is the official publication of the Amateur Radio Relay League (ARRL), the world's oldest and largest organization
for Ham radio enthusiasts. Many amateur radio operators also have an interest in astronomy and as such, occasionally
articles appear covering topics on
amateur radio astronomy. There are also quite a few articles dealing indirectly with aspects of astronomy
such as Earth-Moon-Earth (EME) communications where signals are bounced off the moon's surface in order to facilitate
transmission (although it is really more of a hobby achievement). The October 2012 edition of QST had an article
entitled, "Those Mysterious Signals*," which discusses galactic noise in the 10-meter band. Arch Doty (W7ACD)
writes about the low-level background noise that is persistent in the high frequency (HF) bands. At HF, Cygnus A
and Cassiopeia A are major sources of cosmic noise, for example. Low level signals come from pulsars...
November edition of HFE is now online for the non-tree-killers and/or the technophile-cum-e-reader types amongst
Sensors without Batteries, byAli Abedi
Benefits of Mixed Dielectrics When Used for High-Frequency PCB Applications, by John Coonrod
Enterprises introduces their new line of 100 Watt
high power attenuators.
This new line of attenuators is perfect for applications requiring reliable and consistent frequency levels up
to 6 GHz. Pasternack Enterprises’ line of
high power RF attenuators
operate from DC to 6 GHz and have an average power rating of 100 Watts, with peak power handling capabilities
of 2,000 Watts from -55 to +125° C. High power fixed attenuators from Pasternack are constructed with
lightweight, but strong anodized aluminum heatsink bodies and can be ordered with passivated stainless steel SMA,
TNC and N connectors, and silver plated brass 7/16 DIN connectors. Pasternack's high power coax attenuators are
manufactured with large cooling fins.
Ohms is a regular feature of Design News that presents submissions from readers about troubleshooting challenges
and how they were solved. This one is titled "Strange
Case of the High VSWRs" The author discovers test equipment setup issues.
RF Systems introduced the Model TA1011,
a compact GaAs RF power amplifier module that delivers over 20 W peak power from 1700 to 2000 MHz (other
bands available) and is well suited for both wireless communications and CW applications including radar, electronic
warfare, medical, and measurement systems. The
TA10111 incorporates linear circuits
that raise the OIP3 to +60 dBm which allows this small amplifier to produce over 4 Watts of linear,
10 MHz LTE. It has gain of 50 dB, return loss of -14 dB (1.5:1 VSWR), rise and fall times
of less than 1 µs, accepts a maximum RF input of +10 dBm and has a 30 dB RF Sample Port.
Model No. PEC-14-127-8-12-SFF-1
is an ultra-broadband amplifier that operates over the frequency range of 1.0 to 26.5 GHz. This model provides
gain of 13 to 17 dB and has a maximum gain flatness of ±1.5 dB. The maximum noise figure is 5.5 dB
from 1.0 to 20.0 GHZ and 6.0dB from 20.0 to 26.5GHz. This amplifier can handle input power levels up to +10 dBm
with no damage and the Input IP3 is +3 dBm minimum.
is an advertisement for Hytron
Corporation that I scanned from page 83 of my copy of the June 1944 QST magazine. Hytron was a manufacturer
of electron tubes. "So Many Owe So Much To So Few," reds the title line. That is a paraphrase of Winston Churchill's
famous statement during World War II, "Never
in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few." That was in August 21, 1940, more than
a year before the U.S. entered the war. Perhaps of greater interest to RF Cafe visitors are the next lines: "In
peace, the Nation's debt to the radio amateur was great. During hurricanes, floods, and other disasters, he sprang
forward with emergency communications. His endless hours of patient experimentations - particularly on the high
and ultrahigh frequencies - helped open up, as if by magic, whole new segments of the radio spectrum. Traffic
enthusiasts surprised the people with unselfish service; DX hounds fostered international goodwill."
to Antenna Simulation with COMSOL Multiphysics, Thursday, November 29, 2 PM ET. The COMSOL Multiphysics RF
Module is well-suited for the modeling of antennas. In this webinar, a classical dipole antenna model will be
built and solved from scratch. All of the key steps in the software will be addressed. More complex models will
be introduced, and applicability in Multiphysics areas such as RF and tissue heating, as well as thermal drift
and deformation modeling will be discussed.
Plastics has announced the release the “Introduction
to Thermoforming and Vacuum Forming Whitepaper”. Mayfield constructed the guide because they realize that
many people, including designers and engineers, do not completely understand the plastic forming process. Often
confused with injection molding and rotational-molding, thermoforming processes are unique and have distinct differences
for a variety of applications. Thermoforming produces
custom plastic enclosures that
are durable, cost-effective, high quality and aesthetically appealing while offering close tolerances, tight specifications
and sharp detail.
is offering an array of software demonstrations, lectures, and partner presentations at the
Microwave Workshops and Exhibition 2012
Yokohama, Japan from November 28 through November 30.
