Thursday, January 31, 2013

Molex launches SpeedStack connector system

DesignCon 2013, USA: Molex Inc. has introduced its SpeedStack mezzanine connector system, a high-density, low-profile solution that supports data rates of up to 40 Gbps per differential pair. The system is ideal for OEMs that contend with limited PCB real estate in a variety of industries including telecom, networking, military, medical electronics and consumer technology.

The mated stack heights of 4.00 to 10.00mm along with a 0.80mm pitch provides design engineers with the ultimate in flexibly to address space constraints without sacrificing performance. The product was on display at DesignCon 2013.

“The Molex SpeedStack connector system not only delivers a low-profile, high-speed solution, but it was specifically developed with a narrow housing design to allow airflow and promote system cooling.”
“The marketplace has a great need for a versatile, high density, board-to-board mezzanine solution that provides space savings and high data rates, as well as optimal airflow despite a low stack height,” said Adam Stanczak, new product development manager, Molex.

“The Molex SpeedStack connector system not only delivers a low-profile, high-speed solution, but it was specifically developed with a narrow housing design to allow airflow and promote system cooling.”

The SpeedStack Connector System comes in multiple circuit sizes of 22, 44, 60, 82, 104 and 120 with a range of 6 – 32 differential pairs for even greater flexibility. The 100 Ohm design provides superior impedance control with an 85 Ohm version to be released in June 2013 that will support PCIe Generation (Gen) 3.0 and Intel QuickPath Interconnect (QPI) requirements for next-generation I/O and memory signalling.

The insert-molded wafer design includes a protective shrouded housing, providing support to the terminal location and improved electrical balance. A common ground pin helps improve electrical performance and minimize cross talk.

Toshiba announces CMOS image sensor sample with color noise reduction

JAPAN: Toshiba Corp. has announced sample availability of an 8-megapixel, 1.12 micrometer, back side illumination (BSI) CMOS image sensor integrating a color noise reduction (CNR) circuit.

The new 1.12 micrometer image sensor, "T4K35", integrates both BSI and CNR to achieve a signal to noise ratio (SNR) equal to Toshiba's existing 1.4 micrometer product. It supports chip and camera module miniaturization and will contribute to the achievement of slimmer smartphones and tablets.

Pixel miniaturization in today's 1.12 micrometer pixel image sensors has cut light sensitivity and SNR, resulting in poorer image quality. BSI technology alone improves sensitivity but still falls short of the required image quality. Leveraging its powers of innovation and technology expertise, Toshiba has developed a CMOS image sensor that integrates both BSI and CNR, directly addressing the key issues of low light sensitivity and SNR.

The new CMOS image sensor provides an approximately 1.5 times higher SNR value[1] than a 1.12 micrometer pixel image sensor without CNR, allowing manufacturers to develop products that deliver high quality imagery, even in low light conditions.

CES highlights new levels of interconnectivity, underscores demand for quality electronic components

USA: Smith & Associates, the largest independent distributor of electronic components, announced its leadership and momentum in ensuring the highest quality components for the electronics, automotive, aerospace, medical and health fitness industries.

Electronic components are at the forefront of today's industries, as highlighted at CES 2013 and the Detroit Automotive Show; underscoring that component quality is integral to consumer satisfaction and brand identity. Smith ensures authentic, top-quality electronics components to the world’s leading manufacturers.

CES 2013 highlighted device multi-functionality and seamless interconnectivity. For example, a phone can be a camera, a glucose-meter, or a heart monitor; it can synch with a car's navigation and Bluetooth calling. Underlying device multi-functionality are cutting edge chips and sensor hubs, new Bluetooth standards, and advances in Wi-Fi.

New device features are increasing semiconductor and electronics component penetration rates across industries. Multi-functionality and seamless connectivity supports users in their daily tasks, pushing device manufacturers to differentiate devices and their brand based on the level of electronic experience provided. Best in class relies on top quality electronic components.

Through Smith’s commitment and investment in SmithSecure quality framework and high-tech, in-house testing labs, Smith serves some of the fastest growing and most demanding industries in the world.

Medical: The increased commoditization of and demand for medical electronics is driving strong growth trajectories. Recent research forecasts a six-fold increase for in-home, medical electronics monitoring devices. Medical manufacturers must ensure the best quality components in their products.  Smith's IDEA-ICE 3000-certified quality inspectors and engineers, and backs its focus on quality by third-party certifications and industry affiliations, including:
* ISO 9001:2008.
* CCAP-101.
* ISO/IEC 17025.

Automotive: Car manufacturers again showcased their latest models and features at both CES and the Detroit Auto Show. Electronics is central to product and brand differentiation for automotive manufacturers due to a focus on safety, engine performance, fuel-efficiency, driver-assisted functions, and on-board entertainment.

Smith’s quality assurance certifications support automotive manufacturers by ensuring that components received are reliable, authentic, and tested to the highest quality standards.

Aerospace: Counterfeit components are a threat to any supply chain, but especially for electronic equipment used in military combat situations or in commercial planes.

In 2012, Smith was AS9120 certified, recognizing Smith's high standards for traceability and control of records, and its ability to evidence conformance to the aerospace industry’s stringent security and dependability needs. Smith is a voting member of the SAE's G-19 Counterfeit Electronic Parts Committee working with the government, vendors, and other distributors to establish counterfeit mitigation in the electronics industry.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Pulse Electronics intros pin-in-paste RF MoCA filter modules

USA: Pulse Electronics Corp. has introduced RF MoCA (Multimedia over Cable Alliance) filter modules that are pin-in-paste compatible. Pin-in-paste manufacturing uses a reflow instead of a wave soldering process to apply solder to the components, saving time, increasing throughput, and reducing costs.

These filters are compliant with MoCA 1.1 and 2.0 requirements and are qualified with leading MoCA silicon vendors. A filter module can be configured as a multiband diplexer/triplexer with CATV (Cable TV), satellite, and DOCSIS (Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification) frequencies with an optional built-in surge protection. They can withstand a maximum reflow temperature of 260°C and operate over an extended temperature range of -40° to +85°C.

“The ability to use pin-in-paste technology to reflow solder these modules to a circuit board presents significant savings to set-top box manufacturers,” explained Muhammad Khan, product manager, RF Products, Pulse Electronics. “In addition, you get the advantage of having filter modules that meet the highest industry requirements and that can operate in rugged environments over an extended temperature range.”

The pin-in-paste method (also called pin-in-hole, intrusive reflow, or through-hole reflow technology) is a process that allows through-hole components to be reflow soldered instead of wave or hand soldered. Using solder reflow eliminates the cost of wave soldering equipment, saves manufacturing floor space, is a no-clean soldering process, reduces heat stress at the component level, is compatible with existing processes, and results in higher reliability at the printed circuit board level due to fewer soldering processes.

With pin-in-paste technology, the RF filters can also be inserted into the PCB using industry standard pick-and-place equipment, eliminating the need for manual component placement.

Pulse’s RF filters are designed to provide maximum isolation between the bands with excellent return and insertion loss. Pulse offers catalog and MoCA IC suppliers qualified filters to meet the specific needs of each customer. Even in high volume production, these filters are 100% tested to the specifications.

Demand for continuous power fuels European UPS market

ENGLAND: The European uninterruptible power supply (UPS) market is mature. Nevertheless, market expansion will be supported by the escalating demand for reliable power across all end-user segments. The data centre segment, in particular, will offer tremendous scope for UPS sales.

Frost & Sullivan finds that the market earned $1.98 billion in 2012 and estimates this to reach $2.3 billion in 2015. The research covers a range of vertical application segments including data centres, healthcare, commercial, industrial and public/infrastructure.

"The demand for continuous power availability has become the most important driver for the European UPS market," noted Frost & Sullivan Energy & Power Supplies industry analyst, Gautham Gnanajothi . "For certain end users like banks and data centres, power availability is crucial; even a minute of downtime leads to huge monetary losses. This is pushing the demand for smart, reliable and highly energy-efficient UPS systems."

Data centres are the largest end-user segment for UPS systems. The boom in data centres across Europe, particularly Western Europe, will have a positive impact on the uptake of UPS systems.

"Data centres currently contribute about 40 per cent of the entire UPS sales in Europe, with this contribution expected to increase over the years," said Gnanajothi. "Innovative, energy-efficient UPS systems are set to make strong gains in this segment."

As competition intensifies, participants are being forced to reduce their prices. Such price pressures are limiting the growth and margins of most manufacturers, while affecting overall market revenues.

"End users keen on reducing their capital expenditure tend to opt for cheaper products," added Gnanajothi. "However, this trend is changing as end users realise that comparatively higher-priced, energy-efficient UPS systems enable considerable savings in terms of total cost of ownership."

Another challenge is that customers, in most cases, are unable to accurately estimate their power needs. While awareness levels are gradually increasing, manufacturers need to be more proactive in educating clients about their power needs. For this, a more consultative approach is needed wherein manufacturers or distributors work closely with customers to determine their power requirements.

igus announces major initiatives for India

INDIA: India will emerge to be a key growth market for German based igus GmbH, the world’s leading manufacturer of energy supply systems including cables and all accessory components. The company also pioneered research in the field of tribopolymers and today leads the world market in the field of high performance polymer bearings.

In an event to mark completion of 10 years of its successful operations in India, the company announced a slew of significant initiatives and growth plans for the India market, a decade which also marks igus efforts of having introduced, educated and grown the Indian market for innovative use of plastic technology in dry-tech bearings, high flexible cables and energy supply chains.

