Frog Legs Helped Discover the Volt – #6

Do you know how the volt was discovered? It might surprise you! Daniel Bogdanoff & co discuss the wild history of the volt and more!

Hosted by Daniel Bogdanoff and Mike Hoffman, EEs Talk Tech is a twice-monthly engineering podcast discussing tech trends and industry news from an electrical engineer’s perspective.

Do you know how the volt was discovered? It might surprise you! Daniel Bogdanoff, Mike Hoffman, and Matthew Woerner discuss the volt’s wild history and more in this week’s EEs Talk Tech podcast.

Video (YouTube):

Discussions Overview:

The volt and building batteries

Volta discovered the Volt (article)
Capital vs. Lower case SI units
The Greeks knew about static electricity
It’s not that hard to build a basic battery
How do potato batteries work? 4:30, 10:30
How do lemon batteries work?

The invention of electrostatic generators and storage in Leiden jars

Who were Galvani and Volta?

Galvani started experimenting with static electricity
Mike simply assumes frog legs are delicious
Galvani was skinning a frog leg for some experiments and the frog leg kicked!
Why and how did the leg kick?

Galvani vs. Volta
Galvani believed in “animal electricity,” but Volta thought it was just electricity

Galvani is considered to be the father of bioelectromagnetics

Mike thinks plants crave electrolytes

Redox reactions make biobatteries work (like frog leg batteries and ox head batteries)

Galvani’s nephew performed demonstrations on more than just animal tissue

Mary Shelley and the fabled origin of Frankenstein

Volta and the invention of the Voltaic Stack (or Voltaic Pile)
The first light bulb was demonstrated for the Royal Society in London

What is the volt now?
Mike was born just in time to browse dank memes
Why is it called “natural philosophy” – Because there was much study of the mind (Greeks), and technology finally allowed natural philosophers to study nature.

Wikipedia tip
Back in the day, scientists had to understand a lot of different disciplines

Famous scientific rivalries over time – is Edison vs. Tesla over hyped?

Predictions:
Maker movement
We want EEs Talk Tech fan fiction.
We forgot Mike’s prediction 23:25

EEs Talk Tech is an electrical engineering podcast by Keysight Technologies

The Seven Ways we Describe the Universe (SI Units) – #5

The entire universe can be described using just seven different units! Metre, kilogram, second, ampere, kelvin, mole, and candela are defined by the The International System of Units (SI) as the seven base units through which all other units can be derived.

Hosted by Daniel Bogdanoff and Mike Hoffman, EEs Talk Tech is a twice-monthly engineering podcast discussing tech trends and industry news from an electrical engineer’s perspective.

The entire universe can be described using just seven different units! These are the metre, kilogram, second, ampere, kelvin, mole, and candela and are defined by the The International System of Units (SI) as the seven base units through which all other units can be derived.

Learn more about these standard units, their interesting history, and relevance today. Daniel Bogdanoff, Mike Hoffman, and Matthew Woerner discuss.

Video (YouTube):

Discussion Overview:

What is Metrology?
Meteorology vs Metrology
What are SI Units and what is the international system of units?
Why do we even have SI units?
The history of the yard, where does the word “ruler” come from?
The specific value of the kilogram (kg)
Basics of the kilogram and how we define mass 07:00

The kilogram has sister units.
Units of measure defined by constants in the universe are helpful because they don’t change.
What makes up a second? (Uses a cesium atom‘s vibrations)

What are base SI units? 12:06
What are derived SI units? Derived SI units are units of measurement that can be found by selectively combining the seven base SI units. For example, the volt.

What is the difference between base and derived SI units?

Electrical current, the Ampere, and Electromagnetics 15:00

What is the triple point of a substance?
It is the temperature and pressure at which a substance’s gas, liquid, and solid states coexist

What are moles (chemistry) – the quantity of a substance 20:20

What is a candela? (Luminous intensity)

Planck’s constant is important! How to use Planck’s equation

The Watt balance is replacing the physical versions of the kilogram 26:16

Mike’s amazing water bottle flip 38:53

EEs Talk Tech is an electrical engineering podcast from Keysight Technologies

Under the Hood of PCI Express – #4

PCIe 4.0 is doubling the data rate of PCIe 3.0 and poses some interesting challenges for designers. Learn more about PCIe, what it is and how it affects your PC’s performance and capabilities. Daniel Bogdanoff, Mike Hoffman, and Rick Eads discuss.

