Got integrity?

Well, of course you do – most engineers are pretty good people.  Actually, as much as I’d like to brag about acing my ethics training course (one of those fun corporate things we do every year), that wasn’t really what I was referring to…

Integrity in engineering means that something is as it is supposed to be.  Kind of like structural integrity – there are no holes in it.  For signal integrity, it means that the 1s and 0s you sent from the driver are the same 1s and 0s at the receiver.  For power integrity, it means that the volts and amps you sent to the IC pretty much all got there, for all frequencies of interest – “from DC to daylight.”
I talk more about what this means in my recent article in Electronic Design:
http://electronicdesign.com/article/eda/whats-difference-signal-integrity-power-integrity-73842

What happens if you don’t have integrity?  Well, in buildings, anyway, it can all come crashing down.  Printed circuit boards aren’t much different… crosstalk, loss, and impedance mismatches are all like termites trying to eat away at your signal integrity.  Using an analysis tool like HyperLynx can help keep your 1s and 0s safe.  Simulating to understand design margins ensures that you are designing a strong PCB, that will stand the test of time, just like a good building.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at https://blogs.sw.siemens.com/electronic-systems-design/2012/06/13/got-integrity/