Today, igus supplies to diverse and fast growing sectors such as automotives, machine tools, robotics, medical, packaging, steel, food, textile, material handling, ports, cement, mining, energy, etc.
igus India grew nearly 25 times in the Indian market in the last 10 years and close to 40 percent growth in the last financial year- net sales in the country is expected to close at an estimated 60 crore at the end of FY 2012-13.

igus India ranks first among its subsidiaries in growth percentage continuously for the last couple of years and top 10 fast growing markets for Igus globally. The company expects to double its growth in the country over the next three years to establish its undisputed leadership in the market for plastic bearing, high flexible cables and polymer cable chains. igus is continually investing in India, to both enhance its sales organization as well as infrastructure for assembly, storage and distribution. It looks to expand its current network of 11 offices to over 16 across regions in the coming year and will double its sales force to support the growth plans.

igus India, from day one since inception, has remained debt free and on a strong growth path, continuously investing into the local operations and the availability of the large igus’ delivery program for our customers in India from 24 hours.

"To further support our growth plan  and maintain the leadership position igus GmbH in the near future would look at investing in a state of art factory with the highest production standards based on lean methodologies” said Marc Poensgen, head, International Group Development – Asia, igus GmbH.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tektronix launches new toolset for serial data link analysis

USA: Tektronix Inc. has announced a new serial data link analysis visualizer software package (SDLA Visualizer) for Tektronix performance oscilloscopes including the DPO/DSA/MSO70000 series.

Designers working on next generation high-speed serial standards can use SDLA Visualizer to specify their link, de-embed any components from the measurement path, simulate virtual link components, apply equalization and take measurements at multiple points on the transmission line in a serial data system, module or chipset.

For designers doing physical layer characterization, debug, and compliance of computer, communications, and memory high speed buses, SDLA Visualizer enables them to confidently bridge the gap between modeling behavior and actual signal integrity performance. This in turn significantly reduces design cycle time and speeds up decision making on critical design projects.

Starting with USB 3.0, the latest serial technologies require sophisticated link analysis software that considers all components of the network, measurement equipment, and silicon specific IP models. Similarly, embedded designers who need to implement faster links in systems face challenges with probing signals at the desired test point and must remove reflections and other effects in order to see the true signal.

To meet these needs, the SDLA Visualizer provides complete 4-port modeling and takes into account transmitter output impedance, scope and receiver input impedance, and channel and fixture impedance to provide the truest representation of the signal possible.

This is accomplished by accounting for reflections, insertion loss and cross coupling terms of each element in the link.  It also enables the user to validate and debug S-parameters on individual link elements on demand, saving the user time and providing element by element or visibility at any test point in the link.

Another key challenge is validating the link model. SDLA makes this task easier with a complete set of plots including frequency response, phase response, and plots of all 16 S-parameters. Adding to its usability, SDLA provides a single common user interface to define all link components while giving the user the flexibility to define multiple test points instead of having to create a different link model for each test point.

The SDLA Visualizer coupled with DPOJET Jitter and Eye Analysis software allows the user to validate the eye and jitter results at multiple test points simultaneously, providing confidence that the model is configured correctly.

KEMET intros true fail open tantalum capacitor

USA: KEMET Corp., a leading manufacturer of tantalum, ceramic, aluminum, film, paper and electrolytic capacitors, introduced its new T496 Hi-Rel Fused Commercial-Off-the-Shelf (COTS) MnO2 Series of tantalum surface mount capacitors.

These devices are ideal for use in high reliability applications where a capacitor failing short will disrupt the overall performance of the system. The internal fuse in the capacitor results in a fail open condition.

“KEMET’s T496 COTS Series offers our customers a true fail open tantalum capacitor,” stated Dr. Philip Lessner, KEMET’s senior VP, CTO and chief scientist. “Fuse actuation makes it possible for this failure mode to eliminate any concerns with parts failing short by ensuring that the capacitor is isolated from the circuit, thereby increasing overall reliability.”

The T496 Hi-Rel Fused COTS MnO2 Series is available in DLA (DSCC) Drawing 04053 and can be ordered with a variety of options including surge current testing, Weibull Grading, termination options, and various ESR levels. A customizable testing and screening protocol is available upon customer request.

Typical applications include decoupling and filtering in computing, telecommunication, defense, and industrial end applications requiring a built-in fuse capability. This includes filtering for point of load and switch mode power supplies.

Typical markets include defense and aerospace, computer, industrial, lighting, and telecommunications. These devices range in price from $0.50 and higher, and complement KEMET’s T493, T497, T513, T540, T541, and T543 series of COTS capacitors.

KEMET’s T496 Hi-Rel Fused COTS MnO2 Series is designed to operate in high-current applications and includes a fusing mechanism. The built-in fuse element provides excellent protection from damaging short circuit conditions in applications where high fault currents exist. This type of fuse is ideal for high-current applications where no external series resistance is used. This solution will impact the failure mode process, replacing a short circuit situation (with high risk of circuit damage) with an open circuit.

Such a capacitor will prevent any circuit interruption due to the capacitor failure mode. Fuse activation will occur (at room temperature 25˚C) within 1 second at fault currents of 4 amps and higher. As the fusing process is initiated, a post actuation resistance of greater than10 MΩ is assured (at 25˚C).

Molex intros first-to-market LED array plastic interconnection technology

USA: Molex Inc. announced a new development in LED array holder technology with integral electrical, mechanical and optical connectivity for optimal performance and to simplify design integration for lighting manufacturers.

Existing LED arrays represent a challenging compromise between the LED array metal printed circuit boards or ceramic substrates being small enough to minimize costs and deliver the optical performance required while also providing electrical, mechanical and optical attach features to make them easier to use in a lighting system.

The new technology from Molex transfers the connectivity and ease of use features from the LED array metal or ceramic substrate to a separate plastic body substrate, allowing for improvements in thermal, optical and mechanical interconnect functionality. This plastic body substrate can be combined with the LED array package in a number of ways to provide an array top side surface with multiple connection choices.

This new technology, co-developed with Bridgelux, Inc., has been incorporated into the recently announced Vero array product family from Bridgelux. The interconnect technology is expected to make future LED array products easier to integrate and more cost effective, enabling lighting OEM’s to reduce system costs, decrease time to market and to improve the reliability of LED luminaires they design.
These advances include thermally isolated solder pads, an integral Molex Pico-EZmate header, and improved mechanical attach and optical reference features, all while maintaining a very low profile. The solder pads are designed to make direct soldering easier and more robust than soldering to current array packages made of materials such as aluminum or ceramics. The Pico-EZmate connector header option enables a solder free electrical interface and options for field service and replacement.

“This new interconnect technology is a dramatic advancement in LED light source packaging,” said Jim Miller, chief sales and marketing officer at Bridgelux. “This simplifies many of our customers’ immediate system integration problems, and will help usher in the era of smart lighting systems. We know that in the not too distant future we will see convergence occur in solid state lighting, just as it has with consumer electronics. That convergence will require additional functionality, sensors, communications, and other features incorporated into the LED light engine. This advanced platform technology is well suited to enable convergence through its new product architecture.”

The plastic body, interconnect technology builds on technology from Molex that is used in consumer electronics and other high volume markets. Molex will offer a broad range of UL approved Pico-EZmate mating harness products for a robust interconnection system that is easy and cost-efficient to implement with the entire Vero product range.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Nordson ASYMTEK’s LED dispensing apps @ LED Korea

LED Korea 2013, SEMICON Korea 2013, USA: Nordson ASYMTEK, a leader in dispensing, coating, and jetting technologies, will demonstrate precision dispensing solutions for LED and semiconductor packaging at LED Korea 2013, booth #4228, Hall B.

Applications include phosphor coating for tight CIE LEDs, high-throughput silicone phosphor encapsulation, pure silicone casting, flux, and underfill for flip chip, package-on-package (PoP), chip scale packages (CSP), and ball grid arrays (BGA). Also on display will be Nordson ASYMTEK’s new NexJet Dispensing System with the one-piece Genius Jet Cartridge. The system makes dispensing faster, easier, and smarter.

Nordson ASYMTEK’s Spectrum S-922N-LED work cell offers consistent dispensing volume for high yields in LED encapsulation. The dual simultaneous jets deliver high throughput that benefits high-volume production and achieves a low-cost solution. The system uses patented CPJ (Calibrated Process Jetting) for automatically ensuring volumetric repeatability during long production runs.

The LED Industry needs technology to deposit conformal phosphors on die or optics for consistent bin control; however, it is challenging to keep the phosphor dispersion in suspension and uniformly mixed. Nordson ASYMTEK’s Spectrum phosphor coating solution meets these challenges. The system includes air management to address safety concerns, a robust interior to minimize damage from phosphor particles, and heated tooling for your specific application.

LED Korea is being held in conjunction with SEMICON Korea, COEX, Seoul, January 30-February 1, 2013.

Energy efficient lamps market and ballasts market in Latin America are likely to reach $3,552.4 million and $1,036.1 million respectively by 2018

USA: According to a new market report "Energy Efficient Lamps and Ballasts Market - Latin America (South America, Caribbean, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, and Central America) Industry Analysis, Market Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2012 - 2018," published by Transparency Market Research, the market for energy efficient lamps in Latin America is expected to reach $3,552.4 million by 2018, growing at a CAGR of 23.2 percent from 2012 to 2018.

The Latin America ballasts market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 24.7 percent from 2012 to 2018, and reach a market size worth $1,036.1 million by 2018.

The lighting market globally is witnessing a shift towards energy efficient lighting solutions, with the Latin American region showing high potential for growth. The Latin America energy efficient lighting market is expected to expand by 250 percent from 2012 to 2018.

The LED lamps market, which is the fastest growing segment, is expected to record a rise of almost 50 percent in its market share within the Latin America energy efficient lighting market during the forecast period.

Among all the countries in the Latin American region, Brazil is the most attractive market with highest growth potential due to the upcoming FIFA World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016. In Brazil, along with preparations underway for these two mega events there is an underlying energy crisis that the country is facing, which in turn is propelling the demand for energy-efficient lighting solutions.

Sales of Flexpoint sensors increases substantially in Jan.

USA: Flexpoint Sensor Systems Inc. announced that it has received a number of repeat orders from long-term clients, and attracted business from new clients in January.

