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eTech Magazine - Issue 4 eTech Magazine - Issue 4 Document Transcript

  • e YOUR ELECTRONICS MAGAZINE ISSUE 406Watching UsWatching ThemThe Future of the User
  • SWITCH TO APEM Apem is an established name in switches synonymous with innovation, quality and reliability. Approved to most European and International standards, APEM can provide PCB and panel switches membrane and stainless steel keypads, LEDs, panel indicators and joysticks that any designer can specify and feel secure using. APEM have established facilities worldwide providing technical assistance and availability. PUSHBUTTONS FOR HARSH ENVIRONMENTS IR SERIES - Sealed to IP67 - Non-illuminated or illuminated - Momentary, Latching Rear Mount Versions - Square or Round Bezel Actuator - Wide choice of Actuator colours - Wide choice of illumination colours - Wired, Solder or Screw Terminals - Microswitch Versions Rated to 5A 250V AC - Screw Terminals Rated to 2A 250V AC
  • PABI TIES LI 06 4 CA 2 G CE SWITCHIN USER INTERFA G R4 14 GET READY FOWelcome to your latest edition of eTech. The theme for this edition isuser interface and mobile technology, with a focus on the future ofUI, 4G and batteries for mobile designs.We’ve also introduced a new ‘Market Trends’ feature in conjunction with iSuppli, INSIDE eTechwhere we look at future technology trends and the growing use of motionsensors in mobile phones - see page 22. 04 iSAYThe world of electronics technology is evolving rapidly and nowhere is this more 05 RS NEWSLINEapparent than on the forums and blogs. is thegateway to online resources and design support for engineers, powered by RS. 06 FUTURE OF THE USER provides us all with an ideal forum to keep up-to-date with the 10 PRODUCT NEWSlatest trends, tools and hot topics and some of these have shaped this edition. 12 BATTERIES FOR MOBILE DESIGNS Feedback from you indicates that you want to see 14 GET READY FOR 4G more Design Reviews. So we have extended this feature with the ARM mbed review on page 20 16 LANE DETECTION Terms and conditions: Terms and and the Embedded Systems review on page 34. 20 DESIGN REVIEW:conditions of sale set out in the current ARM mbed RS Catalogue. This issue is valid from We are now more connected with you October 2010 to December 2010. than ever before! Keep in touch with us 22 MARKET TRENDS: through or email me at MOTION SENSORS Published by: RS Components Limited. Registered office: Birchington Road, Weldon, Corby, 24 SWITCHING CAPABILITIES 26 Northamptonshire NN17 9RS. Registered No. 1002091. RS EPD UPDATE : WIRELESS Components Ltd 2010. Glenn Jarrett RS are trademarks of RS Components Limited. An Head of Electronics Marketing 29 DESIGN TIPS: ELEKTOR 32 Electrocomponents Company. ELECTRONICS ExTRAS 34 DESIGN REVIEW: EMBEDDED SYSTEMS 38 CUSTOMER PROFILE 40 LUNCH BREAK 42 INDUSTRY NEWS: FRAUNHOFERELE_0010_1010 eTech - ISSUE 4 03
  • iSAY RSPROF FERNANDO AGUADO, .UNIVERSITY OF VIGO, SPAIN NEWSLINESSAYS: 3D CAD Library from RS Energy Micro Cortex M3“ continues to grow range now available. Why there’s RS introduces 3D CAD models Silicon and Development Kits add ultra low power from more manufacturers choice to ARM portfolio at RS In a major expansion of the 3D CAD programme, RS Adding Energy Micro to the M3 core and its integrated low- no time like the present introduces an additional 5000 new models available to already comprehensive range power peripherals to the test. space ” download from its website. Models from key manufacturer of ARM devices at RS brings The combination of Ultra-low Tyco Electronics include the popular Mate-n-Lok and the world of ultra-low power power and industry standard core to get into MODU ranges, along with high speed Z-Pack and Multigig applications in to the hands of should prove to be a compelling connectors. Also introduced are a series of sensor and Design Engineers everywhere. one for energy conscious relay models from Schneider Electric, ideal for use in safety This range expansion will engineers everywhere. equipment designs. include 128k Flash versions of all devices in the Gecko product family. Alongside the silicon, With this expansion, RS now both the Gecko and Tiny Gecko offers a huge number of development tools will be 3D CAD models in over 20 available allowing designers to For detailed information,The European Space Agency’s new low-cost launch different file formats to suit all put the advanced 32-bit Cortex visit, Vega, heralds “the democratisation of space” of the most popular 3D design software suites. All models– and exciting opportunities for electronics are available to downloadcompanies to become involved. free-of-charge, ready to be incorporated into your new Development kit and design. accessories offer doublesHere’s how. Smaller satellites make it applications. Also, these smaller To download 3D models from RS, to over 1,300 visit to carry out missions that would satellites will train new engineers RS recruits development kit reviewershave been inconceivable just a few in space technologies, and makeyears ago. CubeSats, one of the most space missions affordable forpopular standards for small satellites, many fields of research.allow scientists to carry out experimentsin space with very modest budgets. The For example, the XATCOBEO project, RS sign new distributiondesign of a single satellite traditionallyinvolves massive expenditure, long a joint research project between INTA and the University of Vigo includes three agreement with Bournsperiods of design and testing, and an exciting and challenging experiments: an Partnership covers EMEA and APAC,extensive specialized team, but CubeSats in-flight reconfigurable radio based on adding to existing US agreement “change the rules completely. They are standard FPGAs, a radiation dose sensorsmaller and simpler, cheaper to launch,and a small team of engineers can and a panel deployment mechanism. Lower launch costs The partnership with Bourns, a leading manufacturer of passive components, formalises the long-standing relationship with RS.develop in years, rather than decades. This pioneering work will pave the way for many future small-satellite projects and smaller payloads The two companies will be working together on a series of initiatives covering range developments and promotional activities, A significant investment by RS in leading edgeLower launch costs and smaller payloadsmake it economical to fly shorter where the University of Vigo has a pivotal role: like HUMSAT - a low-cost make it economical to be carried out on a global basis. development tools has seen the development kit and accessories offer expand to over 1,300. Now to fly shorter missions - ”missions - and more of them. In turn, global communications infrastructure Over 700 new products have RS is actively looking for reviewers to contribute to and more of them.this means that electronic components for humanitarian aid and disaster or been added to the RS range, the growing database of independent reviews onon board don’t need to be radiation climate change monitoring; GENSO - including TBU™ high speed, nor undergo time-consuming, a worldwide network of education protection components.costly space qualification. and radio amateur ground stations; To view the full range of development kits on offer, and the European Student Earth Orbiter visit, off-the-shelf components (ESEO) and European Student Mooncan be used instead. In this “virtuous Orbiter (ESMO).circle” modern COTS will help meet , If you are interested in writing and posting athe tight mass, power, and dimensions In all of these, the use of COTS If you’ve got a strong opinion and would review, email your details to etech@rs-components.constraints in CubeSats, and at lower components will provide opportunities like the opportunity to get on your soapbox, com and we will send you details of how to obtaincost. It all combines to make CubeSat for the European electronics industry to write it up in around 300 words and email a development kit free of charge. More details can be foundhighly competitive for commercial test its technology and play its part. it to at eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 05
  • Watching UsWatching Them The Future of the User Interface Designers of home computing and consumer Growth of touch technology know that success relies heavily Mechanical knobs, dials and sliders, which were commonplace even on portable music players as on delivering the most outstanding user recently as the last decade, have quickly become experience. Game consoles, smartphones ancient history. Mobile phones introduced the and even PCs are evolving quickly to provide concept of soft keys to enable context-sensitive access to large numbers of features and options. seamless, intuitive interactions that consumers Current MP3 players and mobile handsets have taken not only demand, but also need if they are the concept further to deliver an even more flexible to make best use of increasingly diverse user interface featuring capacitive touch sensing. and powerful features. To make it happen, More recently still, smartphones with multi-touch designers are “disappearing” the technology. capability have begun enabling users to interact even more freely and naturally with their gadgets. Basic two-touch sensing allows features such as pinch- to-zoom, allowing people to experience and share the increasing variety of content now available on mobile handsets more spontaneously and naturally than ever before. Just around the corner, true multi-touch, capable of decoding ten or more touch points simultaneously, hints at a vast new world of single-user and multi-user applications; not only on equipment such as handhelds and game terminals, but also in professional applications such as drawing packages, management/logistics software, and tools for collaborative design. To enable the next technology leap for touchscreens, UK-based Peratech has developed a cost effective pressure-sensing touchscreen technology which differentiates between gentle touch and a hard poke. Using what’s called the Quantum Tunnelling Composite (QTC), a touchscreen display can very efficiently detect where, and how hard the screen is being pressed. Peratech’s QTC changes the game Continued page 08>06 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 07
  • switch Omron < Continued from page 06 when it comes to human machine “light coding” at wavelengths , at home and on the way to work; interface design with capabilities close to infrared, to compute why should they then spend to build truly 3D user interfaces in depth-of-field data. The resulting their working day struggling small, low power devices. Using absence of lag means this with cumbersome, unrewarding products with an embedded QTC approach is well suited to high- industrial technology? switch consumers could use speed consumer devices. this third dimension to search PrimeSense’s 3D capture system The benefits of good ergonomics deeper into a file structure simply shows how visual recognition, in industrial design are, of course, by pressing harder, control an drawing on components such as already understood. Equipment solutions avatar’s movement through a CMOS image sensors can allow designers have drawn heavily game more naturally, or create the machines to respond to users’ on existing PC technology, for thin or thick lines which are vital movements. Sensed actions can example, not only to benefit for Far East characters. be replicated on screen and used from the advanced processing to determine subsequent events capabilities and economies of Optical sensing in the game; no handheld or even scale that are available but also to Despite howls from some self- wearable controller is needed. take advantage of user-interface confessed geeks and couch Building on the concept of motion- advances such as menus and potatoes, disappearing technology aware gaming, which Nintendo pointers – and, more recently, is also having a significant effect in Wii cemented into the collective touchscreen capability. the gaming sector. Nintendo Wii, consumer consciousness, featuring MEMS motion sensors PrimeSense’s technology heralds Examining some of today’s embedded in wireless handsets, another significant milestone: the most advanced machines, such