eTech Magazine - Issue 6


Published on

eTech 6 - DesignSpark PCB takes design to another dimesion

1 Like
  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

eTech Magazine - Issue 6

  1. 1. N SElECTIO 06 bE b PC 20 O K PR DESIGNSPaR 14 USb 3.0One of the triumphs of the harry Potter movie franchise is the plethoraof magical gizmos it features, springing from the fertile imaginationsof J.K. Rowling and the movie special effects department.Yet some of these ideas are no longer so far fetched or magical. The ‘talking newspaper’seen in some scenes, for example is available today on the iPad. I know, because RS has,from our previous issue made eTech available as a downloadable iPad App, and I’m the onedoing the talking.Our theme this issue is connectivity, and that’s particularly appropriate because it isconnectivity that is enabling this functionality. A chain of wireless and wired connections INSIDE eTechcarries a voice recording, a video clip, an image or a piece of text from the source,to your iPad (or netbook, Kindle, laptop, smartphone…) 04 iSayNo wonder that at RS we’re seeing explosive growth in interest in the products and 05 RS NEWSlINEtechnologies that create the links in that chain. In this issue of eTech, we’re exposingjust a few of those. USB3.0 is poised to transform the relationship between computers 06 DESIGNSPaRK PCband peripherals. ZigBee is seeing increasing uptake as a simple mesh networking 10 PRODUCT NEWSprotocol. Power over Ethernet simplifies these networks and potentially saves power.The Human Machine Interface (HMI) is the final, and arguably the most important link in 12 ThINK GlObally, aCT lOCallythat connectivity chain, and we have a major article that looks at how technology pioneered 14 USb 3.0in game consoles is being used in industrial and instrumentation applications. 16 OPEN SOURCE haRDWaRE Our mission at RS is to help you Find the right USER GROUP Terms and conditions: Terms andconditions of sale set out in the current connectivity solutions for your next project, Design them in and then make it simple to Buy the 18 CUSTOmER PROfIlE RS Catalogue. This issue is valid from April 2011 to June 2011. components you need for prototypes and production. 19 POWER OVER EThERNET Offering eTech on your iPad as well as in print and Published by: RS Components Limited. Registered office: online is one part of that mission. The new version of 20 PRObE SElECTION Birchington Road, Weldon, Corby, Northamptonshire NN17 9RS. Registered No. 1002091. RS DesignSpark PCB described in this issue is another. 22 maRKET TRENDS Watch this space for more! Components Ltd 2010. RS are trademarks of RS 24 RS EDP Components Limited. An Electrocomponents Company. PS:…. and before you ask: yes we are planning to extend our iPad app to other platforms like Android. 26 faN IS a blaST 28 DESIGN TIPS: NETWORKER 32 ElECTRONICS EXTRaS Place FSC logo here 34 POWER Of TOUCh Glenn Jarrett Head of Electronics Marketing 36 RaPID POWER RS Components 42 INDUSTRy NEWS: fRaUNhOfERELE_0019_0311 eTech - ISSUE 6 03
  2. 2. iSay RSJEAN-LOUIS BRELET,SENIOR MARKETING MANAGER NEWSlINESPRODUCT DEFINITION, XILINX SAYS:“ eTech launches as the Supporting R&D of flexibility first Electronics Industry Intelligent Robots in Japan iPad magazine app With the use of sensors, the Intelligent Robot featuring enhanced interactive content including laboratory in Japan, successfully developed images, animation and video free of charge an autonomously controlled robot. gives fPGas the advantage ” This iPad app provides a and has been developed to go The research and development of new way to display product beyond the basic page-turner the robot required a wide variety and technology information, digital magazine, taking full of manufacturing knowledge extending and enhancing the advantage of the device’s off-line covering from electronic and magazine content with additional viewing capabilities. ” mechanical components. images, animation and video, Download the latest edition of making it a truly interactive eTech on iPad through the With the support of customer experience. App Store. RS Components, researchers at the laboratory were able to flexibility gives fPGas the advantage in growing number of applications. Commenting on the launch, purchase analog and digital Glenn Jarrett, Head of devices, as well as printed circuit Electronics Marketing at RS boards from a one-stop shop. said, “With more and more The flexibility of programmable components while remaining committed to support the existing information sources available to Dr. Shin’ichi Tuka commented, Dr. Shin’ichi Tuka has become more important than ever as 3G W-CDMA or CDMA2000 standards. Equipment design engineers, it is imperative “It was a paradigm shift. RS ” electronics adoption continues to grow in more and more manufacturers must ensure that these base stations can that RS provides them with features a wide variety of product delivery of RS Components, not applications. For example, in the automotive industry be easily upgraded when required to adapt to any change news in the format that they find portfolio, the next day