November 21, 2017 Volume 13 Issue 43

Electrical/Electronic News & Products

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Raspberry Pi launches $70 AI Kit

Artificial intelligence (AI) is all the rage, and the makers of Raspberry Pi have created a way for enthusiasts of the single-board computer systems to take part and do a lot of experimenting along the way.
Read the full article.


3D model sharing at Brother Industries cuts rework

When Brother Industries, maker of printers, computers, and computer-related electronics, deployed Lattice Technology's XVL Player as a viewer for sharing 3D models throughout the processes of product design, parts design, mold design, mold production, and QA of molded parts, they reduced rework significantly -- especially from downstream departments. XVL Studio with its Difference Check Option helped address the rework in mold design, for example, by always keeping everyone informed of design changes.
Read this real-world case study.


What is 3D-MID? Molded parts with integrated electronics from HARTING

3D-MID (three-dimensional mechatronic integrated devices) technology combines electronic and mechanical functionalities into a single, 3D component. It replaces the traditional printed circuit board and opens up many new opportunities. It takes injection-molded parts and uses laser-direct structuring to etch areas of conductor structures, which are filled with a copper plating process to create very precise electronic circuits. HARTING, the technology's developer, says it's "Like a PCB, but 3D." Tons of possibilities.
Learn more (video included on page).


New! Thermoelectric dehumidifiers for enclosures

Seifert Systems has just introduced its line of compact Soliflex® Series thermoelectric dehumidifiers, with or without condensate pump. These IP 56-rated units are designed to dehumidify enclosures and small control panels, can be used indoors or outdoors, and are maintenance free. When used with a hygrostat, Soliflex dehumidifiers will keep enclosure humidity below a defined level and only operate when needed.
Learn more.


More Stego enclosure heater options from AutomationDirect

Automation-Direct has added more Stego enclosure heaters to their Enclosure Thermal Management lineup. These new 120 to 240 VAC/VDC units include small, flat versions that distribute heat evenly within compact enclosures and are available with 8- or 10-W heating capacities. Also added are compact loop heaters that feature a patented loop body design for increased natural convection airflow, reduced thermal stress on the heater, and better heat transfer. Loop heaters are available in 10- to 150-W heating capacities.
Learn more.


Great design: Handle with integrated lighting/signaling

Signaling and indicator lights, switches, and buttons -- elements that hardly any machine can do without. The new JW Winco cabinet U-handle EN 6284 integrates all these functions into a single, compact element. The new U-handle is designed to enhance the operation of systems and machines. It features an integrated button and a large, colored, backlit area on the back of the handle. These elements can be used individually or in combination, providing a versatile tool for system control and process monitoring that can be seen from across the room.
Learn more.


Engineer's Toolbox: What is ground loop feedback?

Improper grounding can create problems in data logging, data acquisition, and measurement and control systems. One of the most common problems is known as ground loop feedback. Experts at CAS DataLoggers run through five ways to eliminate this problem.
Read the full article.


AI development kit for multi-camera products

The QCS6490 Vision-AI Development Kit from Avnet enables engineering teams to rapidly prototype hardware, application software, and AI enablement for multi-camera, high-performance, Edge AI-enabled custom embedded products. The kit facilitates design with the new, energy-efficient MSC SM2S-QCS6490 SMARC compute module based on the Qualcomm QCS6490 processor. Provides support for up to four MIPI CSI cameras and concurrent Mini DisplayPort and MIPI DSI displays.
Learn more.


High-temp cabinet cooler keeps incineration process in business

An EXAIR client company handles waste treatment on a large ship by operating an incinerator. The area where the incinerator is located gets very hot (over 120° F). This causes failures in the electronics package used to control the incineration process. Since compressed air is readily available, EXAIR's Model HT4225 Cabinet Cooler System is being used to keep the panel cool. It saved the customer from having to replace their control units due to the hot conditions in the incinerator room. Thermostat control is also available, conserving air and operating only when needed to minimize air consumption.
Learn about EXAIR's huge selection of Cabinet Coolers.


Compact snap-in capacitors for general-purpose applications

TDK's new EPCOS B43659 series of snap-in aluminum electrolytic capacitors is the next generation of ultra-compact, general-purpose components for voltages of 450 V (DC) featuring an extremely high CV product. It provides the same features and serves the same applications as the previous series but is much more compact. These RoHS-compliant capacitors can be used in a wide range of applications, such as switched-mode power supplies, frequency converters, UPS, medical equipment, and solar inverters.
Get all the specs.


Conductive Brush Ring overcomes current leakage in EV powertrains

SKF's new Conductive Brush Ring paves the way to greater reliability and longer life in high-performance electric vehicle powertrain systems. Using pure carbon fiber bristles, it provides a reliable electrical connection between an EV eAxle rotor shaft and its housing. When used in combination with SKF Hybrid ceramic ball bearings, it helps to alleviate parasitic current effects that can lead to premature failure in bearings and other components. Available in different configurations for wet (oil-lubricated) motor designs -- and soon for dry (sealed) applications.
Learn more.


