D. C. Smith Consultants
High Frequency Measurement Website
Douglas C. Smith
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High Frequency Measurements Web Page
Index and Technical Tidbits
D-104 mike
Welcome to my High Frequency Measurements Web page. Below you will find links to interesting technical goodies for download, as well as other interesting websites, information on my seminars, and much more. I will be adding to this site weekly, so check back occasionally. Feel free to print out pages on this site and to give them to others, but I ask you to include the complete page with header. Check out the monthly Technical Tidbit article linked at the bottom of this page. Each one will illustrate a design or measurement principle, sometimes what not to do.

HF News has been replaced by my new Twitter feed. Just go to http://twitter.com and follow me at @dougcsmith_ee . I usually post short items such as interesting technical links once or twice per day.

Design and Troubleshooting Tips and Techniques: You will find many tips on design and troubleshooting on this site, yet what you see is just the "tip of the iceberg" compared to what is available in my on-site private seminars. The seminars cover many effective design and troubleshooting techniques developed by myself and not taught anywhere else!  Click here to request more information via email.

Quote from a visitor to this site:
"Every time I browse your site, I never get any work done. I spend hours on it and get in trouble."

High Frequency Measurement Partners

EMC Desisgn Advisory Service

High Speed Digital Design Link

Boulder Dam Hotel and Museum
Our office, laboratory, and classrooms are located in the
Historic Boulder City Dam Hotel and Museum
1305 Arizona Street, Boulder City, Nevada 89005
Phone: (702) 293-3510
Come for a technical seminar, design review/troubleshooting, or just for a visit and mix a little history of the Old West with your work!

Hangar One
Our Silicon Valley associate office and lab are located at
NASA-Ames Research Center
RMV Technology Group
Bldg. 19, Suite 1073, M/S 19-46C
Moffett Field, CA  94035

URLs to Access This Site

(mirror site)
(main site)

http://www.dsmith.org and http://DesertLabRat.com
(pointers to emcesd.com)

University of Oxford Logo
Courses at the University of Oxford by Doug Smith
University of Oxford Tutor - Department for Continuing Education
    Oxford Conted logo

    University of Oxford Course Tutor
    University of Oxford
    Rewley House
    1 Wellington Square
    Oxford, OX1 2JA
    United Kingdom
    University of Oxford Certificate
    click to enlarge

    Webinars on Targeted Topics To Avoid/Fix Design Problems!

    Click here, to see descriptions and registration information on my one hour webinars than can solve difficult design problems quickly. Touching on topics like signal integrity, EMC, ESD, and general analog and digital design, these webinars are a quick way to get your design working. There are public presentations most weeks as well as private presentations on demand with a new simplified, lower cost price structure. New webinars are added periodically.

    Friday, March 13th @ 10 a.m. PST in the US: Switching Circuits in Electronic Systems (Problems and solutions for the design engineer)
    • Click here for an outline and description
    • Click here for a registration form
    •      Switch mode power supplies (at system and board level) and other switching devices like class D amplifiers and pulse width modulation controlled devices have caused a lot of noise problems over the years resulting in a lot of weekends and evenings at work for engineers. This webinar will discuss the four modes of noise generation in switching circuits and how to deal with them. The fourth mode is not well known yet causes many of the problems due to switching circuits and is not covered in specifications. Did you know that switching circuits generate noise that can cause intermittent operation of systems with problems occurring once per hour or even less frequently? How this can happen will be discussed and ways of debugging this type of problem will be covered. Examples will be discussed where switching noise generated in one part of a system caused problems in remote parts of the system, including one case where a hard drive was corrupted from a meter away and the drive was not even connected to the noisy supply causing the problem.
           Recommendations from system level to PCB level are given, right down to the type of inductors/transformers recommended for supplies mounted on PCBs.
    The cost is lower than most webinars at $100/person capped at $400 per location, so that even individuals can afford to attend that will not be reimbursed by their employer. If you have several people that can attend, the cost becomes very low per person. Private delivery for a group is $500.