Flexpoint received an order for 100 complete systems including control panels, monitors and 400 sensors which will be used in Interteks' Protek Passenger Awareness System for ambulances. This is the largest order to date from Intertek and represents a continuing relationship between the two companies.

Intertek and its innovative product were recently featured in Business World magazine, and the company is preparing for a breakthrough year in 2013.

Additional orders from Flexpoint's long-term clients have also come in over this past month, coinciding with a host of strengthening economic indicators.

Flexpoint continues to work with universities in their research and development of new products and recently received a first-time order from Virginia Tech University for bidirectional sensors.

Significant progress continues on PPT's bus tracking system and on the development of the previously announced colonoscope. Several key milestones have been reached for Flexpoint's largest projects.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Founder PCB to showcase advanced PCB technologies

USA: Founder PCB, the largest Chinese owned fabricator of advanced printed circuit boards has announced it will showcase an array of new and innovative technologies for supporting high speed data transmission at this year's DesignCon 2013 to be held at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Jan. 29th-30th.

Founder PCB SVP and CTO/CMO George Dudnikov commented, "This is our third year of exhibiting at DesignCon. It has been a great venue for us to engage with US customers looking for a lower cost supplier of advanced high speed PCBs."

 Visitors to the Founder PCB booth will be able to view the following technologies and data:
* Insertion Loss comparison of some of the newest laminate materials from US and Asia laminators.
* PCB process variability effects on high speed signal integrity.
* Large form factor backplanes running over 25Gbps serial transmission.
* Backdrilling of 1mm and .8mm BGA vias with 2 track routing.
* SpL-50 ( 50 micron) and SpL-40 ( 40 micron)  power/ground core laminates for spreading inductance on PDNs.
* FVS via structuring technology for splitting through holes without sequential lamination.
* Active and blind press fit backplanes.

Dudnikov added: "Founder PCB  is one of the few companies in the industry that operates a dedicated R&D Institute  comprised of 16 researchers who focus on developing and testing leading edge PCB technologies. This group collaborates with customer designers and engineers on developing their next generation products and platforms. This year we will have technical people in our booth who will showcase some of the new technologies we have been working on."

Alpha and Omega Semiconductor intros PFC line

USA: Alpha and Omega Semiconductor Ltd (AOS) has introduced the first of a new product line of Power Factor Correction (PFC) devices; the AOZ7111 is an active power factor correction controller which integrates a number of safety features and functions for the design of robust, efficient and cost-effective off-line power conversion solutions.

The AOZ7111 is ideally suited for PFC applications that operate in critical conduction mode (CRM) such as switch mode power supplies (SMPS), LCD TVs, LED and ballast lighting, and AC-DC adapters.

Power Factor Correction is a vital part of increasing overall power grid efficiency and is thus mandated in an increasing range of power supply applications. The AOZ7111 is AOS value added entry in this emerging market which combines an AC input voltage fault detection function with an internal closed-loop soft-start to allow a well managed current ramp-up. This feature prevents large inrush currents during the system's startup and reset operations.

The secondary OVP function also makes the system more robust and reliable. Additionally, the AOZ7111's zero current detection feature eliminates the need for an auxiliary winding to reduce system cost.

Anaren intros 1.5-1.7GHz ultra-low profile 3dB, 90 degrees hybrid coupler

USA: Anaren Inc. has introduced a new low-cost, low-profile subminiature 3dB, 90 degrees hybrid coupler (part no. C1517J5003AHF) offering excellent performance characteristics in an easy-to-use surface mount package.

Part of Anaren's growing line-up of Xinger-brand subminiature components, the C1517J5003AHF is ideal for balanced power, low-noise amplifiers, signal distribution, and other applications where low insertion loss and tight amplitude and phase balance are required.

Like most of the company's Xinger-brand components, this new part is:

* constructed from ceramic filled PTFE composites, which possess
excellent electrical and mechanical stability;
* has been subjected to rigorous qualification testing and is 100 percent RF tested;
* RoHS compliant, to help address base station equipment manufacturer's environmental requirements;
* shipped on tape and reel packaging, for use in high-volume pick and place systems
* supported by the company's new "Submini Central" online resource, offering white papers, applications notes, informational videos, and other support tools.

Toshiba launches low ON-resistance power MOSFET for automotive apps

JAPAN: Toshiba Corp. has launched a low-ON-resistance, low-leakage power MOSFET using the latest trench MOS process as an addition to the MOSFET lineup for automotive applications.

The new product, "TK100S04N1L", achieves low ON-resistance with a combination of the latest 8th generation trench MOS process "U-MOS VIII-H series" chip and the "DPAK+" package that utilizes Cu (copper) connectors. The product is primarily suited for automotive applications, especially for those demanding high-speed switching, such as motor drives and switching regulators.

Samples are available now with mass production scheduled to start in March 2013.

AVX’s MLO RF-DC and RF-RF SMT crossovers provide low cost, low profile PCB design solutions

USA: AVX Corp. a leading manufacturer of advanced passive components and interconnect solutions, has introduced two new series of miniature RF-DC and RF-RF SMT crossovers capable of supporting frequencies up to 6GHz.

Utilizing AVX’s patented MLO technology, which matches the CTE of PCB material and provides low loss across a wide RF spectrum, the new X2A Series RF-DC Crossovers and X2B Series RF-RF Crossovers provide low cost and very low profile solutions for applications in which a critical RF circuit trace intersects a DC or an RF circuit. Ideal for base stations, mobile communications, GPS, vehicle location systems, and wireless LANs, the X2A and X2B Series Crossovers provide designers with an alternative to PCB vias and coaxial jumper cables.

“AVX’s new SMT crossovers provide designers with an ideal solution for crossing one DC supply voltage or RF line either over another or over an RF signal line while reducing the need for additional layers in the circuit board,” said Larry Eisenberger, product manager at AVX.

AVX’s X2A Series RF-DC and X2B Series RF-RF Crossovers support frequencies up to 6GHz, are designed for use in temperatures ranging from -55°C to +85°C, and feature low loss, DC/high isolation, and NiSn terminations compatible with automatic soldering technologies.

Both series are packaged as 2020 case size Land Grid Arrays, which feature a low profile, improved heat dissipation, excellent solderability, and a CTE that matches most common circuit board materials. Additionally, all X2A and X2B series crossovers have been subjected to JEDEC reliability standards and have been 100 percent tested for electrical parameters and visual characteristics.

Low profile 600W TVS diode from Littelfuse protects sensitive electronics from voltage transients

USA: Littelfuse Inc. has introduced the TPSMA6L series of transient voltage suppression (TVS) diodes. This new series can provide secondary transient voltage protection from transients induced by load dump and other transient voltage events for automotive electronic control units, sensors, entertainment systems, and other applications that require high reliability.

This SMA device’s low profile DO-221AC package is less than 1.1 mm high, but it offers the same peak pulse power dissipation (PPPM) rating (600W) as standard SMB devices. The TPSMA6L Series offers superior electrical performance in a small footprint package, allowing designers to upgrade their circuit protection without altering their existing design footprint or provide more robust protection in new circuit layouts.

“The TPSMA6L Series’ low-profile, small-footprint design and 600W rating make these TVS diodes a great solution for secondary protection in high reliability, automotive, and portable device applications,” said Charlie Cai, Global Product manager for Littelfuse TPSMA6L product line. “They are also AEC-Q101 qualified, which is a critical consideration for automakers because components that meet this specification are suitable for use in the harsh automotive environment without additional component level qualification testing.”

More AEC-Q101 qualified automotive TVS protection products will be available after Q1, 2013.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Mouser and Altera sign worldwide distribution agreement

USA: Mouser Electronics Inc. announced the signing of a worldwide distribution agreement with Altera Corp. Through this agreement, Mouser becomes an authorized global distributor of Altera FPGAs, CPLDs, development tools, intellectual property cores and development kits.

Mouser gives design engineers fast, easy access to the widest range of semiconductor technologies. Its distribution agreement with Altera boosts the Mouser catalog of products and expands the availability of leading-edge programmable solutions from Altera to designers around the world. Mouser will distribute Altera’s full range of products to customers in a variety of end markets, including communications, broadcast, automotive, industrial, compute and storage, test and measurement, military and medical.

Mouser’s Web site will also provide design engineers easy online access to Altera technical documentation for ease-of-design and increased productivity.

“We couldn’t be more pleased to announce our relationship with Altera,” says Russell Rasor, VP of Advanced Technology for Mouser. “Programmable logic is rapidly expanding into a wide variety of applications, and Altera is at the forefront of designing and developing the leading-edge programmable solutions that are at the heart of many of today’s embedded systems. Mouser is known for providing design engineers comprehensive access to the latest systems, tools, silicon and information, and our partnership with Altera will allow us to accelerate the use of programmable logic across a myriad of industries.”

“Mouser has decades of experience as a trusted, authorized distributor of the newest products for design. We are pleased to partner with Mouser to distribute our extensive line-up of advanced FPGAs, CPLDs, development tools, intellectual property cores and development kits in order to accelerate the design process for today’s engineers,” says George Papa, VP of Worldwide Channel Sales for Altera. “This global agreement will allow us to further expand our reach globally to gain new customers with Mouser’s best-in-class service, superb marketing capabilities and streamlined logistics. We look forward to a mutually successful partnership.”

Diodes Inc. expands general-purpose low-voltage CMOS logic family

USA: Diodes Inc. announced the rapid expansion of its standard logic product line, with more package options added to its four families of high-speed and advanced high-speed CMOS parts.

Provided in a choice of SO14 and TSSOP14 packages, the HC, HCT, AHC and AHCT logic families each offer 10 of the most popular logic functions in quad and hex configurations. The devices are widely used in computing, consumer electronics, domestic appliance, building control and industrial automation applications.

