Manufacturing Bits: Nov. 1


U.S. to boost IC competitiveness President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science & Technology (PCAST) has launched a new semiconductor working group in the United States. The new working group will focus on ways to strengthen the competitiveness of the U.S. semiconductor industry. It will provide recommendations to PCAST regarding the challenges facing the U.S. semiconductor industry. Th... » read more

Aftermarket Autonomous Vehicle Race Heats Up


It’s not just car companies that are racing to build self-driving vehicles. An entire ecosystem is sprouting up around retrofitting existing vehicles with autonomous technology, despite the fact that the technology, infrastructure, regulatory and insurance issues are still not fully formed. Uber already is using self-driving taxis, accompanied by a human driver, in Pittsburgh, Pa. And many... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Sept. 6


DARPA ALD The University of Colorado at Boulder has developed an atomic layer deposition (ALD) technology that can be performed at room temperatures. The technology, dubbed electron-enhanced ALD (EE-ALD), has been developed as part of the Local Control of Materials Synthesis (LoCo) program at the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The LoCo program is developing tech... » read more

The Big Race


An estimated 74.39 million automobiles are forecast to be sold this year, according to Statista. That's up about 2.8% over 2015, which on the surface doesn't look like fabulous growth. What isn't apparent in the numbers, though, is the amount and type of semiconductor content. Electronic control units, which are primarily driven by MCUs, increasingly are being replaced by SoCs. Automotive co... » read more

The Week In Review: Design/IoT


Know someone who deserves the Phil Kaufman Award for Distinguished Contributions to EDA? Nominations are open until June 30th. Tools, IP & Chips ARM debuted the Cortex-R8 processor, targeting mass storage devices and future 5G modems with a quad-core configuration and extended low-latency memory. Cadence's schematic design tool, OrCAD Capture, added the capability to export hierarc... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Jan. 5


New materials for 3D printing HRL Laboratories has developed a new ceramic technology for 3D printing. The technology overcomes the limits of traditional ceramic processing, thereby enabling high-strength components. Ceramics are much more difficult to process than traditional 3D printing materials, such as polymers or metals, according to HRL, a corporate R&D laboratory owned by The Boeing... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Oct. 6


Magnetic mass spectrometers The National High Magnetic Field Laboratory (National MagLab) has developed a mass spectrometer, based on what the organization claims is the world’s highest field superconducting magnet. The instrument from National MagLab is called a Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance (FT-ICR) mass spectrometer. The mass spectrometer boasts a 21 tesla magnet, which is ... » read more

Automotive Electronic Power


Nick Hendricks: I was drag racing. I'm a drag racer. Detective Samson: You were drag racing. Nick Hendricks: [nods] Detective Samson: In a Prius. Nick Hendricks: I don't win a lot. —Horrible Bosses (2011) Automobiles are now a platform for multiple electronic devices. From controllers for complex hybrid drive systems like those found in the Toyota Prius to all types of entertainment s... » read more

Week 39: How Safe Is Your Car?


In the age of increased connectivity, security is a major concern for all of us. Every few weeks seem to bring news of another massive breach, making it impossible not to be wary of the security threats we face every day when paying with our credit or debit cards online or in a store. There are so many examples that I’ve occasionally wondered whether I should go back to cash payments. For now... » read more

Fill ‘Er Up With Hydrogen


Japan’s Nihon Keizai Newspaper reported recently that Toyota and Honda would release fuel cell vehicles (FCV) in 2015 at a price of 10 million yen ($98,000) or less. This follows a decline in popularity of electric vehicles due to limited range per charge. FCVs use a generator rather than a battery, which means they need to be filled with hydrogen. The current cost of an FCV is more than 1... » read more

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