Mixed Signal & Analogue

While digital electronics tends to get more than its fair share of coverage, analogue electronics remains the technology that makes things happen. It’s the interface between the real world and the 1s and 0s of the digital domain.

The range of technologies falling into the analogue domain is wide; everything from data conversion to amplification to switches. Like electronics in general, analogue products are getting more complex as device developers look to integrate more functionality. Recognising this, manufacturers have started to develop more capable design tools to support engineers.

Because analogue design is so important, New Electronics covers all aspects of the technology regularly.

Programmable mixed signal device looks to mop up utility functions

In the mid 1990s, there was a flurry of activity as companies attempted to emulate the success of the fpga in the analogue world. These programmable analogue parts, for a number of reasons, failed to capture the interest of electronics designers. Since then, Cypress has had particular success with its PSoC range, which integrates analogue and digital peripherals, memory and a microcontroller on the one chip.

Manufacturers continue to develop the analogue ‘building blocks’

During New Electronics' Analogue Roundtable last month, the discussions focused on a number of areas. One was the increasing complexity of analogue components; another was their increasing functionality. But the participants also underlined the need for device developers to continue to develop what they called the 'building blocks' of analogue design.

New approaches to a/d conversion technology

Advances in architecture and integrated circuit design techniques have allowed a/d converter manufacturers to push sample rates, resolution and power consumption. In so doing, they have simplified development of many systems while enabling the next generation of others.

Beat the clock: System design and frequency management

Clocks are the 'heart beat' of almost all electronic systems and clock management is an especially important part of the overall system design. Since clock accuracy, stability and overall signal quality affect system performance, choosing the right timing solution that fits the design application is critical.

A matter of scale: Integrated device eases industrial signal scaling issues

In an industrial environment, the control of machinery or the control of process is done with the help of programmable logic controllers and distributed control systems. Both have monitoring and controlling functions, as they include analogue I/O modules that can receive input signals from sensors and transmit output signals to actuators.

Engineering portable power

Providing mobility in a product can provide additional revenue and open new markets beyond the scope of fixed applications. A good example of this is the portable ultrasound market.

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