Latest In Depth Technology News

Wireless Sensor Networking for the Industrial Internet of Things

Much is being made of the Industrial Internet of Things (IoT) and the associated need for wireless connectivity for industrial sensors. But the networking needs of industrial devices and applications are distinct from the consumer world, with reliability and security high on the list. This article highlights some of the key network requirements specific to industrial wireless sensor networks.

Collaboration is the centerpiece to push the limits of lithography

The continuation of Moore’s Law requires a combination of both physical and functional scaling, where our main challenge in lithography is to continue pushing the physical scaling limits in a controlled and cost-effective way. By serving as the collaboration hub of the industry in this area, imec is playing an important role in helping the industry to address the major technical challenges towards continued physical scaling. This is being done on multiple fronts.

Meeting the short term and long term requirements for IoT connectivity

As the concepts of the internet of things (IoT) starts to gather supporters within organisations, the numbers behind Gartner’s forecast that the IoT will comprise 50billion devices by 2020 starts to take shape. The challenge facing many organisations is so crucial to their future viability that no one can ignore it.

Building in security from the start

Security remains the top concern for designers, builders and marketers of products for the Internet of Things (IoT) – and for good reason. When previously unconnected products join the IoT, they – and their users’ data – become subject to hacking, compromise and mischief.

The ‘blackest material yet’ could improve the performance of satellite based instrumentation

Carbon nanotubes have been seen as having a wide range of potential applications for many years, but their use in the ‘real world’ has been a long time coming. The first research into such structures was reported in 1952 by a Russian team, but it wasn’t until the 1990s that the technology began to gain some traction. Even today, their use – particularly in industrial applications – remains the exception

Harnessing quantum technology for UK plc

November saw the opening of the Quantum Metrology Institute (QMI). Based at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) in Teddington, it forms a key element in the UK’s efforts to exploit quantum technology commercially through the National Quantum Technologies programme.

Making massive MIMOs for high speed short range comms

The communications issues related to the Internet of Things have been discussed over the last few years and a range of solutions is available, although some remain proprietary. But a new set of challenges is emerging as designers look to enable communications between devices taking advantage of nanotechnology.

Do engineers know what they like and like what they know?

Engineers can select from a range of technologies which might be appropriate for their next design. Options include ASICs, FPGAs and embedded CPUs. But there is a suspicion that, rather than selecting the platform which will be best for the job, engineers fall back on something with which they’re familiar.

Why security is critical to the success of IoT

The Internet of Things (IoT) has exploded on to both the consumer and business markets in the last few years and is starting to have a major impact in almost every industry. From construction and manufacturing to retail and healthcare. Like it or not, IoT is here to stay.

Squeezing the performance out of ATCA through virtualisation

It is more than 10 years since the release of PICMG 3.0, the standard which defined the Advanced Telecom Computing Architecture (ATCA). Deployed in many parts of the ‘network’, ATCA is now beginning to be adopted in markets such as military and aerospace, where highly reliable computing is a hard necessity.

Programmable matter could make evolutionary hardware a reality

First realised 20 years ago, evolutionary hardware design continues to fascinate a small group of researchers. The attraction is not difficult to understand; instead of trying to design behaviour or structure into a system manually, you let the system determine for itself how it should work. Just like biology – only you need it to happen in less than a few million years.

Distribution has never been more challenging

The challenges facing distribution are varied and growing. How companies – large or small, broadline or specialist – respond will affect the way in which they are perceived by their customers and whether they can grow in a highly competitive market.

Understanding the need for protection from lightning induced surges

Without question, the feat of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to Earth, has been one the greatest engineering accomplishments in history. The complexities of escaping gravity, entering orbit, and then travelling on to Earth’s ethereal rock companion still boggle the mind nearly fifty years later. Along with thrust, propulsion, astrophysics, and zero gravity considerations, perhaps the most critical element to be considered in the success of the lunar missions was circuit protection.

Why treat EMC and environmental compliance separately?

Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) and environmental tests are often treated separately, so it is not unusual for products to be sent for assessment at different times; EMC testing is usually done first, with environmental testing following on much later. As a consequence, the effect of environmental degradation on EMC performance tends not to be routinely addressed and, very often, such testing is carried out in benign conditions that fail to represent real-world use.

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