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About RF Cafe

Kirt Blattenberger - RF Cafe WebmasterCopyright
1996 - 2022
Webmaster:
Kirt Blattenberger,
 BSEE - KB3UON

RF Cafe began life in 1996 as "RF Tools" in an AOL screen name web space totaling 2 MB. Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The Internet was still largely an unknown entity at the time and not much was available in the form of WYSIWYG ...

All trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other rights of ownership to images and text used on the RF Cafe website are hereby acknowledged.

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Today in Science History

Many Thanks to Nova Microwave for Continuing Support!

Nova Microwave circulators & isolatorsNova Microwave is a leader in technically differentiated electronic and radio frequency Ferrite Circulators and Isolators that connect, protect and control critical commercial and military wireless telecommunications systems. Our staff is dedicated to research and development of standard and custom design quality Ferrite Circulators and Isolators from 380 MHz to 26.5 GHz. Please visit Nova Microwave today ...

Tone Modulator for R-C from April 1958 Radio-Electronics

Tone Modulator for R-C from April 1958 Radio-Electronics Magazine - RF CafeDeclaring any kind of straight LC tank circuit to be high stability is a bit of a stretch when compared to the Q available simply by adding a crystal, even in 1958. Tone modulation was an early method for achieving remote control of model airplanes, boats, and cars. The number of channels with these tone modulation systems is two times the number of modern proportional systems in that moving the rudder left took one channel and moving it right took another. Up and down elevator likewise took two channels. Therefore, this four channel system is only two channels by today's terminology. Technology evolved into fully proportional ...

Saelig Intros 200 MHz SDS1202X-E 'Super Phosphor' Oscilloscope

Saelig Intros Economical 200 MHz SDS1202X-E "Super Phosphor" Oscilloscope - RF CafeSaelig Company has introduced the Siglent SDS1202X-E 200MHz Digital Oscilloscope with improved Super Phosphor Technology at a remarkably affordable price. With a real-time sampling rate of 1 GSa/s, this new 200 MHz scope features waveform capture rates of up to 100,000 wfms/s in normal mode and 400,000 wfms/s in sequence mode. The SDS1202X-E has a waveform record memory of up to 14 Mpoints, and a 256-level color and intensity grading and color temperature display. Together, these technologies have been collectively dubbed by the manufacturer ...

Engineering Career and Job Hunting Advice for April 2017

Engineering Career and Job Hunting Advice for April 2017 - RF CafeStories of interviewees being asked to solve engineering problems - basically working for free - have been around for a long time. Dilbert comic strips have been drawn about it. Job search forums have posts by people telling of ridiculous and/or insulting treatment. Fortunately, at least in the engineering world, those instances are relatively few and far between. This first article this month address the issue. The others cover both employers and employees - and prospective employees. I try to weed out the ones written by people who do nothing but give regurgitated advice to others without actually ...

Anatech Electronics Newsletter for April 2017

Anatech Electronics Newsletter for April 2017 - RF CafeAnatech Electronics, a manufacturer of RF and microwave filters, has published its April newsletter. As always, it includes both company news and some tidbits about relevant industry happenings. In it, Sam Benzacar discusses, among other topics, the court battle battle between AT&T and Rivada Mercury Networks regarding the National Public Safety Broadband Network administered by FirstNet, build-out of IoT services, and Google fiber. Anatech's business is to make certain that system and circuit designers have capable filters available to assure successful ...

Designing Electronic Warfare to Regain Airborne Military Dominance

Designing Electronic Warfare to Regain Airborne Military Dominance - RF Cafe"For decades, military aircraft have relied on electronic warfare (EW) solutions to protect assets and dominate airspace. The ability of the United States to detect and track aircraft, or avoid detection has played a major role in its ability to project power globally and maintain freedom of operation in the air. Today, that dominance is being challenged given the rapid advancements in, and widespread availability of, technology for adversaries. In order to make the best use of finite resources, EW ..."

Many Thanks to Federal Custom Cable for Continued Support !

