Monthly Archives: April, 2014

DIY: Build a $10 USB visible-light spectrometer

Use simple and cheap materials to build your own USB spectrometer for visible light, or assemble one from


Understanding Polymer Capacitors

Capacitors may seem simple enough, but specifying them has actually grown more complex in recent years. The reason why comes down to freedom of choice. The universe of capacitors has expanded greatly over the past few years, in large part because of capacitor designs that take advantage of advances in conductive polymers.

These advanced capacitors sometimes use conductive polymers to form the entire electrolyte. Or the conductive polymers can be used in conjunction with a liquid electrolyte in a design known as a hybrid capacitor. Either way, these polymer-based capacitors offer a performance edge over conventional electrolytic and ceramic capacitors

Panasonic have published a hugely useful white paper that explains everything the average engineer will need to know about polymer and hybrid capacitors.  You can download this document here, and whilst it might not make you an industry expert, it will take the mystery out of polymers and will let you design with confidence.

Download the white paper

via Understanding Polymer Capacitors » DesignSpark.

Schematic Design Tutorial using DesignSpark PCB

DesignSpark PCB is free, easy to use and learn software for capture Schematics, design PCB boards and layouts. This will help students,  startups and hobbyist to turn concept to products in time at no cost investment

This Tutorial explains how to create a schematic diagram, add components, add connections and add net references in

Read the Completed Tutorial on DesignSpark PCB – Schematics Entry

Download DesignSpark PCB and Resources