Design Decisions: Understanding the Value of Integrated System Design
This diesel engine emission control module manages fuel, air atomization, and air purge functions. Integrated into this assembly are two solenoid valves, two pressure regulators, three pressure transducers, a fuel injector, and precision orifice. The compact design and simplified mounting provide a distinct advantage over having to connect and mount individual components on a truck chassis.
Mr. Fleischer, thank you for a good white-paper blog. You did not make it an advertisement for your company or products. Granted, the image shown was likely your product, but it in no way sold that product or even identified it. It was a good example of integrated system design.
It is certainly true that for many systems that utilize either hydraulics, or pneumatics, that using a manifold for some of the interconnects can provide a much more compact system that is both more reliable and less expensive. In fact, this holds true for both mass production and one-off systems, which is unusual. Of course the down side is that the system must be defined prior to the manifold being designed, since most manifolds are difficult to revise. But once a system is accurately defined a well designed manifold will usually provide a cost reduction, and almost always provide better reliability.
Was Steve Job’s signature outfit of a black turtleneck, jeans, and sneakers the secret behind his success? Maybe, or maybe not, but it was likely an indication of a decision-making philosophy that enabled him to become one of the most successful innovators of all time.
Remember when design decisions for optimizing low-power MCU applications were simple? All you needed to do was select when to put the MCU into the low-power mode and when to wake it up. Once it was awake, you just ran the required code as quickly as possible. Simple, right? Well, these days designing for power efficiency isn’t so simple. Why is that the case?
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