Archive for August 22nd 2011

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In today’s fast-paced technological environment, product training and expertise are vital to both an individual’s and organization’s success. Skills developed through training help you make sure that applications are coded correctly the first time, leading to shorter development times and reduced project failure risk.


The NI Training and Certification Membership Program ensures maximum skill development at the best value by offering you unlimited access to NI courses and certification exams for one or two years at one low price. If you require only a limited number of courses in a shorter period of time, a six-month membership is also available. If you purchase a membership within 90 days of taking a course, you may deduct the price of that course from the membership purchase price.


>> Read about the different membership options and pricing.

With the addition of the NI PXIe-6556, NI PXIe-4140 and NI PXIe-4141 instrumentation to the NI PXI platform, engineers working in semiconductor characterization and production test can now significantly reduce their costs and increase efficiency in their projects.


The NI PXIe-6556 high-speed digital I/O with PPMU helps engineers to generate and acquire a digital waveform at up to 200 MHz, perform DC parametric measurements with one percent accuracy on the same pin and nearly eliminate timing skew due to the built-in timing calibration feature. It also provides the option to switch in another NI source measure unit (SMU) for higher precision.


The new NI PXIe-4140/41 SMU modules provide four SMU channels per PXI Express, with sampling rates of up to 600,000 samples per second, which can drastically reduce measurement times. The NI PXIe-4141 SMU features next-generation SourceAdapt technology, so unlike traditional SMU technologies, engineers can custom tune the SMU output response to any given load.


Combined with LabVIEW, the new PPMU and SMU modules add to the modular software-defined  approach to semiconductor test by increasing quality, reducing cost and  decreasing the time of test across validation, characterization and  production.


Get all the details on the new PXI modules by visting

The Graphical System Design Achievement Awards (GSDAA) is the National Instruments annual technical application contest, showcasing the most innovative projects based on NI software and hardware. Technical judges have whittled down more than 120 submissions to 16 finalists, two for each application category.


During NIWeek 2011, more than 180 people, including engineers, scientists, students, researchers, NI leaders, and industry experts, attended the 2011 Graphical System Design Achievement Awards ceremony to honor the 16 contest finalists competing in the following application categories: Automated Test, Embedded Monitoring, Advanced Control Systems, Life Sciences, Robotics, Validation Test, and Education. In addition, all finalists were considered for the following featured awards: Community’s Choice, LabVIEW FPGA Innovation, sponsored by Xilinx, Green Engineering, Humanitarian, Editor’s Choice, and the Customer Application of the Year.


So, which engineers took home these awards? Dave Wilson, NI director of corporate marketing and academic segment, gave the audience an overview of each and every finalist’s application before revealing the big winners.


Advanced Research


Winner (also Customer Application of the Year and LabVIEW FPGA Winner): FPGA-Based Feedback Control of a Single Atom Trajectory by Christian Sames from the Max-Planck Institute of Quantum Optics

Finalist: Using LabVIEW and PXI to Measure the Temperature and Density of Fusion Plasmas on a Tokamak COMPASS by Milan Aftanas from the Institute of Plasma Physics AS CR, v.v.i.


photo (6).JPGCustomer Application of the Year Winner, Christian Sames, With Michael Dams From NI Germany


Advanced Control Systems


Winner: Positioning Actuators for the European Extremely Large Telescope Primary Mirror With LabVIEW and PXI Hardware by Miguel Núñez from Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias

Finalist: Developing a Solar-Powered Milk Chiller With LabVIEW and NI Single-Board RIO by Sorin Grama from Promethean Power Systems

Finalist: Powering Remote Villages with Revolutionary Airborne Wind Technology Using NI CompactRIO by Matt Bennett from Windlift


Automated Test


Winner: Texas Instruments Increases Firmware Test Platform Throughput, Coverage, and Reliability with NI Hardware and Software by Sambit Panigrahi from Texas Instruments

Finalist: Using NI FlexRIO to Develop a Cost-Effective Solution for 3D and HD Video by Mauro Arigossi from Alfamation




Winner: MIT Students Use LabVIEW and CompactRIO to Design and Implement a Dynamic Output Feedback Controller by Professor Jonathan How and Brandon Luders from MIT

Finalist: Using LabVIEW, CompactRIO, and PXI to Study Renewable Energy Sources by Prof. Peric and Prof. Željko Ban from University of Zagreb


Embedded Monitoring


Winner: Remotely Assessing the Structural Health of the LIRR Railroad Viaduct by Jim Campbell, Brian Lander, and Dan Fridline from Viewpoint Systems and STRAAM Corporation

Finalist: Creating a Distributed Wireless Monitoring System for Aircraft Noise by Luis Pastor Sánchez from Center for Computing Research, National Polytechnic Institute, Mexico City, Mexico


Life Sciences


Winner: Using NI FlexRIO to Develop a High-Speed, Compact OCT Imaging System by Takuya Suzuk from Santec Corporation

Finalist (also Humanitarian and Editor's Choice Winner): Developing the World’s First Real-Time 3D OCT Medical Imaging System With NI FlexRIO by Dr. Kohji Ohbayashi from Kitasato University




Winner: Simulation Software Improves Design Process for Robotic Manipulator by Lisa Mosier

Finalist (also Community’s Choice Winner): Developing a Leg-Wheel Hybrid Mobile Robot Using LabVIEW and CompactRIO by Pei-Chun Lin, Shen-Chiang Chen, Ke Jung Huang, Shuan-Yu Shen, and Cheng-Hsin from National Taiwan University


Validation Test


Winner: Using LabVIEW, PXI, and CompactRIO to Rapidly Develop Structural Test Systems for a Space Exploration Vehicle by Dave Baker from G Systems

Finalist (also Green Engineering Award Winner): Using CompactRIO and LabVIEW to Verify the Design and Test the Durability of a Wind Turbine Drive Train by Rasmus Vistisen and Morten Petersen from Vestas Wind Systems and CIM Industrial


>> Congratulations to all the winners! Read more about their applications here.