Getting involved in an insurance claim scam,
whether intentionally or unintentionally, can profoundly affect the future of a
business. Mac McGregor, of course, would never consider bilking any customer be
it a person or
insurance company. Diligent bookkeeping, annotation, and on-the-record statements
from claimants seeking his repair services were in 1956 (when this story appeared
in Radio & Television News) and are today the keys to covering your
posterior. Also mentioned is a scheme to electromechanically make dynamic adjustments
to a tape recorder's read/write head in order to compensate for minute skew angles
of the magnetic tape media as it feeds through the machine. Many of the topics covered
in the Mac's Service Shop episodes concern real-life products, research, or processes,
so my guess is that Mac's reference to a friend applying for a patent on this tape
head scheme was an actual invention. Reading about the dynamic head positioning
idea reminds me of how all new giant telescopes ...
The old saying that "Ground is ground the
world around" might be true in the general sense when referring to signals with
a large signal-to-noise ratio and impedances don't matter much, but when it comes
to having electrical signals and power sources keeping within their intended domains,
often times a simple, single ground plane connection is not the best solution. In
Part 4 of his series "The Chronicles of GND," author Kendall Castor-Perry discusses
supply currents. Says Mr. Castor-Perry, 'I was going to take a break from 'The Chronicles
of GND.' But 'Push Me, Pull Me' resulted in a surge of correspondence - much of
it criticism that I had not included any diagrams of the various forms of current
flow in the output stages I described in that post. So, the first thing I intend
with this post is to include diagrams to illustrate ..."
Unless otherwise annotated, U.S. Government
publications are deemed to be in the public domain for American citizens. Since
government websites are famous for moving pages around and/or eliminating them entirely,
I went ahead and captured this copy of the
wire-wrapping workmanship standards as defined by NASA. In fact, many moons
ago when working as an electronics technician at the Westinghouse Oceanic Division
in Annapolis, MD, I attended a week-long class learning to perform soldering, wire-wrapping,
and PCB rework per NASA standards. My work involved a lot of building electronic
and mechanical assemblies for DoD and aerospace systems, and U.S. Navy inspectors
were on-site to perform inspections on everything I built ...
"Lockheed Martin and Penn State University have
developed an innovative antenna technology that is now under consideration for use
in next-gen GPS satellite payloads. They worked together to dramatically improve
the design of the conventional short
backfire antenna by significantly increasing its aperture efficiency
(gain), without affecting its rugged and compact design, nor increasing its weight.
This type of antenna was originally developed in the 1960s at the Air Force Research
Lab. Since then, it has been used in many ground, sea and space applications, perhaps
most notably in the communication between NASA and the Apollo spacecraft, and it
is still in use on terrestrial communication antenna towers today ..."
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If you believe this 1953 advertisement in
Radio & Television News magazine, engineering at Bell Telephone Laboratories
wire-wrapping process. A little additional research shows that indeed it was
a Bell Telephone engineering team led by Arthur Keller who developed the method
and a wire-wrap tool to do the job. Field technician needed a fast, durable, and
reliable electrical connection when making hundreds or thousands of splices at relay
stations and while up on telephone poles. The key to making a good wire-wrap connection
is sharp corners on the wrapping post so that the corner pushes through any oxidation
or contaminant on the bare wire. NASA and the DoD have exacting workmanship standards
to guarantee ...
"Researchers at Intel and UC Berkeley are
working on a new transistor technology based on
magnetoelectric and spin-orbit materials that offers several
advantages over CMOS. According to Ramamoorthy Ramesh, a UC Berkeley professor of
Materials Science and Engineering, projections show that the explosion of sensors
and computing devices that will constitute the Internet of Things (IoT) - numbering
perhaps in the billions - could lead to such an increase in energy demand that electronic
devices could comprise as much as 20% of all energy consumed. That's a drastic increase
compared with 4-5% today. And just that is enough to justify the search for a new,
more energy efficient computing architecture. However, a second challenge has to
do with computationally intensive ..."
In the light of recent urgent news about
an unexplained, sudden uptick in the migration rate of Earth's magnetic field, this
chapter on magnetism from the U.S. Navy's training course is especially interesting.