delivery, to mention the support provided on-board integrated systems are multiplying to provide in standard. In addition, operators require slight variations both informative and engaging. and long-tail products. I was through regular advice through greater convenience and safety, along with improved in different countries and some parts of the world are eTech for iPad is an industry first astonished at the speed of face-to-face meetings.” pollution control. Cutting-edge electronic modules provide intending to use WiMax. greater functionality at ever-decreasing cost. The standard components (or Application Specific Standard Product (ASSP)) and specific ASIC-type circuits (Application Specific To my knowledge, no supplier of fixed and mobile telecommunications infrastructure relies only partially EnbW Engineers build an automated Cocktail mixer Integrated Circuit) available on this market are however on FPGA solutions. Programmable components are often found to be inadequate for the demands made fast becoming the only economically-viable approach four trainees at EnbW in Tuttlingen, a PlC and two custom boards resistors, rectifiers, capacitors, on them. for new systems. Germany, have built an automated were also used. To provide efficient microprocessors and cocktail mixer as their final project service, an lCD display shows users the stepper motors, The needs of manufacturers frequently change between as they study to become Industrial the cocktails they have selected all of which they the initial design specification and the arrival of a new Electronics Installation Engineers. and an aluminium compression tool obtained quickly and “ vehicle on the market, making demands on the flexibility driven by a geared motor is used to easily using the RS of the electronics which are difficult to satisfy using ASSPs and ASICs, especially within an accessible price range. ...on-board integrated The engineers built a mixer that could accommodate a large pour out the required level of liquid from the bottles. E-Procurement service. The cost of masks set in 40/45 nm technologies reaches systems are multiplying to spindle bearing eight bottles. Plexiglass windows and a stepper for the mixer’s electronic provide greater millions of dollars. The effect of this is clearly a fall in the number of ASSPs and ASICs. In 2009, the number of new motor was used to push the systems, a large number of small spindle over cog wheels. components including transistors, ASIC designs fell by 21%. FPGAs, on the other hand, are entering the world of processors because of their flexibility convenience and safety, of use, coupled with the efficiency and performance levels along with improved RS announces partnership with board ” of hardware solutions. SRAM-based programmable components combine the benefits of fast integration and flexibility during the design stage while being adaptable pollution control manufacturers bVm and microsoft to multiple standards. RS Components are pleased to announce leading board developer BVM and software customers and suppliers; our business For instance, the FPGA is now vital in mobile telephone the partnership with BVM and Microsoft to giants Microsoft. is focused on doing what is best for all infrastructures. The latest generations being installed provide design engineers, exclusive access stakeholders, to ensure we deliver the best are based on 3GPP LTE technology, whose full range of to a complete range of motherboard kits with This joint venture provides engineers with a product and service to the end customer. specifications is not yet finalised. Base station suppliers Share your opinion on this at Windows Embedded software installed and plug and play solution which is transferable Clearly RS are a great partner to meet these have however already begun to deliver LTE technology, ready to use. This is the first partnership of across devices with easy adoption routes, objectives and Microsoft thinks so too.” its type in the high-volume distribution market offering a long-term development lifespan. place, linking the RS design engineering Commenting for BVM, Robert Wainwright, community (DesignSpark) and the General Manager said “we are committed Find out more on the BVM / Microsoft / ecommerce trading site users with market- to working in partnership with both our RS partnership at www.designspark.com04 eTech - ISSUE 6 eTech - ISSUE 6 05
