November 27, 2018 Volume 14 Issue 44

Electrical/Electronic News & Products

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20-in. automotive touchscreens enabled by new controllers

With cars like the Tesla Model S featuring 17-in. touchscreens, the trend in automotive displays is to go bigger and bigger. But unlike handheld mobile devices, screens in automobiles need to meet stringent head impact and vibration tests, so they have thicker cover lenses that potentially affect the touch interface performance. As screens get larger, they are also more likely to interfere with other frequencies and car access systems. These factors pose a major challenge in the design of modern automotive capacitive touch systems, but a new family of single-chip maXTouch touchscreen controllers from Microchip Technology was designed to address these issues.
Learn more.


Electric high-force linear actuator choices: Ball vs. roller screw

Many applications require high-force linear actuators -- from moving equipment in a foundry to powering a press in metal forming to guiding heavy logs in a sawmill. Whatever the application, a machine designer is faced with a choice: whether to specify a ball or roller screw in the electric high-force linear actuator. Learn how to make the best decision for your application.
Read the Tolomatic blog.


Big additions to miniature LED product line

Thanks to the recent acquisition of Display Products, Inc. (DPP), VCC is offering LEDs that drive energy-saving solutions for a range of applications. In mid-October, VCC announced the first wave of available replacement LED products, including the bi-pin model of the T-2 Slide Based LED Lamp. Now, the innovative company is making additional models available to provide several benefits for manufacturers, designers, and even end users seeking ways to improve efficiency and reduce maintenance costs. This next wave of rollouts includes T-2 Slide Based LED lamps in voltages ranging from 12V to 120VAC, as well as the new and noteworthy T-3 1/4 Miniature LEDs.
Learn more.


Flexible circuit design guide

Tech-Etch uses advanced techniques to manufacture flex and rigid-flex circuits to exacting customer specifications. Special processes include selective plating a single circuit with two different finishes, contoured circuits with variable metal thickness, semi-additive and subtractive techniques, open window or cantilevered contact leads, plus SMT for component assembly. Tech-Etch specializes in flexible circuits for medical device, medical implant, diagnostic ultrasound, and patient monitoring applications, in addition to telecommunications, aerospace, semiconductor, and other high-reliability electronic applications.
Learn about flex circuits and download the guide (no registration required).


Power supply for servos with power factor correction

ADVANCED Motion Controls has introduced the PFC2400W375, a regulated DC power supply designed to feed 400-V series servo drives with a low-noise 375-VDC bus. Universal single-phase AC input 100-240 VAC/50-60 Hz with power factor correction and low harmonic distortion along with soft starting circuitry guarantees global high-performance, reliable operation. This new power supply is designed to achieve power factor improvement, improve performance, and ensure consistent operation regardless of the local power company's voltage levels and quality.
Learn more.


World's smallest safety laser scanner

A laser scanner is a safety device that uses the reflection of laser beams to detect the presence of objects or people. The SE2L Safety Laser Scanner from IDEC is the world's smallest unit of its kind -- and the world's first with master/slave functionality and dual protection zones. This scanner is certified for use in safety applications including AGVs, forklifts, robots, and other items of moving equipment found in industrial facilities.
Learn more.


See further at higher sensitivity: Advanced, lightweight infrared camera core for imaging gimbals

Sierra-Olympic Technologies, a supplier of infrared (IR) and thermal imaging components, cameras, and systems solutions, has just introduced the Ventus 275, a midwave-infrared imaging engine with a continuous zoom (CZ) optic. Advanced image enhancements include electronic image stabilization, automatic/manual gain control, adaptive contrast control, and optional target tracking/detection. This compact, lightweight MWIR thermal camera core is specially designed for OEM integrators of surveillance system enclosures and other imaging gimbals.
Learn more.


1000Base-T1 automotive Ethernet common mode choke

Pulse Electronics' Networking Business Unit has introduced the 1000Base-T1 Ethernet Common Mode Choke for automotive applications. Designed to deliver high reliability and performance, the AE5002 1000Base-T1 series is ideal for applications such as Infotainment, Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS) Body Control, Camera/Radar, Gateways, and Backbone Diagnostics.
Learn more.


Cool Tools: Minimally invasive video borescope

Extech Instruments has launched the BR250-4, an affordable and versatile wireless inspection borescope designed to get into openings as small as 4.5 mm while providing bright clear images on its detachable, wireless 3.5-in. color display. When you need to get into walls, ducts, furnaces, boiler tubes, air handlers, exchangers, coils, plenums, and other concealed or hard-to-access areas, this is your hero. And when there's no existing opening and drilling is required, making a much smaller hole leaves minimal damage.
Learn more.


Drop-in solution makes your machine ready for Industry 4.0

Bosch Rexroth's IoT Gateway Rack is an IP65-rated enclosure containing Rexroth's award-winning IoT Gateway. It includes all the necessary wiring and connections to connect PLCs, I/O, and other data sources for collection, processing, and forwarding of plant floor data to upper-level data systems, making it ideal for retrofitting older machines with Industry 4.0 data-transfer capabilities. The plug-and-play design allows OEMs to use the IoT Gateway Rack as an optional addition to their existing machines. Uses standard 110-V plug.
Learn more.


New family of EC fans for AC applications

Orion Fans has launched a family of electronically commutated (EC) fans that offer low-power, energy-saving cooling solutions for AC applications. The AC-input fans -- available in a range of sizes (60 mm, 120 mm, 172 mm, and 250 mm) -- utilize a brushless DC motor and incorporate voltage transformation within the motor for significantly lower power consumption. This equates to power savings of up to 50 percent, enabling customers to meet energy-consumption requirements from agencies like ENERGY STAR. These fans are ideal for a broad range of applications including appliances, commercial and process control, refrigeration, HVAC, and electronic enclosures and cabinets.
Learn more.


