Design Con 2015

Test & Measurement

Martin Rowe
Senior Technical Editor
Technical information about test and measurement equipment and strategies from the point of view of the R&D or design and development engineer. Topics include T&M hardware such as oscilloscopes and signal generators/analyzers, as well as software and test methodologies.

Test challenges for USB 3.1 SuperSpeedPlus

Testing for USB 3.1 involves not only measuring traditional eye diagrams, but also RF analysis using spectrum analyzers, time domain reflectometry, transmission characterization using S-parameters, and the new requirement for loopback receiver testing. Here's how to do it. Read More...

10 More tricks to extend oscilloscope usefulness

Make yourself look like the company's oscilloscope expert with these ten handy tips and tricks. Read More...

LXI + PoE: Essential Design Considerations

This paper introduces the basic concepts of LXI (LAN eXtensions for Instrumentation) and PoE (Power over Ethernet), and studies the four key considerations for hardware realization to achieve LXI compliance for a device powered over Ethernet. The LAN PHY compliance test is also discussed. Read More...

100G and things to COM

Channel Operating Margin provides a more flexible way to characterize channels and receivers in the presence of FEC, but what you get in flexibility you pay for in complexity. Read More...

Profiles in Design: Thomas Lee, Ph.D.

“Learn to be your own teacher. The profession changes at such a velocity that many things you learn in school will be obsolete before too long.”—Tom Lee Read More...

Frost and Sullivan forecast: PXI to disrupt automated test

PXI’s forecasted growth rate shows it dominating automated test by the next decade. Read More...

EDN Hot 100 products of 2014: Test & Measurement

This section of EDN's Hot 100 Products of 2014 lists this year's test & measurement picks. Read More...

Software option multiplies oscilloscope vertical resolution

An upgrade lets you increase resolution to 16 bits, at a price. Read More...

Triple output lab power supply offers paralleling & tracking

This 315W power supply power supply has three outputs, each with multiple ranges. Each output can provide 0 V to 35 V at 0 to 3 A. Read More...

How to measure the world's fastest power switch

GaN transistors are incredibly fast, but we don't know how fast because of our test equipment and circuit limitations. Read More...

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Power transient buffer enables IC & circuit testing

This DI lets you use a versatile function generator to test a circuit’s response to power transients and noise. Read More...

Antilog converter linearizes carbon dioxide sensor

Simplify gas sensor interface with some analog preprocessing. Read More...

Sub-picofarad measurement with CMOS inverters

Measure capacitance down to 2.5pF full-scale using this hex inverter-based design. Read More...

Short circuit tracer/finder uses low power

Build this bench tool and become a master at pinpointing shorts. Read More...

LabVIEW real-time seismic alert system

National Instrument’s LabVIEW has uses beyond instrument control, as demonstrated by this Web app. 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...

Milliohm Squawker great at finding shorts and reverse engineering PCBs

This well thought out tool for “listening to” low resistances really speeds troubleshooting & tracing. Read More...

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16-channel DAQ amplifiers withstand harsh environments

Complementing HBM’s SomatXR data-acquisition system are three multichannel amplifier modules that are well-suited for taking measurements under harsh operating conditions, such as those found in automotive field testing, structural monitoring of buildings, and aerospace applications. Read More...

Handheld Ethernet tester performs speed certification

Net Chaser from T3 Innovation lets engineers and technicians speed-certify the data-carrying capabilities of Ethernet network cables up to 1 Gbps by testing for noise in the network, detecting faults in the cable wiring, and ensuring that cables are able to support the speed capabilities of active equipment. Read More...

EDN Hot 100 products of 2014: Test & Measurement

This section of EDN's Hot 100 Products of 2014 lists this year's test & measurement picks. Read More...

Software option multiplies oscilloscope vertical resolution

An upgrade lets you increase resolution to 16 bits, at a price. Read More...

Triple output lab power supply offers paralleling & tracking

This 315W power supply power supply has three outputs, each with multiple ranges. Each output can provide 0 V to 35 V at 0 to 3 A. Read More...

RF, wireless test on display at Electronica

UK-based Cobham Wireless, formerly Aeroflex wireless business unit, displays stand aonle, PXI, and system-based wireless test equipment in Munich. Read More...

An antenna and RF amplifier in one

The EMField Generator from ETS-Lindgren combines a power amplifier and antenna into one unit for radiated immunity testing. Read More...

Littlefuse announces circuit-protection at Electronica

The company is also announcing LED circuit protection, reed-sensing devices, and thyristors. Read More...

