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Electronics Product Design and Development

Learning to Design a Product

Engineering a Good product will result in a well manufactured usable electronic equipment or appliance. Product Safety, Reliability, Serviceability, Maintainability, RFI-EMI immunity are some factors to study.

Product Design

When you wish to Begin to learn Electronics, first a short study of Physics is essential, secondly some Electronics theory. Then build simple and small gadgets to learn Practical Electronics while working with Educational Hobby Circuits.  Lastly to make your own product designs, a fundamental knowledge of Analog and Digital Electronics is the foundation for your next steps into Engineering a Design.  

Applications and Components

The basic building blocks for most circuits are Chips or ICs. You can acquire considerable knowledge by studying Application notes of Semiconductors. When you want to use a Microprocessor or Build Your Own Microcontroller Projects, you can study the chip datasheets and try the Evaluation Kits. The Specifications and Behavior of Passive Components like inductors, capacitors and Resistors; Discrete Semiconductors; Power Devices. and RF Components have to be understood well, in order to design sturdy Industrial Grade Designs.

delabs Electronic Design

Advanced Engineering

The Technology related to the equipment used for Testing, Troubleshooting and Calibration is called Test & Measurement, Here we use Test Instruments like Oscilloscopes and Digital Multimeters. Medical Electronics and Military Designs require more meticulous, robust and dedicated designs with higher reliability and accuracy. In Medical electronics product safety is vital, Consumer products should be affordable without compromising Human Safety factors. Then you need to look into Usability or Ergonomics, which is a science that helps us develop practical and cost-effective products, which have an optimum Man-Machine Interface. EMI, ESD, RFI are other important aspects that deals with Electromagnetic, Electrostatic and RF; Noise and Interference; in the Stable performance of products in Real World Harsh Environments or the Reliable Transmission of data.

Lastly Computing and Communication makes products more versatile in any application. EDA, Technical Computing and Systems Engineering helps creating products and complete process solutions.

Industrial Automation and Process Control

Automation and Control is the predecessor of Robotics and Mechatronics.

A Control system is made of Sensors sending acquired data to a Controller which operates Actuators to manage the process in Real Time. Starting from a Bimetal Thermostat to a SCADA, the controller has grown from mechanical -- electrical -- analog -- digital devices to microcontroller-computer based equipment.

Both in Control Systems and Robotics the Collaboration between Robots or Control Units, leads to the development of wireless network of Interactive, Intelligent and Distributed Self Governing Systems. The outcome is Web Process Automation, Web Applications based Solutions in Monitoring, Analyzing and Configuring these Sophisticated Networked Systems.

Black Box Specifications

Black Box

Product Development Fundamentals

1. Product Design Sections :

a. Electronic Engineering Circuit Design, PCB Design, EDA.
b. Mechanical Engineering CAD, Tool and Die Design, Enclosure
c. Software Engineering Firmware PC ware, CASE, emulators

2. Methods of Product Design :

a. Design Automation. Design and Simulation with Computer.
b. Computer Aided Design Design on Computer, Breadboard test.
c. Conventional Design. Paper design with Breadboard test

3. Criteria of Product Design :

a Ergonomics User friendly Interface of controls, display, etc..
b EMI / RFI Ext. Immunity to external electrical disturbance.
c EMI / RFI Int. Reduction of Internal electrical noise generation.
d Input Cost Selecting Cost effective components and methods.
e Product Safety Eliminating shock hazard, fire hazard or stress.
f Corrosion res. Resistance to Chemical Fumes, brine, gases etc..
g Reliability Long Life reliability engineering, MTBF, stability.
h Serviceability Accessibility - Maintenance and repairs, Self test.
i Vibration Enclosure / Components to be vibration resistant .
j Ease of Manfr. Manufacture ease and provision for test and Calib..
k PC Interface RS232, GPIB, etc. for PC Control and recording.
l Upgrade Ease Options, Software change, Hardware upgrades.
m Quality Design, Components, Production methods.
n Accuracy Specifications of performance and its stability.
o Misuse-Abuse Rugged design both electrically and mechanically.

4. Criteria of Circuit Design :

a Technologies Time proven technology and Standard Parts.
b Reliability Component Selection and Design Methods.
c Modular Allow for incremental upgrades and Service.
d Safety Margins Overrating for Voltage, threshold, speed, etc..
e Testability Test Points, Isolating Jumpers, self test mode.
f Isolation High voltage isolation, User safety, grounding.
g Thermal Limits Dissipation Limit, Heatsinks, Shutdown, Size.
h Protections Fuses, Current Limit, Zeners, Varistors, Alarm.
i Power economy CMOS Designs, LCD Designs, SMPS, Portable.
j Electrical Parts Connector selection, Relays, Switches, PCB.
k Precision Accuracy, Resolution, Drift, Thermal stability.

If Inputs are Distorted, The Outputs are Noisy.
Even if the Amplifier is Very Good.

If Raw Materials are of Poor Quality, The Finished Goods are Defective.
Even if the Process and Machinery is State Of The Art.

If the Specifications are incomplete, The Prototype will be rejected.
Even if the Design and Tools are Perfect.

Solderman Talks - 1707 AD

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30th Aug 2020


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Creative Work, ideas and documents of delabs can be used for Product Design and Development by R&D Engineers, Hobbyists, Students and even firms for creating useful products. These cannot be used for reprint, replication or publishing online or offline.