Industry's first 100-W and 200-W USB Type-C controllers

Texas Instruments has introduced two new USB Type-C and USB Power Delivery (PD) controllers, with fully integrated power paths to simplify designs, minimize solution size, and speed time to market. The TPS65987D and TPS65988 offer system designers the industry's highest level of integration to reduce design complexity and overall cost. The devices are the industry's first USB PD controllers to source 100 W and 200 W of power, respectively, to support computing applications and enable the benefits of USB Type-C in additional applications such as cordless power tools, gaming, and virtual reality headsets.
Learn more.


First explosion-proof stackable multi-turn encoder

Sensata Technologies has introduced the first explosion-proof stackable multi-turn encoder, an ideal position sensing solution for oil and gas applications such as drawworks, top drives, and pipe-handling equipment where working conditions are extreme. The new encoder, BEI Sensors' model MAAX, is ATEX and IECEx certified to operate in explosive environments and features a Profibus output in a unique, stackable package. CANopen and SSI outputs are also available. The MAAX provides up to 16 bits of resolution as well as up to 16 bits of turns by mechanical counting. This workhorse product operates directly in Zone 1 environments without the need for an accompanying Intrinsic Safety barrier.
Learn more.


DuPont announces newest in-mold electronics inks

DuPont Electronics and Imaging is launching its second generation of In-Mold Electronic (IME) materials with key advancements in its electrically conductive adhesive, protection encapsulant, and crossover dielectric. IME technology enables functions such as touch controls and lighting to be directly embedded inside plastic parts by printing circuits onto plastic sheets, which are then thermoformed and injection molded. This allows product engineers to reduce weight and cost while increasing design aesthetics and functionality in everything from car dashboards to home appliances, using fewer parts and manufacturing steps.
Learn more about the latest materials.
Go to the DuPont In-Mold Electronic Technology website.


Through-beam object-detecting fork sensors

Fork sensors (slot sensors) from Automation-Direct are U- or L-shaped through-beam object-detecting sensors that have the transmitter and receiver built into the opposing "fork" arms of the sensor housing. New PS series fork sensor additions include harsh-duty U-frame sensors for food applications, L-frame or angled fork sensors for unique mounting situations, and fork sensors for liquid detection. Depending on the model, PS series fork sensors are available in visible red, infrared, and laser lighting and in sensing ranges from 5 mm to 220 mm.
Learn more.


Is your smart TV spying on you? NAU electrical engineers to lead development, commercialization of next-gen cybersecurity solutions for Internet of Things

Industry experts forecast that more than 20 billion wireless devices of all types -- from smart TVs, phones, and home appliances to healthcare monitors and manufacturing process controls -- will be connected worldwide via the emerging Internet of Things (IoT) by 2020. Malicious cyber activity, which cost the U.S. economy $57 billion to $109 billion in 2016 alone, is expected to rise by 22 percent each year, disrupting both consumer and business use of these devices and putting the economy at risk.

A team of electrical engineers, led by assistant professor and principal investigator Fatemeh Afghah of Northern Arizona University's School of Informatics, Computing, and Cyber Systems (SICCS), was recently awarded a $750,000 grant by the National Science Foundation's Partnerships for Innovation Program to develop and commercialize a next-generation cryptosystem, or security platform, capable of protecting IoT devices from cybersecurity attacks through more advanced authentication procedures.

The NAU team, which includes professor of practice Bertrand Cambou and assistant professor Abolfazl Razi, will collaborate with Michael Kozicki and Hugh Barnaby of Arizona State University to enhance security solutions used in e-commerce, banking, smart cities, supply chains, smart health, machine-to-machine communications, and the IoT.

Current methods of protecting devices from cyberattacks often are software-based, which limits the extent to which unique identifying properties can be used for secure authentication. The security platform Afghah and her team are developing is a software-hardware hybrid implementing physically unclonable functions that rely on the unique properties of a device's memory -- variabilities generated through the fabrication process -- to provide a technological "fingerprint" unique to each device.

The proposed solution uses ultra-low-power memory, such as resistive random access memory, making it more competitive because of its reduced consumption of power. Advanced error correction methods will help ensure authentication.

"One of our main contributions with this project designing new algorithms and mechanisms is to ensure that we can always correctly authenticate a device, no matter what physical environment it's in," Afghah said.

This three-year project is part of the NSF's Partnerships for Innovations Program, which offers researchers from all disciplines of science and engineering "the opportunity to perform translational research and technology development, catalyze partnerships, and accelerate the transition of discoveries from the laboratory to the marketplace for societal benefit."

The team will work with several industry partners, including BRIDG, SecureFoundry, and Desert Microtechnology Associates, who will build these devices, evaluate their performance under a range of environmental conditions and manufacture cost-effective products that will be competitive in the marketplace.

"If we can make this happen, it will be a very competitive solution for the IoT, since, despite the current cryptographic methods where the cryptographic keys are stored in devices' memories, no security keys will be stored in the proposed security module," Afghah said. "It could have a huge impact on society and the economy by protecting millions of IoT devices against physical hijacking."

Afghah, who joined NAU in 2015, is the director of the Wireless Networking and Information Processing Laboratory. Her research focuses on machine learning and signal processing in different areas, including wireless communication systems, unmanned aerial vehicles, security systems, and medical applications.

Source: Northern Arizona University

Published November 2018

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