  3. 3. “ ...3D viewer, enablingengineers to gain a ‘reallife’ view of a PCb layout DesignSpark PCb Version 2 takes PCb deSiGNSparkPCB ” design toduring design... aNOThER DImENSION by martin Keenan The launch of DesignSpark in summer 2010 sent ripples through the engineering world. With free online resources and design support, waves of engineers soon joined the community. One of the biggest success stories since the launch of DesignSpark has been DesignSpark PCb; a completely free and unrestricted professional-grade schematic capture and PCb design environment. Now, after just nine months, the number of downloads for DesignSpark PCB has exceeded 60,000; functionality, resulting in an even better experience for the many thousands of engineers already using it. The expectation Through the 3D Viewer, engineers can review a three-dimensional representation of their board, at any stage during design, to that’s around 300 per working day since is that this commitment to development quickly evaluate the mechanical design. Any its launch! will help to further increase its popularity adjustments can easily be carried out in the and encourage the DesignSpark community 2D view and checked in the 3D Viewer for With a commitment to maintaining and to continue contributing their ideas for near-instant visual feedback. improving what is rapidly becoming one of future enhancements. the most important engineering resources to engineers in over 150 countries across 3D Viewer added the globe, RS has announced Version One of the major new features of 2 of DesignSpark PCB. This is the first DesignSpark PCB Version 2 takes PCB official revision of the tool and while it design to another dimension – literally! remains totally free and unrestricted in its The development team have implemented functionality, it boasts a long list of new a 3D Viewer, enabling design engineers features. Engineers can download Version to visualise in real time their final project, 2 today from rendered in a highly accurate, fully detailed and start enjoying all the new features and 3D view. existing benefits that large corporate users, as well as SMEs and hobbyists around the DesignSpark PCB has always offered world, have already discovered. the ability to export designs to a CAD environment that offer a 3D representation The 3D Viewer is found in the tool bar and In fact, the diverse cross-section of of the board and its components, for along with the ability to view a populated DesignSpark PCB users is something RS mechanical design. While this is still board in 3 dimensions, engineers also have is particularly proud of; the intention is to possible, using a pre-loaded and extensible the option to edit individual component develop, support and maintain DesignSpark library of 3D components engineers no settings, to get the most realistic PCB to remain an industry-leading resource, longer need to move to a CAD environment, representation possible – all from and with the release of Version 2 comes or export an intermediary file, to visualise within the same design environment; the addition of many new features that their design in 3D. DesignSpark PCB. extend the tool’s capability, usability and Continued page 08>06 eTech - ISSUE 6 eTech - ISSUE 6 07
  4. 4. Amphenol range increased to over “ There are now some 30,000 registered users of DesignSpark and downloads of 9,000 connectors at RS the tool number 55,000 ” New introductions expand the Amphenol portfolio, including renewable energy, industrial, medical, military, data and audio technology markets, all available direct from stock for next-day-delivery< Continued from page 07New capabilities ‘escape’ key. To enable finer gained design,As well as the breathtaking 3D Viewer, the resolution of angular rotation has alsoDesignSpark PCB’s Version 2 also been increased, while the Library Managerintroduces a number of new capabilities. function will also offer new ‘move to’ andThese enhancements include being able ‘save to’ automatically create and save a new RJField range XLR Solutionslibrary as an item, as well as saving the more functionalityselected components directly to a library Adding to the enhanced usability,from the design view. Simpler and more functionality has also received somecomprehensive output is enabled through attention; support for thetwo new features; a new column type widely used Excellonallows plain text to be inserted in to reports, drill file format has beenwhile a new bitmap printing option enables extended to supportgreater flexibility. In addition to these different drill toolcapabilities, DesignSpark PCB will also numbers acrossprovide a drill indent output option, able drill files. Otherto switch between separate plated and enhancementsunplated drills. include the ability to paste copies ofGreater usability components in the sameWe live in a connected world, where candid position, as well as add valuesfeedback via online portals has become to all the alternate footprints of asecond nature and, as with most well- component when editing just one.received products, DesignSpark PCB hasgenerated its fair share of on-line debate. The success of DesignSpark PCB reinforces Ecomate Series 62GB Electroless NickelThanks in part to this user feedback some the belief that the electronics engineeringfeatures have been highlighted where community needs professional tools and See the full range at :usability could be further improved. services that aren’t just free to use butSo in response to this, the first major offer real value, with an uncompromisingupgrade to DesignSpark PCB will include a commitment to support that only anumber of usability enhancements, which company like RS can truly offer.include new commands in the Project menuthat allow sheets within a project to beduplicated or renamed. It will also be easier With the release of DesignSpark PCB Version 2, RS has reaffirmed its commitment to delivering the best Get more online... Share your experience using DesignSpark PCb on adding a new component to return open source experience to its www.designspark.comto the dialog box; by simply pressing the engineering community.08 eTech - ISSUE 6
