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Articles & Papers

NXP and Mouser Electronics Launch Dual PCB Configurable Logic Design Contest

The Dual PCB Configurable Logic Design Contest will be this year’s entry in Convergence Promotion’s 2015 Big I.D.E.A. (International Design Engineering Award). The contest will feature Dual PCB Configurable Logic, Load Switches, Protection and Filtering, Small Signal MOSFETs, and Small Signal Diodes. With merchandise awards worth a total of $12,000  for the most creative designs using the NXP products together in one application solution, and prizes at every stage in the contest, there will be dozens of winners.

Register Now

Add mobile control to your embedded application

With Anaren’s new Broadcom-based AIR for WICED Bluetooth Smart modules it’s easier than ever to ‘go wireless’ – by connecting your embedded device to a Bluetooth Smart enabled mobile device. Tiny, globally pre-certified, and ready to surface-mount in your embedded circuit.

PCB Reliability: Via Design

When considering the long term reliability of a PCB, you must take into account the vias that you have on your board. While an invaluable and essential part of board design, vias introduce weaknesses and affect solderability. This article will discuss vias, the potential concerns that are introduced into your board through their implementation, and how to minimize those concerns to acceptable levels.

A Look at the MicroSD Card of the Future: Speed & Capacity meet Reliability

Manufacturers recently released the largest capacity and fastest microSD cards ever made. The 128 Gb cards demonstrate more than a 1,000-fold increase in storage density over the last decade, and the fastest speeds of these microSD cards now rival other high-speed options for wireless computing.

Easy Methods to Improve Code Quality and Reduce Bugs

Almost all software products contain errors. If you think your product is an exception it probably means you are just not aware of the bugs yet. Modern embedded systems contain hundreds-even thousands of KB of code. As code size increases, so does system complexity and errors. Today there are affordable IDEs like Atollic TrueSTUDIO that can help you reduce the number of errors in your code early on-before you get to the debugging stage.

Low-Cost Solutions for Gesture Recognition - Renesas Solutions- Part 4

New low-cost system-design components can be used to overcome the limitations of traditional motion sensors, allowing system developers to create human-machine interfaces that accommodate a wide range of non-contact dynamic control gestures. This fourth article in our series on Renesas products for HMI applications highlights an advanced design solution that detects eight directions of palm motion.

Protect Your MCU Design from Copying and Reverse Engineering

MCUs are used as the main control element in just about every application imaginable. Their power and flexibility make them the go-to component at the heart of most designs. Since it is important to make sure that your design cannot be easily copied, reverse engineered or tampered with, modern MCUs now provide a few different options for protecting your design.

8 Cost Saving Steps for Your Next Design

Large or small, every company wants to decrease costs without affecting the quality of products or services. There is rarely a perfect way to achieve this and PCB design and assembly is no exception. Accurately assembling PCBs takes experience, technology and, above all, dedicated people to ensure your projects are done right. With thoughtful planning, you can incorporate the following eight design principles to bring the overall price down while still using a high quality shop and getting high quality results.

The Wireless Car: Multiple Interfaces Provide Safety, Security and More

The car has evolved from a basic transportation machine into a full-fledged mobile entertainment and communications platform. Today’s feature-rich cars pack multiple wireless radios to stream entertainment from outside the vehicle, provide location information via embedded GPS navigation systems, and offer keyless entry/starting systems, and wireless tire-pressure sensors. In the future we will see wireless capabilities such as car-to-car communications to help smooth traffic flow and further reduce accidents.

NXP's Complete Solution for Motion-based, Always-on Sensor Processing Applications

This all-in-one solution, based on the ultra-low power LPC54102 microcontroller, provides everything needed to bring sensor-based motion and other sensor-processing applications to market quickly. NXP has partnered with Bosch Sensortec to offer an integrated solution that makes it easy to incorporate motion/inertia and other sensor data into a variety of end applications.

Should You Buy or Build?

Does using a module let you save costs over the complete lifetime of the project?

Design Calculator

1. Concept phase: Feasibility study, analysis of components, time and personnel requirements is approximately $70,000 for an i.MX6 based project. This can be reduced to $27,000 if using an embedded module.

2. Circuit diagram: Preparing a circuit diagram with an integrated processor and memory is going to cost $30,000. Using an embedded module reduces the complexity and can bring this cost down to $6,500.

3. Layout: Since the application board is simpler to put together with a modular design, $13,500 to $15,000 will usually suffice. With an integrated processor costs can be double.

4. Software: The module is delivered with  BSPs for a number of different OSs and/or RTOSs. If these have to be developed then the cost can be at least $50,000.

5. Testing: As a rule integrated designs require more complex testing and cost difference can be as much as $30,000.

Bottom Line: The additional costs for an integrated design can amount to $300,000 not counting the costs of redesigns and interest charges. Comments

Power Supply Chips Get Smart

Renesas has recently introduced a number of new ICs for microcontroller power supply systems. When you have an MCU with standby modes in the nanoamp range, how much energy does that save when the multiple switching and LDO supplies that support it stay fully powered up? Not so much. That’s the problem that Renesas’ new Simple Power Supply ICs address. More


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