Category Archives: Guides

What Are Field Logic Controllers?

FLC or Field Logic Controllers are standard IO blocks with the ability to perform logical operations. By attaching them to individual industrial devices, engineers allow them to execute arithmetic functions, support the use of counters and timers, and toggle bits. FLCs have the capability to create a web-based human-machine interface (HMI) as well. Engineers use FLCs to transfer the burden of logical operations to individual devices. Therefore, they need not rely on centralized computing power such Read more [...]

Nanoparticles Toggle a Window between Clear and Reflective

By applying a coating on a clear window, it has been possible to convert the window into a one-way reflective mirror. If applied correctly, the coating allows people from inside the room to see outside, but for those outside the room, the windowpanes act like mirrors, preventing them from looking in. To revert to the clear glass, it is necessary to peel off the coating. Clearly, this is not a reversible process. A research team from the Imperial College London has now developed a process by which Read more [...]

Whisker Growth in Printed Circuit Boards

in whiskers are not fanciful or imaginative items, but are real and pose a serious problem for all types of electronic manufacturing. Pure tin is often used as a finish material on printed circuit boards (PCBs) to protect the exposed copper pads from tarnishing. However, pure tin spontaneously grows conductive whiskers, thin wire like growth that can form electrical paths and affect the operation of the PCB assembly. Understanding Tin Whiskers and their Effects First reported in the 1940s, tin Read more [...]

Preventing or Mitigating Whisker Growth in PCBs

Growth of whiskers puts PCB assembly at considerable risk, since whiskers interfere with components, and this automatically qualifies a good product as a defective one. Although a growing tin whisker may seem harmless, it can pose a very real threat to both the product as well as to the human operator. In PCB assembly, one of the most common problems that whiskers create is a short circuit or arcing. This can cause breakdown of electrical equipment, as well as harm people from the arcing. Either Read more [...]

A Cheaper Alternative for Batteries—Sodium Ion

A vast majority of electronic equipment running on batteries rely on the Lithium-ion technology for their electrode material. Since Lithium is relatively rare, its mining and refining make it an expensive material to use. This has led scientists to search for a cheaper alternative, and they have turned to the cheapest substance available, the common salt. A team from Stanford has developed a battery based on Sodium-ion whose cost per storage capacity is far lower than that of the existing batteries Read more [...]

Is It Necessary to Ground Cable Trays?

Within a cable tray system, one may use an Equipment Grounding Conductor (EGC), or use the body of the cable tray itself to ground the system—provided the cable tray is made of metal. There are no restrictions as to where one installs a cable tray system. Since the function of the EGC is to provide electrical safety, the EGC is the most important conductor in the electrical system. Therefore, one has three options for grounding in a cable tray wiring system: Use an EGC conductor within or Read more [...]

What is BiCMOS Technology?

CMOS and Bipolar are two of the pioneering technologies of the electronics field. Components fabricated with the CMOS technology dissipate lower power, have smaller noise margins, and are physically smaller. On the other hand, components fabricated with the bipolar technology operate at higher speeds, switch faster, and offer good noise performance. By combining the two, scientists have created the BiCMOS technology that offers a combination of advantages from both processes. For instance, BiCMOS Read more [...]

Window Blinds Offer Shade and Electricity

Everyone is looking for clean energy, because awareness is growing of the problems the use of fossil fuels is creating. Although alternate forms of energy from wind and waves is viable now, solar energy is more accessible to all, since it needs only a solar cell placed in the sun to start generating energy. SolarGaps from Ukraine offers a new type of window blinds that do double duty. You can control the smart shades by an app on your smartphone, and while they screen your house from the fierce rays Read more [...]

What is an i-Robot?

The level of CO2 in our atmosphere is increasing at alarming levels, affecting all life on Earth either directly or indirectly. For instance, it is related to global warming risks, reducing the quantity of ice in the polar regions, which in turn changes the level of seas all around as the ice melts. This has significant consequences on several human activities such as fishing. It also affects the submarine environment adversely, together with the associated biological sphere. For long, scientists Read more [...]

Cloud Storage and Alternatives

Ordinarily, every computer has some local memory storage capacity. Apart from the Random Access Memory or RAM, computers have either a magnetic hard disk drive (HDD) or a solid-state disk (SSD) to store programs and data even when power is shut off—RAM cannot hold information without power. The disk drive primarily stores the Operating System that runs the computer, other application programs, and the data these programs generate. Typically, such memory is limited and tied to a specific computer, Read more [...]