Figure 83 is a snapshot of the
magnetic variation (aka declination) isogonic lines as they were around 1945,
when this manual was published. I say "snapshot" because those lines are constantly
changing. Magnetic declination (variation) is the difference between magnetic north
(or south) pole as indicated by a magnetic compass, and the true geographic north
(or south) pole around which the earth rotates. Magnetism records locked up in rocks
and plants, combined with records kept by ancient mariners who compared compass
readings with those obtained from sextants provide the data. As you can see in the
animation posted on Wikipedia, the magnetic declination changes significantly. The
advent of satellite-based navigation ...
hybrid detector design from the folks at Sandia National Laboratory
is a combination of a high dynamic range linear amplifier and a logarithmic amplifier.
"Many applications require detection of both very small and very large signals.
High-gain detector amplifiers provide low noise, but are easily swamped by large
signals. Logarithmic amplifiers provide a wide range, but contribute to distortion.
Auto-ranging circuits lose data when switching between low and high gain. Detecting
over a wide range is especially challenging for modern, low-supply-voltage integrated
circuits. Transimpedance amplifiers can be used to convert an input current signal
into an output voltage signal. This is useful for processing current signals generated
by photodetectors ..."
"Chinese officials on Friday released more
imagery from the Chang'e 4 mission, a robotic lander and rover exploring the far
side of the moon after a successful landing January 3. The imagery released Friday
included a new view of China's
Yutu 2 rover captured by a camera aboard the Chang'e 4 lander,
a panoramic vista of the austere lunar landscape, and a sped-up video showing the
spacecraft’s final descent to the moon from the view of the probe’s descent camera.
Chang'e 4 was set to enter a low-power sleep mode Sunday as the sun set on the landing
site in Von Karman crater, a bowl-shaped depression measuring around 110 miles in
diameter located in the southern hemisphere of the far side of the moon ..."
Centric RF is a company offering from stock
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levels from 0.5-500 watts are available off the sheld. Order today, ship today!
Centric RF is currently looking for vendors to partner with them. Please visit Centric
RF today ...
Other than for DC power supply applications
where you might need to implement current steering and/or redundancy schemes, there
are not too many times when a combination of transistors and/or diodes would be
used for logic circuitry in place of integrated circuits. That has not always been
the case. Early packaged IC blocks were expensive compared to discrete components,
so both hobbyists and professional designers often used a combination of technologies.
Resistor-transistor logic (RTL) and diode-transistor logic (DTL), emitter-coupled,
logic (ECL), and other variations were covered in a 1969 Radio-Electronics
article by titled "How IC's Work: Integrated Circuit Logic Families." This piece
provides a little more insight into the construction of those families and shows
how to construct logical combinations using diodes and NOR gates ...
The January issue of NASA Tech Briefs
magazine has an article titled "3D Printing: The Impact of Post-Processing," which discusses
the common misconception that incorporating 3D printing into a manufacturing process
is a guaranteed time and money saver. In reality, most 3D components require some
post-processing that can be very labor-intensive, which can wipe out any anticipated
savings. Fine modeling skills are often needed for those tasks, meaning good jobs
for people with modeling building skills. A couple months ago Glenn Robb, of
Antenna Test Lab,
published a couple articles on his efforts to 3D-print feed horns. Post-processing
included smoothing the printed layer ridges and painting the surfaces with metallic
paint. 3D printing in most cases still has a long way to go before the ultimate
finished-product output is realized ...
"The prospective peacetime applications of
radar are beyond prediction. Among the more obvious are those relating to navigational
aids and collision prevention. In some of these uses it will be a case of radar
replacing radio." That was 74 years ago when real-world radar was still in its infancy
that futurists were prognosticating on potential uses for radar beyond its use for
the war effort. Just a month after the April issue of QST was published, the war
in Europe ended (V-E Day, May 8, 1945), and four months after that the war in Japan
ended (V-J Day, August 14, 1945). Editor DeSoto would be utterly amazed at just
how widespread radar is today. It not only surveys the airways for commercial, military,
and civilian craft, but also for marine and land traffic, orbiting spacecraft, and
planetary science ...