Hosted by Daniel Bogdanoff and Mike Hoffman, EEs Talk Tech is a twice-monthly engineering podcast discussing tech trends and industry news from an electrical engineer’s perspective.

Peripheral Component Interconnect Express, officially abbreviated as PCIe® or PCI Express®, is a computer expansion bus standard designed to replace the older bus standards such as PCI.

PCIe 4.0 is doubling the data rate of PCIe 3.0 and poses some interesting challenges for designers. Learn more about PCIe, what it is and how it affects your PC’s performance & capabilities. Daniel Bogdanoff, Mike Hoffman, and Rick Eads discuss.

Video (YouTube):

Discussion Overview:

Intro 00:00

Rick Eads is “PCI-Eads” 13:00
Rick’s background with PCIe – He’s been around since the beginning PCIe 1.0
Rick spent time on the PCI-SIG board of directors 50:00
PCI-SIG means “Peripheral Component Interconnect Special Interest Group”
Signal integrity, transmitters, receivers (PCIe PHY Layer) 1:00
What is PCIe? What is PCI Express? 1:20
PCIe means Peripheral Component Interconnect Express
Used to have the ISA bus, ISA means Industry Standard Architecture 1:40
Which transitioned to PCI, but that wasn’t fast enough 1:55
Gaming has driven overclocking 2:00
PCIe is revolutionary 2:25

PCI and ISA was parallel but, PCIe is serial 2:40
PCIe is scalable 3:00
PCIe lanes use lanes that are a differential TX (transmit) and a differential RX (Receiver)3:09
You can have 1 lane (x1, “by one”) up to at least 32 lanes 3:30

PCIe is starting to be used for storage 4:35
Storage with PCIe is popular thanks to solid state drives
NVMe (also called NVM Express) uses PCIe PHY layer 5:25
NVMe means “Non-Volatile Memory Host Controller Interface Specification”
SATA & SAS involve sectoring and writing onto “RUST” (iron oxide) It turns out that sand is faster than rust! 6:00
It’s in consumer-grade equipment now 6:45
m.2 is on most motherboards, and takes an SSD drive running NVMe or SATA express
NVMe is targeted more towards servers but NVMe’s speed and reliability makes it more of a standard interface 7:40

When is PCIe used? 8:05
PCIe is designed to be an interoperability 8:20
The “Root Complex” is the host, like a motherboard, the “Peripheral” is the card 8:40
Why does the PCI-SIG exist? 9:15
The point is that you can be interoperable, the device should work with all other similar devices

PCI-SIG holds interoperability workshop events 11:00
The first rule of the interoperability workshop is we don’t talk about the interoperability workshop 11:30
Engineers have brought in products covered in giant trashbags with a port sticking out 11:50

Thunderbolt is a combination of PCIe and Displayport 13:00
But it doesn’t leverage the “collateral,” the written spec but instead borrows the theory of operation from PCIe
How does Thunderbolt work with the PCI-SIG? 13:30

PCI express is a variant of the PHY portion of InfiniiBand (IB), which is a computer networking standard
A Physical layer is called a PHY
Motherboard designers don’t want to build a lot of PHYs, they want something universal 14:15
Industry tries to build universal PHYs 15:00

PCI express is used in some mobile devices 15:10
Because PCI express has some low power states
Some cars use a PCI express connection for connecting the rear view camera to the rear view mirror display

How far can you transmit PCI express? 16:15
There is a cable version of PCI express
You can use an active cable 16:30
There are some proprietary systems that use a repeater
The repeater transmits a proprietary signal to a receiver that converts it back to PCIe

PCI express 4.0 (PCIe Gen 4) 17:45
The PCI express Gen 4 feature set has been fixed 18:05
It’s not final-final 18:30
PCIe has used a 0.7 version as a sort of a trial run 18:40
PCIe Gen 3 equalization changed from 0.7 to 3.0 and a nonlinear equalizer was implemented 18:45

PCIe Gen 4 is different 19:15
PCI express Gen 4 looks a lot like PCI express Gen 3 19:30

PCI express Gen 4 20:00
The average link length on a motherboard is 10 inches, a server is about 20 inches
This architecture can’t change, so the speed has to increase

