Technical Glossary

Term Definition
ADM (add/drop mux)Add/Drop multiplexers are the main building blocks of SONET/SDH networks.
Air-gap discharge methodMethod for testing the electrostatic discharge (ESD) immunity of electronic devices by using the Human Body Model and Machine Model.
Anti-aliasingA low-pass filter which removes the folded-back (aliased) components of the signal above the Nyquist frequency.
AutoShutdown™A function in RS-232 ICs that places the IC in low-power shutdown mode when there is no signal on any RS-232 receiver input for a specified period of time.
AutoShutdown Plus™A function in RS-232 ICs that places the IC in low-power shutdown mode when there is no signal on any RS-232 receiver input and no signal on any RS232 transmitter input for a specified period of time.
Beyond-the-Rails™A feature of amplifiers that allows input or output voltages to exceed the supply rails.
Boost converterA power supply that steps an input voltage up (boosts it) to a higher, regulated voltage.
BootstrapOften refers to using the output of a step-up converter to drive the main power FET switch, providing more gate drive than the input can supply alone. Also refers to using a switched capacitor to boost the voltage of a node.
Break-before-makePrimarly in analog multiplexers and switches, refers to the process of breaking the contact of one switch prior to making contact with another.path.
Buck regulatorA power supply which steps a higher input voltage down (bucks) to a lower output voltage.
CHATEAUCHAnnelized T1 and E1 And Universal HDLC controller.
Coplanar lineA line which is in the same plane as another line. Any two intersecting lines must lie in the same plane, and therefore be coplanar.
CrossoverIn an output stage (or similar amplifying stage which uses one device to pull the signal up and another to pull the signal down), the region in which the high-side device is turning on and the low-side device is turning off, or vice versa.
Crowbar currentShort-circuit current from the postive supply to ground or the negative supply. Occurs when both the P-channel and N-channel drivers of a complimentary output driver, or high-side and low-side switches in an H-bridge configuration, are on simultaneously.
Current mode feedbackAn alternative op amp topology usually used in high-speed amplifiers. It is sensitive to feedback impedance, and cannot be used as an integrator.
Dual Mode™Indicates that the IC has two modes of operation. In power circuits, the IC can deliver either a fixed 5V or an adjustable 1.3V to 16V source. In cellular phones, the IC operates in FM or CDMA mode, AMPS or TDMA mode, etc.
DualSpeed/BiLevelA dual comparator circuit used in hot swap controller ICs where each comparator operates at a different speed (DualSpeed) and different threshold (BiLevel) in order to allow the system to respond optimally to actual error conditions without generating nuisance errors for minor transient conditions.
EconoResetThe simplest form of microprocessor supervisory circuit, it monitors the power supply for the microprocessor and provides only a power-on reset function.
EconOscillatorA low-cost, square-wave oscillator that requires no external clock reference or timing components. It is an alternative to crystal-based oscillators in applications where size and cost are important, but absolute frequency accuracy is not.
End-point behavior of the device at the limit of temperature or voltage.
Exposed padOffered in some packages to increase thermal dissipation. Normally not electrically isolated, it typically needs to be connected to a ground or power plane, depending on electrical connection.
Fault blankingA function that ignores a fault for a predetermined period. This is done to eliminate nuisance fault indication.
Foldback current limitCurrent limit is reduced from a higher initial value to a reduced value once the device enters into current-limited operation.
Foldback Mode™A current-limit circuit in which the limit value is reduced once the device enters the initial current-limit range. Commonly seen on RS-422/485 drivers.
HandoffSee "handover."
HandoverSwitching an on-going call to a different channel or cell in a wireless cellular network. Also known as "handoff."
HDLCHigh-Level Data Link Control. Ensures that data passed up to the next layer is received exactly as transmitted and that data is transmitted only as fast as the receiver can receive it.
Human body modelA specific method for testing the electrostatic discharge (ESD) immunity of an electronic device.
Idle Mode™A mode of operation between shutdown and normal operation in which sections of the device function but others are disabled.
InterleaveTo organize the data sectors on a computer hard disk, so the read/write heads can access information faster.
MicroLANA 1-Wire® network. A low-cost network in which PCs or microcontrollers communicate digitally over twisted-pair cable using 1-Wire components.
MicroMonitor™A device that monitors three conditions vital to processor-controlled systems: power supply, software execution, and external override.
ORingCombining two signals so that the output is on if either signal is present.
PowerCap®A special surface-mount package with access to the internal cavity via an openable top. This packaging scheme allows the easy upgrade of NV RAMs without having to change the PCB hardware layout - the user can simply open the lid and swap out the IC.
Power-OKTypically, an IC's output which indicates when the applied power supply voltage exceeds the nominal operating threshold. Also indicates when the power supply drops below the nominal operating threshold.
Pseudo-differentialUsually refers to an input to an ADC which is not truly differential. This is essentially a differential input scheme without dynamic common-mode rejection.
QuickChip™A high-frequency semicustom ASIC design methodology.
Quick-PWM™Refers to Maxim's proprietary, quick response, constant on-time, high-frequency pulse-width modulation (PWM) control scheme. Quick-PWM can handle wide input/output voltage ratios and provide "instant-on" response to load transients.
Quick-Tools™Maxim's design system that provides complete IC schematic, simulation, and layout capability. It is preconfigured and tailored for Maxim's processes, design libraries, electrical rules, and process limits.
Shoot throughAlso called "cross conduction." See "Crowbar current."
Spurious-freeUnwanted frequencies are not present.
Star groundA pcb layout technique in which all components connect to ground at a single point. The traces make in a "star" pattern, emanating from the central ground.
Star pointA point from which all traces leave in a "star" pattern in pcb layout.
Straight binaryA coding scheme in which each bit is equal to its binary equivalent. This is common in most Maxim DACs. Two's complement, offset binary, and grey scale are examples of other coding schemes.
SusceptanceThe ease with which AC passes through a capacitor or inductor.
Thermocron®A temperature logging iButton® from Dallas Semiconductor.
ThrottlebackReduce power supply current.
TINI®Tiny InterNet Interfaces, a platform that adds Internet and Ethernet to low-cost microcontrollers. With TINI, a wide variety of hardware devices can connect directly to corporate and home networks at very low-cost and with minimal development time or effort.
True Shutdown™A shutdown mode in which the output is fully disconnected from the inputs.
UCSP™A Maxim proprietary IC packaging technology which uses solder balls on the die (chip) in place of conventional leads. In assembly, the solder balls are melted while positioned over matching landing pads, replacing bulky IC packages. Presently the smallest SMT package available.
UndersamplingSampling a signal at a rate below the Nyquist frequency (i.e., less than twice the signal's highest component frequency).
Voltage marginingSetting the output voltage higher or lower than the nominal voltage so that the output voltage remains within the specification during all load conditions.

™ trademark of Maxim Integrated or Dallas Semiconductor
® registered trademark of Maxim Integrated or Dallas Semiconductor

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