The quad device configurations include dual-input AND, NAND, OR and XOR gates and output enable low and high tri-state buffers. The hex arrangements comprise single input inverters, unbuffered inverters, inverters with open drains and inverters with Schmitt trigger inputs. These are direct replacements for mature industry-standard logic devices, and utilize modern process technology to create up-to-date logic functions offering an improved power to performance ratio and enhanced ESD classification.

The wide supply voltage range covered by the new logic families, from 2.0V through to 5.5V, means they will support legacy 5V applications and can be tailored for lower voltage and lower power applications as well. HCT and AHCT versions provide TTL compatibility and can replace 74LS bipolar logic types.

In addition, all devices include optimized inputs with hysteresis to help avoid any noise problems due to slow-rising or slow-falling signals. Drawing less than 10µA at an ambient of +25ºC, the products also meet the needs of energy-sensitive design.

Larson intros low voltage LED light with class 1 division 2 approval

USA: Longtime leader in the explosion proof lighting industry Larson Electronics has introduced an explosion proof LED light designed for use in Class 1 Division 2 locations to its extensive line of explosion proof lighting solutions.  The HAL-31L-LV 31 Watt Class 1 Division 2 low voltage LED Light features high output and 12 or 24 volt DC compatibility combined with a compact yet rugged aluminum housing and is an ideal alternative to less durable HID fixtures.

The Larson Electronics HAL-31L-LV 31 Watt Class 1 Division 2 low voltage LED light is an ideal alternative to fragile and bulky HID fixtures.  This light provides powerful illumination in a compact design capable of operating with 12 or 24 volt DC current.  Rated IP66 rated waterproof and constructed of machined aluminum with an unbreakable polycarbonate lens, this LED light is extremely durable and resistant to the effects of water and dampness.

The small size and aluminum construction makes this unit light weight and ideal for installation in areas where space is limited.  Larson Electronics also offers a choice of beam configurations including a wide angle 100 degree flood for illuminating large areas and a 30 degree spot beam to produce a long reaching beam of light. These LED lights use only 31 watts with a 2.64 amp draw on a 12 volt circuit yet produce 2,416 lumens, making them an excellent alternative to less durable and heavier HID lamps.

The heavy duty aluminum housing is mounted via an included aluminum mounting bracket that allows mounting to flat surfaces while providing vertical adjustability once installed. Power is supplied to the light through an included 6 feet of two wire connecting lead which provides simple connections and ample length. This light is Class 1 Division 2 Groups A, B, C, and D approved, carries UL 1598 certification and has a T3 temperature rating.

The LEDs in this unit utilize quality Cree X-Lamp XR-E emitters to provide high reliability and 90 lumens per watt output with 70 percent lumen retention at 50,000 hours of operation. This light is ideal for operators who wish to upgrade from less durable and shorter lived HID fixtures and offer the ability to run on 12 or 24 volt DC current supplied from transformers, vehicles electrical systems, batteries, and portable power sources.

"The HAL-31 LED light is an ideal solution for operators looking for low voltage LED lighting," said Rob Bresnahan with Larson Electronics.  "We have seen an influx of operators searching for low voltage LED lighting for portable applications, remote installations, mobile trailers and other equipment operating on low voltage. In many cases, it simply unfeasible to install HID in low voltage environments due to the ballast requirements and incandescent have their own set of frailties that are not conducive to demanding environments.  With a Class 1 Division 2 rating, the HAL-31-LED fills a unique niche in the marketplace for hazardous location lighting."

Mouser intros enhanced RF wireless technology site

TAIWAN: Mouser Electronics Inc. announced that its newest technology site on covering radio frequency (RF) Wireless Technology has been expanded to feature the leading drop-in RF solutions.

The new RF Wireless Technology site’s enhanced Solutions spotlight helps design engineers choose from the latest integrated solutions and drop-in modules with pre-certified radios that instantly add wireless capabilities to existing applications.

The Solutions spotlight features the newest RF modules from industry-leading manufacturers Skyworks, Murata, Panasonic and Texas Instruments, to name a few. These leading RF solutions are organized by both frequency range (sub 1GHz, 1 - 5GHz, and over 5GHz) and protocol (Bluetooth, ZigBee, Wi-Fi, and GPS).

The RF Technology site also provides information for designers looking to build an RF design from the components up and features a variety of resources and industry news, including the latest article from Richard Trueman, Panasonic Product Manager, Wireless Devices, titled “Bluetooth Low Energy…The World’s Next Great Technology.” The RF site also showcases a block diagram of a transceiver to speed navigation based on area of component interest.

“With the growing market demand for wireless systems, Mouser recognizes the need to provide design engineers with a comprehensive site that lets them quickly integrate RF technology into their designs,” says Kevin Hess, Mouser VP of Technical Marketing.

“Our expanded RF Technology site makes it easier for engineers to identify the right drop-in solution to speed time to market by instantly adding wireless capability to existing applications. With expanded information on the industry’s leading RF modules, including selection criteria by frequency and protocol, Mouser’s RF Technology site supplies design engineers with a wealth of resources right at their fingertips.”

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Mitsubishi Electric to expand line-up of color TFT-LCD modules

JAPAN: Mitsubishi Electric Corp. launched the 8.4-inch SVGA, 9.0-inch WXGA and 10.6-inch WXGA color TFT-LCD modules with projected capacitive touch panels that enable intuitive operation even with gloved hands.

Mitsubishi Electric’s existing models, launched on July 19, 2012, are 6.5-inch VGA, 10.4- and 12.1-inch XGA modules offering excellent visual clarity combined with durable 2.8mm cover glass. The three newly announced modules include one 4:3 aspect model and two with wide aspects, thereby offering additional options for industrial applications of high-quality touch-panel screens.

Sales will begin on February 8 at Mitsubishi Electric offices worldwide. Initial production has been set at 2,000 units per month for each model.

IXYS UK intros high power capacitors for power electronics

SWITZERLAND: IXYS Corp. announced that its wholly owned UK subsidiary, IXYS UK Westcode Ltd, expanded its portfolio of capacitors for power electronics, including many new introductions to complement its extensive range of power semiconductors.

Within the portfolio are AC/DC capacitors (general use), Axial and Radial low inductance capacitors, gate turn-off thyristor (GTO) snubber low inductance capacitors, PK-16 low inductance DC capacitors, SR17TM DC capacitors for traction and 3-phase AC filter capacitors.

“This expanded portfolio enables IXYS UK to fully support the design needs of our customers, providing a total solution with both semiconductor and complementary capacitors. These capacitors have a unique self-healing dielectric characteristic giving them a longer operating life over conventional designs,” commented Nicholas Tarling, product engineer at IXYS UK.

This portfolio covers capacitance of up to 7400uF with DC voltages up to 50kV and peak current up to 34kA. IXYS UK can also design and supply custom made capacitors to suit any application.

Typical applications for these capacitors include: line filters, energy storage, GTO and IGBT snubbers, smoothing and rectification, surge and pulse discharge, commutation, 3-phase harmonic filters and clamp circuits.

Solid state thin film battery 2013-2019

USA: announced that a new market research report is available in its catalog: Solid State Thin Film Battery: Market Shares, Strategies, and Forecasts, Worldwide, Nanotechnology, 2013 to 2019.

Batteries are changing. Solid state batteries permit units to be miniaturized, standalone, and portable. Solid-state batteries have advantages in power and density: low-power draw and high-energy density. They have limitations in that there is difficulty getting high currents across solid–solid interfaces.

Power delivery is different in solid state thin film batteries, – there is more power per given weight. The very small and very thin size of solid state batteries helps to reduce the physical size of the sensor or device using the battery. Units can stay in the field longer. Solid state batteries can store harvested energy. When combined with energy harvesting solid state batteries can make a device stay in the field almost indefinitely, last longer, power sensors better.

Temperature is a factor with batteries. The solid state batteries work in a very broad range of temperatures, making them able to be used for ruggedized applications. Solid state batteries are ecofriendly. Compared with traditional batteries, solid state thin film batteries are less toxic to the environment.

Development trends are pointing toward integration and miniaturization. Many technologies have progressed down the curve, but traditional batteries have not kept pace. The technology adoption of solid state batteries has implications to the chip grid. One key implication is a drive to integrate intelligent rechargeable energy storage into the chip grid. In order to achieve this requirement, a new product technology has been embraced: Solid state rechargeable energy storage devices are far more useful than non-rechargeable devices.

Thin film battery market driving forces include creating business inflection by delivering technology that supports entirely new capabilities. Sensor networks are creating demand for thin film solid state devices. Vendors doubled revenue and almost tripled production volume from first quarter. Multiple customers are moving into production with innovative products after successful trials.

A solid state battery electrolyte is a solid, not porous liquid. The solid is denser than liquid, contributing to the higher energy density. Charging is complex. In an energy-harvesting application, where the discharge is only a little and then there is a trickle back up, the number of recharge cycles goes way up. The cycles increase by the inverse of the depth of discharge. Long shelf life is a benefit of being a solid state battery. The fact that the battery housing does not need to deal with gases and vapors as a part of the charging/discharging process is another advantage.

According to IBM, the world continues to get "smaller" and "flatter." Being connected holds new potential: the planet is becoming smarter because sensors let us manage the environment. Intelligence is being infused into the way the world works.

Sensor networks are being built as sensors are integrated into the systems, processes and infrastructure that comprise surroundings. These sensor networks enable physical goods to be developed, manufactured, bought and sold with more controls than were ever available before.

That sensor network allows services to be delivered. Sensors facilitate the movement of everything from money and oil to water and electrons in a controlled environment. That is positioned to help millions of people work and live in a middleclass lifestyle.

How is this possible? The world is becoming interconnected. The world is becoming instrumented. Sensors are being embedded everywhere: in cars, appliances, cameras, roads, pipelines. Sensors work in medicine and livestock management.

Systems and objects can "speak" to each other in machine to machine networks. Think of a trillion connected and intelligent things, and the oceans of data they will produce, this is the future.