Rohde & Schwarz is running a new promotion
called "Buy a Scope – Get a Probe!" Purchase an R&S®RTM3000 or an
R&S®RTA4000 and get a probe for free. High-quality measurements require the
right probing solution. With this promotion, customers get a free oscilloscope probe
if they buy an R&S®RTM3000 or R&S®RTA4000 with the R&S®RTM‑PK1 or R&S®RTA-PK1
application bundle. They can choose one of six different probes that are specially
designed for specific applications. Their individual parameters are optimized for
digital protocol decoding applications, power integrity analysis or power electronics
"To better protect the global electronics
and IT supply chain, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is looking at
solutions that can track and authenticate computer hardware components as they are
manufactured, shipped and assembled around the globe.
Resold and recycled components degrade the reliability and security
of many systems used by the Defense Department. The Pentagon has known about the
problem for decades and in 2012 issued comprehensive guidance to DOD program and
procurement managers to crack down on the problem, with a particular emphasis on
electronic parts and components. However, the increasingly complex nature of the
global supply chain means that even primary government contractors have difficulty ..."
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"Scientists at the Harvard A. Paulson School
of Engineering and Applied Sciences have created a new way to store light in an
integrated circuit. The integrated photonics platform also allows them to electronically
control the frequency of thelight being stored. Scientists believe their new system could
have a vast array of applications including microwave photonics, photonic quantum
information processing, and optical signal processing, to name a few. Scientists
have long hoped to harness microwave signals for such work. Unfortunately, they
had always proven to interact far too weakly with electrons to prove effective.
That's what led scientists to try a different method, using lithium niobate. This
is a material with powerful electro-optic properties ..."
Sam Benzacar, of RF and microwave filter
company Anatech Electronics, has penned this piece titled, "5G
Fact and Fiction" as part of his January newsletter. Sam keeps abreast of all
the latest news in the wireless world, which is not unexpected given his company's
long-time involvement in helping others make their products play well together in
an increasingly crowded electromagnetic spectrum - both licensed and unlicensed.
The term "5G" is still a relatively fuzzy entity whose definition is still being
constructed by the telecom industry's engineers, marketeers, and the news media.
Also included are a few other topics including Google's high power automotive radar,
5G at this year's CES show, Ford's cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) scheme,
and the Bluetooth SIG push for IoT ...
On January 29, at 11 am ET, Rohde & Schwarz's
Reiner Stuhlfauth will present a free webinar titled, "How LTE-A Pro Paves the Way for 5G New Radio." This webinar
provides a technology dive into the LTE-A Pro features, showing the flexibility
and variety of LTE use cases and service scenarios. The features are presented from
the perspective of the 5G service triangle - supporting higher data rates including
LAA, enhanced CA, LWA, MUST and SC-PTM, massive machine type communications including
LTE-M and NB-IoT enhancements and ultra-reliable low latency services such as C-V2X.
LTE-A Pro will play an essential role in 5G deployments. For example, option 3,
the non-standalone (NSA) mode ...
first full moon, known as the Wolf Moon, is the biggest and brightest full moon
of 2019 - a 'supermoon' in modern parlance. It was also a long duration (1
hour and 2 minutes) total lunar eclipse. The technical name for this special combination
is the perigee-syzygy of the Earth-Moon-Sun system. The moon reached fullness at
00:17 EST and perigee at 14:59 EST on the 21st. The moon is full when the earth
is between the sun and the moon, and the moon is new when it is between the sun
and Earth. The picture below was taken out of my back door, at around 9:30 pm local
time (Erie, PA), at the beginning of the penumbral phase of the eclipse (not apparent
in the photo). The outside temperature was about 5 °F and the wind was howling
pretty good - quite appropriate for this Wolf Moon ...
"In the 1970s, at the height of the Cold
War, American military planners began to worry about the threat to U.S. warplanes
posed by new, radar-guided missile defenses in the Soviet Union and other nations.
In response, engineers at places like U.S. defense giant Lockheed Martin's famous
Skunk Works stepped up work on stealth technology that could shield aircraft from
the prying eyes of enemy radar. This advantage is now under threat. In November
2018, China Electronics Technology Group Corporation, China's biggest defense electronics
company, unveiled a prototype radar that it claims can detect stealth aircraft in
flight. The radar uses some of the exotic phenomena of
quantum physics to help reveal planes' locations ..."