Introducing the New A9 series of Switches took user interaction to a higher age of the controller-less controller. as production-line equipment level than was possible with the for electronics manufacturing, traditional gamepad featuring The notion is poised to reach shows how simplified graphics button and joystick control only. significantly beyond gaming, and touchscreens are being The recent announcement of however. PrimeSense envisages used successfully to help users This new range of switches from Omron has a see-saw mechanism that offers high contact reliability Microsoft’s Kinect for Xbox television viewers using hand set up complex processes 360 claims to advance the movements, instead of a quickly and accurately, despite combined with a quick electrical changeover that minimises risk of sparks and chattering. concept of ultra-accessible and traditional remote, to select economic pressures that are compelling gameplay even channels, browse interactive forcing employers to provide the I Two-point clip contact mechanism combined with see-saw action further. Kinect uses optical sensing features and access online briefest, most cursory training. and recognition technologies services. The company’s CEO, Inon Extensive use of pictorial – rather I Gold-plated clip contact and cleaning mechanisms ensure high reliability developed by the Israeli company Beracha, has said the technology than text-based – instructions also PrimeSense to realise what some enables a paradigm shift in overcomes language barriers, I Specially designed to prevent grease entering the contact area the way people interact with which brings benefits I Sealed against flux entry and a built-in ‘O’ ring ensure immersion washability “ consumer electronic devices. In for equipment owners as I Washable Models (IP64) More recently still, fact, PrimeSense’s goal, through well as vendors in today’s its recognition technologies, is globalised economy. smartphones with multi- to enable users to control and interact naturally with devices in a Taking a fresh look at important A9P Push Button Switch touch capability have simple and intuitive way. advances in the consumer sector – and particularly technologies such Available with straight, right-angle or vertical mounting, with or without a 5mm cap top. begun enabling users to Implications for professional technology as multi-touch, motion sensing and 3D optical techniques – could interact even more freely This, of course, is where many inspire future generations of A9S Slide Switch owners of professional technology professional equipment designers This switch is available with two positions (changeover) or three positions (off-on-off). and naturally with their ” – such as industrial, medical and to deliver even more productive, gadgets. office equipment - would like to go. Achieving a more natural and easy to use and rewarding designs in the future. A9T Toggle Switch intuitive user experience is seen as Offered in momentary and latching form with two or three positions and a standard, flat or anti- being central to helping business consider as being the ultimate owners increase their productivity, electrostatic actuator. It is also available with straight, right-angle, vertical or bracket versions. game controller – the player’s reduce training overheads, and own body. avoid cost contributors such as stoppages and human errors. Omron’s range of switches includes quality, precision microswitches satisfying most industries, Optical 3D sensing can be done in It is also important to note that tactile switches featuring the industry’s smallest positive click action switch and DIP switches to a number of ways. Some systems today’s equipment operators Find the latest introductions suit most production processes. detect the position of the user’s expect a better user experience; from RS to support new body or limbs by calculating the as increasingly tech-savvy user interface designs “time of flight” for a pulse of light. consumers, they are accustomed for applications at PrimeSense uses what it calls to easy interaction with devices Omron designs operability, user-friendliness and customer benefits into all of its switches. Visit to view the range08 eTech - ISSUE 4
  • PRODUCT PRODUCTNEWS AGILENT 33500 SERIES WAVEFORM GENERATOR NEWS Agilent Technologies Announces 30 MHz Function/ Arbitrary Waveform Generators with Unparalleled Signal Accuracy compact connections. n Agilent 33500 series of waveform generators deliver the lowest total harmonic distortion, true point-by-point arbitrary waveforms, lowest jitter in their class for the most challenging measurement JTAG PROGRAMMING AND applications.The generators include USB 2.0 , LAN (LXI-C) and GPIB BOUNDARY-SCAN TESTING PRODUCTS (optional) for quick and easy connectivity to a PC or a network. Increase your coverage with JTAG master Online search term: Agilent, 30MHz n JTAGMaster is a Boundary Scan Tester and In-System Programmer from ABI Electronics. The ABI JTAGMaster is a complete and powerful solution for the testing, faultfinding and programming of complex PCB assemblies with JTAG devices. Online search term: JTagMaster RS THERMAL INTERFACE MOLEx MINI-FIT H20 RANGE Allowing the efficient conduction and managementThe sealed Mini-Fit H2O™ IP67-rated system meets of heat away from sensitive components the need for weatherproof, compact connections n RS Components is delighted to introduce a range of thermal n The Mini-Fit H2O™ mid-range power interface materials, gap fillers, greases and gels. The range offers connector is designed for use in weatherproof good value without compromise in performance. applications. It has a small overall profile and Online search term: RS Thermal Interface Material can handle up to 9.0A per circuit. RECOM REC3.5 AND REC6 Online search term: molex h2o minifit ISOLATED DC/DC CONVERTERS Re³inforced DC/DC Converters offer up to 10kVDC isolation compact connections n The Recom Re³inforced range offer users the triple bonus of reinforced isolation, high isolation voltage and high efficiency. The REC3.5-R8/R10 offers 3.5W of power and the REC6-R8/R10 offers 6W DESCO EMIT BENCH TOP ZERO VOLT IONISER of power, both with 10kVDC of isolation Zero Volt ESD equipment for handling of sensitive electronic components in a DIP24 package. Online search term: recom, rec35*, rec6* n Ionization systems provide neutralization of charges on items such as circuit board materials and some device packages. The ionisers from Desco Emit are very small in size, have two fan speeds, have visual and audible power and alarm indicators and come with a 5 year manufacturer’s warranty. Online search term: ESD zero ioniser NEW COST EFFECTIVE PASSIVE COMPONENTS FROM RS RS Series of Thick Film Resistors, 0402 / 0603 / 0805 / 1206 formatSCHAFFNER INLET FILTER 9244x SERIES n RS Series of Thick Film Resistors, 0402 / 0603 / 0805 / 1206 format,FN 9244 Excellent performance IEC inlet filter RS Thick Film Chip Resistors have anti-surge characteristics superior to standard metal film resistors and are very reliable. They are suitable forn The FM9244 series of IEC inlet filters from Schaffner provide both reflow and flow soldering operation with a consistent size to allowexcellent performance and are a practical solution helping you pick and place machines to be pass EMI system approval in a short time. These filters Online search term: RS Resistorcombine an IEC inlet and mains filter with superior filterattenuation in a small form factor.Online search term: schaffner FN9244* RS Series of Carbon Film Leaded Resistors, MICROCHIP MCP2200EV-VCP Axial 0.25W / 0.5W / 1W / 2W format MCP2200 USB to RS232 Development n The RS Carbon Composition Resistors consist of a solid and Evaluation Board cylindrical resistive element with embedded wire leads to which HALL EFFECT JOYSTICKS FROM APEM the wires are attached. The body of the resistor is protected with Contactless joysticks for harsh environments n The MCP2200EV-VCP is a USB to RS232 development and paint or plastic polymers then colour coded with its value. evaluation board for the MCP2200 USB to UART device. The Online search term: RS Carbon Resistor n The 3000 Series are high precision contactless accompanying software allows the special device features to joysticks. It is available in one, two or three axes be configured and controlled. The board is powered from USB. formats. Long trouble-free life is assured with the Online search term: Microchip MCP2200* latest hall effect technology. Online search term: Heavy duty Apem10 eTech - ISSUE 4 See more online - Over 5,000 new products are added at every month eTech - ISSUE 4 11
  • Batteries designs solid polymer composite rather than an organic powered by battery manufacturer’s ever- cells, ensuring that there is always the perfect solvent, as is the case with Li-ion. Advantages stronger R&D efforts, according to Herbert solution for any application. Regardless of of this approach include lower manufacturing Schein, Managing Director and CEO at VARTA technology, the fundamental questions remain cost, more rugged construction and wider Microbattery, “There is a continuing increase the same for the designer: finding the solution adaptability to different packaging shapes. in more powerful batteries, for example in the that best meets the requirements of size, area of rechargeable batteries there is a need voltage, current, duration, weight, temperaturelive longer for mobile This means that, as with Lithium Ion battery cells, they can be used to construct battery packs in a huge variety of voltages and for technically advanced and well-engineered energy storage. VARTA Microbattery meets these requirements with fundamental range, recharging, environmental and safety considerations. capacities, all of them ultra-lightweight in research. The challenges of the future will be ”By Vincent Bannigan relation to their capacity. met by a strengthened team in a new researchProduct Manager, RS Components and development centre. Varta’s innovative EasyPack range, based onAs mobile devices continue to evolve, they are becoming smaller and smarter. Today’s their leading PoLiFlex® technology, offers a The right choice – the widest rangehigher performance mobile processors demand ever-greater power; and users want high performance, ready-made, cost effective Despite this, traditional solutions may still solution. The expanding RS catalogue prove best for some applications. The limitedlonger-lasting, faster-charging batteries, in ever smaller and lighter packages. includes four 3.7V EasyPack modules with output current of Li-ion and Li-polymer capacities up to 2000mAh. And designing batteries may be a drawback, especially withThe batteries for use in these applications are amongst the best, they suffer no memory customers a range of Li-ion batteries in could not be simpler, thanks to the availability need for a protection circuit module. Alsocontinue to develop with higher energy effect, and lose their charge slowly when not cylindrical and flat prismatic hard and soft-pack of an EasyPack Charging Evaluation Kit. This transportation issues need to be considereddensities, as manufacturers apply new in use. Beyond these advantages, lithium formats, delivering between 3.7V, 1840mAh comes complete with a sample of each of with lithium chemistries. Often there is a morerechargeable chemistries such as lithium-ion ion batteries are increasingly recognised and 15V, 6800mAh in packages of up to 12 the EasyPack range; plus a plug in power suitable solution provided by more traditionaland lithium polymer to professional for military, electric vehicle, and aerospace cells. All provide high energy density and long supply, open PCB-mounted charger circuit technologies: for example a 2.7kg pure leadand industrial devices as well as applications because of their high energy cycle life, require no maintenance and have and connector set. Based on the Texas battery can produce over 300A. It’s handconsumer products. density. Manufacturers are making a string built-in circuit protection Instruments BQ24014 charge management portable yet powerful enough to start a of R&D improvements to the technology, chip, the kit also incorporates 14 test pins to large vehicle.Not to be confused with the non-rechargeable focusing on energy density, durability, Improving on Lithium-ion make it easy to perform measurements andlithium primary cells, lithium-ion batteries cost, and safety. Lithium polymer technology is a further add elements to the circuit. RS stocks literally hundreds of different battery Find a complete range of batteriesare justifiably popular for portable consumer development from lithium-ion batteries, in types, from dozens of manufacturers, ranging suitable for mobile devices atelectronics, as their energy-to-weight ratios For example, Enix Energies offers RS which the lithium-salt electrolyte is held in a Battery innovations are set to continue, from coin back-up batteries to lead-acid primary rswww.com12 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 13