Insertion loss in PCIe Gen 4 is increased 10:50
As loss increases, the ability to transmit data decreases
PCI express Gen 3 runs at 8 Gb/s per data link, PCI express Gen 4 runs at 16 Gb/s per data link
PCI express Gen 3 has a 25 mV eye height 21:00, PCI express Gen 4 has a 15 mV eye height
and even then, the lane length is too long 21:30

PCI express Gen 4 adds a retimer (a form of a repeater) 22:05
A retimer was option for PCI express Gen 3, but it’s refined in Gen 4
A retimer takes data and passes it through as quickly as possible to extend the channel length 22:35
But, it takes more power and more cost. Designers are not excited about retimers 22:50

PCI express Gen 4 also uses a lower loss material 23:00
PCI express Gen 4 uses FR4 23:10
FR4 stands for “fire retardant 4”
Electronics fail because the magic smoke comes out 23:45
FR4 is cheap, which is why engineers are using it 23:59
The motherboard cost can double just by going to a lower loss interconnect material 24:10
FR4 is a weaved fiberglass weave put in a mesh and pressed
You can have variations in insertion loss characteristics, etc 25:05

Predictions 28:10
High speed PCI express buses will appear in weird places like IoT toasters!

Bonus 32:19

Wireless Charging – #3

Wireless charging is growing in popularity! Learn about the difference between inductive and resonant techniques, as well as who’s implementing the technology (it might surprise you!).

Hosted by Daniel Bogdanoff and Mike Hoffman, EEs Talk Tech is a twice-monthly engineering podcast discussing tech trends and industry news from an electrical engineer’s perspective.

Wireless charging is growing in popularity! Learn about the difference between inductive and resonant techniques, as well as who’s implementing the technology (it might surprise you!). Daniel Bogdanoff, Brig Asay, and Johnnie Hancock discuss.

 

Video (YouTube):

Discussion Overview:

Intro 00:00
Efficiency measurements for wireless charging system 01:02
Basics of wireless charging 01:53
Phones without built-in wireless charging functionality
Phone case to enable wireless charging 02:05
Wireless charger and phone as primary and secondary transformer 02:16

 

Magnetic Inductive vs Magnetic Resonant techniques for Wireless Charging

Magnetic resonance versus inductance for wireless charging 02:39
Magnetic inductance 02:54
Qi technology 03:05

Rezence/Airfuel/A4WP (alliance for wireless power)
Magnetic inductance runs at a lower frequency 03:21
Device communication – “ping” 03:30
Load change, load modulation, handshaking 03:39
Spool of wire as load 04:05
Two main states – polling/power save 04:23
Magnetic resonance 04:39
Proximity of device to charging pad for magnetic inductance charging  05:00

Charge multiple devices wirelessly with magnetic resonance using one large charging coil 05:31

Can you mount a charging pad under table/surface? 05:46
Surface material types that do and do not allow charging 06:07

 

Where is wireless charging available?

Integration of wireless charging into non-electronic devices 06:28

New infrastructure – Furniture makers, coffee shops 06:52
Wireless charging pads built into furniture 07:01
Magnetic inductance, built into surface of furniture 07:06
Coffee shops in the future may have wireless charging in the tables and counters
Wireless charging might not be free 07:35
Near field communication (NFC) 07:52

 

Is wireless charging secure?
There’s a possibility of data transfer (non power-related information) 08:04
Magnetic resonance has parallel communication path 08:39
Bluetooth protocol will be used to transfer more information 08:51

 

Wireless charging in cars and furniture

Automotive integration of wireless charging 09:36
Why is this better than plugging the phone in directly? 10:24
Wireless chargers embedded in furniture
Sold at furniture stores 11:18
Standards for distance from charging pad 12:26
Charging from far distances using repeater systems and magnetic resonance 14:28

 

How to tune a wireless charging device

Tuning a wireless charging device 15:01
Network analyzer for tuning, impedance matching 15:12

Oscilloscopes can also be used for tuning
Why don’t we have this technology everywhere right now? 15:44
Slowed down by lack of a single standard 16:06
Magnetic resonance versus inductance for future technology 16:34
Companies and standards – one technology will win
Influencers of the consortium – manufacturers, tech companies, etc. 18:54
Trade offs 19:31
Efficiency, cost, multiple devices
What is the efficiency of wireless charging? 20:12
Wireless charging efficiency for bigger device – electric car 20:45
Safety, government regulations 21:18
Texas A&M professor – what does electric radiation do to people? 22:07
NFC – Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, etc. 22:38
Wirelessly charge wearables, medical implants 23:16
Wireless charging pacemakers
How much power can we really transfer wirelessly? 24:53
Charging all devices inside a single room?
Predictions for the future of wireless power 26:24

 

Read Johnnie’s wireless charging application notes:

 

Part 1: Measurements during the power transfer state

Part 2: Measurements during the power save state

Part 3: Power and efficiency measurements

Artificial Intelligence and Dispersed Computing – #2

How is the world of processors changing, and what does it mean for the future of AI? Daniel Bogdanoff and Brig Asay sit down to talk about it.

