App note: Murphy’s Law and the risks of Designing “Off Data Sheet”

Posted on Sunday, October 23rd, 2011 in app notes by DP

Murphy’s law is a undisputed fact of life, and this app note by Maxim explains how it impacts electronics design.

This application note considers off-data-sheet operation of integrated circuits (ICs). It discusses the pitfalls awaiting engineers who have not experienced Murphy’s Law, which is anything that can go wrong, will go wrong at the worst possible time. The article reviews the thought process of an experienced and inexperienced engineer, and how they can make a circuit immune to leakage from environmental contamination, radio frequency interference, and electro static discharge.

The article provides explanations on how to avoid pitfalls common to inexperienced engineers when designing from data sheets. From knowing what various data sheet specifications actually mean to learning how to protect your ICs from electrostatic discharge and RF interference is covered in this app note.

Right image by EgoVolo: CC BY-SA

This entry was posted on Sunday, October 23rd, 2011 at 10:00 pm and is filed under app notes. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

3 Responses to “App note: Murphy’s Law and the risks of Designing “Off Data Sheet””

  1. Bertho says:

    Oh so true; Murphy is lurking in all the small design details. And, lets not forget all those missing decoupling capacitors people present in their designs (and test breadboard).

  2. Matt Bennett says:

    A huge thing about off data sheet use is that while it may work for a particular part or batch of parts, there is no guarantee that it will work with the next batch, even though all the parts are still full within all the specs in the published data sheet.

  3. rsdio says:

    Why Everything You Know About Murphy’s Law is Wrong

Leave a Reply

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.

Recent Comments

  • Pekka Akselin: This is ridiculous!? :-) We are back at 256(!) byte EPROMs that needed multiple, a handful, of voltages to run! :-(
  • KH: Let's try a back-of-envelope calc balancing energies. From MCP1700 datasheet, there are graphs for a 200mA load step. Estimate the energy shortfall as 12uJ. Say...
  • Daniel: It's been a week and my comment is still awaiting moderation. Apparently the CIA doesn't want their involvement known?
  • KH: Agree, so okay, I guess he must have learned from somewhere. 100nF and 1000uF is so far apart, that was jarring; it's more magic incantation...
  • Max: I have a suspicion the hefty electrolytic cap might be some sort of cargo cult carry-over from other RF-based projects - for instance, I've seen...