A number of sensors have been developed to detect excessive alcohol consumption and prevent impaired drivers from starting their vehicles. The application has primarily been incorporated as a punitive step for repeat offenders. However, when a carmaker proposes a concept, the possibility of OEM use gets a step closer to reality — a step which could prevent or reduce deaths and accidents from drunk driving. Saab's Alcokey concept combines an alcohol sensor with engine immobilizer technology. A key fob with an integrated mouthpiece provides a sample of the alcohol content in the driver's breath to a small semiconductor sensor. An excessive level of alcohol prevents the engine from starting similar to the immobilizer in existing anti-theft systems. For more information on Saab's Alcokey concept go to: http://rbi.ims.ca/4914-505
Researchers at the University of Maryland have achieved a first in lithium-ion battery science: the development of a successful lithium-based battery using one material for all three core components of a battery -- anode, cathode, and electrolyte.
The online Bar Steel Fatigue Database for automotive design engineers has been updated for the fifth time and now contains 134 iterations, or grade/process combinations. It provides better predictability for designing parts with long-term reliability and durability.
FPGAs use programmable fabric to create custom logic, but this flexibility comes at a cost -- usually around 10 times more silicon real estate and 10 times the power dissipation. Can we really claim any FPGA is low power?
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