Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Newsletter | Volume 8, 2018
Welcome to the latest issue of Exponent's Electrical Engineering & Computer Sciences Newsletter. Our experience gives us an in-depth understanding of the complexity of the technology sector, and this newsletter is a repository for that insight.  

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  • Radar vs. Renewables
    An ongoing issue in the development of utility-scale wind and solar installations is the potential for the planned facilities to interfere with nearby radar and communications systems. According to a 2016 report from the U.S. Department of Energy, the probability for wind installations to pose compatibility issues with nearby radar systems related to air traffic control, weather forecasting, homeland security, and national defense is likely to increase, as is the potential severity of those conflicts. Offshore wind farms may affect marine navigation and communications systems, airborne radar, coastal HF radars, and subsurface acoustics.Utility-scale solar installations have also been subject to scrutiny for their potential to adversely affect the performance of certain radar systems.
  • Battery-Powered Medical Devices: Their Failure Modes and Mitigation Strategies

    More and more products today are battery operated. As a result, rechargeable batteries have become ubiquitous in our daily lives and are present in a variety of products, including consumer electronics, vehicles, and medical devices. Understanding how these batteries are designed, manufactured, and used is essential to uncovering what happens when these batteries, and the devices they power. In this article, we examine the possible causes of lithium-ion battery failures and discuss what measures can be taken during the product development cycle to prevent such failures, with special consideration to the highly regulated medical device environment.

  • 5G: Challenges, Opportunities, and Health Concerns
    The mobile communication industry is about to start its latest revolution: fifth-generation (5G) wireless broadband technology. 5G operates at higher frequencies than today's wireless networks and uses new advanced technologies such as massive antenna arrays, to provide better speed and coverage while decreasing latency, the delay before a transfer of data actually begins. 5G will rely on small cells installed every few blocks and closer to the ground than today's tower-top radios scattered every few miles and it will significantly increase the amount of data exchanged among users without utilizing network provider’s resources. With these advanced features, 5G will be the backbone of next generation technologies such as driverless cars and the Internet of Things (IoT) while bringing new technological challenges. With its inter-disciplinary teams of engineers, scientists, and regulatory experts, Exponent can help you with overcoming technical challenges and meeting compliance requirements in this emerging market.
  • ASHER NFPA Safety Standard
    Since August 1st, 1966 there have been 152 mass shootings in the United States, killing 1,091 people and injuring thousands more. For comparison, in the 50 years prior, only 25 mass shootings had taken place. The general definition of ’mass shooting’ is an incident in which four or more individuals are killed by a single shooter in the same general time frame and area. On June 12th, 2016 Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida became the unwelcome host to the largest mass shooting by a single assailant and deadliest terror attack since 9/11, resulting in 48 deaths and 53 injuries. 15 months later, a man opened fire during a music festival on the Las Vegas Strip, taking the lives of 58 people and injuring 851 more.
  • Electronic Toy Safety
    The global toys and games market is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 4.9% during the period 2017–2021. Toy sales in the United Sates, the world’s largest toy market, grew to $20.8 billion in 2017. In addition to the conventional role of companionship and education, modern toys provide comprehensive engagement for children to interact with their surroundings, both indoors and outdoors. With the increasing complexity of toys, safety needs to be built into every step of the production process, from the initial concept to the final product available in retail. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), “All children’s toys manufactured or imported on or after February 28, 2018, must be tested and certified to ASTM F963-17.” Standards aim to reduce the risks to kids playing with a toy; unfortunately, toy-related injuries are common. In 2016, there were an estimated 240,000 toy-related injuries for all ages treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments. 

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