Category Archives: Guides

Electronics for Indoor Farming

With global population growth, there is increasing concern over the sustainability of ecologically friendly farming. Farmers are now adopting innovative technologies for improving the overall efficiency of farming. Among them, the Internet of Things or IoT shows a greater promise with real-time, wireless, and remote sensing, monitoring, and control of indoor farming conditions and operations, such as humidity, moisture levels, soil pH, temperature, and lighting. Most of the functions mentioned Read more [...]

Flexible Heaters and Multiple Heating Zones

Flexible heaters are suitable for a wide range of uses that require variable heating options. While providing optimal heat transfer, they also offer the right temperature for products like foodservice, medical devices, sensors, instrument panels, and electronics. We are accustomed to thinking of heaters in standard shapes like square, round, and rectangular. However, customized flexible heaters are available in a wide variety of shapes that have the requisite shape to wrap around specific objects Read more [...]

Motor Run & Motor Start Capacitors

Electric motors exploit the interaction between two magnetic fields for rotating a shaft. The stator windings generate one of the fields, and the rotor windings provide the other. In some DC motors, permanent magnets replace one of the windings, while the commutator, whether brushed or brush-less, changes the direction of the current in the other winding to continuously alter the interaction between the two magnetic fields to allow the motor to rotate.
In three-phase AC motors, the interaction between Read more [...]

Storing Data with Light

Currently, we have several methods of storing and transmitting data. The most common method followed is storing data on a magnetic hard disk in the form of bits. Here minute magnetic domains form a North and a South pole pair, with the direction of the magnetization of the poles defining whether the stored bit is a digital 1 or a 0. Writing the data means physically switching the magnetization of the relevant bit, one at a time.
Switching or changing the magnetization of each bit requires the application Read more [...]

Role of LEDs in Horticulture

While LEDs have revolutionized indoor and exterior lighting methods, they have been revolutionizing operations involving indoor grow facilities. This is mainly because LEDs are highly flexible in their spectral output, while their efficiency is very high. That means they emit much lower heat.
A new standard from ASABE specifies the performance of LED lighting products for horticulture applications. The standard spells out the test methods to measure the optical radiation from LEDs in the range 280-800 Read more [...]

What are Laminated Bus Bars?

Rather than use one solid bar of copper, the industry prefers laminated bus bars. These are fabricated components with layers of engineered copper bars separated by flat dielectric materials, bound together into a unified construction. Laminated bus bars offer several advantages—improved reliability and reduced system costs. They are available in various sizes and shapes, some as big as a fingertip while others more than twenty feet in length. Several industries use multilayered bus bar solutions Read more [...]

Are Ferrites Good for Interference Suppression?

Although ferrite beads and sleeves are a common sight on cables, the technique for reducing both outgoing and incoming RF interference is the least understood. To study ferrites, and to do some comparative frequency domain measurements, one needs actual ferrite samples, a specially designed test jig, a spectrum analyzer, and a tracking generator.
Any current flowing through a metal conductor will create a magnetic field around it. The inductance of the conductor transfers the energy between the Read more [...]

How do Antistatic Bags Work?

Computer boards and sensitive electronic components need protection from electrostatic discharge, especially at the time of shipping, handling, and assembly. This requirement has led to the development of an entirely new class of antistatic packaging materials. Now, a multi-million dollar packaging industry exists, with major developments in polymers. These are special conductive polyethylene and other laminates covered with very thin metalized films. This packaging industry saves several hundred Read more [...]

Problems Mains Harmonics Cause

Single-phase power converters are specifically problematic since they generate significant levels of triplen harmonics, such as the 3rd, 9th, 15th, etc. As they do not undergo phase cancellation, they add up linearly in the neutral conductor to create a particular nuisance. Apart from this, they are also present in zero-phase transformer flux, and heat up cables and transformers. Although three-phase converters also generate harmonic emissions, the triplen currents produced by them are of much lower Read more [...]

Raspberry Pi and Traffic Lights

Although we come across traffic lights almost every time we step out of our homes, we rarely stop to think about how they work. However, Gunnar Pelpman has done just that, and he has put the hugely popular single board computer, Raspberry Pi to good use. While most of the tutorials introduce turning on and off LEDs, he has prepared a somewhat more complex tutorial, one that teaches how to program traffic lights. Moreover, he has done this with the Raspberry Pi (RBPi) running the Windows 10 IoT Core.
Traffic Read more [...]