    Design Troubleshooting, EMC, and ESD in Boulder City, NV!
    --------------------> July 27-29, 2015 - Registration is Now Open <
    One of the best seminar venues in the industry with some people staying on after the seminar to see the area.
    The seminar fee includes your hotel room for up to 4 nights, 2 meals/day,
    and local transportation to/from Las Vegas McCarran Airport and the Boulder Dam Hotel via private limo (22 miles)!

    The combination of the material presented, the venue, and the passionate presentation will likely make for the best technical short course/seminar you have ever taken! Didn't think a technical presentation can be passionate? This one is. The result is this short course/seminar
    will likely be the most informative, practical, and FUN seminar you can attend.

    New topics added within the last year:
    1. Expanded section on switching power supply and class D amplifier noise
    2. A new form of ESD/EFT generated by system power supplies (how your system can take itself out)
    3. Analyzing systems as a collection of resonant, tuned circuits for robust design and troubleshooting
    4. Effects of radio frequency signals on analog circuits
    5. EMC test lab errors that can spoil your day (much more common than you would think)
    6. Simple antenna theory for troubleshooting EMC problems (leading to using your index finger as a useful troubleshooting tool)
    This seminar, and its demonstrations, are the product of a lifetime of experimentation and electronic design, 55+ years of electrical engineering (starting at age 12). Major concepts discussed in the seminar are illustrated with experiments on live circuits that were developed over years and are quite unique, enabling a deeper understanding of engineering concepts than seminars usually do. Many new topics and experiments have been added over the last few months that engineers and technicians will find very useful in producing, testing, or debugging new and existing designs of ALL types. No other seminar illustrates principles of design with experiments like this seminar does! Using the techniques presented in this seminar, design problems can be found and fixed in a few days, not weeks or months that are typical in the industry, not to mention being able to avoid the problems in the first place.

    Seminar Testimonials
    Here is a recent testimonial:
    "Your seminar still rates as one of the most educational experiences of my life. It was awesome." KC Armstrong
    Click here for more!

    Boulder City Dam Hotel and Museum
    For more pictures of Boulder City, NV click here
    For more information on Boulder City, NV click here
    For more information on the Boulder City Dam Hotel and Museum, the site of the seminar click here

    This three day seminar takes the best points from my seminars and compresses them into three action packed days with lecture, video, and many demonstrations on live circuits. Time is allowed for attendees to operate the experiments if they want. In two days, you will learn how to make accurate measurements in the lab and then apply those techniques to design verification and troubleshooting as well as EMC problems. The techniques and experiments are geared to the development lab and common equipment found there. During an optional third day, ESD/EMI at the system level will be covered as well as applying system level ESD stress to components, such as LEDs, in a test environment. Click here, for an outline of the seminar. This seminar is derived from the following seminars and is composed of the best points from them to make the best use of your time. All attendees will receive a USB thumb drive with a pdf copy of the notes on it as well as other useful technical information.

    In addition, the seminar fee includes (for the same price that other seminars in the field cost for just the seminar and lunch):
    1. Round trip transportation by Lincoln Towne Car (or equivalent) to/from Las Vegas McCarran Airport and the Boulder Dam Hotel
    2. Up to four nights in the historic Boulder City Dam Hotel
    3. Breakfast and lunch each day
    4. Tuesday evening dinner reception
    5. A PDF electronic color copy of the notes on a USB thumb drive including other useful technical information.
    6. A one year membership in the Boulder Dam Museum for unlimited visits to the Boulder Dam Museum, discounts at the Boulder Dam Hotel, and more.
    You just have to get to Las Vegas McCarran Airport and I take it from there except for dinner on Monday and Wednesday.

    During your stay, walk around town and experience the scenic, quaint town of Boulder City, NV. Boulder City is like living in the 1950s but with high speed Internet! However, the glitter of Las Vegas is only ~20 miles away.

    This seminar combines features from the following seminars into three days. Seminar Outline
    Click here to see testimonials about Doug and the seminars
    Click here to send an email for registration details.