Federal Custom Cable - RF CafeFederal Custom Cable is your direct source for Federal Custom Cable - Cable AssembliesRF & microwave and contract manufacturing (CM), cable prepping, kitting, labeling, rack & panel, modular assemblies, delay lines, Federal Custom Cable - Attenuatorsinductors and toroids, semi rigid, stripping and bending, custom molding, Ø-matched, power and multi-conductor and shielded cables. Please contact Federal Custom Cable today for your project needs ...

Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio

Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio - RF CafeEmpire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio is a quite interesting documentary about the struggle that Edwin H. Armstrong - inventor of the superregenerative and superheterodyne circuits, and of wideband frequency modulation (FM) - had with Lee DeForest - inventor of the Audio amplifying tube - and David Sarnoff - CEO of Radio Corporation of America (RCA). Extensive legal battles ensued between Armstrong and DeForest over vacuum tube patents, and Sarnoff's transition from biggest cheerleader to biggest thwarter of Armstrong's efforts are epic. A huge amount of historical information and vintage film clips ...

BBTLine Intros Unique Line of Broadband Power Combiners / Dividers

BBTLine Intros Unique Line of Broadband Power Combiners / Dividers - RF CafeBBTLine LLC (Broadband Transmission Line) has introduced a unique patented design which allows for more compact devices while maintaining low insertion loss (higher RF power handling... > 20 watts as a splitter), excellent return loss and excellent amplitude and phase balance. Although there are endless RF power splitters / combiners to choose from on the market, once you start narrowing the search criteria down to 1) Broadband, 2) Surface Mount, and 3) Higher RF Power Rating characteristics, the number of choices is reduced considerably. BBTLine's line of surface-mount ...

"Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do, Or do without," April 1944 Radio-Craft

Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do, Or do without, April 1944 Radio-Craft - RF Cafe"Use it up... Wear it out... Make it do... Or do without" - what a great slogan! It was coined by the War Advertising Council during World War II to promote the dual need to conserve scarce resources and to help keep prices down by not generating excess demand. Most of us have seen videos or read articles about neighborhood materials collection efforts to round up old tires, scrap metal, glass, tools, electronics equipment, cloth and clothing, and many other items that could be ...

Whitepaper: What Makes a Good VNA?

Copper Mountain Technologies: What Makes a Good VNA? - RF CafeCopper Mountain Technologies has published a whitepaper titled, "What Makes a Good VNA?" CMT manufactures Vector Network Analyzers with a USB interface. "Everyone knows that a good VNA should have both excellent hardware performance and an easy to use software interface with useful post-processing capabilities. But there are numerous VNAs in the market with different performance levels; some of them are economy grade, and others are truly laboratory test grade. So what ..."

Creating Signals That Look Real to Radar

Creating Signals That Look Real to Radar - RF CafeTektronix has published a whitepaper titled "Radar Signal Generation with a High-Performance AWG" that is available as a free download. "Generating radar signals is one of the most challenging tasks for a signal generator. The signals' combination of carrier frequency, modulation bandwidth, and, in most cases, their pulsed nature creates a series of requirements difficult to match with existing instrumentation. The increasing complexity of radar systems, the growing use of complex modulation techniques such as OFDM or UWB, and the signal quality ..."

How Advanced Are Tactical Airborne Laser Weapons?

How Advanced Are Tactical Airborne Laser Weapons? - RF Cafe"Laser weapons have been one of the most important topics of discussion in the Pentagon at least for the past five years, and several weapons programs involving high-energy lasers are in advanced development. There's the U.S. Navy's shipboard Laser Weapon System (LaWS) which was deployed for operational tests aboard the amphibious transport dock USS Ponce. Then there's the Boeing truck-mounted High Energy Laser Mobile Demonstrator (HEL MD) for use against air and ground targets. One of the most important potential future ..."

Dig That Reel Flat Response!

