Good ideas with bad execution, or good execution of what should be bad ideas - an analysis of inferior, off-beat or malfunctioning products, and how other people's failures can help us design better stuff.
Inductive Spike Causes Premature Transistor Failure
The worst sort of failure mode is the one that is invisible — no tests, root cause analysis, or part swap-out can ferret out the root cause.
In the EDN Tales From the Cube installment Time Bomb: The Case of the Invisible Failure Mode, Engineer Walter Lindenbach shares his ghost-hunting experience when he was called in to investigate a peculiar problem with his company’s oil-rig-monitorinig device. Time and time again, the transistor that switched the relay coil would fail within a year of installation and the units would be returned for repair.
Though it took some effort, Lindenbach describes his success at finding the failure mode and correcting the problem.Tags: Inductive Spike, Transistor