Qi wireless power receiver from scratch


Vinod made a Qi wireless power receiver using Attiny13, that is available on GitHub:

I have only two aims while trying this. The receiver should get powered by the transmitter continuously. I should be able to control the power received by adjusting the error packets, in my case I am trying to keep received voltage always 10v.
There are lot more but I am only interested in this two features for now, so I will not be following the complete Qi specs described on the WPC documents, by the way, it worked for me without any issue. This is purely experimental.

See the full post on his blog.

Check out the video after the break.

Teardown of a Spex HS1000 monochromator controller


Kerry Wong did a teardown of a SPEX HS1000 monochromator/spectrometer controller:

Monochromator is one of those things that has always fascinated me. Over the years, I have done quite a few experiments (I, II, III) with an EP200Mmd monochromator and it was a lot of fun. Because monochromators are such highly specialized equipment, decent ones are hard to come by at reasonable prices second hand. So my strategy has been to scour eBay once a while and pick up bit and pieces whenever I can.

See the full post on his blog.

Check out the video after the break.

The Raspberry Pi 4 has landed! A sneak peak prototype review.

There's been a lot of speculation from the SBC community about what the Raspberry Pi 4 will look like and the Raspberry Pi Foundation has really kept the lid on it. However, I was recently given a pretty honorable opportunity. To road-test a prototype of the Raspberry Pi 4. Yeah! Wow! Continue reading The Raspberry Pi 4 has landed! A sneak peak prototype review.

The post The Raspberry Pi 4 has landed! A sneak peak prototype review. appeared first on MickMake.

App note: Replacing traditional optocouplers with Si87xx digital isolators


Digital isolator from Silicon Labs app note shows pin compatible plus high performance replacment of incumbent optoisolators, link here (PDF)

Opto-couplers are a decades-old technology widely used for signal isolation, typically providing safety isolation, signal level shifting, and ground loop mitigation. They are commonly used in a wide range of end applications, including data communication circuits, switch mode power systems, measurement and test systems, and isolated data acquisition systems. Optocouplers have several weaknesses, including parametric instability with temperature and device aging, significant internal parasitic couplings, long propagation delay times, narrow operating temperature ranges, and relatively low reliability.

Today’s advanced CMOS signal isolation products offer better timing performance, higher reliability, and lower power consumption compared to optocouplers and are capturing sockets traditionally held by optocouplers. However, converting to CMOS isolation devices has, most often, required circuit changes and PCB modifications that cost money and create design risks, until now.

App note: Introduction to gapped clocks and PLLs


App note from Silicon Labs on the introduction of gapped clocks, how they can be used in network timing, and their impact upon phase locked loop (PLL) technology. Link here (PDF)

Gapped clocks are periodic clock signals of a single clock frequency that have clock pulses removed from their stream. Well-formed gapped clocks do not have reduced width pulses (known as runt pulses). Rather, each individual clock pulse is either completely present or completely absent.

Programmable light controller


Dilshan Jayakody published a new build:

The main objective of this project is to design a maintenance free and low-cost light which automatically turns on and off at the predetermined time of the day.
To meet the above requirement I designed this controller using ATmega8 MCU and DS1307 RTC. The driver stage of this light controller is intended to work with commonly available 7W LED modules.

More details  on his blog.

App note: Miniature, precision negative reference requires no precision resistors


App note from Maxim Integrated creating voltage negative reference from charge-pump inverter plus positive voltage reference combo. Link here (PDF)

This application note discusses how to build a negative voltage reference without using external resistors or a negative supply by simply combining a simple charge-pump inverter and a positive output voltage reference.

App note: Simple test method for estimating the stability of linear regulators


Tips from ROHM Semiconductor to estimate the stability of linear regulator using simple step response method. Link here (PDF)

Low drop-out (LDO) regulators developed back in the age when large-capacitance multi-layer ceramic capacitors (hereinafter, MLCCs) were uncommon cause a phase delay, leading to oscillation when connected to a low-ESR capacitor like an MLCC. Often, MLCCs are used to save board space and prolong the lives of electronic components. A resistor placed in series in the circuit increases apparent ESR and establishes a phase lead that enable the use of an MLCC as an output capacitor. Phase margin measurement is practical on an LDO having variable output voltage, since its feedback loop is outwardly exposed. However, on a fixed output voltage LDO, the phase margin cannot be measured because of its closed loop circuit.

Op amp on the Moon: Reverse-engineering a hybrid op amp module


Ken Shirriff has written an article on reverse engineering a hybrid op amp module:

I recently obtained a mysterious electronic component in a metal can, flatter and slightly larger than a typical integrated circuit.1 After opening it up and reverse engineering the circuit, I determined that this was an op amp built for NASA in the 1960s using hybrid technology. It turns out that the development of this component ties connected several important people in the history of semiconductors, and one of these op amps is on the Moon.

See the full post on his blog.