Anyone here who works in validation?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by EngIntoHW, Sep 23, 2010.

  1. EngIntoHW

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 24, 2010
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    Hi,

    I'm about to occupy a position of chips validation.
    I've never dealt with chips validation before, and would be happy to get any tips and guidelines to follow when validating a chip, in hardware aspect and software aspect.

    Thank you :)
     
  2. EngIntoHW

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 24, 2010
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    Anyone here?
     
  3. Kermit2

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 5, 2010
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    Poker chips? Cow chips?

    What EXACTLY are you talking about. (Kinda helps us know what your needs are) :)
     
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  4. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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  5. EngIntoHW

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 24, 2010
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    Hey,

    I'm talking about chips assembled in cell phones, pagers, etc.
    What's your occupation? :)

    Thanks for the great link John :)

    I thought validation and verification were the same.
    Now that I see the difference, I was actually talking about validation.
     
  6. jpanhalt

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    The difference can be subtle. Validation is harder and usually requires that you know what the item is intended to do, so you can see whether it does that. That is distinct from meeting a specification; although, the distinction does get blurred.

    So, what is it that your chips are intended to do? I assume they are part of a larger system that also has a purpose. Must you validate the system function as well?

    John
     
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  7. EngIntoHW

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 24, 2010
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    Hi John.

    I understand, you need to know for example what the chip was programmed to do, so you could check that it actually does it and well, right?

    What would be a good way of finding out what the chip does?
    I assume they'd give me the datasheet of the chip and some kind of document which describes software programmed into it, am I close?

    There are cellular chips, installed in mobiles, pagers, etc - which tells what they are intended to do.
    The large system which they are part of is the mobile itself which includes SIM, transciever, battey, etc.
     
  8. jpanhalt

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    Jan 18, 2008
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    I am not familiar with application of the terms to individual electronic components, but I think you have the general idea, particularly when you consider the "do it well" part.

    Here is an example from an area with which I am more familiar. Let's say you are in a clinical lab and buy a new test for detecting a drug of abuse (e.g., LSD). You will know what its sensitivity (ng/mL) is supposed to be and will have positive and negative controls provided by the manufacturer. Independently verifying the sensitivity and testing the positive and negative controls is verification. You also validate the test by using it on some number of real specimens and compare its results to results from a standard, existing, or reference method. If the sample size is sufficiently large, the test results of the different methods will not agree on every specimen. Then you resolve those discrepancies to find which test is right and eventually make a decision on use of the new test.

    Testing to be sure a chip meets anything in a data sheet is probably more in the realm of verification than validation. That is one reason I raised the validation/verification question.

    By analogy to the lab test example, let's assume, however, that a cell phone chip has some program in it that the manufacturer does not want to release details about, but claims it will improve some function (say, clarity) and decrease battery drain. Battery drain may be given as a specification, so confirming that is verification. However, to assess clarity, you would need to install the chip in a working cell phone and devise a test to compare its performance to existing performance. That is where the "does it well" comes into play. Other members here may have much better and more realistic examples from the electronics industry.

    As I said in my first post, the distinction is often blurred, so that in meetings, people will often just say "QA/QC" as if it were one process. When industry switched from QC to QA to TQI to TQM to whatever is the current popular term -- all of which can be distinguished -- there was a good bit of feeling that the new term was just the latest fad introduced by some consultant. Word processors made search and replace for the terms easy so supervisors had an easier time revising manuals and so forth. In other words, the actual processes may have changed very little, but the new terms were accepted and used, because that is what management or a regulator wanted you to do.

    My advice is to find out what your boss wants and do it. It seems unlikely that a large manufacturer would ask a new employee to design a complete QA system from scratch, unless of course, you actually were hired as an expert in QA.

    John
     
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  9. EngIntoHW

    Thread Starter Member

    Apr 24, 2010
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    Thank you very much John.

    That is one good informative post, which is very helpful to me.

    :)
     
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