The latest from TI experts on our innovative industrial systems designs and solutions.
    • Aug 22, 2017

    Using mmWave technology to enable sense and avoidance in drones

    Despite the great advantages to be gained from the use of drones in civil applications, such as weather forecasting, package delivery and 3-D mapping, the drone industry faces a dual challenge: the demand for both safer flights and lower prices. Most drones on the market today are not equipped with sense-and-avoid (SAA) technology and pose potential...
    • Aug 17, 2017

    Designing with PIR motion detectors: part 1

    Imagine waking up in the middle of the night to find that all of your motion-sensitive lights have suddenly turned on. Now you’re stuck wondering whether there is a stranger in your home or if Fluffy the dog simply triggered the lights while on a quest for a midnight snack. This is just one example of why false trigger avoidance is necessary in...
    • Aug 16, 2017

    Color the world with what’s next in RGBW LED light source technology – part 2

    In part 1 of this series, we discussed a few challenges associated with a color-tunable, dimmable light-emitting diode (LED) light source and the various advantages and disadvantages of dimming methods such as analog, pulse-width modulation (PWM) and shunt FET dimming. In this installment, we will discuss the need for high PWM frequency as well as...
    • Aug 7, 2017

    Quantifying harmonic distortion - Effect of sinc3 filter roll off (part 3)

    In the second installment of this series , I briefly talked about the attenuation of frequencies due to the sinc 3 digital filter. In this installment, I’ll quantify the theoretical degradation due to a sinc 3 filter and talk about how the Multiphase Power Quality Measurement with Isolated Shunt Sensors Reference Design reduces this degradation...
    • Aug 3, 2017

    Color the world with what’s next in RGBW LED light source technology – part 1

    Red, green, blue and white (RGBW) light emitting diode (LED)-based color-tunable luminaires are very common in applications such as stage lighting, entertainment lighting and architectural lighting; Figure 1 shows a couple of examples. In this blog post, we will discuss the key challenges associated with designing such LED light sources and how to resolve...
    • Aug 1, 2017

    What’s the big deal about circuit breakers?

    A circuit breaker is one of the most essential components of an electrical power system, used in electrical transmission and distribution networks to protect equipment or circuits during fault conditions such as a short circuit or overload by interrupting the circuit. Industrial breakers are generally three- and four-pole designs, with current-interrupting...
    • Jul 26, 2017

    Smart sensing with ultra-low-power MCUs – part 6: ultrasonic chirp sonar

    In the final installment of this six-part smart sensing series , I would like to discuss a conceptual ultrasonic sonar system that employs a pulse-compression technique to improve target-range accuracy and range resolution. Ultrasonic sonar uses the propagation of acoustic energy at ultrasonic frequencies to extract information from the environment...
    • Jul 24, 2017

    Let the loop current flow, but only 4-20mA

    The simplicity and robustness of 4-20mA current loops in factory automation and control systems is remarkable. They even deliver power to the field transmitter, which converts the measure and sets the current in the loop from 4-20mA accordingly. An analog input module then measures the current. Measuring a 4-20mA loop current is quite simple. The...
    • Jul 17, 2017

    How to design an efficient and cost-competitive choke in PFC applications

    As losses in the grid increase due to bad power factor (PF), mandates call for more and more end equipment to comply with stringent target values. Air conditioners are already fully regulated, but other motorized appliances such as ceiling fans, vacuum cleaners or refrigerators will likely be next. Power-supply unit (PSU) efficiency enhancement...
    • Jul 13, 2017

    Sensor-to-cloud: sending all data to one place

    In my last post, “ Collecting environmental data with less energy and wiring ,” I discussed making more applications wireless, but how can all this data be collected and manipulated in one place? The solution is the SimpleLink™ Sub-1 GHz Sensor to Cloud, so today I will discuss how to easily set up a sensor-to-cloud network. The...