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A Programmable USB Type-C Switch, Designed by Manufacturing Engineers for Test Automation

BOULDER, Colo.–Acroname, a producer of embedded automation and manufacturing test platforms, recently launched its USB-C-Switch, a 4-channel, programmable, USB 3.2 multiplexing switch that is optimized for USB Type-C applications in manufacturing and development environments. According to a release from Acroname, the USB-C-Switch allows engineers to programmatically select one of 4 available USB ports to conduct hot-plug and un-plug operations, enable and disable individual ports, monitor current and voltage, and automate connector orientation flip operations.

"Type-C represents a new set of challenges for test engineers," said Acroname CEO Justin Gregg, in a press release. "In particular, the reversible plug orientation makes test automation difficult. As manufacturing test engineers ourselves, we understand that automated testing of USB Type-C functions will help our customers lower the cost of test for their next-generation products. With the USB-C-Switch, Acroname continues to advance the tools available to manufacturing engineers for USB test automation;"

Advanced USB Type-C features are supported, including USB Power Delivery (USB-PD); alternate modes, such as DisplayPort and HDMI; and Apple CarPlayTM and AndroidTM automotive protocols. The USB-C-Switch is bi-directional, allowing it to be used in 1:4 or 4:1 configurations. Keep-alive charging is available to sustain battery-powered devices when they are not selected.

"The USB-C-Switch complements Acroname's programmable USB hub products, providing a full solution suite for customers who need to quickly and simply automate USB switching and port handling functions," said Lance Davies, director of sales for Acroname, in the release. "With USB-C-Switch in Acroname's product family, test engineers will now have tools to manage the very latest features of USB."

Acroname reports that "flexible BrainStem® technology and elegant APIs in C, C++, Python, and LabVIEWTM control the USB-C-Switch," and a simple cross-platform GUI application is provided. The USB-C-Switch, designed by manufacturing engineers, is said to address reliability concerns for manufacturing environments, such as withstanding up to ±15kV ESD strikes, the company said in the release.

Acroname (, based in Boulder, Colorado, designs and develops products for applications in automated manufacturing, embedded robotic, and control systems. The company's BrainStem technology provides highly modular and scalable hardware and software tools used in OEM applications around the world.

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