Nanostructured or nano-enabled batteries are a new generation of lithium-ion batteries and battery systems to serve applications and markets. Nano-enabled batteries employ technology at the nano-scale, a scale of minuscule particles that measure less than 100 nanometers, or 100x10-9 meters.

Traditional lithium-ion (Li-Ion) technology uses active materials, such as lithium cobalt-oxide or lithium iron phosphate, with particles that range in size between 5 and 20 micrometers. Nano-engineering improves many of the failings of present battery technology. Re-charging time and battery memory are important aspects of nano-structures. Researching battery micro- and nanostructure is a whole new approach that is only just beginning to be explored.

Industrial production of nano batteries requires production of the electrode coatings in large batches so that large numbers of cells can be produced from the same material. Manufacturers using nano materials in their chemistry had to develop unique mixing and handling technologies.

The efficiency and power output of each transducer varies according to transducer design, construction, material, operating temperature, as well as the input power available and the impedance matching at the transducer output.

Cymbet millimeter scale solid state battery applications are evolving. In the case of the Intra-Ocular Pressure Monitor, it is desirable to place microelectronic systems in very small spaces. Advances in ultra-low power Integrated Circuits, MEMS sensors and Solid State Batteries are making these systems a reality. Miniature wireless sensors, data loggers and computers can be embedded in hundreds of applications and millions of locations.

Various power factors have impinged on the advancement and development of micro devices. Power density, cell weight, battery life and form factor all have proven significant and cumbersome when considered for micro applications. Markets for solid state thin-film batteries at $65.9 million in 2012 are anticipated to reach $5.95 billion by 2019. Market growth is a result of the implementation of a connected world of sensors.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Leviton intros 20A USB charger/tamper-resistant receptacle

USA: Leviton expanded its industry-leading USB charger receptacle offering with a new 20 Amp version. The latest USB charging device from Leviton offers the same ground-breaking 2.1A of charging power as its 15A counterpart, but now features a 20A/125V tamper-resistant receptacle, ideal for high-current devices, such as small kitchen appliances.

"Leviton's new 20 Amp USB charger/tamper-resistant receptacle demonstrates the company's commitment to expanding solutions to meet varying applications," explained William Randall, Leviton's director of Product Management for Residential. "Understanding that many customers charge their USB devices in the kitchen, this latest device offers USB charging capabilities without sacrificing a receptacle necessary for safely powering appliances with larger loads."

The state-of-the-art device has the capability to charge two USB-powered electronic devices utilizing its two USB ports, leaving the 20A tamper-resistant receptacle free to power devices requiring higher currents. Leviton's USB charger/tamper-resistant receptacle is designed to charge tablets, smart and mobile phones, gaming devices, e-readers, digital cameras and a host of other electronic devices.

Leviton's entire USB charger/tamper-resistant receptacle line is strategically designed with two vertical USB ports, providing additional space for maneuvering of charging cords and reducing stress on the cables while charging. The USB ports are Type A, 2.0/3.0 and incorporate a smart chip which recognizes and optimizes the charging power of the device plugged in. It is engineered to fit in a standard wallbox, use a standard wallplate and can be multi-ganged with any standard Leviton wiring device.

With its contemporary and aesthetically pleasing design, the Leviton 20A/125V USB charger/tamper- resistant receptacle is perfect for both residential and light commercial applications, including kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, home offices, hospitals, hotels, college dorm rooms and any other location where both higher-current powering and USB charging is desired.

The device is 2011 NEC compliant, certified to the applicable US and Canadian Standards by Underwriters Laboratories (UL), and comes with a five-year limited product warranty. The receptacle's shutter mechanism is designed to block access to the contacts from most foreign objects to improve safety.

Available in white and light almond, the Leviton USB charger/tamper-resistant receptacle is compatible with Leviton's complete line of signature Decora wiring devices and wallplates, as well as Leviton's Mobile Device Station.

The 20A Leviton USB charger/tamper-resistant receptacle is now available through Leviton's network of retail and electrical distribution channels.

Li-ion batteries for electric vehicles to reach $22 billion by 2020

USA: In recent years, the lithium ion (Li-ion) battery industry has taken a number of steps forward. The technology continues to improve, leading battery cell manufacturers have built new factories that incorporate advanced production techniques, and automakers have greatly increased their research and development (R&D) efforts on plug-in electric vehicles (EVs).

According to a new report from Pike Research, a part of Navigant’s Energy Practice, these developments will translate into strong growth for Li-ion batteries over the remainder of the decade. The overall market for Li-ion batteries in light duty vehicles will grow from $1.6 billion in 2012 to almost $22 billion in 2020, the study concludes.

“The Li-ion battery looks set to be the chemistry of choice for the on-board energy storage market for the foreseeable future, taking over from nickel-metal hydride, which has been the preferred battery for hybrids to date,” says senior research analyst, David Alexander. “Li-ion batteries can supply the much greater capacity needed for battery electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, and 2012 saw the launch and announcement of new models from many manufacturers, all featuring Li-ion batteries.”

The pressure to reduce the cost of electric vehicles is high, and the cost of the battery pack is the most important factor in determining the premium cost of EVs. Large R&D funds have been invested, but only small incremental improvements have been achieved so far. One challenge is that volumes remain small in automotive terms. The cost of the battery pack will come down to about $447 per kilowatt-hour by the year 2020 at scaled production, according to the report.

Global and Chinese PC connector industry report, 2012-2013

IRELAND: Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Global and Chinese PC Connector Industry Report, 2012-2013" report to its offering.

In 2012, the PC connector market scale approximated USD8.4 billion. It is common that cable assembly producers team up with connector makers. In other words, most cable assembly producers are involved in a small amount of connector business, likewise, most connector markers set foot in a small amount of cable assembly business.

In terms of the desktop PC connector market, Euro-American companies, Honhai and Foxlink are taking the leading position in the internal connecter market, while a great number of Taiwanese SMEs are occupying the external connector market. When it comes to the notebook connector market, Japanese and Taiwanese players are monopolists since 90 percent notebooks worldwide are made by Taiwanese companies.

In general, large vendors focus more on internal connector business, while small ones are more concerned about external connector business. In the tablet PC field, external connectors are seldom used but internal connectors are largely provided by Japanese companies including Panasonic, Fujikura (DDK), JAE and Hirose.

In 2012, the output value of the connector industry in Taiwan reached roughly NT$158 billion (or about $5.448 billion), of which, 80 percent was contributed by the PC field.

Mouser provides low-power bidirectional isolators from TI

TAIWAN: Mouser Electronics Inc. is stocking low-power bidirectional isolators from Texas Instruments that block high voltages, isolate grounds, and prevent noise currents from damaging sensitive circuitry.

The TI ISO1540 and ISO1541 feature isolation technology that provides for function, performance, size, and power consumption advantages when compared to opto-couplers. These bidirectional isolators enabled a complete isolated I²C interface to be implemented within a small form factor.

ISO1540 provides two isolated bidirectional channels for clock and data lines while ISO1541 offers a bidirectional data and a unidirectional clock channel. ISO1541 is ideal for applications that have a single master while ISO1540 is designed for multi-master applications.

TI ISO154xEVM allows the user to evaluate the electrical parameter performance and features of TI ISO154x isolators.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Xicato XSM 3000 LED module brighter and more efficient

USA: Xicato, a leading developer of LED modules for retail, hospitality and architectural environments, announced the latest addition to its XSM family of products, a 3000 lumen module that is easily implemented into new or existing spot and general illumination applications.

In addition to retaining Xicato's quality of light characteristics, all XSM products share a common footprint, mechanical connections and optical aperture, so it's easy for lighting manufacturers to offer a portfolio of solutions by simply changing modules. There's no need to re-engineer reflectors or fit to expand a range of luminaires. The new XSM module is designed to replace a 35W ceramic metal halide lamp and deliver superior color consistency initially and over time.

"The new XSM module uses our phosphor and packaging innovations to achieve great efficiency that supports energy and cost reductions while retaining ease-of-use for our OEMs," said Thor Scordelis, manager of global product marketing at Xicato. "XSM 3000 does this without sacrificing quality of light or the 'future-proof' approach of our product family."

Xicato believes the true value of LED modules lies in the quality of light they deliver from an aesthetic and economic perspective. Its solutions are engineered to meet the highest standards of light quality, which allows end users to experience true, consistent color, both initially and over time. The small form factor of the modules and complement of reflectors, heat-sinks, and drivers make Xicato's modules the perfect choice for lighting retail, hospitality and gallery environments around the globe.

Test economics

USA: Executives rely on engineering and manufacturing operations to maintain marketplace advantage. They measure financial and business metrics such as return on invested capital (ROIC), return on assets (ROA), time to market, profit margin, and product quality to drive improvements in product development. However, methods used to measure test organizations are less standardized.

The reality is that many companies have test organizations with reactive approaches that lack a long-term strategy or financial impact metrics, as described in the “Optimizing Test Organizations” business trend of NI Automated Test Outlook 2012. This forces executives to ask the wrong question of test functions; it is not just “How do I reduce my cost of test?” but rather “Which test investments (people, process, and technology) do I need to improve business metrics?”

According to the 2012 NI test leadership survey, approximately 66 percent of an organization’s test budget is spent on maintaining the current environment with only 34 percent dedicated to providing new business capabilities to the business. This means organizations can make only incremental improvements to test operations. By contrast, design engineering teams are developing new products with step function increases in capability, and lower price points.

To meet this challenge and justify strategic investment in test, test organizations are proposing initiatives backed by financial metrics such as return on investment (ROI), cost per unit tested, annual test costs and savings, payback periods on investments, and the breakdown of capital versus noncapital costs. Proper modeling uncovers all lifetime costs of certain test assets and provides a financial framework for justifying future investments.

