Special Coverage

Soft Robot “Walks” on Any Terrain
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Using Microwaves to Produce High-Quality Graphene
Transducer-Actuator Systems for On-Machine Measurements and Automatic Part Alignment
Wide-Area Surveillance Using HD LWIR Uncooled Sensors
Heavy Lift Wing in Ground (WIG) Cargo Flying Boat
Technique Provides Security for Multi-Robot Systems
Bringing New Vision to Laser Material Processing Systems
NASA Tests Lasers’ Ability to Transmit Data from Space
Converting from Hydraulic Cylinders to Electric Actuators
Automating Optimization and Design Tasks Across Disciplines

Optical Device Tester

Anritsu Company (Richardson, TX) has introduced the BERTWave MP2110A, an all-in-one instrument that conducts simultaneous BER measurements and eye pattern analysis to more efficiently evaluate multi-channel optical devices used in optical communications systems, including 100GbE, InfiniBand EDR, and 32G Fibre Channel. The BERTWave MP2110A features a built-in BERT that can be configured with up to 4 channels at up to 28.2 Gbit/s, and up to a 2-channel sampling oscilloscope. This single-instrument design allows the BERTWave MP2110A to conduct simultaneous TRx BER measurements of multi-channel optical modules used by 100GbE standards, such as QSFP28, and other standards, such as InfiniBand EDR and 32G Fibre Channel, as well as simultaneous 2-channel eye pattern analyses.

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Posted in: Products, Products, Data Acquisition, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments
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Time-to-Digital Converter

Mouser Electronics, Inc., (Mansfield, TX) is now stocking the TDC7201 time-to-digital converter from Texas Instruments (TI). The TDC7201 is designed for use with ultrasonic, laser, and radar range finding equipment using time-of-flight (TOF) technique. TI’s TDC7201 time-to-digital converter has two built-in time-to-digital converters (TDCs) that can be used to measure distance down to 4 cm and up to several kilometers using a simple architecture. The TDC7201 features a wide measurement range of 0.25 ns to 8 ms and high accuracy of 28 ps. The device has a single shot resolution of 55 ps, (equivalent to 0.825 cm).

Posted in: Products, Products, Data Acquisition, Measuring Instruments
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Single Photon Counting Module

Excelitas Technologies® (Waltham, MA) has introduced SPCM-NIR, a Single Photon Counting Module specifically selected and performance-optimized for the near-infrared (NIR) wavelength spectrum. This NIR-spectrum enhanced device is designed to support long-range LIDAR, quantum communication and microscopy applications. The Excelitas SPCM-NIR uses a specially selected silicon avalanche photodiode (SLiK) with peak single photon detection efficiency (PDE) at 780nm, typically better than 73%, while maintaining uniformity over a 180 μm diameter active area.

Posted in: Products, Products, Data Acquisition, Measuring Instruments
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CoaXPress Frame Grabber

Responding to the need to create a cost-effective, high-speed interface to fully leverage CXP cameras, BitFlow (Woburn, MA) has introduced the Aon-CXP single link CoaXPress frame grabber. The Aon is powerful enough to support camera speeds up to 6.25 Gigabits/second, which is almost twice as fast as USB3 and over six times the speed of current offerings of GigE Vision. While capturing video at those speeds, it is simultaneously sending control commands, triggers and up to 13 W of power over a single piece of 75 Ohm coaxial cable.

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Posted in: Products, Data Acquisition, Board-Level Electronics, Computers, Electronics & Computers, Imaging, Video
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Oldest Known Planet-Forming Disk Discovered

A group of citizen scientists and professional astronomers, including Carnegie's Jonathan Gagné, joined forces to discover an unusual hunting ground for exoplanets. They found a star surrounded by the oldest known circumstellar disk: a primordial ring of gas and dust that orbits around a young star and from which planets can form as the material collides and aggregates.

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Help for Fishing Vessels to Locate Their Catch

Professional fishermen have been wanting to obtain data that could help them better predict where fish can be found. A solution may be around the corner. They may get a decision-making tool that tells them where fish shoals are located and how their vessels can be operated as economically as possible, report researchers.

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Exploring Vast 'Submerged America' and Bubbling Methane Vents

Five hundred vents newly discovered off the U.S. West Coast, each bubbling methane from Earth's belly, top a long list of revelations about "submerged America" being celebrated by leading marine explorers meeting in New York. "It appears that the entire coast off Washington, Oregon, and California is a giant methane seep," says RMS Titanic discoverer Robert Ballard, who found the new-to-science vents on summer expeditions by his ship, Nautilus.

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Creating 3D Hands to Keep Us Safe and Increase Security

Creating a 3D replica of someone's hand, complete with all five fingerprints, and then breaking into a secure vault may sound like a plot from a James Bond movie, but Michigan State University Distinguished Professor Anil Jain recently discovered this may not be as far-fetched as once thought and wants security companies and the public to be aware of the possibility.

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Executive Perspectives: Data Acquisition & Sensing

GRANT MALOY SMITH
President and CEO
Dewetron, Inc.
Wakefield, RI
www.dewamerica.com

In 40 years, data acquisition products have evolved from paper-based chart recorders and analog tape machines, to computer-based instruments. As a result, the relatively slow pace of improvements in performance that typified data recorders for nearly a century is now swept along on the fast-moving current of computer technology advances.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Data Acquisition, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Data acquisition and handling, Sensors and actuators, Data acquisition and handling, Sensors and actuators
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Remote-Controlled Robot Inspects Suspicious Packages

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Techniques (FHR) have created a sensor suite that will help emergency services more effectively detect improvised explosive devices. The system records the shape of suspicious packages and creates 3D images of their contents.

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