    The Boulder City, NV seminar above is a very special event. Attendance is limited to insure a "one-on-one" experience and they are held in beautiful Boulder City, NV near Hoover Dam. Hotel, NV airport transportation, and most meals are included, and yet, these seminars cost no more than most public seminars. Previous people attending have rated these seminars as the best they have ever taken! There are no lengthly forms to fill out, just contact me by phone or email for details or to register. To see testimonials, click here

    Contact me if you are interesting in having a semi-private "seminar-on-demand" for your company in Boulder City. The material can be custom tailored to your interests from topics you see on this website for groups of 2 to 8 on short notice. Click here to send an email requesting details. I can also arrange a session in Boulder City to troubleshoot your design on my test bench for small products.

    Go directly to my papers, articles, and Technical Tidbits on this site!

    CircuitAdvisor.com logo

    Check out http://CircuitAdvisor.com for my podcasts and videos!
    (site upgrade underway, will be open again shortly)

    CircuitAdvisor.comis devoted to engineering information and training delivered through video and audio multimedia as well as written text. The site is being rebuilt as a training and resource site for companies that desire group subscriptions to provide their engineers with a useful resource that will reduce design problems and help insure a smooth rollout of products at a very low cost.   Contact me for more information.

    Check out one of my non-technical adventures, the Devil Dash, a footrace combined with an obstacle course (barbed wire, mud,  rough terrain, etc.). Click here to see the story. The event took place in Bootleg Canyon, here in Boulder City, NV March 23, 2013, on a much colder than normal day.
    I finished faster than 90% those entered, who on average were less than half my age (66), including finishing faster than 82% of the 20-25 year old group!

    Exiting barbed wire/mud obstacle

    Technical Tidbit:  
    My latest Technical Tidbit appears at the bottom of this page. Click here to go to the bottom of this page for the article (but you will miss more than 250 papers and articles in-between).

    Have a tough design problem? Design problems can be very costly. Even if caught in the lab, precious resources can be wasted tracking such problems down. My private seminars cover design and troubleshooting techniques I developed that are not taught by anyone else! These techniques have solved tough problems in a day or two after design teams had struggled with the problems for weeks or months, not to mention avoiding the problems in the first place. Click here to request more information.

    Design troubleshooting and verification: Tracking down design problems in the lab can be time consuming. My public seminars and my private on-site seminars include new information to minimize debug time. The difference can be hours to a solution instead of weeks! Click here to hear a 1 minute, ~128K, audio clip discussing the seminar.

    Also, check out the job listing page updated October 30, 2011.

    Book image

    Click here for more information, books, seminars, and  consulting on high frequency measurement, design, troubleshooting, signal integrity, and EMC.

    Doug's iNarte certificate
    (click on the image to enlarge the certificate)

    University of Oxford Certificate
    (click on the image to enlarge the certificate)

    Doug setting up for an ESD test
    Doug, setting up for an ESD test.

    Check out my interview on EEWeb! Click here to see the interview.

    News and Items of Interest
    Unique and Useful Instruments

    Technical Information and Downloads

    Technical Tidbits (archived, current article is at bottom of this page)

    Talks and Presentations

    The links listed here are Adobe Acrobat (pdf) files containing the visuals of recent talks and presentations I have given to various groups. You will need Acrobat Reader V4.0 or better to read the files as well as a password. If you have attended one of  these presentations, then you already have the password, if not and you would like to view the file, click here to request the password. Keep in mind that the visuals only cover about 50% or less of my presentations. Live demonstrations and discussion of past experiences make up most of these talks.

    Links to Interesting Sites and Events

    Information About My Seminars

    Information About Myself


    Technical Tidbit - December 2014
    EMC and Other Test Lab Errors

    Abstract: EMC testing is a required part of bringing a product to market. Passing the test itself can be a real headache for developers and marketers, but what if the test was performed in error and the test results are not valid! This is a real problem in the more general field of lab testing as well as specifically EMC testing. Some thoughts are shared on the topic.

    Plot of bad test data
    Click on the picture to read the article.

    Check out http://CircuitAdvisor.com for my podcasts and videos!
    (site upgrade underway, will be open again shortly)

    Interested in more information on this and related topics? Click here for a schedule of upcoming design and measurement seminars.

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    Questions or suggestions? Contact me at doug@dsmith.org
    Copyright 1999-2014 Douglas C. Smith