Detector tests up to three LEDs simultaneously

ingunTesting the on/off status of up to three LEDs simultaneously was demonstrated at Southern Electronics 2017, courtesy of the LED detector from Ingun.

The LED detector consists of three phototransistors to test LEDs from 420 to 1130nm, three fibre optic cables, each approximately 300mm long, and three receptacles for customised assembly on the unit under test.

Space-saving assembly of the LED detector can be from the bottom as well as the top in the test fixture.

Outer dimensions are 50 x 30 x 63mm, with a fibre optic cable bend radius of 25mm, minimum. The phototransistor operates at 200mW, with a switching time of 7.4 to 10μs.

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RF power amps a speciality

acturusElectronics manufacturer, Acturus, showcased its specialisation in RF power amplifiers for the defence, medical and general commercial sectors at Southern Electronics 2017. The firm undertakes sub-contract PCB assembly and test for SMT and through-hole electronic assemblies, using its own, automated placement machine and RF test equipment. It is also pleased to offer NPI (new product introductions), build to print and can provide obsolescence solutions.

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Hybrid laser debuts

At Southern 2017, Technifor exhibited its new Hybrid laser for the first time.

techniforDescribing itself as a world leader in the design and manufacture of dot peen, scribe, engraving and laser marking equipment for the aerospace, automotive, medical, general engineering, and oil and gas industries, Technifor has over 30 years of experience.

The company provides permanent traceability solutions using direct part marking through Data Matrix codes or human readable text across various manufacturing sectors. From VIN numbers at OEMs to the smallest component part, its traceability solutions provide a key element in enabling the automotive supply chain to maintain and improve its quality standards.

Direct part marking (also known as etching, engraving or scribing) and traceability is playing an increasingly important role in manufacturing. Increasing numbers of companies are automating their marking processes whether through data matrix codes or human readable text. If properly integrated into the production process, part marking can provide a platform for improved quality control and traceability that can reduce costs and improve yield, says the company.

Technifor is part of the Gravotech group, and the inventor of dot peen. More information at

Enclosures demonstrate home automation options

PKPhotographyandMultimedia-263_tmbA range of products developed specifically for the home automation sector were highlighted by Hitaltech at Southern 2017. As climate/lighting control screens become an ever more common feature of the home, Hitaltech exhibited the lower profile terminal blocks and sleek enclosures that make discreet wall mounting possible.

Andy Fitzer, managing director, said: “Every year we look forward to demonstrating our latest innovations in connectors, terminal blocks and enclosures. This year, we’re particularly excited about our home automation enclosures.”

Flexible surface mount (SMD) jumpers for automotive, industrial control, building automation and energy metering were also shown. An enclosure range includes the 1MXTS Modulbox, and a range of DIN enclosures to house embedded platforms such as the Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone and Arduino.

The growing Conex-it range of PCB mounting terminal blocks and connectors displayed included both rising clamp and spring clamp mechanisms across a range of pitches produced from two to 24 poles.

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Connector means error-free assembly

Yamaichi_Electronics_Y-Circ-S-series_press_tmbConnector developments were the focus of the Yamaichi Electronics stand at Southern Electronics 2017, as it showcased the latest developments in its push-pull circular connector series Y-Circ P connector range.

Now, in addition to the B series, which is sealed to IP50, there is also an S series, also sealed to IP50, available with a hermaphroditic connector configuration. According to the company, the new design means assembly is just as easy and error-free, as with the B series, using identical half-shells.

The hermaphroditic connector means that the insulator is divided, with male and female contacts installed in both plug and socket, claimed to make the connection easy and secure.

All connectors in the S series have a blue dot marking, designed to make connection and finding the coding easy.

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Are you seeing RED?

RED Letter image_tmbThe Radio Equipment Directive (RED) has been in force since June 2016. From 13 June 2017, radio equipment placed on the European market must comply with the Radio Equipment Directive 2014/53/EU.

All radio equipment that is placed on the market from 13 June 2017 must comply with RED, including products that were approved under the R&TTE Directive. If the product batch is already placed on the market under R&TTE prior to 13 June 2017 then it can remain on the market. If a subsequent batch is placed on the market after that date, it must comply with RED. This includes DoC and user information or packaging supplied with the product.

At Southern Electronics 2017, RN Electronics offered visitors its assistance in preparation for RED. It can undertake testing to harmonised RED standards and draft standards. It can also provide gap analysis for products that were tested under the R&TTE Directive to determine any new testing requirements.

RN Electronics is a UKAS-accredited Radio Test Laboratory No. 2360. It is also recognised for its EMC and radio testing by the FCC in USA (Registration No.293246) and ISED in Canada (registered under site Nos. 5612A-1 & 5612A-2). The company expertise and its knowledgeable engineers have many years’ experience in radio/wireless product testing, including RF design troubleshooting, certifications and antenna testing. Using RF design expertise, the team can help to develop new and existing products, assist in design, provide advice on use of radio modules, perform pre-compliance or initial assessment tests and implement solutions as the design develops. Valuable development time can often be saved by a visit to its laboratory, allowing a faster time to market.

