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Your RF Cafe
Airplanes and Rockets:
Each week, I select a new book that is relevant to engineers, scientists, students, hobbyists or managers. Most of the time they are sold through Amazon (I earn a few pennies on each sale), but when possible, I present books that are available in an e-book format that can be downloaded for free. The latter are much less available. After all, most people like to be paid for their work, as I'm certain that you do, too.
Note: I just began archiving these picks in May of 2009, but they have been going on since about 2003.
Synthesis Using Genesys S/Filter (Artech
House) Hardcover, by Randy Rhea. S/Filter includes tools beyond direct synthesis,
including a wide variety of both exact and approximate equivalent network transforms, methods
for selecting the most desirable out of potentially thousands of synthesized alternatives,
and a transform history record that simplifies design attempts requiring iteration. Very few
software programs are based on direct synthesis, and the additional features of S/Filter make
it a uniquely effective tool for filter design. This resource presents a practical guide to
using Genesys software for microwave and RF filter design and synthesis.
do a lot of my purchasing on Amazon for convenience, but also because that's where I can usually
find the best price and shipping is almost always free. They also have a no-hassle return
policy where if the problem is their fault, they pay return shipping; otherwise, you pay only
the cost to mail it back. If I need something that there is a fair chance it will need to
returned, I'll buy locally to avoid a potential return shipping cost. Cellphones are a good
example of finding a good price online. This unlocked
Samsung S5830 Galaxy Ace is a good example, as are of course just about any form of electronics,
tools, housewares, and of course movies, books, and software.
How to Diagnose and Fix Everything Electronic, by Michael Geier. Master the Art of Electronics Repair. In this hands-on guide, a lifelong electronics repair guru shares his tested techniques and invaluable insights. How to Diagnose and Fix Everything Electronic shows you how to repair and extend the life of all kinds of solid-state devices, from modern digital gadgetry to cherished analog products of yesteryear. You'll start by selecting the tools and test equipment you'll need and setting up your workbench. Then, you'll get familiar with components and how they form circuits, stages, and sections of a device. Next, you'll learn how to take a product apart, figure out what's wrong with it, replace components, and reassemble...
Essential Skills for Electrical Engineers, by Barry Dorr. Engineers know that, as in any
other discipline, getting a good job requires practical, up-to-date skills. An engineering
degree provides a broad set of fundamentals. Ten Essential Skills applies those fundamentals
to practical tasks required by employers. Written in a user-friendly, no-nonsense format,
the book reviews practical skills using the latest tools and techniques, and features a companion
website with interview practice problems and advanced material for readers wishing to pursue
additional skills. Aspiring and current engineers may approach job interviews confident in
their grasp of the engineering skills that their employers seek.
of RF and Microwave Transistor Amplifiers, by Inder Bahl. A comprehensive and up-to-date
treatment of RF and microwave transistor amplifiers. This book provides state-of-the-art coverage
of RF and microwave transistor amplifiers, including low-noise, narrowband, broadband, linear,
high-power, high-efficiency, and high-voltage. Topics covered include modeling, analysis,
design, packaging, and thermal and fabrication considerations. Through a unique integration
of theory and practice, readers will learn to solve amplifier-related design problems ranging
from matching networks to biasing and stability.
couple decades ago, you would expect to pay $100 for a good quality handheld DMM that measured
AC and DC current and voltage and maybe even power, plus had a few other functions like frequency
counting, and capacitance and transistor beta measurement. Now for about the same money, you
can buy a handheld digital oscilloscope (DSO) for about the same money. This 1 MHz bandwidth
RioRand DSO features 1 Msps, 12-bit sampling and a 320x240 pixel color LCD display.
is included. The price from Amazon is less than $90 with free shipping. If you need more bandwidth,
Owon HDS1021M provides a 20 MHz BW and also has a multimeter function for a tad over
the extra BW and 2 channels? Less than $400 gets you the
Owon HDS1022M-N with 20 MHz BW, or $800 for the
Owon HDS3102M-N with 2 channels and 100 MHz. This is a good time to add one to your
Circulator Design, 2nd Edition, by Douglas K. Linkhart. Circulator design has advanced
significantly since the first edition of this book was published 25 years ago. The objective
of this second edition is to present theory, information, and design procedures that will
enable microwave engineers and technicians to design and build circulators successfully. This
resource contains a discussion of the various units used in the circulator design computations,
as well as covers the theory of operation. This book presents numerous applications, giving
microwave engineers new ideas about how to solve problems using circulators. See
can't go wrong with a good Dilbert book like
I Sense a Coldness to Your Mentoring, by Scott Adams. Dilbert is the most photocopied,
pinned-up, downloaded, faxed, and e-mailed comic strip in the world. Dubbed "the cartoon hero
of the workplace" by the San Francisco Examiner, Dilbert has been syndicated since 1989 and
now appears in 2,000 newspapers in 65 countries and 25 languages.
Engineering, by David M. Pozar. Pozar's new edition of Microwave Engineering includes
more material on active circuits, noise, nonlinear effects, and wireless systems. Chapters
on noise and nonlinear distortion, and active devices have been added along with the coverage
of noise and more material on intermodulation distortion and related nonlinear effects. On
active devices, there's more updated material on bipolar junction and field effect transistors.
New and updated material on wireless communications systems, including link budget, link margin,
digital modulation methods, and bit error rates is also part of the new edition.
MIMO Antenna Engineering, by Mohammad Sharawi. Wireless communications has made a huge
leap during the past two decades. The multiple-input-multiple-output
(MIMO) technology was proposed in the 1990's as a viable solution that can overcome
the data rate limit experienced by single-input-single-output (SISO)
systems. This resource is focused on printed MIMO antenna system design. Printed antennas
are widely used in mobile and handheld terminals due to their conformity with the device,
low cost, good integration within the device elements and mechanical parts, as well as ease
is an item than can be worth it's weight in gold. At today's gold spot price of $1,283/oz.,
this 12.8-ounce Eclipse 900-056
Field Service ESD Protection Kit would be worth $16,422. OK, maybe that's overstated,
but depending on what type of equipment you happen to be working on, zapping an electronic
component because you failed to exercise proper ESD protection measures could potentially
(pun intended) cost that much. Silver closed at $19.39/oz., so
maybe it is a bit more realistic as it makes this ESD work station worth $248. That's about
the price of a replacement smartphone or midrange radio if you zap it while tinkering. Seriously,
though, if you work on microelectronics without adequate ESD protection measures, you're asking
for trouble. Even if you don't fry anything right away, you are likely to create the "walking
wounded" scenario where failure is imminent in the future. $34 for this ESD work mat is cheap
it's time you had your own
ESD-Safe Digital Soldering Iron Station. Whether you do your soldering at home, at work,
or at both places, having to tolerate a piece of junk soldering iron can be not only annoying,
and can cause irreparable damage to both components (heat, mechanical, and ESD) and circuits
boards (layer delamination and metal trace separation). Really nice programmable soldering
stations are available today at surprisingly low prices. Many models are available, but this
one even includes a fluorescent work lamp. It gets great reviews - just $90 including free
shipping. Don't wait for your company to finally supply you with a good soldering station
when you can buy one for the cost of a month of cellphone service.