  5. 5. PRODUCT PRODUCTNEWS NEWS fIbRE OPTIC CONNECTORS fibre Optic Transceiver for high speed data rates mICROmaTCh CONNECTORS n The AFCT-5805xxZ transceiver is a high 1.27mm - Tyco amP mICRO-maTCh™ performance, cost effective module for serial IDC Series optical data communications applications specified for a data rate of 155 Mb/s. It is designed to n This small system of IDC connectors provide a SONET/SDH compliant link for intermediate reach links operating at have a contact spacing of 1.27mm, offer +3.3 V or +5.0 V input voltage. Application areas include links for LAN backbone a range of wire-to-board & board-to-board switches and routers, WAN core, edge and access switches and routers, links for intercommunications. The contacts are fully add/drop multiplexers and demultiplexers and SONET interconnections protected by plastic housings, providing high Online search term: afCT-5805 performance and reliability with built in Polarisation. No additional strain relief is required. The contact spring system is in the female board header and not in the wire connector, which compensates for positional tolerances and prevents fretting corrosion. Online search term: idc micro-match 1.27mm POSITION SENSORS fROm SPECTRaSymbOl Contactless, low profile and high temperature Position Sensors. n Membrane Sensors from SpectraSymbol have transformed the way engineers think about position sensing through a low form-factor (less than 0.5mm), better value compared to other linear sensors, and high adaptability for design constraints. We have now introduced high temperature linear sensor applications with the Hotpot, rising to +85°C in operation or storage, the MagnetoPot for contactless applications and the ThinPot which is half the width of the traditional Softpot product. Online search term: Spectrasymbol SChOTTKy DIODES USb2.0 hUb CONTROllERS Rectifiers - Schottky barrier Up to 0.199a Industry’s first Single-Chip, USb 2.0 hub and 10/100 Ethernet Controllers n We have increased the range from Vishay and can now provide Small signal schottky diodes for general purpose n SMSC are the first company to introduce a fully applications. The diodes feature low turn-on voltage and integrated 2/3/4 port Hi-Speed USB 2.0 hub with high breakdown voltage and are protected by a PN junction 10/100 Ethernet controllers. SMSC’s UniClock ™ guard ring against excessive voltage, such as electrostatic technology simplifies the clocking scheme andmCX CONNECTORS - fROm CablINE discharges. They are available in the reduces system BOM cost by using a single 25MHz Specifically designed conectors for DO-35 case with type designation crystal for both USB and Ethernet connectivity lCD applications lECROy USb aNalySERS BAT41, and are AEC-Q101 qualified. − without the need for extra components when Online search term: vishay 7103* adding USB hubs. They have built-in ±8kV/15kV n Cabline V is used in slimline LCD applications. PCmCIa card USb 2.0 analysers “Diode Schottky” contact/air discharge ESD protection on both USB It is now considered the defacto standard of LVDS n The Lecroy USBMobile T2 is a small and affordable hardware-based USB 2.0 and Ethernet PHYs . Multiple Operation Systems panel interface for LCDs with LED backlight. Cabline protocol analyser family that combines de-facto standard CATC Trace display with are supported including: Windows® 7 Windows XP , , VS is specially designed for the transmission/shield powerful analysis features. Features include : portable operation with any PCMCIA Windows Vista®, Windows CE, Windows Mobile®, performance of the Displayport signal which is the compatible PC, CATC trace analysis software, 64 MByte recording memory, High Linux® and Mac®. embedded standard interface of the FPD and is certified impedance probe, 2 mini AB USB ports, Advanced Triggering and Event reporting. Online search term: 716-0449 to the latest VESA specification. Online search term: CablINE Online search term: lecroy, USb ThERmal INTERfaCE KIT Comprehensive Thermal Interface Sil-Pad kit GDT 2 aND 3 ElECTRODE n Bergquist is a world leader for Sil-Pad materials SURGE aRRESTERS to meet critical needs of a rapidly changing Surge arrestors from Epcos electronics industry. This universal kit comprises of different forms of Sil-Pad, Q-Pad and Gap- VNC2 VINCUlUm USb hOST Pad insulators with the necessary accessories n Excessive voltages and the resulting DEVElOPmENT KIT required to attach them to the PCB. The thermally surge currents can damage or even destroy VNC2 Vinculum USb host Development Kit communications equipment, data transmission conductive insulators, continue to be a clean and and energy supply systems. Gas-filled surge efficient alternative to mica, ceramics or grease arresters offer optimal protection in these cases. They limit n V2-Eval Board is intended for use as a hardware