Homepage Archive - December 2017 (page 3)

These archive pages are provided in order to make it easier for you to find items that you remember seeing on the RF Cafe homepage. Of course probably the easiest way to find anything on the website is to use the "Search RF Cafe" box at the top of every page.

Homepage Archive Pages

2018:  Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec
2017:  Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec
2016:  Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec
2015:  Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec
2014:  Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec
2013:  Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec

See Page 1 | 2 | 3 of the December 2017 homepage archives.

Sunday 31

RF Cafe Engineering Crossword Puzzle w/ Headlines December 31

RF Cafe Engineering Crossword Puzzle w/Weekly Headlines December 31, 2017At least 10 clues in this crossword puzzle with an asterisk (*) are pulled from this past week's (12/25 - 12/29) "Tech Industry Headlines" column on the RF Cafe homepage (see the Headline Archives page for help). For the sake of all the avid cruciverbalists amongst us, each week I create a new technology-themed crossword puzzle using only words related to engineering, science, mathematics, chemistry, physics, astronomy ...

Friday 29

Comics with an Electronics Theme

Comics with an Electronics Theme, December 1973 Popular Electronics - RF CafeGiven that this is the afternoon of the last workday of 2017, this is a good time to kick back and enjoy a couple more electronics-themed comics from vintage Popular Electronics magazines. RF Cafe officially does not recommend that anyone try using the temporary solution for a too-short antenna cable shown in the one comic ...

SIA Welcomes U.S. Tax Reform Bill - RF Cafe

SIA Welcomes U.S. Tax Reform Bill - RF Cafe"Congressional approval today of legislation to reform America's outdated corporate tax system is a welcome and long-overdue win for the U.S. semiconductor industry and a major step toward sustaining U.S. leadership in semiconductor research, design, and manufacturing. The bill includes several important provisions that SIA has long supported to improve the global competitiveness of U.S. semiconductor companies ..."

New Hologram Crystals Permanently Store Images

New Hologram Crystals Permanently Store Images, August 1972 Popular Electronics - RF CafeLithium niobate is used today as the substrate for surface acoustic wave (SAW) filters, oscillators, optical waveguides, and many other applications. It, along with barium niobate, was used experimentally by RCA for storing holographic optical images that can be read out later using a laser. This 1972 issue of Popular Electronics included a brief news item referencing the work being done. I could not locate any information that indicates any significant commercialization of the process. Patent US3799642 was awarded ..."

Radio & Wireless Week 2018

Radio & Wireless Week 2018 - RF CafeRWW consists of five related conferences that focus on the intersection between wireless communication theory, systems, circuits, and device technologies. This creates a unique forum for engineers to discuss various technologies for state-of-art wireless systems and their end-use applications. RWW2018 will be held at the Hyatt Regency Orange County in Garden Grove, California, 14 - 17 January 2018. The venue is located in the sun-splashed southern ...

High School Student Building His Own Integrated Circuits

High School Student Building His Own Integrated Circuits - RF Cafe"Electronics enthusiasts like being able to make things themselves. In IEEE Spectrum's Hands On column, we've detailed how readers can make their own solder reflow ovens, conductive ink, and synthetic aperture radars. But making DIY integrated circuits seemed impossibly out of reach. After all, building a modern fab is astronomically expensive: For example, in 2017 Intel announced it was investing $7B to complete a facility for making chips with 7-nanometer-scale features. But Sam Zeloof was not deterred. This 17-year-old high school student has started making chips in his ..."

Thursday 28

Linx Technologies Intros Dual-Band WiFi WRT Antenna

Linx Technologies Intros Dual-Band WiFi WRT Antenna - RF CafeExpanding the popular and proprietary Linx WRT line, the dual-band WiFi WRT antenna supports legacy 2.4 GHz WiFi and newer 5.8 GHz band applications, in a single, compact antenna. The dual-band WiFi WRT antenna has a low profile and tamper resistant design that is perfect for challenging applications such wireless vending, security, traffic, and power equipment. Installing through a small hole in the enclosure the dual-band WiFi WRT antenna has an integrated closed-cell PSA seal, protecting critical equipment from harsh, external elements. The dipole ...