Keithley SMU gets capacitive touchscreen

The Model 2460 source-measure unit is yet another instrument moving to the familiar touch screen user interface. Read More...

Dual-band amplifier meets radar-pulse test requirements

Covering a frequency range of 1.0 GHz to 4.0 GHz in two bands (1.0 GHz to 2.0 GHz and 2.0 GHz to 4.0 GHz), the AS0104-700/300 solid-state amplifier from Milmega exceeds the requirements of automotive radar-pulse test standards when used in conjunction with a new lensed horn package. Read More...

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The Tektronix 1101 oscilloscope-probe power supply

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

What's inside a smart meter? iFixit tears it down

When iFixit's Kyle Wiens had the opportunity to tear down an Elster smart meter, he jumped at it—not to come up with a repair manual but to evaluate the health and safety issues that seem to surround the utilities’ installation of smart meters. Read More...

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Test challenges for USB 3.1 SuperSpeedPlus

Testing for USB 3.1 involves not only measuring traditional eye diagrams, but also RF analysis using spectrum analyzers, time domain reflectometry, transmission characterization using S-parameters, and the new requirement for loopback receiver testing. Here's how to do it. Read More...

10 More tricks to extend oscilloscope usefulness

Make yourself look like the company's oscilloscope expert with these ten handy tips and tricks. Read More...

LXI + PoE: Essential Design Considerations

This paper introduces the basic concepts of LXI (LAN eXtensions for Instrumentation) and PoE (Power over Ethernet), and studies the four key considerations for hardware realization to achieve LXI compliance for a device powered over Ethernet. The LAN PHY compliance test is also discussed. Read More...

Profiles in Design: Thomas Lee, Ph.D.

“Learn to be your own teacher. The profession changes at such a velocity that many things you learn in school will be obsolete before too long.”—Tom Lee Read More...

How to measure the world's fastest power switch

GaN transistors are incredibly fast, but we don't know how fast because of our test equipment and circuit limitations. Read More...

Product safety testing limits risk of shock, fire, and injury, Part 1

Ten important safety tests help protect users, products, and surroundings. Read More...

S-parameters basics

S-parameters are a “frequency-domain” description of the electrical behavior of a network. Here’s an introduction to what they mean and how they are determined. Read More...

Digitizer front ends need the right inputs

Understanding how your digitizer works can help you maximize signal integrity and minimize measurement errors. Read More...

Book Review: Power Integrity

In some cultures like those in China and the near Himalayas, dragons are considered amulets to attract good luck. Author Steve Sandler surreptitiously includes a dragon figure at the beginning pages of this book, however, luck will not be needed since Sandler’s technical skills and his ability to communicate them will certainly make this book a success with electronics designers. Read More...

8 Ways to clarify spurious emissions

Avoid confusion among engineers by defining terms such as carrier and bandwidth right up front. Read More...

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100G and things to COM

Channel Operating Margin provides a more flexible way to characterize channels and receivers in the presence of FEC, but what you get in flexibility you pay for in complexity. Read More...

Frost and Sullivan forecast: PXI to disrupt automated test

PXI’s forecasted growth rate shows it dominating automated test by the next decade. Read More...

Book review: Controlling Radiated Emissions by Design

This near-classic EMC book, now in its third edition, keeps pace with todays radiated emissions problems using easy-to-understadn examples. Read More...

Using a differential probe to troubleshoot EMI

One other tool you may want to consider when troubleshooting and EMI issue is a high frequency differential probe. We’ll use the Rohde & Schwarz RT-ZD10 1 GHz bandwidth probe, but similar probes from other manufacturers should work equally well. Read More...

Test your knowledge of PAM4 modulation

PAM4 modulation is gaining traction as a replacement for NRZ. Will it take over? Find out at DesignCon 2015 but for now, take our quiz on EE Times. Read More...

Design for test boot camp, part 2: Test compression

Test compression adds a small amount of circuitry for test purposes and drastically reduces test time while maintaining test coverage. Read More...

Vote for your favorite design trick

It's time to pick the best design trick from our DesignCon Trick for a Treat contest. Read More...

Does not compute! Everyday calculations

Devices and programs and apps for everyday engineering calculation. Read More...

Testing times for design engineers

Characterising subsystems containing high-power devices switching at megahertz/gigahertz frequencies with very fast edges is stretching the capabilities of measurement equipment, and we all have to become test engineers to understand what's inside the box, the sources of errors, and how to use DSOs, VNAs, TDRs and spectrum analysers properly. Read More...

Design for test boot camp, part 1: Scan test

Part 1 of this series on DFT basics covers scan test. Read More...

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