Hosted by Daniel Bogdanoff and Mike Hoffman, EEs Talk Tech is a twice-monthly engineering podcast discussing tech trends and industry news from an electrical engineer’s perspective.

How is the world of processors changing, and what does it mean for the future of AI? Daniel Bogdanoff and Brig Asay sit down to talk about it.

Video (YouTube):

Discussion overview:

Intro 00:00
Intel acquisition of Altera 00:45
What does it mean for Intel to buy an FPGA company?
What is “dispersed computing” 1:17
Microprocessors used to handle everything
Then, GPUs became integrated 1:45
Offloading computing from a microprocessor 2:02
One option is to use an FPGA to share computing 2:10
ASIC vs FPGA 2:15
ASICs aren’t flexible 2:45
FPGAs give more flexibility than an ASIC 3:03
We use both FPGAs and ASICs in our instruments 3:25

Parallel vs serial buses 3:35

PCIe is x16, other tech going well past 2 and 4 lanes 4:00
This is helpful, but it adds a lot of design complexity
We’re starting to see 5:00
PCIe, USB, SerDes used to dominate but now we’re seeing some other technologies
like Generation Z and CCIX (Cache Coherent Interconnect for Accelerators) 6:00
Makes designs faster to market and easier to debug
Generation Z (Gen-Z) 6:25
Generation Z and CCIX build on PCIe technology
Why are these technologies coming out? 7:00
PCIe takes a lot of work to implement 7:35
So these technologies are less stringent 8:00
and are more open 8:15
We see a lot of PCIe Gen 2 that will start to be replaced by Gen-Z or CCIX type buses internally 8:30
How does the microprocessor connect to other chips in the design? 9:05
That’s the biggest opportunity for speed increases
Thunderbolt has been around for a while 9:45
But, Thunderbolt is finally taking off 10:00
It used to be an internal bus, but now we’re starting to see it externally on consumer devices

What are the next major tasks that will be offloaded? 10:25
AI, machines learning from themselves 11:00
“If true artificial intelligence happens, there’s no way a microprocessor can do it all” 11:10
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_data

Big data is huge, and that requires a lot of processing and computing 11:32
A processor and a server won’t be able to do it alone 11:50
Is this because there’s too much data? (it’s two-fold) 12:10
1. There’s tons of data 12:45
2. We want to know the answer right away
FPGAs/ASICs are currently doing a “filtering” of data which then feeds into a central processor 13:15
Right now, FPGAs are handling very specific tasks 13:56
Intel acquires Altera, which is a good indicator of where the industry is going 14:15
The FPGA is going to get smarter and smarter 14:50
Are FPGAs too slow? 15:15
What do designers need their FPGAs to do? 16:10
Companies creating FPGAs know that they have to have higher performance at lower cost 16:30
NVIDIA, Google, Facebook are all releasing their own chips
FPGA part costs will likely drop in the next 5 years as a result 17:20
Is there a blend of FPGAs and ASICs? 18:00
We’re seeing FPGAs starting to be implemented on data centers and servers 18:15
Using FPGAs instead of ASICs there for their flexibility

Servers lead the PC/consumer market in technology 18:45

Server loads are an order of magnitude greater than PC loads
Hyperscaling 19:40
Historically, you had storage, servers, and routers all separate. Now, they’re getting smarter with resource allocation

Localized vs remote dispersed computing 21:20

All the data has to go somewhere, there’s not a lot of point to point
Latency is becoming more of an issue 22:00
Is processor technology plateauing? 22:30
Consumers generally don’t need a lot more processing power as of today, but servers do
Are multiple core processors a harbinger of FPGAs taking on more tasks? 23:55