Total cost of ownership
A fundamental way to assess business impact of a test organization is to determine total cost of ownership (TCO). TCO is emphasized because test cost is often attributed to capital-equipment costs of test systems. While capital cost is a key component, there are other elements such as upfront development cost, deployment test cost, and operational/ labor cost. The combination of these components represents total cost of test for a product and/or company.

Upfront development cost elements are typically one-time costs such as strategy development, hardware and software tools, non-recurring engineering (NRE), and internal training. It is important to note that an organization may have additional development test costs not represented in these common elements.

Deployment costs are costs incurred every time a tester is deployed. They are the easiest to determine since most include cost of capital equipment along with software deployment costs. There are additional deployment test costs for test organizations, such as shipping, so it is important to carefully examine deployment costs to ensure consistency.

Operational test costs are a combination of personnel, maintenance, and facility costs to keep testers running. More specifically, personnel costs accumulate man-hours, while capital costs reflect cost of maintaining spares to prevent downtime in the event of a failure or need to remove instruments for calibration.

Knowing TCO at the project, department, and company level is a powerful tool for test leaders to represent actual added value of a test strategy and to help justify future investments.

Strategic test scenarios
Accurate TCO models are invaluable when determining where to invest for maximum ROI and where to reallocate resources. It can determine process improvements and increase efficiency while lowering design and manufacturing costs affected by test. However, financial metrics are not always the same. The following case studies examine transformation initiatives executed by organizations that affected different financial metrics (reducing operational cost, minimizing true cost of test, and improving cost/defect), but each measured ROI and payback on initial investment.

Production test standardization: Large organizations segmented by business units (BUs) or product lines typically have their own P&Ls. Each BU typically owns its product development and manufacturing process and resources. This leads to each BU developing testers specific to product(s), which leads to a heterogeneous mix of test equipment based on individual product lines.

Developing a common  test platform across multiple test platforms not only reduces capital costs by leveraging economies of scale but also decreases operating and maintenance personnel costs by eliminating operators and technicians. Hella KGaA Hueck & Co executed this strategy by aligning multiple product lines and standardizing common hardware and software. Hella realized a 46 percent reduction in operational test costs while increasing test throughput by 57 percent, resulting in a 37 percent ROI and a payback period of just eight months.

Scaling test throughput: As product demand increases, companies need to reevaluate testing methodologies and develop systems that can test growing volumes of product at lower margins while maintaining product quality.

Investing in a next-generation multi-unit parallel test strategy has significant impact on test throughput and test TCO per unit. Harris Corp. reduced its cost of test by 74 percent while scaling the test solution to meet increased demand. The project had an ROI of 185 percent and a payback of just 2.8 months.

Our mission is to develop innovative high-quality products that simplify our customers’ lives. By investing in our test platform team, who leveraged NI technology for automation and reuse, we reduced our cost of quality by 81 percent, while maintaining full compliance with the international regulatory standards, saving us $4.5 million annually, said Katherine dePadua, VP of Quality and Regulatory Affairs, Philips HHS.

Engineering test re-use: While the definition of quality varies by company, it is universally a high priority. Results based on analysis of 63 software development projects at companies such as IBM, GTE, and TRW Automotive show the cost of finding a product defect during production was 21 to 78 times more expensive than during design.

Engineers at companies seeking to differentiate products by adhering to the highest quality standards focus on investing more in test systems that reuse test components to capture defects earlier. Philips Healthcare saved $4.5 million annually with a test strategy that reduces cost of quality by 81 percent. This strategy identifies defects earlier in the design process, resulting in a 316 percent ROI and three-month payback period.

Measuring and tracking financial metrics are necessary complements to any test vision and strategy. Justification for investment in test relies on proving long-term ROI as well as metrics to measure success. The test TCO approach evaluates investment alternatives and makes a proactive impact on business metrics.

-- National Instruments, USA.

2012 December LED light bulb ASP continued sequential drop; Korean vendors gear up on US deployment

TAIWAN: According to LEDinside, the LED research division of TrendForce, the ASP volatility of LED light bulb has been continued into December 2012.

Products from the US took the led as more new items were launched during the month. ASP for those LED bulbs targeted to replace the traditional 40W incandescent light bulb posted a mild 0.2 percent sequential gain to $18.70. Those targeted to replace the 60W incandescent lamp posted a 3.9 percent drop to $30.90 in the same period.

ASP of LED for 40W incandescent bulb replacement up 0.2 percent to $18.70
Breaking down by region, LEDinside observes that those LED bulbs for 40W incandescent bulb replacement posted a respective gain of 4.6 percent and 5.9 percent in England and Germany, thanks to the mild ASP growth plus weaker currency against US dollar in the regions.

Korean vendors saw a mild 1.1 percent ASP gain, pretty much driven by a weaken Korean won. ASP for most items maintained flat with limited new products launch though.

Korean vendors such as Samsung and LG still have their products priced at lower ASP level, the research firm indicated. In Japan, a mild 1.9 percent drop is observed because of a stronger yen and an absence of new items. Among all, US led price drop among all with an 8.1 percent sequential change reported amid launch of cheaper-price items.
ASP of LED for 60W incandescent bulb replacement down 3.9 percent to $30.90
In the 60W replacement segment, US again led the drop with a sequential ASP decline of 13.4 percent reported. While most current items priced lower, new brands such as Samsung also launched competitive pricing at the region.

In Japan, the ASP dropped by 7.7 percent to $32.80. A stronger yen is the key reason for the price drop, while most current items have also priced lower in December. No new items have been launched last month, LEDinside observed. Korean vendors, on the other hand, managed to post a mild 1.1 percent sequential ASP gain.

Still, a weaker Korean won is the major reason, plus a mild price revision at the region. British vendors also saw a mild ASP gain of 4.1 percent, thanks to price revision of current products and a weaker pound trend. Germany posted a 3.2 percent sequential drop because some high ASP items were absent temporarily while existing products faced a mild ASP volatility.
Aggressive pricing from Korean vendors helps flourish industry
The sharp ASP drop in the US market in December is a joint result of a further price revision and a competitive pricing from new products. LEDinside observes that new products from EcoSmart and Samsung both offered competitive prices in the US. Of which, Samsung has launched the 810 lumen 10.8W LED bulb for 60W incandescent bulb replacement in the European market. ASP of such item is only $15 in the US market in December, a price range which is among the lowest of all major brands in the region.

Since domestic competition intensifies as market matures, Korean vendors, who eye on the business potential in the European and US markets, thus launch aggressive pricing strategies in order to grab bigger share, LEDinside indicated. This strategy should help diversify the product variety and further intensify competition, in turn results in prosperity.

Along with the ban of sales of incandescent bulb from January 1, 2013 in all European Commission countries, corresponding impetus to drive the LED bulb replacement should be strengthened. As the debt crisis seems putting on a temporal breath, consumers should again grow their acceptance and consumption power for LED bulb, LEDinside believes. The whole LED market should materialize with more healthy competition and development, the firm noted.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Pennsylvania DEP reminds consumers about new electronics recycling law

USA: The Department of Environmental Protection is reminding consumers and businesses that on Thursday, Jan. 24, they will no longer be able to throw away their electronic devices with their trash.

Passed in 2010, the Pennsylvania Covered Device Recycling Act (CDRA) requires that consumers and businesses not dispose of covered devices, such as computers, laptops, computer monitors, televisions and tablets with their trash. This means that trash haulers will no longer take covered devices unless the municipality has a curbside electronics collection program that ultimately sends the devices to an electronics recycler.

"This law is an important step toward further reducing the amount of waste disposed in our landfills," DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. "There will be a host of positive impacts from this law, such as deriving economic benefits from precious metals found in electronics, eliminating heavy metals in the environment and encouraging environmental stewardship."

Under CDRA, the covered devices and their components must be properly recycled and may not be taken to, or accepted by, landfills or other solid waste disposal facilities for disposal.

The law also requires that manufacturers of the covered devices provide for the collection, transportation and recycling of these devices by establishing one-day events, permanent collection programs or mail-back programs for consumers. This is offered to consumers at no cost. Manufacturers must work with an electronics recycler that is properly permitted and certified to handle and process electronic waste.

Manufacturers must register their covered device brands with DEP and attach brand labels to those devices. Additionally, retailers who sell electronic covered devices may only sell devices with a manufacturer's brand that is registered with DEP.

Consumers can also continue to recycle their electronics through a county or municipal electronic recycling program, if one is available. It is recommended that before taking any electronics to collection points or drop-off locations, consumers should first contact that location to see what types of electronics they accept.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Offseason effect in 4Q, 2012 drives Taiwanese vendors toward bidding market

TAIWAN: According to LEDinside, the LED research division of TrendForce, Taiwanese listed LED manufacturers posted a total revenue of NT$6,917 million (MoM-14.8 percent, YoY+5.1 percent) as of December, 2012. As the fourth quarter is the traditional offseason, and branded TV vendors delayed the replenishment of their stocks, LED manufacturers’ fourth-quarter revenue was put to the test.

Affected by the offseason effect in the LED backlight market, many Taiwanese LED manufacturers started to set eyes on the LED bidding market such as bulbs and street lights. However, in the face of keen competition in the market, most vendors have aggressively reduced their prices to win the bid, further dampening Taiwanese LED manufacturers’ profitability.

From February, 2013, the Taiwanese government will launch a two-stage LED bulb subsidy program targeting 220,000 mid- and low-income households as well as social welfare organizations. The government will plan a NT$230 million budget for purchasing 500,000 bulbs and for administration expenses.
The program has attracted furious bidding from vendors. Winners of the bid must deliver the first shipment in 21 days, followed by another shipment of the rest 465,000 bulbs in the next 46 days. Therefore, bidders have started to replenish their stocks. As a result, the first quarter of 2013 is expected to see a large amount of inventory entering the market, and affect the existing price and quality of LED bulbs.
LEDinside suggests that, apart from lowering product prices, Taiwanese vendors should place equal emphasis on product quality and sales support during the promotion of LED products. Only by enhancing consumers’ understanding of LED products and building up their confidence in the products with clear product specifications can the LED market gain sustainable growth momentum.

