Articles

Micromachining with Lasers

Laser micromachining involves using light to remove material. Lasers can also be used in many other applications such as welding, marking, additive manufacturing and surface alteration, but these fall outside the definition. As a general rule, laser micromachining involves working on substrates that are less than 1 mm in thickness — usually much less — and feature sizes that are also less than 1 mm, with the lower end on the order of a few microns.

Posted in: Features, ptb catchall, Photonics, Articles

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Flowmeters Are Not All Alike

When it comes to choosing a flowmetering device, some users assume “one size fits all.” In reality, there are significant differences between flowmeter types, and each design has its unique “pros and cons.” The basis of proper meter selection is a general awareness of flow measurement science — and a clear understanding of your specific application requirements.

Posted in: Features, Motion Control, Articles

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Mechanical Carbon Machine Parts Ease Liquid Handling

For over a hundred years, machine parts composed of mechanical carbon have provided an alternative solution in applications where temperature and atmosphere conditions prevent the use of oil-grease lubricants. Mechanical carbon materials containing graphite are relied on for their self-lubricating characteristics.

Posted in: Features, Motion Control, Articles

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Interlaced Goes Digital: Combining Interlaced Sensors With a Digital Interface

With increased digitalization in the field of industrial image processing, the industry sometimes rashly writes off conventional technologies. In actuality, many users cling to their analog image processing systems. Those who take the needs of these users seriously have come to realize that the reason for this does not lie in analog transfer technology as such, but in the advantages of interlaced sensors, which are widely used in analog systems and previously were not available in cameras with a digital interface.

Posted in: Imaging, Articles

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Creating and Deploying a Drop-in Network

Companies are constantly looking for ways to monitor and track the critical device information that resides in their remote assets. They also need to understand the environments in which their devices reside. But why? The traditional method for remote device management is to send technicians to remote sites to gather information. This can be expensive and labor-intensive. As a result, organizations need to have a strong reason to gather remote device information; otherwise, it just doesn’t happen. This article will take a modern view of remote device management — what is it and why is it important? We will discuss the modern, cost-effective method of remote device management known as Drop-in Networking, and important considerations in creating a Drop-in Network.

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Adopting Aerospace Development and Verification Standards for Software

An ever-increasing reliance on software control has meant that many companies from non-aerospace business sectors (automotive, nuclear power, MRI scanners, financial systems) that do not have a traditional requirement for sophisticated software development processes now find themselves compelled to undertake safety-critical and safety-related analysis and testing. With the need for increased software quality across different industries, a tendency has emerged for companies to look outside their own market sector for best practice approaches, techniques or standards. Examples of such industry crossover have been seen in the automotive and avionics industries with the adoption of elements of the DO-178B standard by the former and a similar adoption of the Motor Industry Software Reliability Association (MISRA) standards by the latter.

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Board Versus Box: The Age-Old DAQ Dilemma

Since the beginning of PC-based data acquisition and control in the 1980s, one question has remained a constant consideration for all who would specify a new DAQ system. Is this application better served by an external I/O “box” connected to the PC via some communications link, or an internal “board” system plugged into a slot within the computer? If anything, this question has become more complicated as technology has progressed.

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