AI is becoming more and more important 25:05
There’s nothing more debated than artificial intelligence 25:40
We’re using it in a minimalist way 26:00
A “large tech company” had an AI go on Twitter and it didn’t work out very well 26:35
What is it going to take to make AI something that is integral to our daily life? 27:05
For data centers, AI is going to play a role in adjusting to the flux of data 27:50
What’s the difference between artificial intelligence and analytics 28:15

AI makes the decisions, analytics is just a flow of information
The 2016 USA presidential election is an good example of analytics vs AI 28:53
AI has been in Science Fiction for a long time 29:55
AI brings a lot of ethical discussions, but we don’t have time to talk about them 30:00
Predictions (Luddites, elections, and “the common man”) 30:45
AI and self driving cars 31:30

USB Type-C – #1

What does USB Type-C mean for the world? Daniel Bogdanoff and Mike Hoffman sit down with Jit Lim to find out. We discuss super fast charging, blazing data transfer – and, of course, things catching fire as a result.

What does USB Type-C mean for the world? Daniel Bogdanoff  and Mike Hoffman sit down with Jit Lim to find out. We discuss super fast charging, blazing data transfer – and, of course, things catching fire as a result.

Video version (YouTube):

What does USB Type-C mean for the world? Daniel Bogdanoff (@Keysight_Daniel) and Mike Hoffman sit down with Jit Lim to find out. We discuss super fast charging, blazing data transfer transfer – and, of course, things catching fire as a result.

Watch the video version and ask us any questions you might have on the Keysight Oscilloscopes YouTube channel or in the comments below!

Look for new episodes each 2nd and 4th Thursday.

Visit Keysight’s USB Type-C design and test solutions page for app notes and more!

Discussion overview:
What is the EEs Talk Tech podcast?
What is USB Type-C, one port to end all others!
Reversible plugs
Show and tell
-Superspeed USB, micro USB
USB Type-C cables are the same on both ends
Host/Device Source/Sink vs role negotiation

USB Power Delivery (USB PD) overview

USB PD for USB A was deprecated

USB Type-C charger has 60 watts of power!

Charge your phone very quickly using USB PD 10:00

5V is an hobby-industry standard level, what about going forwards?

What does USB Type-C look like for day-to-day life?  LED projectors? USB Noodle makers?

Q: Can I find a cheap USB Type-C cable? Should I?

A: Probably over time, but if it’s poorly made it could go badly

Phones are literally blowing up!

The cable isn’t just a wire anymore 14:59

USB alt modes:

USB is the cable to end all cables!

It can handle Displayport, HDMI, VGA, DVI, Thunderbolt, ethernet, power, headphones

MHL device discussion

No headphone jack needed!?!

Is USB Type-C available in stores?

Are manufacturers pushing Type-C or are consumers demanding it?

USB A to C, USB B to C, Thunderbolt to USB C adapters are allowed in the USB C spec (USB Type-C specification)

Make sure to look for USB Certification when you buy products

USB IF mandates that products be certified before being sold

A bad USB Type-C implementation can destroy your stuff!

How are USB alt modes implemented?

What makes up the hardware? 20:20

All USB Type-C cables & hardware have to be the same!

CC (Configuration Channel) line starts the handshake and is a dedicated pin

Make sure cables only have one CC! 21:40

USB Type-C is reversible! 22:20

The device receptacle does the signal routing based on cable position and orientation

How does device negotiation work? For example, what if two phones want to charge each other?

A device can be a host (sinking) or a device (sourcing) 24:20

How does it happen? 24:45

RP, RD, RA resistor network is fundamental to Type-C

What do the resistors mean?

RP means “always a source”
RD means “always a sink”

These resistor networks have certain values that determine current, etc.

You can have USB Type-C without PD, up to 5 Volts  3 Amps
USB Type-C PD lets you go to 20V 5A

We have two USB test fixtures/USB test jig the N7015A and N7016A

Is USB PD available today?
Temperature sensors (or other fail safe mechanisms) are required 28:00

Are USB Type-C cables active or passive?
In general, USB Type-C cables are passive. Active USB Type-C cables will be used for longer cables.

All USB Type-C cables are required to have an e-mark chip to help with power negotiation 29:15

Not all USB Type-C cables can handle 100W
USB Type-C can go up to 80 Gb data transfer using four TX/RX links!

There’s a lot of room to grow for future USB Type-C revisions 32:10

Predictions 30:30

EEs Talk Tech Engineering Podcast