Taiwan’s Bureau of Energy under Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) has planned a LED streetlight installation project which will invest NT$2 billion to replace 250,000 existing mercury streetlights with LED streetlights between 2013 and 2014. The awarding of the project will be based on the most advantageous bid; that is, bidders using Taiwanese makers’ chips, LED components, power supplies, and heat sinks, will have the upper hand.

However, even if the bidders manage to win the bid by lowering prices, their profits may be offset by future maintenance and warranty costs. Hence, the current winners of the bids are mainly listed companies including Leotek Electronics, Everlight Electronics, and Delta Electronics.

Infrared products, new LED specs for tablet PCs and mobile phones ensuring stable revenue
Influenced by a slowdown in chip market growth and a reduction in replenishment demand, Taiwanese listed LED chip vendors’ revenue regressed to NT$2,650 million (MoM-17.9 percent, YoY-1.2 percent) in December, 2012. TEopto, the joint venture between Epistar and Toyota Gosei, has unveiled various LED chips for Mobiles and tablet PCs markets.

Epistar has also benefited from increased infrared product orders, which contributes to a fairly stable revenue stream and gross margins for the company. Forepi has successfully become Sharp’s supplier by signing a cross-licensing agreement with Toyota Gosei, and is expected to receive new orders from Japanese illumination and backlight customers in 2013. Epileds is another company that has benefited from infrared LED products.

Taiwanese listed LED package manufacturers’ revenue reached NT$4,270 million as of December 2012 (MoM-12.74 percent, YoY+9.4 percent). Benefiting from infrared LED orders, Everlight Electronics saw stable revenue at NT$1,330 million. Lextar, which enjoyed growth in its LED backlight products for smartphones, has shipped its COB (Chip On Board) products for European luminaire manufacturers. The company’s LED panel lights have also been delivered on schedule.
Influenced by the traditional offseason effect in the fourth quarter, Taiwanese high brightness LED product failed to meet requirement sales performance in the backlight and lighting markets. However, with the launch of the Taiwanese government’s bidding projects and LED bulb subsidy programs, coupled with demand from the end market that will benefit Taiwanese LED chip and package manufacturers, LEDinside expects 2013 to be a prosperous year for Taiwanese LED vendors.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Industrial apps drive lithium-ion batteries market

ENGLAND:  Industrial applications represent substantial, untapped growth potential for lithium-ion batteries. The increasing need for cordless tools, data communication equipment and energy storage applications for renewable power will promote greater demand for lithium-ion batteries.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan European Lithium-ion Battery Market for Industrial Applications, finds that the market earned revenues of $748.2 million in 2012 and estimates this to reach $1,644.2 million in 2017. The research covers the use of lithium-ion batteries in six key applications: industrial tools, medical devices, aerospace and defence, data collection, energy storage, and telecom and data communication.

"High energy density, light-weight, improved performance and long life-cycle are the key factors that motivate the use of lithium-ion batteries in industrial applications," noted Frost & Sullivan Energy and Power Supplies Industry Manager, Suba Arunkumar. "Such inherent advantages are highlighting their appeal, despite higher costs."

These features are also underlining the potential for lithium-ion batteries in energy storage applications. In 2012, back-up applications accounted for majority of the revenues. However, the contribution of residential and community energy storage systems is likely to pick up significantly after 2015.

"Incentives to promote renewable energy is driving market growth by increasing the need for self-consumption of the energy generated," added Arunkumar. "This will lead to heightened demand for lithium-ion batteries."

A key challenge for market participants is to address the high initial price, which could impede mass adoption in stationary applications.

"Owing to low unit shipments and it being a relatively new market, lithium-ion batteries are a little more expensive than existing, established chemistries like lead acid, nickel cadmium and nickel metal hydride," explained Arunkumar. "On reaching mass commercial volume, similar to consumer applications, the price of these batteries is expected to fall, pushing usage levels."

NXP launches next gen power MOSFETs for hot-swap apps

SINGAPORE: NXP Semiconductors N.V. launched its NextPower Live portfolio, a new family of linear mode power MOSFETs designed specifically for use in ‘hot-swap’ environments. The NextPower Live family offers both excellent linear mode performance and a very low RDS(on) value, a unique combination demonstrating NXP’s expertise in this area.

Much of the infrastructure that runs our 24/7 online world – from cloud computing and mobile telephony to ATMs and traffic management – is made up of rack-based systems that are permanently live (switched on). As such, the boards and components that drive these systems must be able to be “hot-swapped” to allow for upgrades and maintenance without ever needing to power down the equipment.  NXP NextPower Live MOSFETs are designed to deliver optimum performance within such systems.

In order to cope with the in-rush current when a replacement board is plugged into a live system, MOSFETs need to have a strong linear mode performance and a wide safe operating area (SOA) to protect against power surges; however, this has traditionally required the use of older generation MOSFETs with poor RDS(on) efficiency.

The NXP NextPower Live family has overcome this problem, offering high linear mode performance to manage the power-up sequence while delivering very low levels of resistance once safely installed and in operation.

“We live in a non-stop world where the computing and communications infrastructure never sleeps – to enjoy our always-connected, always-on society without disruption requires special types of components able to deal with the demands of mission-critical applications,” said Chris Boyce, MOSFET business manager, NXP Semiconductors.

“In the past, infrastructure owners have been forced to use older generation MOSFETS that could cope with being installed into a live environment, but subsequently introduced high levels of resistance into the system, burning excess power and raising the temperature of the rack. Our NextPower Live MOSFETs change all of that, reliably powering up without disruption then operating with a very low RDS(on) value. No other solution can offer comparable performance parameters.”

The NextPower Live portfolio incorporates 30V devices for applications such as blade servers operating on a 12V DC supply and 100V devices for telecommunications applications operating on a nominal 48V DC supply. Both voltage ranges come in D2PAK and LFPAK56 (Power-SO8 compatible) packages and are available now.

NXP is also developing NextPower Live MOSFETs for a range of other linear mode-related applications such as Power-over-Ethernet (PoE).

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Bosch Sensortec intros next-gen electronic compass BMC150 geomagnetic sensor and accelerometer

USA: With the new BMC150, Bosch Sensortec announces the second generation of its revolutionary electronic compass module. The new implementation again raises the bar in terms of package size, accuracy and versatility.

The BMC150 is a 6-axis electronic compass module based on Bosch's proven FlipCore technology which provides high accuracy and at the same time low power operation for longer battery life for smartphones, tablet computers and similar mobile devices. With a size of just 2.2 x 2.2 mm2 and a power consumption as low as 190 µA it sets new standards for compactness and battery lifetime.

"Our focus for the BMC150 design was reducing the footprint and thus to help our customers to save valuable PCB real estate," comments Bosch Sensortec CEO, Stefan Finkbeiner. "An equally important goal was increasing the measurement range. As the result, the BMC is the ideal eCompass module for innovative applications in battery-driven mobile devices such as smartphones, tablet computers and watches."

BMC150 combines a 3-axis geomagnetic sensor and a state-of-the-art 3-axis accelerometer in a single package. Its high integration translates into another benefit for users: It reduces the number of components that otherwise have to be handled and qualified separately.

Both sensors form a logical and functional unit, since the g-vector generated by the accelerometer is required to calculate the tilt compensation for the azimuth data produced by the geomagnetic sensor. The accelerometer and the geomagnetic sensor in BMC150, however, can also be used as two fully functional independent devices.

Besides high integration, the sensor offers very high accuracy. Its exceptionally wide measurement range of +/- 1300 µT per axis makes it more tolerant to stray magnetic fields associated to loudspeakers or other magnetic components in smartphones. On the other hand, its extremely low noise of just 0.3 µT enables very accurate measurement.

Many applications for handheld devices such as user interface or navigation depend on an orientation vector. With eCompass library V3.0, Bosch Sensortec also offers a sensor data fusion software that performs the calculations for tilt compensation and thus generates precise heading information for compass applications.

In cases where a highly dynamic orientation vector is indispensable – such as augmented reality or games – designers typically employ a gyro sensor to provide this information in a 9-axis sensor system. Along with Bosch Sensortec's FusionLib V3.0 algorithm, the 3-axis stand-alone gyro sensor BMG160 is the ideal complement to the BMC150.

The inherent intelligence of the BMC150 helps to significantly reduce time to market for application developers. With its powerful and versatile interrupt system, the BMC150 greatly facilitates the design of a broad range of different applications. The integrated smart interrupt engine enables the sensor module to automatically identify motion patterns and situations.

For instance, it detects free fall conditions, flat orientation on a table, tap sensing or even no motion at all for a definable period of time. These status data enable the implementation of many innovative features for mobile devices such as activating sleep mode and waking it up by tapping it with a finger.

Developers also benefit from the new FIFO buffer which acts as a temporary storage for measurement data until they are needed. This feature offloads the application processor further, effectively reducing the system's overall power consumption. The accelerometer section of the sensor can be adjusted to four different g ranges between +/- 2g and +/- 16g, enabling designers to select the g range that fits best their application.

The Bosch Sensortec BMC150 is available now.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Fairchild intros 2-in-1 power switch package solution

USA: As today’s consumer electronics and home appliances become more sophisticated, they require better performance and reliability.

Designers of these types of switch mode power supply (SMPS) systems need space-saving, cost-effective power supply solutions with high energy efficiency that meet strict energy regulations. Fairchild's FSL1x series of FPS Green Mode power switches help designers address these challenges.

The highly integrated FSL1x series is a two-chip-one-package design with an avalanche-rugged 650-800V SenseFET and a current-mode pulse width modulator (PWM) that is specifically designed to reduce component count and system costs for offline SMPS. The green-mode functionality of the PWM controller helps to meet global energy regulations by minimizing standby power consumption.

