Agilent Division Addresses Power and Energy

Kari Fauber, General Manager, Agilent Technologies Power and Energy Division

Products ranging from solar inverters to battery-powered mobile consumer devices are the focus of Agilent Technologies’ Power and Energy Division (PED) announced in May 2013. Kari Fauber, general manager of the new division, said of PED’s operations so far, “It’s been quite exciting. The focus is energizing for the organization, and we are finding that it is resonating really well with customers.” The energy market and the power markets are large and growing quickly, she said, and having attention and focus on that space is viewed as a growth opportunity internally within Agilent as well as an opportunity to better meet customer needs.

Thus far the new organization has been busy. “In early September,” Fauber said, “we had our biggest product launch in the history of Agilent. We announced 52 new products that had never been part of our power-products portfolio before.” Those products include the N6900 and N7900 advanced power system families of high-power supplies for ATE applications and the N8900 family of basic autoranging power supplies. Fauber added, “We also made a lot of changes internally to continue to develop new products at a faster rate than before.”

The new division grew out of parts of other divisions within Agilent. Said Fauber, “We took primarily two divisions that existed previously—the System Products Division and the Basic Instruments Division—and we reformed those organizations into the Power and Energy Division, taking all of the advanced and application-specific or specialty power products out of the System Products Division plus the basic power supplies out of the Basic Instruments Division. The remaining products that were within the System Products Division and Basic Instruments Division went together in a new organization focused on general-purpose products called the General-Purpose Electronic Measurement Division.”

The reorganization will not affect how customers interact with Agilent. “From a channel perspective,” Fauber said, “the basic power supplies and the multimeters, for example, are available together through all our distributors worldwide. So the fact that they are coming now from different organizations is really hidden from a customer perspective.” Within Agilent, however, “The synergy we get in combining all the power products in a single organization is significant—the technology leverage between power products offers more of an opportunity than, for example, the technology leverage between a DMM and a basic power supply,” she said.

Fauber cited some application areas that PED addresses. “If you think about a solar inverter,” she said, “you have the need for a high-powered DC power supply, which our N8900 now addresses. If you want to have a complete application solution, then you also need high-power loads, a three-phase AC source, and application software.” PED’s standalone power products, she said, constitute the pieces that are needed to provide a complete application solution.

As for mobile applications, she said, “We introduced an SMU battery characterization product in 2010 that specifically focused on mobile devices.” The product can capture the current usage from nanoamps to amps in a single shot. “That technology is still unmatched in the market today,” she said, adding the product is used by major power-amplifier and RFIC vendors as well as makers of devices including handsets, hearing aids, pacemakers, and remote thermometers to optimize their designs to extend battery life.

Fauber brings extensive experience to PED. She joined Agilent (then Hewlett-Packard) in 1989 as an applications engineer supporting the launch of the HP3070 in-circuit test systems. She has held positions in test engineering, design validation, business development, product marketing, and R&D project management. She also has held marketing management positions including marketing integration manager for an optical-inspection acquisition and business manager for the manufacturing test information software business. In addition, she has been responsible for marketing for general-purpose instrumentation including multimeters, power supplies, function generators, data-acquisition products, and counters.

Commenting on her experience, she said, “What I am finding is that I have the ability to look at the customer needs holistically rather than from a single-product perspective. I can couple that with the insight from all the individual instruments that I have had the opportunity to work with to really consider customers’ needs—from design to manufacturing, whether they want a complete turnkey solution or want to put together their own application system with various products from Agilent.”

 

See http://bit.ly/KCNWB6 for more about Fauber and the Agilent Power and Energy Division.

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