  • Get ready for 4G “ Fourth-generation (4G) wireless has got off to a quiet start but the migration to a faster mobile internet is already underway. Cities The move from 3G to such as Atlanta, Chicago and Las Vegas already have 4G services 4G is far smaller than in place and US operator Sprint is gradually adding cities to its list. the one from GSM to 3G that faced integrated circuit (IC) designers ” Stockholm and Oslo saw the first deployments of 4G to launch, getting underway just ahead of the Beijing service by operator TeliaSonera late last year. But, as with the 3G services that preceded them, there is a Olympics in 2008. ten years ago catch. These services all fall under the 4G banner One thing became very clear early on in the development but these US and European networks use of the 4G standards. The 4G networks would use some different protocols. form of orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing only reduce the cost of 4G handsets, it means Wimax can support downlink datarates (OFDM), the same basic technology as that used in WiFi you can get the additional bandwidth and lower approaching 50Mbit/s, with LTE promising Sprint and a number of operators in Asia have opted wireless networks and ADSL for wired access to the latency of LTE alongside high-speed CPUs that 100Mbit/s, although the higher peak speed of for services based on a mobile form of the Wimax internet. The situation is slightly simpler than with 3G as can be used for embedded processing. LTE was only recently demonstrated by Telstra standard that was originally developed to offer wireless Qualcomm’s own successor to CDMA2000 did not enjoy in Australia. But these are speeds that, for broadband to homes and at least 250 are already in place. success: operators picked either LTE or Wimax. The result for designers of industrial systems users closer to a basestation, compete well TeliaSonera and other large operators such as Verizon is a set of wireless standards that support high- protocols benefit from low latency as well with ADSL minus the wires, making possible a Wireless in the US and NTT DoCoMo in Japan have There is good news for anyone who wants to implement speed access to the internet at a lower cost as high bandwidth and LTE in particular host of new applications. chosen the Long-Term Evolution (LTE) of the standard LTE in industrial communications. In terms of the amount than that of 3G when it first appeared. Analysts was designed to reduce latency compared widely used for 3G today in Europe and Japan. of die space that it takes up, the move from 3G to 4G also expect the wireless dongle market to be with 3G. This helps reduce the chances is far smaller than the one from GSM to 3G that faced much more important in the early development of time-outs and similar problems from As with 3G, there are strong technical similarities integrated circuit (IC) designers ten years ago. of 4G than they were for 3G, especially as disrupting communications, as well as helping between LTE and Wimax – their differences often the the networks that underpin 4G are based applications such as videoconferencing where result of their different lineages. Although the world According to Professor Gerhard Fettweis of the Technical on the Internet Protocol (IP) rather than delay in sound and video can irritate the users. ended up with three different 3G protocols, they were University of Dresden, whereas the 3G modem would being designed around the needs of Get more online... all based around the core technology of code-division use up a complete IC ten years ago, a modem that voice communication. In applications such as telemedicine, LTE and multiple access (CDMA). CDMA2000, based largely supports 2G, 3G and LTE implemented using today’s Wimax bring higher peak bandwidths than their Find out more on 4G, and add your on technology from Qualcomm, became the preferred silicon technology does not need more than a quarter of The design decisions behind the 4G standards 3G predecessors, making it possible to have voice on how the roll-out is going standard for the US and Korea. In Europe and Japan, a die. So, we are likely to see those functions combined help with applications such as security, real- high-quality two-way video to allow doctors to at wideband-CDMA prevailed. TDS-CDMA was the last with applications and graphics processors. That will not time monitoring and control. Many network make better diagnoses remotely.14 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 15
  • Lane detectorzoomsout the noiseBy Yifei Wang, Naim Dahnoun and Alin AchimDepartment of Electronic and ElectricalEngineering, University of BristolThroughout the last two decades, a significant amount of research hasbeen carried out in the area of lane detection to improve the safety ofmotor vehicles. These systems will prevent drivers from unwittingly movingout of their lane and into the path of other cars on the road.It is a difficult problem to solve as, even with clearly By carefully selecting a region of the image andmarked lanes, images captured by a camera contain interpolating this region back to the original imagea large number of extraneous features that can size, the driver’s view can be simulated and theconfuse the lane-detection algorithm. lanes on the interpolated and original images should overlap.Feature extraction is a key part of lane detection:using image processing to work out which shapes in The first task is to select the appropriate area forthe frame form part of the actual lanes along which interpolation. On a flat, straight road, the vehicle willthe vehicle is moving. By using the characteristics head towards the vanishing point where the left andof the lanes and their shape information, a novel right lanes meet on the horizon. A Sobel filter is usedfeature-extraction algorithm has been developed that to generate lines for each clear edge in the image.Thecan verify whether the features in a process belong to intersection of each line and the horizon’s ‘vanishingthe lanes or are extraneous noise. line’ is a possible position for the vanishing point of the lane. A voting system picks the point on theTypically, while driving on a straight road with vanishing line to which most of the detectedcontinuous lane markings, the positions of the lanes edges point.will not change significantly over time from thedriver’s point of view. The algorithm takes advantage This technique works for flat, straightof the above phenomenon and tries to find the non- roads but few are like that. To extendmoving features within the scene. In order to do this, this approach to curved lanes,a digital interpolationis is used. Continued page 18>16 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 17
  • Microcontrollers< Continued from page 17 Does your product design require a USB Connectivity upgrade?the image is split into a number of Add USB connectivity to your application without completely redesigning the systemhorizontal bands and perform vanishingpoint detection on each of the image bands. Controllers Digital SignalThe number of edges belonging to the laneboundaries found by the Sobel filter willdecrease with distance, so the vanishingpoint of the lowest, and nearest, imageband is detected first. The vanishing pointson the upper bands are detected based onthe vanishing-point position of the lowerbands to reduce the detection error and theamount of processing needed. Detection Analogaccuracy is helped by tracking the positionof the vanishing point frame by frame onthe basis that the position of the vanishingpoint will not change dramatically. can perform up to eight 8bit multiply- comparison, in addition to the edge map accumulate (MAC) operations per clock from the original image. As the maximumTo extract the lane features and suppress cycle. The processor can be clocked at up to zooming ratio is set to be 0.9 in normalnoise from edges that do not belong to the 700MHz. , although we run it at 600MHz, . cases, the selected zooming areas havelane markings, a logical-AND operation is Due to the high precision required in some almost the same size as the original image.applied to the original image edge map algorithms a combination of 8 × 8bit and 4 × Therefore a large amount of data needs to Memoryand to the edge map from the scaled, 16bit MACs, which the processor supports, be transferred. However, a large portioninterpolated image on a pixel-by-pixel have been used. of the image is repeated for each pair ofbasis. If the interpolated edges overlap the adjacent selected areas. Reusing thewith the original image edges, these edges This processor also provides a video repeated areas will save the memoryare preserved. More of the noise can be subsystem. This provides a glueless transfer significantly.removed by rejecting edges that are clearly interface to the standard video decoder andat the wrong angle to be a lane marking. on-screen display. The combination of the In experiments, the initial gradient map video subsystem and the enhanced direct was very noisy, containing a large numberThe zooming and edge comparison process memory access (EDMA) that the processor of unwanted features. The resizing and Microchip o ers design engineers a complete, out-of-the-box solution that makes it easy ORDER YOUR MCP2200EV VCPis carried out with different zooming ratios supports simplifies considerably the data noise-removal algorithm successfully to add USB connectivity to existing systems.until most of the unwanted features are transfer from the camera to the processing removes most of the unwanted feature but DEMO BOARD FROM RS TODAY!removed. Typically, the lanes will remain buffer and from the output buffer to preserve the lane features, showing that The MCP2200EV-VCP USB-to-RS232 Demo Board is a low-cost evaluation tool which is supportedintact because, on a straight road, will the display. If the EDMA and the central the implementation results agree with the with software libraries and a PC based con guration tool, the board removes the burden ofremain approximately in the same position processing unit (CPU) are synchronised theory and are robust.on the image no matter the scale factor. The perfectly, the memory transfer overhead thoroughly understanding the USB protocol from system designers, which simpli es the additionother objects will disappear because they will be reduced to minimum. The possibility of using the on-chip resizer of customizable USB functionality to existing designs.will not match up in all cases. to interpolate the zooming areas needs toBased on experiments, ten iterations are The captured frames (test videos are in be further investigated. But the complete The Board serves as a complete USB-to-RS232 converter solution (dongle) and provides USB-to-GPIOnormally sufficient even under very severe NTSC format) are resized to 352 × 240 pixels system is running today in real-time at capability, enabling designers to manipulate the on-chip I/O from the included PC software, so thatconditions. During the edge comparison to reduce the computation, using the on- above 23 frames per second without they can program and test di erent functional con gurations.process, segmented lane markings will be chip resizer hardware. The resizer is capable the need to write code at the assemblyshortened because of the change in length of generating output images from 1/4× to 4× level and just by managing the memory The whole solution is designed to shorten time-to-market for a variety of applications in addition MCP2200EV-VCP : RS Stock No 699-0448 : ~ £16.00and