platform to enable easy for a wide range of electronic applications. They surge voltages quickly and safely to uncritical values and reliably evaluation of FTDI“s Vinculum-II VNC2 series of embedded USB Host / Slave provide excellent thermal performance, eliminates discharge any dangerous currents that may occur. We have now controllers. The V2-Eval Board includes all the necessary components required the mess of grease, is more durable than mica and have full portfolio of Epcos devices that are very smal,l have a by a user to begin developing USB Host / Slave system applications based on the“total applied cost” compares favourably with fast response time and stable performance over the lifetime the VNC2 device. There are two USB type A connectors for connecting to USB other alternatives. with extremely low capacitance. slave peripherals, FT42232H USB to quad channel UART device for VNC2 programming & debug Online search term: 127-057 Online search term: epcos GDT functions and USB type B connector for connection to PC host via FT4232H. The board supply voltage is +4.75 to +5.25V and supply current is 60mA Online search term: 708-011010 eTech - ISSUE 6 See more online - Over 5,000 new products are added at every month eTech - ISSUE 6 11
  6. 6. Think globally,act locallyWireless Personal areaNetworks: Zigbee or IEEE802.15.4? Certification,Standards and alliances. While electromagnetic radiation in the form of radio waves has been exploited for over a century, without alongside other standards from the same group (802.15) which defines wireless personal area networks (WPAN), and is itself The right profile The real power of the 802.15.4 standard is its ability the older IR style remote control with an RF device, which doesn’t rely on a clear line- of-sight to operate. More significantly, the ZigBee RF4CE specification. It means device manufacturers can now integrate Atmel’s solution secure in the knowledge that it will the incredible success of mobile phones its a subset of the more overarching group, 802, to create networks using multiple integration of ZigBee into consumer devices be compatible and interoperable with other real commercial potential may yet remain which defines local area networking in general nodes within the immediate area, and to will not only allow a single remote to control devices that have been certified to the unrealised. While cellular technology provided and is not restricted to wireless technologies. use this network to exchange relatively small multiple devices, but also enable those devices same standard. a focus for R&D as well as a return on that amounts of data in a power-efficient way. This to communicate directly, to share information investment, it has encouraged and enabled While the standard defines the physical (PHY) contrasts with other WPAN technologies, about the use and distribution of multimedia, Low power, short range wireless the development of an ever widening array and media access (MAC) layers, it is the such as WiFi and Bluetooth where, although and even shut down equipment automatically communication is expected to support of wireless technologies. Though the basic set of protocols developed to exploit the capable of creating ad hoc networks or peer- when it isn’t being used. greener living through the secure exchange principles remain unchanged, the various underlying network architecture that is actually to-peer connections, their higher bandwidth of data using intelligent sensors to control our “ regulations and protocols that are applied to known as ZigBee. Although the ‘brand’ name and more demanding power requirements will immediate environment which, in turn, could them continue to define the world around us. and the standard are often synonymous, early adopters were prone to using the PHY/MAC likely preclude them from encroaching on the burgeoning application areas where ZigBee is low power, help the global environment too. Perhaps unsurprisingly, wireless technologies that operate in the unlicensed part of the technology with proprietary protocols, rather than ZigBee itself, largely due to now being applied. short range wireless spectrum have seen the greatest amount of interest and as those frequencies become manufacturers wishing to protect their market share from competitors with A significant boost to ZigBee’s appeal – and prerequisite for interoperability and certification communication increasingly congested so too does the need compatible solutions. – is the development and application of is expected to for encoding techniques and protocols that profiles. These effectively define the application are able to cope with the ‘noise’ from other However, while this may have initially area for a ZigBee device and today there exist support greener ” devices.This, along with the need for reliable stymied the adoption of ZigBee in some a number of profiles which cover health care, find the latest Zigbee ranges at interoperability, has led to the evolution of applications areas, it has not impeded the home automation, smart metering and most living... industry standards, governed by independent development