Glossary / Definitions


A/D
Analog to Digital, the conversion of analog signal to digital binary information.
a
Acceleration, the rate of change in velocity. Generally measured in metres per second per second (m/sec2)
BGA
Ball Grid Array, a type of surface mount packaging. Used for integrated circuits, the device has a grid of pads, with balls solder, that will attach to a printed circuit board through a specialised soldering process.
CofG
Centre of gravety, also known a centre of mass. The point thru' which gravitational force will act on an object, regardless of orentation.
CSP
Chip Scale Package, where the integrated circuit package is shrunk to a near die size. These are usually surface mount devices (SMD) that use ball grid array (BGA) methods to attach to printed circuit boards (PCB).
DIL
Dual In Line, an alternative to acronym for DIP.
DIP
Dual In-line Package, a package where pins are arranged down either side of the housing. In the case of ICs a notch is used to orientate the case, with this to the top pin 1 is in the upper left corner and the other pins are numbers are counted counter-clockwise.
dohyo
From Japanese meaning "place of the Way" or "place of enlightenment", refers to the ring in which the Minisumo competition takes place.
F
Farad, Unit of Capacitance (Michael Faraday b.1791 d.1867)
Force, an influence that changes a mass from a state of rest to motion to changes the rate of motion.
G
Giga, a prefix denoting a factor of 109
(One Thousand Million - British, One Billion - American)
g
Gravity, a force of attraction between to masses, such as Earth and an object on or near it.
  • for Earth g = 9.806 m/sec2
  • for Moon g = 1.622 m/sec2
Hz
Hertz, a unit of frequency equal to one cycle per second. (Heinrich Rudolf Hertz b.1857 d.1894)
I
Current, the flow of electricity through a conductor measured in Amperes (amps). I derived from the German word Intensit├Ąt meaning intensity. (Andre Marie Ampere b.1775 d.1836)
IC
Integrated Circuit, an electronic circuit on an semiconductor "chip".
IR
Infrared, referring to light outside the visable spectrum with wavelengths longer than those of red light. (Typically 800-950nm wavelength for electronic products)
K
Kilo, a prefix denoting a factor of 103
(One Thousand)
LED
Light Emitting Diode, a semiconductor device that emits light when conducting.
(Typical wavelength 525-567nm Green, 585-591nm Yellow, 610-635nm Orange, 645-700nm Red)
M
Mega, a prefix denoting a factor of 106
(One Million)
m
mass, a measure of quantity in a body and a force experienced in a gravitational field.
metre, the basic unit for measuring length (SI).
milli, a prefix denoting a factor of 10-3
(One Thousandth)
N
Newton, the derived unit of force that imparts an acceleration of 1 metre/second2 to a mass of 1 Kg
(Sir Isaac Newton b.1643 d.1727)
n
nano, a prefix denoting a factor of 10-9
(One Thousand Millionth - British, One Billionth - American)
Ohm's Law
The relationship between voltage, current, and resistance in a DC circuit. V=IR
(Georg Simon Ohm b.1789 d.1854)
p
pico, a prefix denoting a factor of 10-12
(One Billionth - British, One Trillionth - American, One Millionth of One millionth)
PCB
Printed Circuit Board, an insulating material which carries a number of electrical conductors on it's surface. Usually manufactured for attaching a number electronic devices, by soldering, to form a circuit.
PWM
Pulse Width Modulation.
R
Resistance, a material's opposition to the flow of electric current Measured in Ohms (Ω)
(Georg Simon Ohm b.1789 d.1854)
r
radius, the distance from the centre of a circle to it's edge.
rpm
revolutions per minute, a measure of rotational speed.
SI
Denoting Systeme International d'Unites - International System of Units.
SMD
Surface Mount Device, electronic devices designed to mount directly on the surface of a Printed Circuit Board (PCB), alternative to Through-Hole technology where wire leads pass through circuit board holes to attach to the circuit.
T
Tera, a prefix denoting a factor of 1012
(One Billion - British, One Trillion - American, One Million Million)
Torque, a forge that causes rotation, expressed in Newton metres (Nm)
t
time, for calculations usually measured in seconds.
V
Volts, the difference in electrical charge, or potential, of two points that causes current to flow in a circuit.
(Count Alessandro Volta b.1745 d.1827)
Vcc
Operational Supply Voltage
Watt
A unit of Power. For DC Circuits it's equal to Current (Amps) times Volts
(James Watt b.1736 d.1819)
Wave Length
The distance, in meters, between two successive equivalent points on a repetitive electrical pulse or waveform.
Ø
Diameter, the distance across a circle measured thru' the centre.
μ
micro (Small Greek Letter Mu), a prefix denoting a factor of
10-6
(One Millionth)
Co-efficient of Friction, the ratio between frictional force and force between surfaces (lower moves more freely)
μC
Micro Controller, sometimes written uC
Ω
Ohm (Capital Greek Letter Omega), denoting Resistance (See R)



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