position caused by the image scaling. the original image size in increments efficiently. Further optimisation could be to legacy RS-232 applications. MCP2200-I/MQ : RS Stock No 698-8990 : £1.54Although they will stay on the same line of 256/N where N is an integer between achieved by identifying the slow parts ofafter interpolation, the upper part of the line 64 and 1024. the code and optimise these parts using MCP2200-I/SO : RS Stock No 698-8993 : £1.42will be erased. intrinsics, linear assembly or assembly. Features: MCP2200-I/SS : RS Stock No 698-8997 : £1.42 The system was implemented can be • Powered via USBAs multiple vanishing points exist on separated into three main parts.The first issegmented images each of the image edge and vanishing-point detection, which • Test points for all GPIO pinsbands has its own corresponding vanishing takes 16% of the total computation power. • RS232 device and 9-pin D-sub connector for connecting to RS232 applicationspoint and the results of edge detection Handling multiple vanishing points takes 2% • Tx and Rx LEDs for indicating USB to UART tra c (when enabled)on each section are compared separately. of compute power.The last component of • Software for con guring special features of the deviceImage content above the vanishing line, the process, digital interpolation and featurewhich does not include useful information, extraction, is the most processor hungry,is not processed in order to reduce thecomputational complexity. taking 82% of the total computation power. Intelligent Electronics start with Microchip As the iterative zooming process normallyThe system was implemented on a Texas requires ten steps, ten different zooming See our full range of TI digital mediaInstruments TMSD6437 Digital MediaProcessor, based on the C64+ core which areas need to be transferred into internal memory for interpolation and edge processors available from stock at eTech - ISSUE 4 The Microchip name and logo, the Microchip logo and PIC are registered trademarks of Microchip Technology Incorporated in the U.S.A. and other countries. All other trademarks mentioned herein are property of their respective companies. © 2010, Microchip Technology Incorporated. All Rights Reserved. ME276Eng/08.10D
  • DESIGN DESIGNREVIEW REVIEWUsing the // mbed test program using I2C and PWMout: WGM 6/2010 // Uses SRF08 Ultrasonic Range Finder ARM mbed #include “mbed.h” I2C sonar(p9, p10); // Define SDA, SCL pins Serial pc(USBTX, USBRX); // Define Tx, Rx for PC PwmOut motor(p21); // Define PWM pin const int addr = 0xE0; // I2C device address for SRF08 char cmd[2]; char echo[2]; int main() { in the cloud // Set up SRF08 max range and receiver sensitivity over I2C bus cmd[0] = 0x02; // Range register cmd[1] = 0x1C; // Set max range about 100cm Fig 2. mbed pin functions sonar.write(addr, cmd, 2); cmd[0] = 0x01; // Receiver gain register cmd[1] = 0x1B; // Set receiver gain software and hardware. You do not have access sonar.write(addr, cmd, 2); to debugging features such as breakpoints and By Dr William Marshall, RS Components // Set up PWM frequency single-step operation for example. For checking motor.period(0.01); // Set PWM frequency = 100Hz out design ideas involving small amounts of program code mbed is ideal, making it perfect while (1) {The launch of the mbed development system for internet connection: drop the breadboard in my for students and small companies unable to briefcase with a laptop and I’m no longer tied // Get range data from SRF08 afford the large investment necessary in fullARM-based microcontrollers represents a revolution to the lab! // Send Tx burst command over I2C bus development systems. cmd[0] = 0x00; // Command registerin the way computer software and firmware is cmd[1] = 0x51; // Ranging results in cm sonar.write(addr, cmd, 2); // Send ranging burstdeveloped. The expensive business of buying software Getting the hardware together RS Embedded Development My test project involved interfacing an SRF08 wait(0.07); // Wait for return echo Platform (EDP)development tools such as IDEs and compilers ultrasonic rangefinder unit and a simple dc RS Components have released an adapter // Read back range over I2C busis eliminated by using internet-based resources. motor to the mbed module. The SRF08 has an cmd[0] = 0x02; // Address of first echo module (part no.703-9235) for mbed which sonar.write(addr, cmd, 1, 1); // Send address of first echo I2C bus so linking it to one of the two I2C ports, echo, 2); // read two-byte echo result allows this type of internet-based developmentThis article describes my first experience with access using the supplied USB cable and then available just involved a few wire links and a to be applied to an EDP system. A dedicated // Generate PWM mark/space ratio from range datathis new way of working: the aim being to find navigate to the mbed web site. The module is couple of pull-up resistors. The mbed module float range = (echo[0]<<8)+echo[1]; processor module for the LPC1768 has alsoout just how ‘rapidly’ I could prototype a simple USB-powered and needs no separate supply. has a +5V output (from the USB port) and this range = range/100; // Turn range into PWM ratio been released (part no.703-9229) which can motor.write(range); // Update PWM pulse-widthmobile robot collision avoidance system using powers the rangefinder. The motor requires then replace the mbed unit when a morethe NXP LPC1768-based mbed module and a Getting on-line more current than the mbed can supply so pc.printf(“range = %0.2fn”, range);// Send PWM ratio to PC display sophisticated development environment iscommercial ultrasonic sonar unit. As soon as you make the USB connection to it will require a separate PSU, but this could required. These will be covered in a future wait(0.1); your PC, drivers will be installed and the mbed be a battery pack to keep things portable. The Design Review.The mbed kit hardware module will appear as a new drive in Windows popular L293D H-bridge driver chip is used to } }On opening the box you will find: the tiny Explorer. The drive contains only one file at drive the motor from one of the six available Additional materialmbed module itself, a USB cable, a credit this point: mbed.htm. Double clicking on this PWMout lines. The circuit diagram for the collision avoidancecard-sized aide-memoire showing the module file will open your web browser at the mbed Fig 1. Sonar program source code hardware together with a file version of thepin functions and a single sheet of ‘Getting home page where selecting ‘Signup’ will take Programming program source code are downloadableStarted’ instructions. Oh, and a useful mbed you to the registration screen. Once your Before creating some code, I realized The program listing shown in Fig 1 is for my maximum of 100cm from the SRF08 module from the eTech website. The LPC1768 mbedsticker. There is no CD with megabytes of module is registered you will have access to debugging would be a whole lot easier if sonar system. via an I2C serial bus link. A PWM signal drives module used in this article is available from RSsoftware to be installed on your PC, no small the Compiler. This is a social networking site program output data could be displayed on the motor at full speed at maximum range, Components: part no. 703-9238.print informing you that you will have to for engineers, so you have your own home the PC using a serial terminal emulator such When you have created your source code, progressively reducing it as the obstacle getspurchase the full versions of the development page, a ‘notebook’ or blog where you can jot as Windows Hyperterminal. A Serial Port select Save to keep it in your mbed folder. Now nearer. The first version of the program wastools if you want to create anything larger than down thoughts and ideas on a project and file driver must be installed on the PC first and select Compile and watch for the message rather longer than necessary because of a buga program to blink an LED. Instead, you are told space for your programs. I also like the way is thoughtfully provided in the ‘Handbook’ ‘Success!’ or more likely, the list of errors. in one of the higher-level I2C drivers. I used theto connect the module to a PC with Internet I can work on a project anywhere there’s an section. This allows the C functions printf When you have cleared all the bugs and there forum to discuss the problem and eventually and scanf to be used in a program. are no more errors, a message inviting you to the bug was traced and modifications included save the binary file will appear. This triggers in the following release of the mbed library Click on ‘Compiler’ and a new window opens the download to the mbed module. Hit the header file. revealing an IDE-type screen, but much simpler reset button and your program will run. The and with no de-bugging features. Select ‘New’, development cycle is really that simple: a few Interactive development type in a program name and you’re ready hours assembling the hardware and producing This is development ‘in the cloud’: fast access to add some program lines. The language the initial program code. That includes initial to experts in the field and interaction with other is C with the object classes of C++. The familiarization of course. engineers and designers working on similar first line of a C program is normally #include problems. It would be easy to get carried away Get more online... “stdio.h” which brings in the library of standard Test Program with this concept of open development, but it Download the sonar program source functions, but in this case we use #include The sample program illustrates how device will not suit everyone working in a commercial code and connect wiring diagram “mbed.h” for the same purpose. The library drivers are taken from the web Handbook and environment. Obviously there is the question from Design Review at contains the necessary drivers for all the port just pasted in where required. The program of security for your brilliant new ideas, and pins including I2C, PWM and DigitalOut. reads the range to an obstacle up to a the practical limitations of the development20 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 21
  • MARKET TRENDS Not Your Average Test Bench Shipments of Cell Phone Motion Sensors Now it’s easier than ever to debug those complex designs to Rise Fivefold by 2014 Accelerometers, compasses, gyroscopes, pressure sensors penetrate smart phone market. Global shipments of motion sensors for cell Accelerometers speed ahead Gyroscopes spin up phones are expected to quintuple by 2014 as In 2014, accelerometers will account for 44 Mobile handset makers showed little interest smart phones and their operating systems percent of total motion sensor revenue for cell in gyroscopes until early 2009. That changed, increasingly support motion command and phones. By that time, 65 percent of all phones however, in mid 2009 following the success of navigation applications that require these parts, will incorporate accelerometers, up from 2 the Nintendo Wii Motion Plus and the advent according to iSuppli Corp. percent in 2007 and 28 percent in 2009. of a cascade of new gyroscopes with 2 and 3 axes from IvenSense and STMicroelectronics. Shipments of cell phone motion sensors – Falling prices for 3-axis parts will promote the i.e., accelerometers, compasses, gyroscopes growth of accelerometer sales. Prices for Gyroscopes were expected to enter the and pressure sensors – will rise to 2.2 low-end, 6-bit 3-axis accelerometers are set first smart phones this summer. The main billion units in 2014, up from 435.9million to decline to 34 cents by 2014, down from 90 applications in 2010 and 2011 will comprise in 2009. Revenue will amount to slightly cents in 2008. The share of higher-end 12-to-14 a user interface utilizing a gyroscope in more than $1 billion in 2014, up from bit accelerometers will increase because these combination with an accelerometer, followed $316 million in 2009. are essential for more sophisticated hand by image stabilization and dead-reckoning for gesture recognition and navigation applications. in-vehicle navigation. From 2012, gyroscopes Motion sensors such as accelerometers and will start to be used for indoor navigation Debug is hard enough. Don’t let your test instruments get