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Thoughts on product innovation
250Mpix sensor

Canon develops 250 Mpixel CMOS image sensor

I came across this article on EE-times. A quarter gigapixels on a chip smaller than an old 35mm negative is a fantastic accomplishment—but what does it really mean?

The array of 19,580 by 12,600 pixels measures 29.2mm by 20.2mm—a fraction over APS-H format; that gives it a pixel pitch of about 1.5µm. Those pixels are somewhat larger than for commodity mobile phone 8-16 Mpixel imager chips (1.2µm) but a lot smaller than for your typical consumer DSLR (about 3µm), let alone professional DSLR (over 5µm).


Twenty Pound notes

Innovation Vouchers: Up to £5k for expert advice

Through InnovateUK’s “Innovation Vouchers” scheme SMEs can get up to £5k to pay for expert advice on innovation: This specifically includes product design and engineering. Panchromos qualifies both as Design Advisor and as Technical Consultancy, which makes this scheme suitable for kicking off a product development project with new clients.

At the start of a product development project there are a number of big questions that need to be answered: What is the main problem we’re trying to solve? What will the solution roughly look like? What are the main technical or project risks we’re facing? What is the project plan—resources, timing and deliverables?


iTeam Lent 2015 Gax

Who wants a pocket gas chromatograph?

This lent term I’m once again mentoring an i-Teams group (and eating plenty of pizza doing so). We’re looking at potential market applications for a small hand-held gas chromatograph (GC) with a thermal conductivity sensor.

The technology is the result of the research done by Dr. R. Vasant Kumar and Dr. Sohab Sarfraz of the department of Material Science and Metallurgy. The novelty of their thermal conductivity sensor—in itself a very well established sensor type—is that their version is insensitive to gas flow rate variations.


Must read books

5 must-reads for aspiring entrepreneurs

Here are 5 must-read books for aspiring entrepreneurs. If you think you’ve got a great technology and are looking to create a start-up company to bring it to market these offer some food for thought.

1. The four steps to the epiphany – Steve Blank

The basic premise of this book is that the usual path a start-up follows to market—the Product Development path—is mis-used to guide all other business functions: Marketing, sales and operations. What works for product development turns out to be ill-suited for launching novel products into uncharted or undefined markets: A situation faced by many technology-driven start-ups.
The alternative Blank promotes is the path of Customer Development, where the most significant milestone is not “product ready for launch”, but “sales model validated by customers”.


Gloved hand with syringe

ISO 13485: My journey to certification – infrastructure

I work from home, where I have a comfortable office, small lab and well-equipped workshop

As far as the ISO 13485 standard is concerned, these rooms (two spare bedrooms and my garage) and the equipment, tools, machinery, IT systems and services I use in client projects are all part of the infrastructure used for product realisation, and I should therefore identify and maintain them.


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