Dig That Reel Flat Response!, May 1956 Popular Electronics - RF CafeThis 1956-vintage article by techno-kidder Carl Kohler taught me a new word - 'darb,' as in "Isn't that a darb, now." According to Merriam-Webster, a darb is a slang term for something superlative. Mr. Kohler penned many tongue-in-cheek stories for Popular Electronics in the 1950s and 1960s, all of them based on his antics involving the latest electronics gadget and Mrs. Kohler's reaction to them. Maybe they are real (in this case, 'reel') and maybe not, but regardless, they are funny and even if made up, could easily be actual experiences. A list of other Kohler ...

3-Photon Interference Measured at Long Last

3-Photon Interference Measured at Long Last - RF Cafe"Quantum interference involving three photons has been measured by two independent teams of physicists. Seeing the effect requires the ability to deliver three indistinguishable photons to the same place at the same time and also to ensure that much more common single-photon and two-photon interference effects are eliminated from the measurements. As well as providing deep insights into the fundamentals of quantum mechanics, 3-photon interference could also be used in quantum cryptography ..."

Science & Electronics Crossword Puzzle for April 23, 2017

Science & Electronics Crossword Puzzle for April 23, 2017 - RF CafeThis week's tech-themed crossword puzzle, as is the case every week, contains only words pertaining to science, engineering, amateur radio, physics, mechanics, mathematics, etc. Making a special appearance is the name of the most recent company to support RF Cafe through advertising. You will see their banner graphical ad appearing in the right page border sometime this week. Enjoy ...

$5.00 for Best Short Wave Kink

$5.00 for Best Short Wave Kink, September 1935 Short Wave Craft - RF CafeHere for radio hobbyists are a dozen handy-dandy 'kinks,' otherwise known as tricks, shortcuts, or clever ideas, that could prove useful while working in the lab at work or in your shop at home. One kink that might be worth trying calls for immersing an aluminum panel in a water-lye solution to achieve "a professional-looking finish." A satin look results. A Google search on etching aluminum turns up many other methods. Admittedly, most of these ideas would not ...

Semiconductor Nanofiber with Superb Charge Conductivity Developed

Semiconductor Nanofiber with Superb Charge Conductivity Developed - RF Cafe"A novel technology that embeds highly conductive nanostructure into semiconductor nanofiber has now been developed by researchers. The novel composite so produced has superb charge conductivity, and can therefore be widely applied, especially in environmental arena. A research team led by Prof. Wallace Leung develops novel semiconductor nanotubes with superb charge conductivity which can be widely used in different applications, especially in environmental arena ..."

Space Debris Problem Getting Worse

Space Debris Problem Getting Worse - RF Cafe"Scientists sounded the alarm Tuesday over the problems posed to space missions from orbital junk - the accumulating debris from mankind's six-decade exploration of the cosmos. In less than a quarter of a century, the number of orbiting fragments large enough to destroy a spacecraft has more than doubled, a conference in Germany heard. And the estimated tally of tiny objects - which can harm or degrade spacecraft in the event of a collision, and are hard to track - is now around 150 million. - We are very ..."

Tech Industry Headlines

Tech Industry Headlines - RF Cafe- Archive -

UK Engineers Want Action by Government on Skills Shortage

Metamaterial Designed with Counterintuitive Property 

BT Takes Legal Action Against Former Execs over Italy Accounting Scandal

Skyworks Sets Environmental Resource Conservation and Waste Minimization Records

India's Mobile Subscriber Base Reaches 895M in March

Broadband, Wi-Fi More Important Than Laundry for Apartment Dwellers

ARRL 2017 Hamvention Forum Topics Encompass Makers, Youth, HamSCI

Rechargeable Batteries from Recycled Glass Store 4x More Energy

Google AI Engineers Defect, Start Own Company

Triad RF Systems Intros 5700-5900 MHz, 25W Bi-Directional Amplifier

Triad RF Systems Intros 5700-5900 MHz, 25W Bi-Directional Amplifier - RF CafeThe TTRM1090 GaAs amplifier operates at a frequency range of 5700 MHz to 5900 MHz and has a power output of 25 Watts, while still maintaining a compact form factor of 5.3 x 3.25 x 0.57 inches. This unit also features internal protection against over/under voltage and excessive temperature conditions, which coupled with its rugged construction, ensure fault-free operation in even the most extreme environments. This class A GaAs module is designed for both military and commercial applications. It is capable of supporting any ...