in the way. Our test bench offers the same ease-of-use compasses already play a key role in the Compasses point north combination with an accelerometer, compass you’ve come to expect from our oscilloscopes. From dedicated buttons for common functions to USB ports for saving functionality of smart phones like the iPhone Shipments of compasses for cell phones and pressure sensor for floor accuracy. By or Google phones. Accelerometers detect exploded in the second half of 2009. In 2009, 2014, the market for gyroscopes in cell phones data. To simplify your most complicated tasks, you can connect your test bench with the included copy of LabVIEW when a phone with a large touch screen 19 percent of GPS phones used a compass, up is expected to amount to $190 million. SignalExpress™ from National Instruments. Control your Tektronix instruments right from your PC. Automate measurements has been turned on it’s side, allowing the from 4 percent in 2008. devise to switch from portrait to landscape Semi opportunity and analyze data across multiple instruments. Capture and save results. Create reports. Take your test bench from view. They also play a key role in gaming Compasses support navigation, enabling auto With the anticipated upsurge of motion sensor average to extraordinary. and navigation functions, and increasingly rotation of maps to match the direction a user shipments in the years to come, additional are used in augmented reality and is facing. Augmented reality applications that opportunities along the supply chain will Basic Oscilloscopes Digital Multimeters NEW! context-awareness applications. combine the compass, GPS signal and camera be created for semiconductor companies, are also a big driver in Andriod phones and in affording participation to the manufacturers of ■ 40 MHz to 500 MHz bandwidth ■ 5.5 digit and 6.5 digit resolution Furthermore, the expanding presence of the iPhone 3Gs. processors, microcontrollers and navigation ■ Up to 25 automatic measurements ■ Dual display accelerometers in cell phones can be seen in chipsets, iSuppli believes. At present, new ■ Battery operation available* ■ Statistics, histogram and trending modes the hundreds of Independent Design Houses These attributes are so compelling to architectures are being explored that can *Depends on model. (IDHs) in China adopting motion sensors consumers that competing smart phone offload the application processor, optimize Power Supplies NEW! in 2009. Nearly 20 percent of the global platforms, including Google’s Andriod and power consumption at the system level and Up to 72 V output range Bench Oscilloscopes ■ shipments of accelerometers for cell phones Microsoft’s Mobile Windows 7 are promoting or , improve response time. went to China in 2009, iSuppli estimates, with even mandating support for these features. This ■ 100 MHz to 200 MHz bandwidth ■ Up to 0.5 mV and 0.1 mA resolution the vast majority used in the Chinese gray will cause shipments of compasses for mobile By Jérémie Bouchaud the director and ■ Up to 4 analog and 16 digital channels Timer/Counter/Analysers NEW! handset market. phones to boom during the coming years. principal analyst of MEMs at iSuppli Corp. ■ Parallel and serial bus analysis ■ 12 Digit/s frequency resolution ■ Wave Inspector® for fast navigation of data Shipments of motion Sensors in Mobile Handsets ■ 50ps time resolution Arbitrary/Function Generators ■ Measurement statistics, histogram & trend plots ■ Up to 240 MHz bandwidth One or two channel modelsMillions of Units ■ ■ 12 standard waveforms, including arbitrary Get the Latest MEMS and Sensors Industry Leading 3-Year Warranty included with all Tektronix bench instruments. Research at or by contacting iSuppli via info@ Discrete motion sensors Motion sensors as part of multi-sensor chipset Copyright 2010 iSuppli Corporation. © 2009 Tektronix, Inc. All rights reserved. Tektronix products are covered by U.S. and foreign patents, issued and pending. TEKTRONIX and the Tektronix logo are registered trademarks and LabVIEW SignalExpress is a trademark of National Instruments. 22 eTech - ISSUE 4
  • A world ofSWITCHINGCAPABILITIESBy Jerry AbrahamCentral Product Manager, RS ComponentsMore than ever, designers are turning their attention to the human-machine Disability Discrimination Act), it allows disabled benefits of simpler customisation, high security applications, navigation, marine and medicalinterface, spurred by increasing variety of designs and technologies available persons to access lifts and buildings more easily. and reliability and ease of cleaning. equipment. Transparent ink can be printed over the EL to allow any colour illumination to befrom switch manufacturers. New tactile switches and keypads are making their Membrane switches innovation Built using a sandwich of polyester and produced.mark across medical, industrial, security, defence, telecom, computer, transport OEMs looking for more complex human- adhesive, the APEM membrane switches areand consumer electronics. machine interfaces are increasingly turning simple to mount and are directly connected With innovations like these, it is no wonder that to membrane switch panels in order to to the electronic equipment by a flexible tail there has been an explosion in the range of embellish and protect their end- termination. Tactile feedback can be provided options available to designers. products. Medical devices, food through the use of either a metal snap dome processing machinery and under the flexible surface, or by embossingAs well as variety, manufacturers are meeting footprints and variable heights from the board permutations and combinations to fit the exact outdoor equipment the top layer itself. APEM uses a wide rangethe challenges of cost reduction, space-saving, to top of the switch. The switches can be needs of the customer. These tactile switches such as kiosks of materials and adhesives including versionsregulation, reliability and product lifetime. reflow soldered and are available in tape-and- are available in two output versions, for front all reap the with Microban® antimicrobial protection for reel packaging where required. or rear mounting: a 5A combined separated medical equipment.Making tact switches smaller NO/NC version and a 0.5A NO version.Compact size and quality products are the Large switches for the less able user The low behind-panel depth allows The latest twist to switch panels’driving forces behind APEM’s MEC micro At the opposite end of the size spectrum, installation in environments where range of options comes in the form ofminiature tactile switches, which offer regulations and ergonomics set the space is critical. electroluminescent backlighting. Designeddesigners substantial savings in board space - background to APEM‘s new LPI series, which as an integral layer behind the front faceand surface mount options for higher-volume provides the largest actuator and lowest Because of its large actuator, this series is graphic, the electroluminescent film allows RS has added over 800 new linesautomated assembly. MULTIMEC switches behind-panel depth in the portfolio. The LPI ideal for all applications where the pushbutton membrane switch panels to be used from APEM in the last six months.are IP67 sealed and suitable up to 10 million has been developed based on a modular needs to be located quickly. Complying with the in darkened areas or for nightoperation. The MULTIMEC family offers small concept, thereby providing large number of requirements of the EN81-70 standard (from time use, making them ideal See our full range available direct-from- for many automotive stock at eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 25
  • EDPUPDATEEDP Goes WirelessWith the demand for wireless connectivitygrowing relentlessly, EDP has been extendedto support fast development of RFID orGSM/GPRS based applications.With the introduction of two new wireless modules, engineeringteams using EDP and the mbed module can quickly add RFID,GSM/GPRS or both technologies to their next application. Bothwireless technologies are now fully supported by EDP including ,an extension to the software development environment to includewireless telemetry, and a production-ready software library ofwireless modules developed by ARM to target the new RFIDand GSM/GPRS modules.EDPThe RS Embedded Development Platform (EDP) offers engineers accessto leading edge technologies in a configurable and flexible format, allowingrapid R&D using production-ready software and proven reference designs.One of the great strengths of EDP is its close alliance with ARM’s mbed; Our online quote tool is so quick it willthe processor module that gives engineering teams easy access to theCortex-M3 32bit embedded microcontroller core, through NXP’s LPC1768. give you a slice of your day backThese modules are fully supported by EDP including the software library ,created to support the growing number of EDP modules available. Thealliance with ARM has yielded two technology reference designs utilisingthe new wireless modules.The new wireless modulesThe new EDP wireless modules were developed by RFSolutions and are exclusively available from RS Components.The RFID modules connect to EDP through a generic interface, whichallows any of the MicroRWD (HITAG) RFID modules designed by specialistsupplier IB Technologies to plug in to EDP IB Technologies offers a range .of production-ready modules and with the support of EDP engineers can ,now easily adopt what is rapidly becoming one of the most widely appliedwireless technologies in the industry.The GSM/GPRS modules also plug into EDP via a generic interface andare supplied with a full Bill-of-Materials and schematics, helping customersimplement the same solution in production volumes. The modules arebased on the Huawei GTM900 modules. This includes tri-band operationat 800, 900 and 1800MHz, packet data services of GPRS Class 10, amaximum bandwidth of 115.2kbit/s and support for speech encoding. Get more online... Go to the addition of wireless, EDP now brings together an even wider range to download software libraries andof leading-edge technologies, allowing the combination of complementary schematics for the ARM in a single development environment that greatly acceleratesdevelopment cycles and simplifies system design. Stay up to date with the latest additions ONLINE QUOTES to the RS EDP portfolio at eTech - ISSUE 4
  • R-78 switching regulators. IN ASSOCIATION WITH DESIGN The number one for over five years TIPS The R-78xx-0.5 series, which is in a sense the “mother” of all of our R-78 switching regulators, offers 1.5-15 VDC output voltage with a maximum output current of 500 mA and 32 VDC input voltage. BOOSTER FOR The unit’s SIP-3 casing measures only 11. 5 x 10 x 8 mm and provides up to 7.5 watts of power output. The regulators are also available in an SMD version.The R-78AAxx-0.5SMD and R-78AAxx-1.0SMD series are RoHS 6/6-compliant and thus 100% lead-free. The key features of the R-78 series at a glance: ✔ ✔ Up to 97 percent efficiency Full short circuit protection AUDIO SIGNALS Cranks up bass & treble ✔ Pin-compatible with LM78 line regulators R-78 series. ✔ Additional input voltage range (4.75V-32V) R-78 switching regulators are often used for very low power ✔ No heatsink necessary microprocessor circuits. By Markus Aebi (Switzerland) Dull and washed-out sound? With modern recording technologies this is unlikely The up to 97 percent ef- ficiency of the R-78 switching to happen. There are nevertheless situations where a fuller sound would do no regulator series obviates the harm (live bands, for example, but cheap headphones could also benefit). need for a heat sink For more info visit: A small amount of ‘effect‘ could make the sound experience just ‘perfect‘. Weak bass and dull treble frequencies are things of the past with this circuit. The ingenious principle of the project described here makes the reproduction more delicate, fuller and subjectively louder. The circuit was originally intended to be built into a mixing desk UTS Hi seal (immediately before the Master Fader), but works just as well as a standalone device when Dynamic IP68/IP69K the input and output voltages are adjusted Waterproof connectors in mated and unmated condition appropriately (about 1.5 Vp/0 dB at the first op amp). The principleProtection of electronics inside the equipment/boxes in case ■ Operational safety - ESD The high and low frequencies are processed independently of each other. The left and rightof maintenance, unmated conditions or cable damage · plastic shells channels are identical, with the exception ■ Rapid and secure locking system of the part of the circuit controlling the f · quick disconnect amplification of the low frequencies, which roo Sealed io n-p sing ■ Suitable for overmoulding · sealed insulator and contacts is used for both channels and therefore unmated os ou orr tic h C as does not need to be implemented twice (see Figure 1). Pl ■ Available : RoHS · 4 shell sizes, Compliant After the high-pass filter with C4 (C15 for · 16 different layouts the right channel) the high frequencies are · multiple polarization options. amplified ‘quick and dirty’ with the circuitry · standard connectors supplied with around T1 (T2). The diode pair D1, D2 (D3, D4) preassembled solder and PCB contacts. generates higher harmonics which are added to the ■ UV resistant original signal with potentiometer P1A (P1B). This · suitable for outdoor use makes it sound ‘fresher’. The low frequencies are separated from the original signal with the network around IC1B (IC2B) SOURIAU your Key Success Partner Continued page 30> eTech - ISSUE 4 29