and adoption of IEEE 802.15.4 recently remote control. bodies which attempt to accommodate both compliant solutions. Today there are a number the commercial and technical requirements of of chipsets and even single-chip solutions The profile for remote control, which was Atmel recently announced that its developers and consumers alike. available on the market. RS stocks a number created after the ZigBee Alliance agreed to ATmega128RFA1 single-chip wireless Get more online... of compliant solutions from manufacturers cooperate with the RF4CE Consortium, is now microcontroller has been certified by the Share your thoughts on Zigbee One such standard is IEEE 802.15.4, often including Texas Instruments, Freescale, beginning to see widespread deployment in ZigBee Alliance to the ZigBee Remote Control adoption at referred to by its ‘brand name’ of ZigBee. It sits Microchip and Atmel. consumer electronics. It effectively replaces standard, which was developed for the12 eTech - ISSUE 6 eTech - ISSUE 6 13
  7. 7. SuperSpeed or Supersede? Will USb 3.0 ring the death knell for slower serial interfaces? compatibility; USB 2.0 receptacles won’t be able to accept USB 3.0 external hard drive manufacturers are already announcing products, plugs as they are physically larger, however USB 3.0 receptacles will such as Buffalo Technology’s latest range of USB 3.0 enabled storage accept USB 2.0 plugs thanks to the connector’s design. solutions which was announced at the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Beyond the physical differences, the protocol used by SuperSpeed is significantly different from its predecessors, although this will be largely CES 2011 was also the venue for a number of other announcements transparent to the user. It will require a new generation of controllers around USB 3.0, such as Genesys Logic’s introduction of a range and drivers, the availability of which will be significant in helping USB 3.0 of controllers including a 4-port hub controller, flash card reader realise its full potential. controller and a SATA bridge controller. VIA Labs also used CES 2011 to demonstrate its range of USB 3.0 controllers. The SuperSpeed interface uses full duplex transfer, thanks to the use of two independent differential channels. Also, the use of a packet based Speculation that USB 3.0 will displace USB 2.0 has, inevitably, caused protocol makes the data routable between host and device, as opposed some providers to question whether it is commercially viable to continue to the broadcast method used in USB 2.0, all of which contributes to to invest in USB 2.0 development. The answer is almost certainly yes, achieving the higher bandwidth speeds. because although SuperSpeed offers many benefits, it is unlikely to be cost-competitive in all applications. Predominantly this no longer relies on polling, or asking each peripheral whether it has data to send, meaning the bus is only active when The undeniable appeal of USB coupled with the benefits of SuperSpeed USB 3.0 has arrived; at over 10 times faster than USB 2.0 it promises to provide quicker file transfer between enabled devices, feeding consumers’ insatiable appetite data is being moved, which has the added benefit of improving power management, which is now addressed at every layer of the interface to deliver a significant power saving. For instance, at the link layer there are and its compatibility with USB 2.0 may even regenerate the market for USB in general, as no other serial interface offers the same level of convenience or, with the advent of SuperSpeed, the same for storing, streaming and sharing high bandwidth data such as four link states, which can be selected to trade off the power consumed high bandwidth. multimedia files. against the latency of the interface. Also, the USB 3.0 specification increases the amount of power that a host can distribute, from 500mA As with previous incarnations of the universal serial bus, and holding to 900mA. fast with its underlying premise of ease of use, USB 3.0 (or SuperSpeed USB as it has become known) will provide backwards compatibility with Support for the new USB 3.0 receptacle will, of course, take time but “ USB 2.0, even though it is electrically and mechanically quite different. there are a number of PCI bus expansion cards available for PCs that Over 10 times In order to reach the blisteringly high 5Gbit/s bandwidth it uses offer the new interface, while newer PCs, laptops and other devices will be able to support the standard natively. faster than two differential pairs; one for transmitting and one for receiving, as opposed to the single differential pair for tx/rx as used in USB 2.0. To Software support will come in the form of drivers, which will need to be added to all the operating systems in circulation, although initially this USb 2.0 accommodate this without sacrificing compatibility, the specification adds four additional wires to the cable assembly. This, in turn, may also involve peripheral manufacturers developing drivers for the relevant OS, too. it promises to necessitates a different connector profile but in order to