U.S. Radio and Television Stations January 15, 1948

U.S. Radio and Television Stations January 15, 1948, March 1948 Radio-Craft - RF CafeSignificant advances in electronics - and all other kinds of technology for that matter - occurred during World War II, which in conjunction with the U.S. government selling surplus equipment at the end of that war at very low prices, cause a boom in consumer electronics markets. The established radio business and the fledgling television markets were abetted by quickly expanding numbers of broadcast stations. This chart from early 1948 show the number of currently licensed AM, FM, and TV stations, with projections out 20 years to 1968. I don't have ..."

Wireless Device Using Open-Circuit Elements Has No Connections

Wireless Device Using Open-Circuit Elements Having No Electrical Connections - RF Cafe"NASA Langley Research Center has developed a wireless, connection-free, open-circuit technology that can be used for developing electrical devices such as sensors that need no physical contact with the properties being measured. At the core of the technology is the SansEC (Sans Electrical Connections) circuit, which is damage-resilient and environmentally friendly to manufacture and use. The technology uses a NASA award-winning magnetic field response ...

Pulse Analysis Techniques for Radar and Electronic Warfare

Pulse Analysis Techniques for Radar and Electronic Warfare - RF Cafe"Pulsed signals are widespread in radar and other electronic warfare (EW) applications, and they must be accurately measured for manufacturing, design of countermeasures, and threat assessment. Pulse measurements are an especially challenging area for signal analysis due to a combination of factors. Fortunately, many of the improving signal processing and analog-digital conversion technologies behind the generation of complex pulse environments also enable new techniques for effective pulse analysis. A real-time spectrum measurement of a multi-emitter ..."

Join Empower RF Systems at the EW Symposium Point Mugu

Join Empower RF Systems at the Electronic Warfare Symposium Point Mugu - RF CafeAs EW warfighting requirements continue to evolve in their complexity and interdependency, it is clear that future EW systems must work collaboratively with other air, ground, surface space and cyberspace systems. The need for multi-purpose, multimode, flexible software defined EW systems is being clearly and widely communicated by the DOD EW community. Empower RF has developed the world's first software definable high power RF amplifiers, an essential element for adaptable multi-mode EW systems. Come visit us to learn more at the Point Mugu Electronic Warfare ...

Infineon Joins 5G Automotive Association for Automated Driving

Infineon Joins 5G Automotive Association to Make Automated Driving a Reality - RF Cafe"Infineon Technologies has joined the 5G Automotive Association (5GAA), to contribute towards the creation of a 5G standard for cars. The association is working on the introduction of new communication solutions enabling connected automated driving and on intelligent transport systems. Infineon will provide key 5G technologies required for the autonomous car, and for electromobility. Secure communication with practically zero time delay is a critical requirement ..."

Negative Dielectric Constant Material Based on Ion-Conducting Materials

Negative Dielectric Constant Material Based on Ion-Conducting Materials - RF Cafe"NASA Langley Research Center has developed a novel negative dielectric constant material based on ion conducting materials. A negative dielectric constant material is an essential key for creating metamaterials, or artificial negative index materials (NIMs). NIMs have generated great attention due to their unique and exotic electromagnetic properties, and could be used for unique optical and microwave applications, including new methods of electromagnetic cloaking and extremely low loss communications ..."

Why Use a Triac?

Why Use a Triac?, April 1974 Popular Electronics - RF CafeTriacs are not a component often used in RF and microwave circuit design, but being conversant in its operation could make you popular at nerd parties. A triac is basically the equivalent of two SCRs connected back-to-back, allowing it to conduct on both the positive and negative half-cycles of an AC connection. Both devices are most commonly used in switching applications. The unique feature of an SCR and triac is that once the gate voltage is sufficiently high to begin conduction between the anode and cathode, it can be removed and conduction will continue until the anode-cathode voltage is removed ...

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