This VC is Betting Next Silicon Valley to Be in Midwest

This VC is Betting Next Silicon Valley to Be in Midwest - RF Cafe"In 2013, venture capitalist Chris Olsen, a former partner at Sequoia Capital, left Silicon Valley to move to Ohio, where he’d just started Drive Capital. Even his movers thought he was nuts for leaving California for Ohio. 'They were like, 'Oh, sorry, man,' ' he says. Just a year or two earlier, Olsen would have agreed with them. When I was at Sequoia, he says, 'We passed on a company that was in Petaluma because that was too far from Silicon Valley.' Then, in 2011, one of his fellow Sequoia ..."

Practical Operating Limits for Filters

Practical Operating Limits for Filters, April 1969 Electronics World - RF CafeThe April 1969 issue of Electronics World magazine featured a collection of ten articles dealing with filter design and application, authored by experts in the field. This one discusses which filter types - lumped element (inductors and capacitors), distributed element (stripline, microstrip, etc.), waveguide, cavity - are best fitted for use based on the intended application. Power handling, rejection requirements, inband insertion loss, physical size, cost, stability over time, temperature, vibration, and moisture as common considerations. Sometimes the decision comes down to designer preference, manufacturing complexity, desire ...

Senior Firmware Design Engineer Wanted by Aethercomm

Senior Firmware Design Engineer Wanted by Aethercomm - RF CafeAethercomm designs and manufactures RF and Microwave amplifier modules, subsystems and systems. The majority of our work is custom. The reliability and effectiveness of thousands of Aethercomm products has been tested and proven in combat, helping to protect and save the lives of our warfighters. Aethercomm is looking to fill a Senior Firmware Design Engineer position. Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following: Develop firmware & digital circuit for power amplifiers and other electronics which could include FPGAs, CPLDs ...

3GPP Declares First 5G NR Spec Complete

3GPP Declares First 5G NR Spec Complete - RF Cafe"As expected, members of the 3GPP ratified the Non-Standalone (NSA) 5G New Radio (NR) specification for what will form the basis of commercial 5G products, capping off months of meetings and work to get consensus. The industry agreed earlier this year to accelerate the timeline so that at least part of the 5G standards work would be complete by the end of this year rather than having it all come due next summer. While some folks were skeptical about getting all the work done by now, many industry leaders were confident it would get done ..."

Wednesday 27

USAF Radar Tech Lloyd Hill Joins Our List of Past and Present

NWS Huntsville Lloyd Hill USAF Technician - RF CafeLloyd Hill joins the prestigious list of former and current USAF radar techs Lloyd went through tech school at Keesler AFB, MS - as did we all - in 1980. Since retiring as a Technical Sergeant, Lloyd has been working for the National Weather Service (NWS). He is identified in this historical document as one of the founding members of the NWS's first Weather Forecast Office in Huntsville, Alabama.

Mac's Service Shop: Cost of Color TV Service

Mac's Service Shop: Cost of Color TV Service, February 1969 Electronics World - RF CafeAs of this day (December 27), we are approaching the December 30 date whereon in the year 1953 the first commercially available color television set - the Admiral C1617A - went on sale. Mac McGregor and his repair shop technician, Barney, had been servicing color TVs since at least February 1955 as printed in a Radio & Television News story titled, "Barney Takes on Color." This particular edition laments the increasing cost of servicing color television sets as they get increasingly complex. Mac and Barney agree that one of the reasons for service cost is having to work with the newfangled printed circuit boards. Those early PCBs ...

Thanks to Antenna Test Lab Co for Continued Support!

Antenna Test Lab Co logoSince 2001, Antenna Test Lab Co has evaluated countless antennas and RF transmitter products. With a fully anechoic Antenna Test Lab Co Anechoic Chamber - RF Cafechamber, antennas can be quickly developed and RF products refined and deployed. Mounting surfaces like drywall, glass, wood, and even curved metal Antenna Test Lab Co 2D & 2D Patterns - RF Cafesimulated automobile available. The price for a standard resolution 2D or 3D field pattern plot is only $450 - for a passive or radiating antenna. That is an incredible deal!