  • DESIGN DESIGNTIPS TIPS low-pass filter (and also has a variable phase shift with respect to the +15V R6 original signal, which results in a subjective amplification of the low Component List frequencies). The values of the RC pair affect the tuning of the filter. The 3k9 selected resistor of 33 kΩ in combination with a capacitor of Resistors RS Stock No. Semiconductors RS Stock No. R5 C6 D2 C7 390k 1n 1N4148 470p 22 nF gives optimum tuning. R1,R19 = 100kΩ 151-303 D1–D6 = 1N4148 652-7343 C5 C1 R7 R8 3 10p T1 R4 C4 D1 10k 10k 1 220n IC1A 1k L R1 2 3n9 BC550C 1N4148 R2,R3,R20,R21 = 92kΩ 151-117 D7 = low current LED, red, 3mm 228-5916A 100k R2 4k7 P1A C8 3 IC3A 1 C10 R10 100R The control current of the VCA, which determines the gain of this IC, R4,R22 = 1kΩ 157-446 T1,T2 = BC550C 545-2254 +15V log. is generated with the circuit around T3. This circuit works as a kind R5,R23 = 390kΩ 683-3594 T3 = BC547B 454-2232 2 10u 92k C3 220p 50V L IC4A 11 R3 47n R11 R12 R13 3 R9 of limiter circuit (quasi limiter function) and shows via LED D7 R6,R24 = 3.9kΩ 151-016 IC1,IC2,IC3 = NE5532, 8-DIP case 810-188 92k 39k how much ‘control’ is applied. The processed signal is added to the R7,R8,R15,R18,R25,R26,R33,R36,R39 = 10kΩ 150-928 IC4 = LM13700 16-dip 533-9656 / 533-9656a 2 47k 4k7 5 1k5 C9 7 IC1B 4 6 1u signal immediately after the ‘Harmonics’-potentiometer (P1A and R9,R27 = 39kΩ 151-325 6 1 5 7 8 C2 P2A R14 -15V R15 R16 C11 R17 +15V R18 P1B respectively). R10,R28 = 100Ω 683-2705 2k2 10k 33k 4k7 Miscellaneous RS Stock No. 4k7 R11,R29 = 47kΩ 148-893 22n D7 10n log. +15V 10k R39 R38 +15V -15V +15V When both potentiometers are set to their minimum positions the R12,R30 = 1.5kΩ 151-094 11 pcs PCB solder pin 434-138 10k 4k7 IC1 = NE5532 D6 R37 C31 C25 C27 C29 IC2 = NE5532 100u 25V 8 100n 8 100n 8 100n C24 1N4148 470R T3 C23 IC3 = NE5532 signal passes through unchanged. An external symmetrical power R13,R17,R31,R35,R38 = 4.7kΩ 151-000 4 pcs 3-way pinheader (P1,P2) 668-9520 supply of ±15 V completes the story. The current consumption at this R14,R32 = 2.2kΩ 151-088 4 pcs 3-pway socket 495-8537 D5 0 IC1 IC2 IC3 10u 220n R36 IC4 = LM13700 4 4 4 63V BC547B C32 C26 +15V 1N4148 10k C28 C30 100u 25V 100n 100n 100n R24 -15V voltage is about 40 mA for the positive supply rail and 35 mA for the R16,R34 = 33kΩ 148-893 PCB, # 080094-1 Go to Design Tips 3k9 -15V -15V R23 390k C17 D4 C18 negative supply rail. Each IC is provided with decoupling capacitors and R37 = 470Ω 683-5518 C12 3 C16 10p T2 1n 1N4148 470p R25 R26 the PCB is fitted with additional 100 µF buffer electrolytics. P1,P2 = 4.7kΩ logarithmic, stereo 387-896 R22 C15 D3 1 10k 10k 220n R19 IC2A 1k 2 3n9 1N4148 R 100k BC550C P1B 5 C21 R28 Construction Capacitors RS Stock No. R20 When assembling the PCB you follow the traditional procedure: C1,C12,C23 = 220nF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 622-4218 7 4k7 C19 IC3B 100R log. 6 10u 92k C14 220p 50V R IC4B R21 47n 14 R27 first the ‘small’ parts such as resistors and diodes, then the ‘bigger’ C2,C13 = 10nF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 312-1431 parts such as capacitors and transistors. We used sockets for the C3,C14 = 47nF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 622-4555 R29 R30 R31 92k 39k 15 47k 1k5 4k7 5 C20 ICs sothat swapping the op amps for a different sound is very easy. C4,C15 = 3.9nF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 622-455 / 312-1661 7 IC2B 13 6 1u The construction is not all that difficult because no SMD C5,C16 = 10pF ceramic, lead pitch 5mm , 538-1360 9 16 12 10 P2B R32 R33 R34 R35 C13 C22 4k7 components are used. C6,C17 = 1nF lead pitch 5 or 7 mm , .5 622-4268 2k2 10k 33k 4k7 log. 10n 22n -15V 080094 - 11 C7 ,C18 = 470pF ceramic, lead pitch 5mm , 683-2112 In our prototype we chose to use headers and sockets for the C8,C19 = 220pF ceramic, lead pitch 5mm 683-2109 connections to the two double potentiometers. These are mentioned C9,C20 = 1µF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 483-3933Figure 1. The schematic may strike as quite sizeable, in the parts list. It is, of course, also possible to omit those headers and C10,C21 = 10µF 50V, radial, bipolar,but the dimensions of the PCB are very reasonable. connect the potentiometers directly to the board using short wires. lead pitch 2.5mm, diam. 8.5mm max. 440-6547 The double-sided PCB has been made as compact as possible C11,C22 = 22nF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 334-164< Continued from page 29 (88 × 69 mm) and has not been designed with a specific enclosure C24 = 10µF 63V, radial, lead pitch 2.5mm, in mind (see Figure 2). The PCB layout can be downloaded from diam. 6.3mm max. 365-4240and subsequently passed on to the current-controlled operational the eTech website. C25–C30 = 100nF lead pitch 5 or 7 , .5mm 652-9995transconductance amplifier (OTA), which is configured as a VCA C31,C32 = 100µF 25V, radial, lead pitch 2.5mm,here (Voltage Controlled Amplifier, IC4A and IC4B respectively). The Measurements diam. 8.5 mm max. 684-1942‘Dynabass’ potentiometer P2A (P2B) determines how much of the The two graphs summarise how the circuit influences the signal. The Figure 2. The components are quite close together so that theoriginal signal is processed. RC network R16/C11 acts as a variable graph in Figure 3 shows the amplitude characteristic of the low-pass circuit will fit on a compact PCB. Elektor Elektor +3 30 +10 +0 20 filter. This shows that the low-frequency part of the circuit operates probably only use flawless signal sources. For everyone else who would +5 -3 10 below about 100 Hz. At the high-frequency end the circuit operates from like their sound to be fresher and livelier this booster circuit is a good -6 -9 5 +0 around 5 kHz, based on the clipping alternative to an equalizer. -12 -5 of T1 (T2). 2 -15 d -10 B -18 1 The second curve (Figure 4) shows the ratio between the amplitudes of THD + N % dBV V -21 0.5 -15 the input and output signals of the VCA (green curve), measured at pin 9 -24 -20 of IC4. It shows that the curve is linear up to about –10 dB, after which -27 0.2 -30 compression occurs. The effect of this is that the low frequencies are 0.1 -25 -33 accentuated a bit more and the entire sound sounds fuller. 0.05 -30 -36 -39 0.02 -35 The same graph also shows the distortion of the output signal at 60 Hz -42 20 50 100 200 500 1k 2k 5k 10k 20k and 1 V input voltage, measured at pin 9 of IC4 (blue). The –10 dB value Get more online... Hz 0.01 -40 080094 - 12 -40 -35 -30 -25 -20 -15 -10 -5 +0 +5 +10 is also represented in this curve, with the difference that the distortion dBV 080094 - 13 increases exponentially from that point onwards (this makes sense because the signal is compressed above that value). Download PCB artwork from Design Tips atFigure 3. This clearly shows the frequency range of the low Figure 4. The gain and distortion of the low frequencies depends part of the circuit. on the input voltage. This is naturally not a circuit of particular interest for audiophiles. But they30 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 31
  • ELECTRONICS ELECTRONICSExTRAS ANTI-STATIC GLOVES ExTRAS For assembly / inspection of sensitive electronic components n A low linting white antistatic glove with PU palm coating giving a tight fitting for maximum dexterity and tactility. PCB INSPECTION MAGNIFIER Antistatic to EN1149 part 1:1995, Class 1000 clean room 8x magnifying eye glass with acrylic compatible. Supplied as a pair, packed for cleanliness. lens for PCB inspection Online search term: 622-6955 n Has integral metric/imperial graticule for direct measurement. The base cover incorporates 35mm film negative and 35mm slide viewing apertures. Online search term: 544-083 NYLON THREADED SPACERS A large range of metric insulated spacers in a variety of types. n M3 to M6 spacers in varying lengths in either male MAINS ExTERNAL POWER SUPPLIES to female or female to female types. Inserts can be A wide range of products brought to you by RS either nylon, brass or nickel plated brass. Online search term: Nylon threaded spacers n Whether you need AC or DC output, UK or European plugs RS has a range of power supplies to suit your needs from 1.5V to 24V Online search term: RS linear external power supplies STYLISH ELECTRONICS ENCLOSURES TEKTRONIx BENCH MULTIMETER n A new range of eye-catching console format With 5.5 digit resolution, up to 1μV or 1nA aluminium enclosures available in a choice of sizes with either silver of graphite grey powder n Measures Volts, Ohms, current, and frequency. Includes coating and providing IP65 sealing. diode and continuity testing. With 2×4 Ohms 4-wire Online search term: Alustyle measurement technique, dedicated DC leakage current measurements, six dedicated buttons for fast access LOW PROFILE EMERGENCY STOP SWITCHES to instrument setups, limit compare mode for Pass/Fail testing. Connects n EAO 84 series illuminated and non- to test systems via RS-232 or USB via illuminated 22.5mm hole mountable LABCOAT supplied interface adapter cable. emergency stops switches. Includes National Instrument’s LabVIEW Low depth contact block Designed with comfort and practicality in mind. SignalExpress™ TE Limited Edition construction with 300mm software. With 3-year warranty. ribbon cable termination. Online search term: 697-4196 Ideal for use in portable n Generously cut with a front zip, knitted cuffs and an internal equipment or anywhere pocket, it is ideal for use on production lines and laboratories. space is restricted. The fabric is a multi-layer, breathable material which has Online search term: anti-static properties to conform with EN1149-1, and is fire EAO 84 e-stop retardant to EN533 Index 1. Online search term: Candour lab coat ESD SCREWDRIVER AND BIT SET n 16-piece set for use in sensitive electronic SAFESHIELD CARDBOARD BOx applications. Set contains telescopic handle with flat, pozidrive, Torx and hexagon bits. n This handy size cardboard box has foam Online search term: 706-4815 inserts to help protect whatever you want to transport. Online search term: 443-992932 eTech - ISSUE 4 See more online - Over 5,000 new products are added at every month eTech - ISSUE 4 33