Intro to reed switches, magnets, magnetic fields

This brief introductory video on the DigiKey site offers tips for engineers designing with reed switches. Dr. Stephen Day, Ph.D. from Coto Technology gives a solid overview on reed switches -- complete with real-world application examples -- and a detailed explanation of how they react to magnetic fields.
View the video.


Bi-color LEDs to light up your designs

Created with engineers and OEMs in mind, SpectraBright Series SMD RGB and Bi-Color LEDs from Visual Communi-cations Company (VCC) deliver efficiency, design flexibility, and control for devices in a range of industries, including mil-aero, automated guided vehicles, EV charging stations, industrial, telecom, IoT/smart home, and medical. These 50,000-hr bi-color and RGB options save money and space on the HMI, communicating two or three operating modes in a single component.
Learn more.


All about slip rings: How they work and their uses

Rotary Systems has put together a really nice basic primer on slip rings -- electrical collectors that carry a current from a stationary wire into a rotating device. Common uses are for power, proximity switches, strain gauges, video, and Ethernet signal transmission. This introduction also covers how to specify, assembly types, and interface requirements. Rotary Systems also manufactures rotary unions for fluid applications.
Read the overview.


Seifert thermoelectric coolers from AutomationDirect

Automation-Direct has added new high-quality and efficient stainless steel Seifert 340 BTU/H thermoelectric coolers with 120-V and 230-V power options. Thermoelectric coolers from Seifert use the Peltier Effect to create a temperature difference between the internal and ambient heat sinks, making internal air cooler while dissipating heat into the external environment. Fans assist the convective heat transfer from the heat sinks, which are optimized for maximum flow.
Learn more.


Synthetic fuel from seawater? Naval Research Lab receives patent for carbon capture device

The world's oceans cover approximately 70 percent of Earth's surface and contain roughly 93 percent of the planet's carbon dioxide (CO2). With around 38,000 gigatons (Gt) of carbon, our world's oceans contain 16 times as much carbon as that found on land or in the atmosphere combined.

"With greater attention being directed at what mitigating the effects CO2 can have on the environment, an interesting and attractive alternative is to recycle the gas into energy-rich molecules," said Dr. Heather Willauer, research chemist, U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL). "The process, based on Fischer-Tropsch technology, is CO2 neutral and eliminates the emission of sulfur and nitrogen compounds that are produced from the combustion of petroleum-derived fossil fuels."

The Electrolytic-Cation Exchange Module (E-CEM) developed at NRL provides the Navy the capability to produce the raw materials necessary to develop synthetic fuel stock. [Image: U.S. Naval Research Laboratory]

 

 

 

 

Building on the concept of capturing this natural resource, researchers at NRL have developed and received patent 9,719,178, issued Aug. 1 by the U.S. Patent and Trade Office (USPTO) for an electrolytic-cation exchange module (E-CEM). Under this design, the E-CEM is capable of both producing hydrogen (H2) and simultaneously extracting CO2 from seawater.

"In our previous work, the initial scale-up and integration of the E-CEM into a skid platform provided us the data needed to establish faster acidity equilibrium for future modules and improve energy efficiencies and production," said Willauer. "This technology provides the Navy the capability to produce fuel stock, at sea or in remote locations, for the production of synthetic LNG, CNG, F-76, and JP-5 petroleum products."

The E-CEM Carbon Capture device is mounted onto a portable skid along with a reverse osmosis unit, power supply, pump, proprietary carbon dioxide recovery system, and hydrogen stripper to form a carbon capture system (dimensions 63" x 36" x 60"). [Image: U.S. Naval Research Laboratory]

 

 

 

 

Located at NRL's Marine Corrosion Facility, Key West, FL, the next-generation, modified E-CEM demonstrates the progressive steps forward toward integrating and commercializing these systems. The result, at present, is a 33 percent improvement in production time of CO2 and H2 with a feedstock production rate of a single E-CEM capable of producing more than one gallon of fuel per day -- contributing to the removal of nearly 5 tons of CO2 per year.

The Office of Naval Research (ONR) and NRL jointly support the research. The research team includes: Heather Willauer, Materials Science & Technology Division, NRL; Felice DiMascio, ONR; Dennis R. Hardy, NOVA Research Inc.; Jeffrey Baldwin, Acoustics Division NRL; Matthew Bradley, Materials Science & Technology Division; James Morris, Materials Science & Technology Division, NRL, Ramagopal Ananth, Chemistry Division, NRL, and Frederick W. Williams, Chemistry Division, NRL.

Published November 2017

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