Since 1961, MECA
Electronics has designed and manufactured an extensive line of
RF & microwave
components for in-building, satellite, radar, radio, telemetry, mobile radio,
aviation & ATC. Attenuators, directional & hybrid couplers, isolators &
circulators, power dividers & combiners, loads, DC blocks, bias-Ts and adapters &
cables. MECA has long been the 'backbone' of high performance wired and air-interfaced
networks such as in-building applications, satellite communications, radar, radio
communications, telemetry applications, mobile radio, aviation & air traffic
Here is a little technology humor to help
easy you into the week ahead. Ironically, the themes of the three
comics (by three separate artists) represent an evolution of the electronics
realm over the past few decades, although almost certainly not planned by the editors.
The first has to do with a couple TV servicemen installing an antenna, the second
is of an out-of-work TV repairman, and the third is what might be considered a drone
by today's norms. There is a huge list of other comics at the bottom of the page ...
If the history of radar intrigues you, then
you will not want to miss this article titled "Radar:
The Silent Weapon of World War 2," from the October 1945 edition of
Radio News. There are a couple dozen photos of early radar equipment installations
on land, ships, and aircraft. Radar pioneers Dr. A. Hoyt Taylor, Chief Consultant
and Chief Coordinator of Electronics at Naval Research Laboratory, and Leo C. Young
are pictured reminiscing over the "scope" of radar's history beside the first radar
set at the Research Laboratory. In 1922, while experimenting with communications
equipment for the Navy, the two men made the initial discovery of distortion in
radio reception caused by the intrusion of objects between the transmitter and receiver.
Working from this discovery, they and a number of associates made great strides
forward into the vast sphere of scientific fields covered by the word "radar"
today. Do you see the name(s) of anyone you know? ...
There is no shortage of vintage electronics
aficionados who love nothing more than to spend countless hours - and sometimes
dollars - restoring and preserving the memory of the products that appeared along
the evolutionary path leading to modern electronics. David Goodsell documented his
Heathkit EC−1 Analog Computer project on the Nuts &
Volts magazine website. He, as do many hobbyists, even stuffed the cardboard
cases of the original electrolytic capacitors with modern replacements in order
to retain the authentic look. Prices on eBay for some of the vintage equipment has
gotten pretty outrageous. He paid more than $400 for this example ...
RF Superstore, an RF and microwave component
supply outlet created by Pasternack founder Murray Pasternack, announces the
V60-282 Transmitter and
Receiver. They are advanced, highly integrated V-band waveguide modules that
meet the demanding high-speed, low-cost production requirements of today's developers.
These silicon-based 60 GHz waveguide modules utilize the license-free V-band millimeter
wave spectrum of 57 GHz to 64 GHz. Low Cost, Easy Integration The cost-effective
V60-282 and V60-283 silicon germanium (SiGe) chip-based waveguide modules are easy
to integrate. Small and lightweight, the waveguide modules feature a unique chip
to waveguide transition. This radio transmitter operates in the license-free frequency
range of 57 to 64 GHz ...
"Despite limited space within a single mobile
device, one group of researchers has identified a new dual antenna design that could
allow phones to access both LTE and 5G networks. With any transition between old
and new generations of technology, there are compatibility issues. The transition
to 5G wireless communication is no different. One hurdle to be overcome in this
transition involves incorporating, within a single phone, new antennas that can
support the millimeter wavelengths of signals on 5G networks alongside existing
antennas that support the longer wavelengths transmitted by LTE networks. In a new
proof-of-concept study ..."
Rohde & Schwarz develops, produces and
test & measurement, information and communications technology.
Focus is on test and measurement, broadcast and media, cybersecurity, secure communications,
monitoring and network testing. Markets serviced are wireless, the automotive industry,
aerospace and defense, industrial electronics, research and education, broadcast
and media network operations, consumer electronics, cybersecurity for business and
governments, communications and security solutions for critical infrastructures
and the armed forces, reconnaissance equipment for homeland and external security,
and much more ...
Each week, for the sake of all avid cruciverbalists
amongst us, I create a new
technology-themed crossword puzzle using only words from my custom-created lexicon
related to engineering, science, mathematics, chemistry, physics, astronomy, etc.
You will never find among the words names of politicians, mountain ranges, exotic
foods or plants, movie stars, or anything of the sort. You might, however, see someone
or something in the exclusion list who or that is directly related to this puzzle's
theme, such as Hedy Lamarr or the Bikini Atoll, respectively. Enjoy ...