System for Configuring Modular Telemetry Transponders

Possible applications include weather monitoring and forecasting, Earth observation, and ionospheric studies.

Researchers at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center have developed software-defined radio (SDR) telemetry transceiver technology to collect and transmit data to and from small satellites and microsatellites. The SDR concept uses a minimal number of traditional analog radio-frequency components to convert RF signals to a digital format. Digital signal processing replaces bulky radio-frequency components, and enables reduced cost as well as size, weight, and power requirements (SWaP). The NASA technology enables software and firmware updates that increase the lifespan and efficacy of satellites, supporting a wide variety of changing radio protocols as they are developed. A modular design enables inclusion of multiple band frequency transmitters and receivers (S-band, X-band, Ka-band, etc.). The NASA SDR can find use in satellite applications in which cost savings, upgradability, and reliability are essential. A first-generation SDR has been flight tested on NASA’s FASTSAT mission.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronic Components, Electronics & Computers, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Satellite communications, Computer software / hardware, Computer software and hardware, Satellite communications, Satellites
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Optical Encoders

MICROMO (Clearwater, FL) announced the FAULHABER high-precision IER3 and IERS3 optical encoders. Both encoders deliver two-channel quadrature signals and an additional index signal. They can position a FAULHABER micro DC motor or brushless DC servomotor with a typical accuracy of 0.1° to 0.3°. The encoders combine the LED, photodetectors, analysis unit, and interpolation levels on one chip. They lengthen motors by 15.5 to 18.5 mm. Both encoders are also available with line drivers that generate complementary output signals and make data transmission resistant to electrical interference, especially in encoders with long connecting cables. The IER3 encoder has a resolution of up to 10,000 lines per revolution, and achieves an angular resolution of 0.009° with the evaluation of 40,000 edges per revolution. The IERS3-500 provides resolutions of 250 and 500 lines per revolution.

Posted in: Products, Electronics & Computers, Motors & Drives, Optical Components, Optics
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Enabling Small-Form-Factor, High-Capacity Small-Cell Platforms

There are about eight billion people who use cellphones to communicate, access social media, and upload and download videos and other content. This insatiable demand for connectivity and data will continue to increase. By 2020, and beyond, there could be a 1,000x increase in mobile data, which outpaces today's technology network capacity. The communication industry must determine how to scale networks to accommodate the increase in bandwidth demand for better security, power efficiency, reduced latency, and lower total cost of ownership. This paper discusses the options available to increase network capacity.

Posted in: White Papers, Communications, Electronics & Computers
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Combating Driver Fatigue with Mobile Surveillance

Driver fatigue is a leading cause of traffic accidents for heavy-duty vehicles such as mining trucks, excavators, bulldozers, cranes, cargo trucks, and buses. Their drivers need a rapid alert system to keep them awake and on the road. Find out about an in-vehicle surveillance platform that uses a camera to monitor drivers for fatigue, analyzing video in real-time to activate alerts and wireless communications.

Posted in: White Papers, Automotive, Communications, Electronics & Computers, Cameras, Displays/Monitors/HMIs
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GigE Vision over NBASE-T Video Interface

Pleora Technologies (Ottawa, Canada) has unveiled a product that brings the bandwidth and Cat 5e cabling advantages of NBASE-T technology to the vision industry. The NBASE-T specification, compatible with the recently adopted IEEE 802.3bz™ standard, defines a new type of Ethernet signaling that boosts the speed of Cat 5e and Cat 6 cables well beyond the previous limit of 1 Gbps. The iPORT™ NTx-NBT Embedded Video Interface hardware provides a cost-effective upgrade path for imaging device designers by supporting faster 5 Gbps transfer of GigE Vision-compliant images over existing Cat5e cabling in retrofit installations, or inexpensive cabling for new systems.

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Posted in: Products, Board-Level Electronics
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Rugged Train Control System

MEN Micro’s (Blue Bell, PA) MA50C is a modular system for safe train control that complies with AAR (Association of American Railroads) standards. The new controller unit features a mechanical design that meets AAR S-590 as well as an AAR S-9401-compliant enclosure that houses a safe CPU, real time Ethernet card, power supply and shelf controller. An MCU (modular concept unit) design efficiently hosts a single tower of up to six standard 3U CompactPCI boards. User-specific functions, such as safe digital I/O, MVB (multifunction vehicle bus) and serial I/O, are accommodated by incorporating different boards into the system’s slots.

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Posted in: Products, Computers
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Sandia, Harvard Team Create First Quantum Computer Bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

Posted in: News, Computers, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers
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Researchers Create Smallest Transistor Ever

For more than a decade, engineers have been eyeing the finish line in the race to shrink the size of components in integrated circuits. They knew that the laws of physics had set a 5-nanometer threshold on the size of transistor gates among conventional semiconductors, about one-quarter the size of high-end 20-nanometer-gate transistors now on the market. But some laws are made to be broken, or at least challenged.

Posted in: News, Computers, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers
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T-rays Will “Speed Up” Computer Memory By a Factor of 1,000

Together with their colleagues from Germany and the Netherlands, scientists at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT) have found a way to significantly improve computer performance. They propose the use of so-called T-waves – or terahertz radiation – as a means of resetting computer memory cells. This process is several thousand times faster than magnetic-field-induced switching.

Posted in: News, News, Board-Level Electronics, Computers, Electronic Components, Electronics, Electronics & Computers
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Design Contest Winner Could Save Trucking Industry Billions in Fuel Costs

Contest Draws over 1,100 Innovative Product Ideas from a Record 71 Countries

New York, NY – Hyliion of Pittsburg, PA, developer of a hybrid electric technology for semi-trailers, has been awarded a grand prize of $20,000 in the 2016 "Create the Future" Design Contest. Hyliion’s system hybridizes the trailer portion of the tractor-trailer combination and uses regenerative braking to capture power – saving over 30% on fuel and decreasing emissions by 10%.

Posted in: News, Automotive, Electronics
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