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Wound components and transformers strike a chord

Trans-Tronic review edit_tmbProducing coil windings and transformers for over 35 years, Trans-Tronic supplies to a range of customers and market sectors.

The Chesterfield-based company supplies products all around the world to railway, lighting, audio, defence, aviation, oil and gas, medical, renewables, R&D, instrumentation and automotive industries.

It has enhanced its capabilities during the last few years, by moving to a purpose-built factory and acquiring BLS Electronics, Precision Winding, Emdec/Tesla Transformers, Antrim Transformers, EMDEC/Tesla Transformers and Air-tronics. This means it can supply wound components from tiny air coils to toroids and three-phase transformers.

The company manufactures to customer specifications or the experienced technical team can advise and develop new designs. It is approved to ISO9001 and has various quality approvals from UL and Network Rail. In collaboration with Network Rail, it has recently developed a new range of Class II signalling transformers.

Designs are energy-efficient, making the products environmentally friendly, says the company.

Another brand, Trans-Amp, supplies British-made transformers for guitar amplifiers. It has a stock range of products which is being constantly developed and enhanced.

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Power supply protects security systems

170327_news_eng_pic001At this year’s show, Delta Electronics Group, launched the PMU series of power supplies for security systems and DC uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) applications.

The supplies have an LED indicator for DC OK (green) and battery reverse polarity (red) and built-in monitoring signals for AC OK, DC OK and battery-low indication, together with zero cut-over time from loss of AC to battery operation. The supplies protect against reverse polarity battery connection and conform to harmonic current IEC/EN 61000-3-2, Class A. The supplies are reliable, with a mean time between failure (MTBF) of more than 700,000 hours (per Telcordia SR-332).

There is over-voltage, over-current, over-temperature and short circuit protection, with built-in over-current and short circuit protection in buffering mode operation.

The power electronics and energy management company produces power supplies and DC fans for the industrial, automotive and medical sector. The company also exhibited DIN rail, panel mount and open frame power supplies, DC/DC converters, EMI filters and fans.

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Manufacturer reaches for the stars

European Circuits_review edit_tmbThe Aston Starlight is a British-built laser targeted pencil microphone. European Circuits is delighted to be the chosen manufacturer of Aston Microphone’s award winning microphone.

The Aston Starlight is the first laser targeting pencil microphone, allowing for recall of microphone position in studio use. It is also quick and easy to set up in live applications. The microphone showcases Aston’s variable voice switching for sound contouring, nearly indestructible build qualities, and features a sintered head and Aston’s tumbled 100% stainless steel chassis.

The 20mm cardioid capsule was hand-picked by a panel of more than 50 top producers in double-blind listening tests conducted during 2016. Starlight was launched at Winter NAMM in Anaheim CA in January 2017, and immediately won ‘Best in Show’.

European Circuits has been working closely with Aston designers to maximise the DFM (design for manufacture) impact of Starlight. The entire microphone, including all of the electronics and mechanical sub-assemblies, is being produced at European Circuits’ Glasgow-based facility.

European Circuits offer PCB manufacture, PCB assembly, test, box build and design.

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Remote monitoring improves response times

ByteSnap review edit_tmbA demo with ground movement sensors, on the ByteSnap stand at Southern Electronics 2017 showed how remote monitoring can help improve maintenance response times.

The Bridge Bash demo showed how LoRa can be deployed for status monitoring/reporting. It simulates a collision event between a train and a stationary object, such as a bridge or barricade. Acceleration data is collected from the stationary object and transmitted wirelessly to a receiving module.

Using the receiving module, real time information about the object’s acceleration can be processed and displayed to the user to show vibration and impact. The remote monitoring system can be powered by a super low-power cell battery.

Visitors also saw ‘The Product Design Journey’ display, showing how ByteSnap Design worked with a smart home security company to help develop its device, winning the design consultancy the Design Team of the Year at the 2016 British Engineering Excellence Awards.

The latest version of its user interface development framework, SnapUI, was also on show. Now supporting Raspberry Pi, it is more proficient than ever at taking software to production, says the company.

When designing new hardware devices, keeping the user interface design in step with hardware development can be difficult. When the user interface is overlooked, or is the last consideration in the design process, projects can suffer significant delays in getting product to market. SnapUI mitigates this risk by enabling development of the user interface independently of the hardware, on a reference hardware platform or Raspberry Pi, ready for deployment to the target device when the hardware is ready.

SnapUI Raspberry Pi brings high performance to UI prototyping, with the emphasis on CPU embedded chipsets.

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