make it physically compatible with the existing USB user base, the additional With high speed serial communications comes a need for provide quicker file connections are located at the back of the connector, behind the existing comprehensive test and measurement during the development phase transfer between USB 2.0 connections. and in response to this need, leading T&M companies including LeCroy find the latest USb 3.0 ranges at and Tektronix now offer automated test suites for USB 3.0, along with enabled This clever innovation does have some implications, however. It means that only Standard-A receptacles (the ones most frequently found on the necessary probes and interface hardware for their respective oscilloscopes. Get more online... ” devices PCs) will accept both USB 2.0 and SuperSpeed 3.0 Standard-A plugs. Standard-B, Powered-B, Micro-B and Micro-AB receptacles (the ones The primary appeal of USB 3.0 is its high speed and as it becomes more Share your thoughts on USb 3.0 Superspeed at now commonly found on portable devices) will only offer backwards widely adopted, it will create opportunities for high speed peripherals; www.designspark.com14 eTech - ISSUE 6 eTech - ISSUE 6 15
  8. 8. “ It is important to note that not all open source designs must start ...hobbyists out that way and there is no reason why proprietary technology cannot be “open sourced” that is provided that you hold all the , to established rights to the design. However, most OSHW projects are open from Images from OShUG events multi-national the offset and are often the result of collaboration that crosses organisational and geographic boundaries. With public resources organisations have such as mailing lists, version control systems, wikis and bug trackers typically being employed in support of their development. come to realise the The poster child of the OSHW movement is without a doubt the inherent potential of Arduino microcontroller platform, and the success it has enjoyed is in no small part due to its open nature and the fact that this engaging in openIntroduction to aspect has served to foster a substantial ecosystem. Which has collaboration and not only benefited third parties through the creation of new business opportunities, but has also enabled the platform to secure liberal licensing ofOpen Source significant market share. Whilst its highly active and ever growing community of users and a culture of sharing has enabled global- hardware design scale support. ” artefacts... Arduino is just the tip of the iceberg and you’d be mistaken if you thought that OSHW was only concerned with simple systems. Thehardware movement boasts, for example, multiple cutting edge software- defined radio (SDR) projects, high performance embedded computing platforms, low cost desktop 3D printers and an affordable USB protocol analyser project, to name but a few out of hundreds. As was initially the case with open source software, OSHW has its own share of detractors. It may be difficult to at first see howby andrew back, Open Source hardware User Group it could work when the replication costs for hardware are so much greater than those associated with software. However, it offers the potential to democratise the hardware development process, reduce development costs, drive reuse, simplify business relationships in collaborative environments and to createWithin the last few years the open source hardware opportunities for new entrants. By its very nature it supportsmovement has been subject to explosive growth, as learning and for this and other reasons it is also gaining favour in education.hobbyists to established multi-national organisationshave come to realise the inherent potential of The numbers speak for themselves and as of Mayengaging in open collaboration and liberal 2010 there were already at minimum thirteen OSHW companies with >$1m revenue. While this mightlicensing of hardware design artefacts. What sound like small change, let us remember the humblestarted as a niche phenomenon is now a multi- beginnings of the multi-billion dollar open sourcemillion dollar industry that continues to grow and software industry.that shows no signs of slowing down.As the name suggests open source hardware (OSHW) adopts the principles and methodologies employed inthe development of open source software and applies them tohardware development. As with the development of open sourcesoftware there is no rigid formula, however, a fundamentalprinciple is that design artefacts will be made available at zero costand via a liberal licence. These may be, for example, schematics,CAD files, PCB layouts or C or HDL source code. Through publishingthese via an open source licence the copyright holder grants for information on the Open Source hardware User Groupanyone the right to study, modify and improve the design, and for visit http://oshug.orgthem in turn to subsequently make it or a derivative work availablein a similar manner to third parties. Get more online... DesignSpark regularly covers OShW developments. find out about the latest initiatives at www.designspark.com16 eTech - ISSUE 6 eTech - ISSUE 6 17