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From: "Jeff Verive"
References: <email@example.com> <_kjT9.30$BV6.firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Determining type of passive component on LCR meter
X-Newsreader: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2800.1106
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 2003 15:02:30 -0600
NNTP-Posting-Date: Thu, 09 Jan 2003 15:02:30 CST
"Jim Thompson" wrote in message
> On Thu, 9 Jan 2003 12:38:50 -0600,
> "Jeff Verive" ,
We had an engineer who
> |depended on the "leakiness" of free-wheeling diodes in a switching power
> |supply in order to avoid having to add snubber components. When the
> |manufacturer improved the diode's performance, the switching transistors
> |started dropping like flies. The designer actually had the bright idea
> |"screen" for the worst 5% or so of each lot of diodes in order to get the
> |leakiest ones.
> That's not "design", that's *hacking*. That's a worse stunt than
> those who "design" to fit a specific transistor beta ;-)
> ...Jim Thompson
That's also the difference between an engineer who understands engineering
and manufacturing economics and an engineer who understands only electronic
device operation. This engineer knew his stuff from a technological point
of view, but didn't seem to understand total costs to the company. The
vendor would have been happy to screen for the leaky parts (at a price), but
would not be able to guarantee that his process would yield enough leaky
parts to support our production rate. Lead-time for the quantities we
needed went from a couple of months to a couple of years!
I was able to convince him to add a real snubber circuit (grudgingly on his
part, of course), but we kept the manufacturing floor humming.
Perhaps we should require engineers to spend a few months in the "component
engineering" arena before we unleash them into R&D. Rotational assignments
may not appeal to everyone, but they tend to give you insight that you
probably could not get elsewhere.
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