A Few Great RF & Microwave Engineering Articles for December

A Few Great RF & Microwave Engineering Articles for December 2017 - RF Cafe5G and LTE are major topics in the daily news headlines, magazine articles, books, and seminars. I could have easily included twice as many articles in the following list with "5G" in the title. Items move onto and off of all homepages quickly, so even if you visit Microwave & RF, Microwave Journal, Microwave Product Digest, High Frequency Electronics, et al, regularly, you might have missed something in the list below.

- Coexistence of LTE and Radar Systems, by D. McCarthy & S. Heuel
-Making the Jump to Wide Bandgap
Power, by M. Slovick
- 5G: Is it Ready for Take Off?,
 by J. Kimery  <more ...>

Only 1/5 of World's Electronic Waste Tracked

Only 1/5 of World's Electronic Waste Tracked - RF Cafe"The amount of electronic waste produced worldwide - the refrigerators, televisions, computers, smartphones, and other devices thrown out or recycled - increased to 49.3M tons over the last year, up from 46.1M tons in 2014, according to a new report from the United Nations. But only around a fifth of that digital debris was collected and the precious metals inside recovered through formal recycling programs, even though that percentage increased from 15.5% in 2014. The rest falls ..."

Tuesday 26

26" of Snow in Erie Since Christmas Eve

December 25, 2017 Snow in Erie, Pennsylvania - RF CafeUpdate: Epic snowstorm hits Erie! More than 60" just since Christmas Eve!

We had 21" of snow here in Erie, PA, on Christmas day! That's a record breaker even for us. We just got back from visiting the kids in North Carolina and had nearly 30" total to clear in the driveway (not including drifts). It was kind of spooky watching on the webcam while the snow pile up. Thank goodness for snow blowers. I normally shovel by hand. but not this time. Going away in the winter in Erie is not smart.

The Importance of Filters

The Importance of Filters, April 1969 Electronics World - RF CafeFilters has always been one of my favorite topics. I gained a real appreciation for and understanding of them when drudging through the mathematics behind the curves in college courses. BTW, for anyone out there thinking about taking up engineering as a career; i.e., getting an engineering degree, it is vitally important that you fully comprehend the concept of Laplace and Fourier transforms because when you get to the point that you need to employ them in your primary classes. Having to struggle with the basic math while learning to apply it to circuits, mechanics, etc., will almost surely cause you to fail. Anyway, this ...

Triad RF Systems Intros a 30-2700 MHz, 8 W Bidirectional Amplifier

Triad RF Systems Intros a 30-2700 MHz, 8 W Bidirectional Amplifier - RF CafeTriad has released the TTRM1190, a wideband GaN BDA that operates from 30 MHz to 2700 MHz and produces over 8 W of TX power. One of the smallest BDAs in the industry measuring only 3.25 x 2.12 x 0.53 inches, this feature rich BDA is also one of the most efficient. While producing 8 W of RF power, it only consumes 24 W of DC power. It also produces over 2 W of linear 16 QAM with < 9% EVM. In order to operate on various existing platforms, the unit features a wide DC input range of +11 to +28 VDC. Switching between TX and RX at less than 1 μsec can be performed manually ...

Bill Gates Backs Startup to Bring Holographic Beamforming

Bill Gates Backs Startup to Bring Holographic Beamforming - RF Cafe"Holographic beamforming (HBF), a communications technique that is claimed to be superior to MIMO and digital beamforming, is being brought to market by Pivotal Commware Inc., a company that has secured $17M in a Series A round of investment. Pivotal Commware was founded in 2016 as a spin off from Intellectual Ventures Management LLC (Bellevue, Washington) and is an exclusive licensee of IV's metamaterials technology for use in terrestrial communications markets such ..."

Monday 25

Series-Pass Regulators

Series-Pass Regulators, March 1969 Electronics World - RF CafeA linear series-pass voltage regulator is about as simple a circuit as you can devise that will provide a reasonable degree of consistency. With as little as a Zener diode, a transistor, and a biasing resistor. The small parts count does not allow for temperature compensation, variable output voltage adjustment, overcurrent protection, etc., but for most instances it gets the job done. The disadvantage of a linear series-pass voltage regulator is that the larger the difference between the input and output voltage, the greater the inefficiency. That is because the total power dissipated by the circuit is the product ...

ASIS Wants to Know: Are You Spy Material?