  • DESIGN DESIGNREVIEW REVIEW NEC Electronics Microchipxx Texas Instruments Run/Dynamic/Normal Mode Run/Dynamic Mode Active ModeEMBEDDED SYSTEMS Halt Mode (Main) all peripherals on Sleep with WDT LPM3 VLO Standby Mode xxxRun, Sleep, Deep Sleep… Halt Mode (subclock) some peripherals on Stop Modex n/a Sleep with RTC or RTCC Sleep Mode Deep Sleep with RTCCxxxx LPM3 LFXT1 Standby Mode LPM4 RAM Retention LPM5 Shutdown ModeBy Siegfried W BestEditorial Team, Elektronik Industrie n/a Deep Sleep with RTCC n/a x Dependent on the subclock, partial peripherals on (LCD/RTC etc., WDT with own frequency, RAM data retention) xx Microchip also has a Doze Mode in which the CPU frequency is lower than the peripheral frequencyThese days, it is not only battery-powered devices like games consoles, wireless xxx xxxx LPM = Low Power Mode =weather stations, blood pressure gauges, smoke alarms, etc. that requireeconomical µCs. Examples of other application areas that demand low power Table 1: An attempt to compare the different definitions for energy-saving modes from manufacturers NEC Electronics, Microchip and TIconsumption are smart metering devices that measure usage of utilities, such aswater, gas and electricity. Run/Dynamic/ Sleep Sleep Deep Wake-up Normal Mode Modexx Modexxx Sleep Time Energy Micro EMF32 195µA 900nA 600nA 20nA 2µs NEC Electronics µPD78Kx2-L 220µA 580nA 730nA 300nA 2 ... 3µs xxxx NEC Electronics µPD78Kx3-L 190µA 700nA 900nA 330nA 23.3 ... 30.7µs Microchip PIC16F193X 150µA 440nA 540nA 80nA 1µs Microchip PIC24F16KA102 195µA 400nA 500nA 28nA 1µs TI MSP430x1xx 220µA 500nA 900nA 100nA 1µs x Ub 3V, 1MHz; xx with BOD+WDT; xxx with BOD, WDT+RTC; xxxx until CPU starts, periphery is already on Table 2: Comparison of the significant low power measurements for economical microcontrollers from the manufacturers NEC Electronics, Microchip and TI Low Power Parameters/Operating Modes down before it reaches the CPU. This leads to confusion about which It wasn’t only Energy Micro’s announcement of Gecko that kicked off clock frequency is actually required to execute the target application. a discussion about the different low-power operating modes, but other Circuit designers should therefore have a closer look at the instruction manufacturers of economical microprocessors, especially NXP and TI, set architecture before they compare the power consumption data of seem to have woken up since Gecko’s arrival. Looking through the data different microprocessors. sheets from different vendors, the reader is assaulted with a multitude of terms for power consumption that are very difficult to compare with As mentioned above, it is impossible to compare the values of each other. For example, you would find values for power consumption the different energy-saving modes as they stand. So following the in Run Mode, in Standby, in Sleep Mode, in Deep Sleep Mode, in terminology of the vendors Microchip, NEC and Texas Instruments, who Stop Mode, in Shut Off Mode, in Standby Mode, in Extended Standby represent some of the major players in the low-power market, we will Mode, in Idle Mode, in Power Down, in Power Save, in RTC Mode, in now look more closely at the most important power saving modes in RAM Retention Mode, etc. Comparisons are difficult because different order to achieve a sensible comparison of the values for available low- manufacturers often mean the same thing but they call it by a different power µCs in Tables 1 and 2.‘Low power’ describes an application area or market segment where 2013, this will be further lowered to 0.5W. name (see Table 1).the microcontroller is only active for a fraction of its lifetime, with a duty Run Modecycle that can often be as low as 10%. According to an EU directive, All manufacturers of economical µCs attempt to keep the current In Run or Active Mode, power consumption rises with the clock The energy factors in Run or Dynamic Mode (Microchip), also knowneven in a parked car the combined control devices may only draw a leakage from the semiconductor processes, due to temperature and frequency, which is kept as low as possible to minimise consumption. as Active Mode (TI) or Normal Mode (NEC), are operating voltage,maximum of l50 µA from the battery while the engine isn’t running. operating voltage, as low as possible because this has a significant However, the clock frequency is also influenced by other factors such frequency, architecture, the time required to execute instructions andAdditional regulations (EU Regulation 1275/2008 of 17 December 2008 effect on power consumption in the energy-saving modes. as the associated peripherals, the architecture and the instruction set. technology. In other words, energy consumption is the product of Ubto implement Directive 2005/32/EG) mean that from 7 January 2010, The problem is, however, that the trend towards ever narrower An efficient instruction set is an important contributor to low energy x Idd x execution time. A shorter execution time leads to a shorterpower supply plugs and any household devices (except devices with structures with higher clock frequencies and smaller chip areas leads usage. RISC controllers typically operate in a frequency cycle, buta digital display) may now only draw up to 1W in standby mode. From to increased current leakage. some architectures (such as CISC controllers) divide the frequency Continued page 36>34 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 35
  • DESIGN DESIGNREVIEW REVIEW< Continued from page 35 manufacturers NEC, Microchip and Texas Instruments define their (1MHz, 3V) in Run Mode, 30µA in Deep Sleep Mode and 0.2µA in Deep Summary respective sleep modes. Power Down Mode. Choosing the right low-power microcontroller is a difficult task. In the end, it will be the application area that determines which typeactive time and therefore to lower power consumption. The execution Idle Mode Regular readers of Elektronik Industrie will already have seen Atmel’s should be used. And often, rather than the bare technical details, ittime, on the other hand, is determined by single cycle commands, The Idle Mode does not seem to be given as much prominence 8-bit/16-bit AVRXmega Controller in some of the high-tech toys that we is environmental conditions, such as the size of the battery and thethe architecture of the instruction set and the clock frequency, and it is and it is only listed in a few data sheets. Depending on the manufacturer, dismantle in each issue. The controllers require 365µA at 1MHz in Run required peripherals, that determine the final choice. You have to takeexpressed in MIPS. Data sheet values for Run Mode therefore have to the CPU and the non-volatile memory are inactive in this mode. Mode and 1.8V or 790µA at 3V. In Idle Mode, the values are 135µA or into account the size of the application, the type and the voltage of theshow the clock frequency and the operating voltage to be comparable. On the other hand, the peripherals, including interrupt controller, event 255 µA respectively. For the Power Down Modes the following values battery (there is a trend to single battery cells), whether the battery fitsAs an example, it is odd to see voltage values like 1.8V, which no battery system and DMA controller, continue to be active. Any interrupt will are given: 0.1µA (all functions deactivated) or 1.1µA (WDT, sampled into the application’s dimensions, the available power footprint and howdelivers but which leads to low power consumption. And what is the wake the system up. BOD). Finally, in Atmel‘s Power Save Mode the values are 0.55µA at easy it is to change batteries in the application. In addition, there is oftenpoint of showing this value if the On-Chip AD converter only works 1.8V or 1.15µA at 3V. no point in researching low power if low voltage is the critical criterion,with a minimum of 2.2V? In both cases we can assume that it is for e.g. to keep a clock running for a long reasons. TO00/TIO10/PO1 T1000 16bit TIMER/ EVENT CONTROLLER 00 PORT 0 2 P00, P01 Maxim offers the MAXQ2000, a 16-bit µC with an LCD interface for RxD6/P61<LINSEL> PORT 2 6 actuating up to 100 RGB segments. This was originally developed for The range of derivatives for the different P20, P25When measuring the power consumption in Run Mode, it is also T151/P30 8-bit TIMER S1 use in blood glucose monitors, but it is equally suitable for any other microcontrollers is huge because of the differing PORT 3 P30, P35 application requirements outlined above. 3relevant whether the PLL that determines the clock frequency is high-performance, low-power application. It can be clocked at 14MHz TOH1/P30 8-bit TIMER H1active or not and which division factor it uses. PORT 6 2 P60, P61 (Ub = 1.8V) or 25MHz (Ub = 2.25V) and uses only 190µA at 8MHz This means that developers will still have INTERNAL LOW-SPEED PORT 12 3 P121, P122, P125 and 2.2V. Maxim gives the values for the lowest power Stop Mode as to trawl through the details of hundreds OSCILLATORCurrent consumption 78K/0 CPU FLASH POWER ON CLEAR typically 700nA, and in addition there is a Low Power 32kHz Mode and a of pages of data sheets, especially WATCHDOG MEMORY Divide by 256 Mode. since their marketing-driven front CORE LOW VOLTAGE POC/LVI TIMER INDICATOR CONTROL RxD6/P61 SERIAL INTERFACE RESET CONTROL pages are often less than helpful. 10% Duty Cycle TxD6/P60 UARTS Active Icc TOOLCO/X1, TOOLC1/P31 The 8-bit controller ML610Q4xx from Rohm is brand new on the market. The large number of low-power ON-CHIP DEBUG SDAAO/P61 SCLAO/P60 SERIAL INTERFACE IICA INTERNAL TOOLDO/X2, TOOLD1/P32 This ultra-low-power controller with RISC architecture and three-level microcontrollers described above HIGH-SPEED AVREF RAM SYSTEM CONTROL pipeline processes one instruction per clock cycle and uses embedded indicates that this segment, Average current ANIO/P20 to ANI5/P25 6 A/D CONVERTER RESET/P125 X1/P121 Flash at 3.6V down to 1.1V. It comprises LCD drivers for 144 to 1,536 which up to now has been Sleep Icc AMP0OUTNOTE / INTERNAL HIGH-SPEED OSCILLATOR X2/EXCLK/P122 segments, up to 64KB Flash/ROM as well as 4KB RAM. It features dominated by Microchip, NEC PGAINNOTE/P21 NOTE AMP0+ /P22 OPERATIONAL AMPLIFIER 0 extensive peripherals and interfaces plus on-chip debugging. Power and TI, is developing into a consumption is given as 0.5µA in Halt Mode and 0.15µA in Stop Mode profitable niche market for a NOTE AMP0- /P20 Time RxD6/P61<LINSEL> VOLTAGE REGULATOR REGC INTP0/P00 INTP1/P30, INTP2/P31, INTERUPT CONTROL number of vendors. 3Fig. 1: Since µCs are often in sleep mode for long periods of time, the INTP3/P32 VDO VSE Seiko Epson offers the S1C17701, a 16 Bit RISC µC with C-optimisedvalues for this operating mode should be very low, which improves code and serial ICE support. This controller too has LCD drivers for 56the total energy footprint. (Picture: Atmel) x 32 segments as well as 64KB Flash and 4KB RAM. It is designed for Fig. 3: Architecture of the µPD78Kx2-L. (Picture: NEC Electronics) clock frequencies up to 8.2MHz and the low operating voltage of 1.8V. Program Peripherals are comprehensive and among these, the IR controller Flash Memory Wake-Up Time deserves special mention. Low power values are given as 1µA in Sleep RAM EEPROM Another factor in the energy footprint is the wake-up time, i.e. the time Mode and 2µA in Halt or Standby Mode. PORTA that the controller takes to wake up from sleep mode. In the simplest OSC2/CLKO Timing case, waking up can be triggered by a keypress, or it can be caused by Silicon Labs has the C8051F93x/92x controllers in their product range. bus activity, receiving signals from an IR source, Bluetooth activity etc. These can work with voltages from 0.9V to 3.6V and therefore target Generation OSC1/CLKI PORTB INTRC Oscillator CPU applications with one or two battery cells. In applications with one cell, PORTC It is important that the CPU is woken up in every case and this means a DC/DC converter is used. The 8051 core delivers 25 MIPS at 25MHz MCLR that the sleep mode must not be too deep. A number of requirements and 70% of all instructions are processed in one or two clock cycles. The PORTD have to be met before the CPU can start to work and among these is controller with 10-bit ADC, 64KB or 32KB Flash and 4KB RAM features the presence of a clock frequency. The frequency can be supplied very SmartRTClock, which means that, in addition to an internal 24.5MHz PORTE quickly by an on-chip RC oscillator, up to 1000 times more quickly than oscillator (2% accurate), it also provides an oscillator for 32kHz or an SR ADC Latch 10-Bit Timer0 Timer1 Timer2 Timer4 Timer6 Comparators by an external or an integrated quartz oscillator. For this reason, some internal self-oscillate mode. The two clock sources can be switched on low-power µCs use a dual startup in which the RC oscillator is used first the fly, which is a useful feature for the different energy saving modes. to shorten the startup time and then later, when greater precision is Power consumption values for Idle Mode (CPU inactive) are 165µA at LCD ECCP1 ECCP2 ECCP3 CCP4 CCP5 MSSP EUSART required, the CPU takes its frequency from the quartz oscillator. 