These power switches allow for a longer survival at breakdown mode due to Fairchild’s vertical DMOS technology with rugged avalanche characteristics, making them superior to the competitor’s designs that utilize lateral DMOS technology.

For maximum design flexibility, system productivity and reliability, the FPS family allows for single platform design for various input voltage requirements, so that both domestic and export models can meet all standard passive component requirements.

Compared to other discrete MOSFET and PWM controller solutions, the FSL1x series provides a basic platform ideally suited for significantly reducing total system costs and component count
without sacrificing efficiency, productivity and system reliability.

Friday, January 11, 2013

PRANA re-inforces its presence in the Indian market

FRANCE: Prana, a leading French designer and manufacturer of RF power amplifiers for broadband applications such as EMC testing, instrumentation and radio-communication, aims to bring their state-of-the-art technologies in the field of electromagnetic compatibility and evaluate business opportunities in the Indian market.

Prana's products are solid state and cover a frequency range 10 kHz-6 GHz with output power up to 12kW. All amplifiers meet the EMC test standards and provide competent solutions to other unreliable, expensive and problematic tube amplifiers.

Prana amplifiers are a known for their performance, reliability and quality. Prana distributes its amplifiers world-wide and has a large international network of partners to promote sales and provide the appropriate solutions and support in the shortest time possible.

Its client base includes leading companies such as: PSA, Airbus, Dassault Aviation, LCIE, Continental, UTAC, LNE, Legrand, Valeo, MIRA (GB), MBtech (Germany), INTA (Spain), Mitsubishi (Japan), Toyota (Japan), Epson(Singapore), RCI (India), Thales India.

Reliable, robust and manufactured following the ISO9001 standard, Prana amplifiers guarantee to provide a defined power supply, whatever the load mismatch is. The amplifiers are designed in order to provide maximum power at the beginning and in the middle of bandwidth with low harmonic ratio linearity.

The team is committed to technical integrity, innovation and development of their products. Their simplified service and maintenance features reduce downtime, meet regulatory compliance requirements and help them respond quickly to the changing needs of their businesses.

Resolutely turned towards the future, Prana integrates the latest technologies in its new range of power amplifiers: 800-3200 MHz (SV series), 800-4000 MHz (SW series) and 2000-6000 MHz (UX series). These applications offer excellent performance-price ratios and are designed to carry out specialized corrective maintenance operations as well as coordinate preventive maintenance work for different equipment and components involved.

Prana has also signed a partnership agreement with Siepel India to re-inforce its presence in the Indian market. SIEPEL India, a part of SIEPEL group, is based in Bangalore and supplies high class RF products such as shielded chambers, absorbers, reverb chambers, broadband amplifiers, software etc. The products are developed and manufactured in Europe in compliance with the highest quality standards.

Prana participated at the 12th edition of INCEMIC 2012, the International Conference on Electromagnetic Interference & Compatibility. Prana will also present a technical paper at the conference organized during the event titled: "High field levels generated by a 12 kW CW wideband power amplifier". INCEMIC 2012 provided an ideal business platform to PRANA to present their products and to identify new business opportunities.

TE Connectivity’s MHP-TA resettable TCO devices available at Mouser

TAIWAN: Mouser Electronics Inc. is stocking MHP-TA thermal cut-off (TCO) devices from TE Circuit Protection, a business unit of TE Connectivity.

The new MHP-TA series offers overtemperature protection for high-capacity Lithium Polymer (LiP) and prismatic cells in media tablets, notebook PCs, electronic readers and other ultra-thin portable electronics.

The new MHP-TA series is an extension of TE Circuit Protection's innovative MHP (Metal Hybrid PPTC) technology, which connects a bimetal protector in parallel with a PPTC (polymeric positive temperature coefficient) device.

The new MHP-TA series of ultra-low-profile (L: 5.8mm x W: 3.75mm x H: 1.15mm) resettable TCO devices feature a 9Vdc rating. The series includes nine devices with two levels of current carrying capacity: low-current MHP-TA6-9 products with an approximately 6A hold current @25°C, and high-current MHP-TA15-9 products providing a hold current of approximately 15A.

The low-current MHP-TA6-9 devices are available in four different current ratings (72°C, 77°C, 82°C, 85°C) and the high-current MHP-TA15 devices in five ratings (72°C, 77°C, 82°C, 85°C, 90°C).

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Driving OLEDs to a $1.7 billion market opportunity by 2020

IRELAND: OLED revenue has been driven mainly by display applications (smartphones) but the industry is now targeting the lighting market based on the technology specificities in terms of design (form factor) and efficiency.

On this new battleground, OLED will have to compete with LED technology which has already paved the way with a revolution in Solid State Lighting (SSL) that has drawn attention away from OLED over the last 10 years. Added to that, the high cost of OLED technology will not make mass market penetration easier and current low efficacy could slow adoption.

OLEDs will develop slowly in the lighting market (Automotive and General lighting) and attract mainly niche applications (specialty and high-end lighting), differentiating through design possibilities. To access traditional market segments (commercial lighting, office lighting), OLED technology will have to find a spark, as well as combine enough different niche markets to achieve the economies of scale that will decrease costs. In our estimation, this should be triggered by 2014 with the use of larger substrates and better process control.

We estimate that OLED lighting panels will reach a market size of nearly $2.8 million in 2012 and will peak to nearly $1.7 billion by 2020. Growth will be driven mainly by general Lighting applications, representing more than 70 percent of the overall OLED lighting business in 2020.

Huntkey announces wireless charging LED light

CHINA: Huntkey Enterprise Group, a global professional power supply provider, announced wireless charging LED light, a household LED smart emergency lighting solution for your daily life.

There are five high illumination LEDs at the front of the torch light. The five LEDs will turn on immediately after a blackout. There are three modes of illumination level for choice. High mode: five LEDs are lit. Middle mode: three LEDs are lit. Low mode: only the middle one is lit.

There are only two buttons on the torch light. One is on/off, and the other is mode control. Push the mode control button when the torch light is off, it will display remaining power intelligently. There is not any screw, depending entirely on internal locking to fix the product. The design is simple and elegant.

There is an orange part at the bottom of the charger. This is an auto-sensing night light. When in darkness, it will turn on immediately in case you can not find any torch at hand.

This is how the "wireless charging" works. Plug the charger into a socket and charge the charger. Then just put the torch light into the charger and the torch light can be charged to full. With no port or wire, there is no possibility of electric shock.

With high-quality rechargeable lithium batteries, the wireless charging LED light can save your energy to the maximum extent. When fully charged, it will turn off automatically.

Mouser first to stock ultra-slim Murata EDLCs

TAIWAN: Mouser Electronics Inc. is proud to be a selected distributor for Murata’s new DMF series of EDLCs (electric double layer capacitor), measuring an ultra-thin 2.5mm.

The DMF supercapacitor from Murata is one of four series under the electrical double layer capacitor family that offers high power in the form of higher allowable current than batteries or conventional EDLCs.
The DMF supercapacitors have low ESR from 40-60mOhms, an operating temperature range from -30°C to 70°C and capacitance values of 330mF and 470mF. Combining these double cell capacitors with various power devices provides a life-cycle of 100,000 cycles or more and enables the DMF capacitor to be used as a maintenance-free power storage element.

The DMF capacitor has the highest level of power density throughout the industry, making it ideal for use as an auxiliary power supply for LED flash units, digital cameras and cell phones. Additional applications include peak load assist for GSM PA’s, smart meters, compact motor starters and USB power bus.

“Murata’s high peak current supercapacitors offer one of the lowest profiles in the industry while providing low resistance, stable temperature characteristics and a wide operating temperature range,” said Mark Waugh, Business Development Manager Murata Americas. “Murata continues to pack cutting edge components with features that customers need in a miniature package that allows for smaller and lighter end-user products.”

“Mouser’s continued relationship with Murata give the industry easy access to in-demand, reliable, high-tech products,” said Andy Kerr, Mouser’s VP of Passives. “Murata’s trusted technology is featured in the company’s latest supercapacitor line and Mouser is pleased to offer these to our customers.”

Mouser is teaming up with Murata as the company unveils these and other new products this week at CES Booth #35818 (LVCC South Hall 4).

Rambus intros revolutionary LED light bulb

USA: Rambus Inc. has introduced its latest lighting invention turned product – a highly efficient, long-lasting and innovative LED family of light bulbs.

The new family of bulbs offers the high-quality light, simplicity and ease-of-use of traditional incandescent bulbs while delivering the energy efficiency, durability and reliability of the most advanced LED technology. The first offering, an A19, 60 watt equivalent, is designed to provide consumers with the quality and lighting distribution of traditional incandescent bulbs using close to one-quarter the power and lasting up to 25 times longer.

These new bulbs take a fundamentally different design approach than other LED light bulbs on the market. The inventive seed of this lighting solution is Rambus’ MicroLens optical technology, which in the bulb enables the use of a cylindrical light guide with the ability to produce a consistent, spherical distribution of light.

This open structure allows for the innovative use of convection to keep the bulb cool. The result is a family of bulbs with increased energy efficiency, significantly improved lifetime and reduced bill of materials cost by utilizing fewer or lower-powered LEDs. The technology embodied in MicroLens optics has a proven track record in backlighting cell phones, computer screens, televisions and other displays.

The Rambus solution was designed to solve critical consumer lighting issues such as efficiency, reliability, and performance in a cost-effective manner. Building on Rambus’ core strength in electronics, this bulb offers broad compatibility with dimmers, resulting in no humming or buzzing, unlike alternative offerings.

“We are pleased to introduce our revolutionary design for innovative and efficient LED bulbs. Our unique design has all the benefits of the best LED technology available and offers a significant bill of materials cost savings,” said Jeffery Parker, president of the Rambus Lighting and Display Technology division.

The Rambus LED bulbs will be sold through partners and will be available at retailers and professional channels within Q2 2013. Rambus plans to expand its offerings with additional A19 and PAR offerings during 2013.