Silent Project Killers

Is your project doomed? Here are 7 warning signs of potential disaster. Read More...

10 tips for commenting C code

Commenting your code can be a chore but it can pay off handsomely. Here are some tips on how to make commenting C easier and more effective. Read More...

Checklists: Do or die

Do you use checklists as part of your design process? Read More...

GaN technology will transform the future

If we will look out 5 to 10 years we can easily see how a transformative change in semiconductor technology can transform our everyday world. Read More...

Designer's Notebook: Signal Isolation

A quick overview of signal isolation techniques. Read More...

Implantable, transparent sensors give researchers a better view of brain activity

Flexible, see-through sensors made with graphene allow neural researchers to monitor brain activity even when it is taking place beneath an implant. Read More...

5 rules for playing nice with IoT gateways

Here are some design considerations that might help avoid mass confusion in the IoT. Read More...

7 steps to security for the Internet of Things

Keeping IoT devices and their data secure will be essential as the IoT grows. The principles of enterprise security are a good approach to take. Read More...

7 weird IoT applications

With all the potential and creativity in play with the IoT, it is not surprising that every now and then you will come across an application that is simply weird. Read More...

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