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GlobalSpec: DirectU2 Electronic Test Equipment
January 22, 2010  
Industry Trends & Events . . .
Ten-Pounds of Data in a Five-Pound Bag

Ten Pounds of Data in a Five-Pound Bag A test strategy can only succeed if the manufacturer clearly understands the product's target customer and intended use. Testing to yesterday's specifications virtually guarantees inadequate quality. Recently, AT&T discovered that the popularity of the iPhone has overwhelmed their network infrastructure's ability to handle the data traffic. Whether the fault lies in the design step, the design-verification step, or manufacturing test remains an open question. But considering the rapidity of the public's acceptance of this previously unknown technology, it has become increasingly necessary to find a solution that can be extrapolated into the higher-traffic world of the future.

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Your #1 Source for Test Equipment
Bell Electronics NW, Inc.

Your #1 Source for Test Equipment Design it. Build it. Install it. Maintain it. We're with you every step of the way with a full line of test and measurement equipment including power supplies, analyzers, generators, oscilloscopes, and meters. Equipment from Fluke, BK Precision, Extech, Megger, and others is readily available from stock at Bell Electronics NW.

CMC 256plus
OMICRON Electronics Corp. USA

CMC 256plus The CMC 256plus is the universal solution for testing protection relays and calibrating electricity meters of up to class 0.2, transducers, power quality meters, and synchrophasor measurement devices (IEEE C37.118). It is the right choice for all applications requiring the highest versatility and precision. Learn more.

Test Instruments . . .
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Know How to Test Correctly: Video

Know how to Test Correctly: Video Having the correct instrument for a situation doesn't necessarily mean that you know how to use it to its best advantage. This video provides a practical introduction to the Fluke 70 series meters. It includes the types of measurements you can take, as well as methods for conducting those measurements to produce the best possible results.

Mixed-signal Scope Assesses Digital Devices

Mixed-Signal Scope Assesses Digital Devices Testing complex digital devices may require less-than-obvious test strategies. This Webinar demonstrates how to use a mixed-signal oscilloscope's analog features to address this challenge. It presents digital signals that can exhibit distinctly analog character. It covers oscilloscope set-up to trigger on narrow pulse widths and use analog circuitry to look for non-conforming behaviors.

Board and Assembly Test . . .
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How High-def Gets That Way

How High-def Gets that Way One drawback to today's high-definition displays is the complexity of the tests needed to ensure that they perform to expectations. This tutorial shows how Sony approached the testing of Blu-ray players by using traditional tools, as well as by combining a line of PXI hardware with the LabView graphical interface.

If you find this subject interesting, subscribe to GlobalSpec's e-Newsletter DirectU2 The world of Appliance Technology.

No Interference!

No Interference! Electromagnetic interference (EMI) may increase problems with today's broadcast, cell-phone, and other wireless systems. We must certify the maximum emitted EMI, and the maximum it will tolerate from its environment. Testing, especially in populated areas, means screening out ambient EMI. This requires anechoic chambers to increase test reliability.

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2010 Megger Best Practices Circuit Breaker and Substation Seminar

2010 Megger Best Practices Circuit Breaker and Substation Seminar The 2010 Megger Best Practices Circuit Breaker and Substation Seminar will be held on February 14, 2010 at the Hyatt Regency in Long Beach, California. The seminar will run from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Megger will offer a one day complimentary seminar covering topics highlighting HV Circuit Breaker Testing Condition Analysis and Assessment of Power Transformers. Go to to register.

B&K's Programmable DC Electronic Loads Now Available from Digi-Key
Digi-Key Corporation

B&K's Programmable DC Electronic Loads Now Available from Digi-Key B&K's 8500 series electronic loads can be used for testing and evaluating a variety of DC sources. Their wide operating ranges to 500 V and 240 A, and flexible operating modes make the 8500 series well suited for characterizing DC power supplies, DC-DC converters, batteries, fuel cells, and solar cells. Product announcement.

Inspection & Test . . .
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Forego the Microscope

Forego the Microscope Inspecting solar cells is time-intensive, even using automated optical inspection systems. Manufacturers often rely on scanning electron microscopes to spot cell defects while the devices are still on the wafer. Its small field of view, however, assures a lengthy inspection. Electronics Weekly offers the alternative of short-wave infrared camera inspection.

Fit the Camera to Shrinking Targets

Fit the Camera to Shrinking Targets Conventional inspection cameras tend to be large compared with the circuit elements they inspect. As elements get smaller, the unavoidable clumsiness of maneuvering those cameras reduces effectiveness. The Automated Imaging Association explores a move to develop cameras small enough to make the process faster and more precise.

Test Equipment . . .
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When Automatic Test Pattern Generation Doesn't

When Automatic Test Pattern Generation Doesn't Combining scan-based test techniques with sophisticated automatic test program generation software can produce comprehensive tests for complex devices. But what happens when the software's algorithms cannot cope with the device logic and the overall test coverage remains unacceptably low? This article from Electronic Design examines techniques for increasing coverage, such as by taking advantage of information obtained from the ATPG even when it has failed to generate a test.

What's in a Name?

What's in a Name? Sometimes, companies and technologies seem to disappear, but not always so. Engineers looking for a company that offers both x-ray and automated-optical inspection systems will soon experience an identity crisis. YESTech — one of the few remaining vendors to offer both technologies — is changing its name to Nordson/YESTECH.

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Extech 42530 Infrared Thermometer with Laser Pointer
Fotronic Corporation / Test Equipment Depot

Extech 42530 Infrared Thermometer with Laser Pointer Measure surface temperature of objects which are difficult to reach or unsafe to contact and measure hot spots in electrical panels and equipment. Visit us at

Measure from -54 F to 1000 F without contact.
• Large LCD display with backlighting.
• Built-in laser pointer to improve aim.

AC Power Sources — Model 5900
Actioncraft Products, Inc. / Industrial Test Equipment Co., Inc.

AC Power Sources — Model 5900 The Model 5900 is a high general purpose audio generator. The circuit consists of a low distortion oscillator, a drive amplifier, and a bipolar FET class AB1 power amplifier with an output transformer.

• Output: Isolated output transformer; taps from 0-8 V to 0-260 V
• Input: 115 V or 230 V, 50 Hz, or 60 Hz Learn more.

Careers & Commentary . . .
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Breaking the Glass Ceiling

Breaking the Glass Ceiling Have women engineers and managers really emerged as equally participating partners in business? Even as pay scales have narrowed (although not enough), do women's ideas receive the respect and consideration that they would receive if offered by men? According to this New York Times column from entrepreneur and mathematician Pearl Meyer, despite all the touted advances of the past generation, we still have a long way to go.

Diversions . . .
TV to the Third Dimension

TV to the Third Dimension The most popular movie at the end of 2009 was James Cameron's highly touted Avatar. Most experts agree that to truly appreciate the effort requires that the audience view the movie in 3D. So what happens when it reaches the inevitable release for home viewing? The 3D technology in the film remains mired on the wish list of home entertainment. According to the LA Times, recent developments may have brought it a little closer. New 3D Blu-ray units and advances in 3D TV imaging are planned for release this year.

For more on this subject, subscribe to GlobalSpec's e-Newsletter DirectU2 The world of Display Technologies.

Share Your Thoughts . . .
About This Month's Topic

About This Month's Topic Are You an Equal-opportunity Subordinate?

Despite decades of equal-opportunity efforts, many prefer to work for a man. An innovative idea presented by a man still receives more attention than if presented by a woman. What's your experience?

Join the discussion...

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January 22, 2010 - Volume 5 Issue 1
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