After seeing this on a news website, I decided to risk embarrassing myself by taking the Australian Secret Intelligence Service's (ASIS) online preliminary spy qualification test. To gain entrance to the interviewer's office, you must first complete a number sequence on the elevator buttons. That was piece of cake; after all, I am an engineer don't you know! Things got really interesting from there. I soon began harkening back to the observation skills exhibited by Jason Borne and other über spies of filmdom. Surely nobody is that aware and able to remember many details of his surroundings. Evidently, real-life spies can. Click the thumbnail image above to see how I did ...

Thermal Photoluminescence from Semiconductor Nanocrystals

Thermally Activated Delayed Photoluminescence from Semiconductor Nanocrystals - RF Cafe"Researchers from North Carolina State University have found that the transfer of triplet excitons from nanomaterials to molecules also creates a feedback mechanism that returns some energy to the nanocrystal, causing it to photoluminesce on long time scales. The mechanism can be adjusted to control the amount of energy transfer, which could be useful in optoelectronic applications. Felix N. Castellano had previously shown that semiconductor nanocrystals ..."

Sunday 24

RF Cafe Engineering Crossword Puzzle w/Weekly Headlines Christmas 2017

RF Cafe Engineering Crossword Puzzle w/Weekly Headlines Christmas 2017Along with the standard fare of all tech-related words and clues, a holiday message to the RF Cafe faithful ;-) is integrated into this week's crossword puzzle. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Friday 22

Saelig Intros EMI Tent Enclosures for Benchtop Precompliance Tests

Saelig Intros Economical EMI Tent Enclosures for Benchtop Precompliance Tests - RF CafeSaelig Company has announced the TekBox TBST120/60/60/2 Shielded Tent which provides an economical RF/EMI-attenuated environment for a variety of bench-top "EMI quiet" applications. The TBST-120/60/60/2 is a compact shielded tent, designed to suppress interference from ambient noise during EMC pre-compliance measurements. With outer dimension of 4' x 2' x 2' it can accommodate pre-compliance test equipment such as LISNs or TEM ...

DJC - The Radio Voice of Germany

DJC - The Radio Voice of Germany, February 1935 Short Wave Craft - RF CafeThis 1935 article found in Short Wave Craft magazine quotes the DJC radio station engineer as saying that they transmitted with only 5 kW into the farm of directional antenna arrays, and that it was sufficient to provide what was evidently very high quality reception to many remote regions of the world. Adolph Hitler had become "Führer und Reichskanzler" the year before, with plans already in the works to dominate the world. Troops invaded Poland on September 1, 1939, officially beginning WWII. DJC's global reach was used extensively for propaganda during the war ...

Christmas Caroling via HF from Antarctica Set for December 23

Christmas Caroling via HF from Antarctica Set for December 23 - RF Cafe"Each year, the 'residents' of McMurdo Station, Antarctica, celebrate Christmas by singing and sharing Christmas Carols via HF - using a non-Amateur Radio frequency just above 40 meters - for those at remote Antarctic field camps. They'll be doing it again in 2017, on Saturday, December 23, at 2300 UTC. 'Multiple stations are involved, each with different equipment,' explained Nathaniel Frissell, W2NAF, an assistant research professor at New Jersey Institute of Technology who has been part of the chorus in the past. 'McMurdo Station and ..."

RF Test Engineer Wanted by Aethercomm

RF Test Engineer Wanted by Aethercomm - RF CafeAethercomm designs and manufactures RF and Microwave amplifier modules, subsystems and systems. The majority of our work is custom. The reliability and effectiveness of thousands of Aethercomm products has been tested and proven in combat, helping to protect and save the lives of our warfighters. Aethercomm is looking to fill a RF Test Engineer position. Essential Duties and Responsibilities include the following: Monitor creation and maintain quality control of test documentation, test reports and documentation organization ...

Quantum Material Has Shark-Like Ability to Detect Small Electrical Signals

'Quantum Material' Has Shark-Like Ability to Detect Small Electrical Signals - RF Cafe"A quantum material that mimics a shark's ability to detect the minute electric fields of small prey has been shown to perform well in ocean-like conditions, with potential applications from defense to marine biology. The material maintains its functional stability and does not corrode after being immersed in saltwater, a prerequisite for ocean sensing. Surprisingly, it also functions well in the cold, ambient temperatures typical of seawater, said Shriram Ramanathan ..."