1MHz and 1.8V or 235µA at 3.6V. When SmartRTClock is used, this reduces to 84µA. In the so-called Suspend Mode, the values are 77µA Typical representatives of Low-Power µCs (two cells) and for Sleep Mode (SmartRTClock on) they are given asFig. 2: Architecture of the PIC16F193x. (Picture: Microchip) Three families of microcontrollers that can be compared with the least 0.6µA (1.8V), rising to 0.85µA at 3.6V. difficulty are manufactured by Microchip, NEC and Texas Instruments.Sleep Modes They are summarised in Table 2 and, in the full text of the article In absolute Sleep Mode, the values are 0.05µA (1.8V) or 0.12µA (3.6V).In many applications the controller does not run continuously and the available on the eTech website, we provide a short overview of them The SiLabs data sheet provides a formula for calculating the power thatperipherals, too, are mostly idle (Fig. 1). In this case, the total energy in alphabetical order. The values compared here were taken from the is drawn from the battery and this also includes the efficiency of the Get more online...consumption can be reduced through the various sleep modes. manufacturers’ data sheets. DC/DC converter. This should be taken into account for all controllersIn Sleep Mode, the CPU and peripherals are supplied with voltage, with DC/DC converters or load pumps. Apart from the above-mentioned For more information on the independent reviewsbut they remain without clock frequency and additionally the RAM In Sleep Mode, the processor requires 2mA (12 MHz), which drops low-power micros, there are models from Freescale (S08LL16 and V1 carried out go to Design Review atcontent is retained. Among the different sleep modes there are fine down to 6µA in Deep Sleep Mode and further to 220nA in Deep Power ColdFire) and STMicroelectronics (STM32F101x8/xB). to be observed. In Table 1, we have summarised how the Down Mode. The 32-bit LPC1343 with Cortex-M3 core requires 330µA36 eTech - ISSUE 4 eTech - ISSUE 4 37
  • CUSTOMERPROFILEQKey Facts Company Name uick uestions EquipIC supply chain Year established 2005 Location Haarlem, the Netherlands Number of employees 12 Key market Turn key supply chain services Website Interviewee name Geert Jan Davids Interviewee position Founder and CEO Geert Jan Davids, Founder and CEOWhat is your latest product? How do you learn about new technologies?We provide turnkey supply chain services for fabless We generally find out about new foundry, packaging and testsemiconductor & system companies. technologies before the open market generally through our close relationships with our technology partners.What differentiates your products?Our ability to take customers from design (if needed), through How do you gain new skills? Where innovative products aremanufacturing test and assembly through to volume production.EquipIC is differentiated with its strong background in all aspects The EquipIC team each has at least 20 years of experience of silicon development, test and assembly. We work continuously just the beginning.of IC sourcing – Process selection, Design, Production, Test to ensure that our skills are kept up to date, adopting new designall based upon our excellent cooperation with Design teams, approaches and technologies as they emerge.Foundries, Test & Assembly houses. What RS service do you find most useful in your job and why? Molex has a reputation for But at Molex, innovation isn’t At Molex, we put innovation atWhat new technologies does your product employ? If it’s on the RS website today as in stock, we know we can have it setting standards and paving the only about products. We’ve the center of everything we do —We employ the complete spectrum of foundry processes, here in our lab tomorrow.including deep submicron down to 28nm way for new solutions –– from also taken an uncompromising whether that means finding new What technology do you foresee having the biggest the world’s smallest interconnects stance on sustainability and ways to meet customer challengesHow did you equip yourselves with knowledge impact on your next product? to some of the highest density environmental issues. We insist or going beyond the call for theof this new technology? Very high volume analogue rich designs using relative mature power connectors on the market. on ecofriendly business practices global environment.We draw on our many years experience of supply chain services, technologies such as 0.35u, 0.18u & 0.13u CMOS. And we do it all to ensure that and have dramatically increasedas well as our close relationships with our partners. Combined our customers have the tools recycling efforts, reducedwith project management and in depth knowledge of all What is the biggest threat to your business? they need to deliver next- energy usage and emissions,commercial aspects. The very high cost of the next generation of deep submicron generation technology. and committed ourselves to processes puts them out of reach of some start up companies.Give an example of the impact one of your products developing products with minimalhas on, or the benefits it provides to, the end user. Where do you see your industry in 5 years? environmental impact.We’ve completed over 40 designs, in many cases taking over the Very much larger as it is becoming increasingly difficult forsilicon development and allowing our customer to focus on their end customers to deal with the fabs directly.own product development/IP development and marketing/sales.Projects have ranged from satellite terminals to hearing aids. eTech - ISSUE 4
  • LUNCH LUNCHBREAK BREAK WIN Daily No. 1640 Easy a Panasonic Blu-ray Player 13 18 16 4 17 8 Name: Job Title: with our killer sudoku 8 8 14 Ship-To-Number: Tel: 9 16 21 E-mail: 13 26 16 17 Send your completed Sudoku to: RS Components Ltd, eTech Team, DPN 24, Corby, Northamptonshire, NN17 9RS. 4 24 16 Terms & Conditions: This competition is being run by RS Components Ltd. To enter the competition, all information on the entry form must be supplied. Entry is free, no purchase is necessary. It is the responsibility of the 16 16 6 participant to gain permission from his/her employer to enter this competition. The prize is as stated and exact specification will be selected by RS and is subject to availability.. No cash alternatives are How to play: available. The competition is open to all RS Components catalogue 7 3 10 recipients, except employees of RS Components or their families. As with standard sudoku, every row and column and It is not permitted to repeat a number in a shape. The closing date for entries is 01/12/2010. The date of the draw will 3 x 3 square must contain the numbers 1 through 9 If you have a sum of 8 across three cells, this cannot be be in the month of December 2010. The winner will be selected exactly once. 2’, ‘4’, ‘2’ as the ‘2’ is then repeated in the shape. at random by RS Components and will be notified by 1st January 15 10 12 22 2011. Responsibility cannot be accepted for lost entries, damaged The grid is composed of shapes with a dotted outline. No numbers are placed in the grid to start with, unlike in or delayed in transit to the porters address. Illegible, altered or incomplete entries will be disqualified. Details of the prize winner At the top of each shape is a number, this signifies the normal sudoku; however you can work out every number can be obtained from the promoter after the date of the draw by sum of the cell. For example; if there is a shape composed with no guesswork but applying logic alone to reach the 11 9 sending an SAE to RS Components, eTech Team, DPN 24, of two cells with a ‘3’ in the corner, the total of those cells unique solution for each puzzle. Corby, Northamptonshire, NN17 9RS or by visiting is ‘3’. From that you can tell that the values of the cells must be ‘1’ and ‘2’ or ‘2’ and ‘1’. Copyright (c) 2009, killersudokuonline.comWhatever, Whenever Technology quiz! 1 What does NIR stand for? 5 A solar panel is rated at 10 Watts and provides current 8 What was the first 1G system to start operating of 600 mA in bright sunshine (1000 W m2). What is the and in which year? a. estimated power output of the panel (in amps/hour)? Assume 8 hours of sunshine. a. 2 CCD Image sensors are gradually being replaced a. by CMOS image sensors. What does CCD and CMOS stand for? 9 In reference to access technologies, what do the following stand for: (FDMA, TDMA, CDMA)? a. 6 What do the following battery technologies stand for: LiIon, NiCad, NiMH, LiMnO2, SLA and Li/SOC12 ? a. 3 What are Thermopower Waves? a. 10 The future 4G mobile device will be first and foremost a computer, then an OWA low-power terminal. a. 7 Give three examples of User interface (UI) controls. What does OWA stand for? 4 What will InstaLoad prevent? a. a. a.40 eTech - ISSUE 4 Answers can be found at eTech - ISSUE 4 41
  • INDUSTRYNEWSRobots get an artificial skinA mobile robot carefully transports asample through a biotech lab where it issurrounded by the routine hustle and bustle.Lab technicians are conversing with oneanother and performing tests. One technicianinadvertently runs into the robot, which stopsmoving immediately.An artificial skin covering the robot makes this possible. Consisting of conductivefoam, textiles and an intelligent evaluation circuit, the sensor system detectspoints of contact and differentiates between gentle and strong contact. Itregisters people immediately. The shape and size of the sensor cells implementedin the skin can be varied depending on the application. They detect any contact.The higher the number of sensor cells, the more precisely a point of collision canbe detected. A sensor controller processes the measured values and transmitsthem to the robot or, alternatively, a computer, a machine or production line.Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Factory Operation and Automation IFFin Magdeburg designed and patented this sensor system in 2008 for its assistantrobot LiSA, which stocks incubators and measuring instruments in biotech labswith sample cups and relieves lab staff from such work. Since then the engineershave refined the sensor system for a wide array of applications such as industrialrobots and flooring. Contact with humans or objects will be reliably detectablein the future, a basic prerequisite for the implementation of robots in humanenvironments without protective barriers. “Our artificial skin can be adapted toany complex geometry, including curved or very flat. We use large-area floorsensors to define safety zones that people may not enter” says Markus Fritzsche, ,researcher at the Fraunhofer IFF “These areas can be changed dynamically. The . ”tactile skin now also functions as an input medium, for instance, to guide robots Pressure sensitive flooring detects people and slowsby translating contact into motion. “This requires little force. If I touch the robot, or stops the robot’s movement. (© Fraunhofer)it attempts to evade the pressure. Thus, I can direct even a 200 kilogram robot inthe desired direction” says Fritzsche describing the system’s advantages. Another ,of the artificial skin’s distinctive features is the integrated damping elements that “additionally diminish any collisions by cushioning impacts. Our artificial skin can beDiverse variants of the tactile sensor system now exist, the shell material rangingfrom breathable to waterproof. “This opens entirely new fields of application such adapted to any complexas medical engineering or manufacturing” says Fritzsche. “Pressure sensitive , geometry, including curvedflooring is ideal for monitoring workspaces in factories or instantly registeringfallen patients in a nursing home for instance. Robots and mobile equipment or very flat. We use large-outfitted with the artificial skin register any collision and brake immediately. Inaddition, we can provide robot grippers a sense of touch and thus detect whether area floor sensors to definethey are actually gripping something. ” safety zones that peopleNumerous variants of the artificial skin have been prototyped. Fritzsche isconvinced: “We’ll encounter all sorts of forms of artificial skin in everyday life inthe near future. ” may not enter” ” Markus Fritzsche, researcher at the Fraunhofer IFF42 eTech - ISSUE 4
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