AWR’s booth #A305
demonstrations of the AWR Design Environment include: Analyst for 3D EM analysis, Power amplifier design using
digital predistortion for linearity improvement, High performance circuit envelope simulation ,Radar system simulation
using Visual System Simulator™ (VSS) and comprehensive radar libraries, Antenna design using AXIEM®, Microwave
Office™/AXIEM for PCB verification via ODB++, Matching circuit synthesis using iMatch and filer synthesis using
according to Derek Lowe
(aka 'The Contrarian'). In his October 2012 article that appeared in
Discover magazine, Mr. Lowe cites the following
statistics to support his assertion: Of 633e3 graduate-level students in science, engineering, and health fields
in 2012, less than ¼ secure a tenure track academic job within 5 years of earning a Ph.D. Of 63e3 postdoc
appointees in the same group, up 45% from 2000, many cannot find permanent employment. A 3%
(doesn't seem like that much to me) decrease from 2006 to 2010 in federal
non-defense R&D funding harms science-related job
seekers. The overarching theme is that the problem is not a deficit of graduates, but a glut of high quality
candidates for employers. He also published an article on the same topic earlier in the year titled, ".No,
America Does NOT Need More Scientists and Engineers" It's a thing with him.
Mountain Technologies is changing the way Vector Network Analyzers are incorporated in lab and production
environments. The company’s unique virtual VNAs deliver highly accurate measurements at half the cost of traditional
VNAs. Leveraging breakthrough advances in RF technology, CMT’s Planar VNAs provide high measurement accuracy,
a wide dynamic range, a familiar UI and a broad variety of standard features. By developing VNAs that utilize
external PCs, CMT offers users flexibility, portability, improved security and upgradeability.
would have guessed that you need the blessing of the U.S. Department of State if you want to make and sell spacesuits?
Yep, spacesuits are classified as weapons since, by
(yeah, a non sequitur), if you have the capability to attain a presence
at an altitude that requires a spacesuit, you can be a strategic threat to the nation. Here is a story about a
startup company in Brooklyn, NY, that found out the hard way about the
spacesuit-weapon requirement. There is a rapidly growing demand for functional-yet-stylish spacesuits for
safeguarding wealthy space tourists who will soon be blasting off to the top of Earth's atmosphere where space
officially begins (at about 50 miles / 80 km). BTW, I tried
finding the official policy on spacesuit production the Department
of State website, but their search engine keeps failing - must be busy deleting files on the
of the RF & microwave magazines have updated their online editions for November, so here are a few you might
like to check out. A lot of the articles end up being way over my head in theoretical applications, so I tend
to stick with practical stuff that most of us can use. You be your own judge, though.
Emerging RF Technologies
for Smartphones and Connected Devices, by Ben Thomas, RFMD
Why Test Instrument
Frequency Range Matters When Conducting Signal Integrity Measurements, by Bob Buxton
Just Under the Radar:
Where Does It Go From Here?
Bob Pinato, MPD Editorial Advisor
Continue to Advance, by
Frost & Sullivan
is an advertisement for Delco Radio
that I scanned from page 77 of my copy of the June 1944 QST magazine. "What's Magic About Electrons?,"
is the question asked. Answer: "The magic about electrons is man's ingenuity in putting them to work. The magic
about electrons is their promise of service in marvelous ways only hinted at in the last few years. Now harnessed
for war, the science of electrons will later work to enrich the peace. Working in close cooperation with Army
and Navy engineers, Delco Radio has applied its knowledge and skill in putting electronics actively and effectively
into the fight for Victory. In Delco's laboratories, principles are explored and exploited; in Delco's engineering
departments, designs are evolved to apply these principles; and on Delco's production line, complete equipment
is manufactured with the speed and skill that only a large manufacturer of precision radio instruments can
bring to such work."
December 2012 edition of Scientific American
has a short article discussing how much information not just Big Bro but also the Internet search engines has
on you - both from a historical perspective and in real time. In the former case the purpose is for
surveillance and exploitation for a blackmail motive
if the need arises, and in the later case for exploitation with a profit motive since the need always arises.
Your cellphone is a godsend to such amassers of personal data. As reported, services like
Skyhook† know that you are most likely to
click on a smartphone advertisement if, based on your phone's location data, they discover you are sitting in
a movie theater before the film starts rolling, if you are at home on a Sunday morning, or if you are in the middle
of a lake fishing. That is when the ad services charge companies the highest fees for serving a clickable promo
to your phone. With enough data, they can deduce your personal identity. Maybe that can be used to set up an ambush
by a hacker who gets access to it. Nice, eh? You are soooo... predictable!
* Per their website, "PlaceIQ extracts context and meaning from location data
and organizes this into actionable intelligence about a hyper local location."
† - “There's no part
of society that's not going to use these data,” says Ted Morgan, CEO of Skyhook
witnesses play a big role in most - if not all - of the court cases that get reported here on RF Cafe.
is a law firm specializing in expert witnesses. Every month or so they send me an article about specific court
cases that could be of interest to my visitors. This particular installment is titled, "Experts
Face Fewer Challenges in Court, Survey Says" and reports that after a decade of increases, in the year 2011
a large drop in the numbers of court challenges to expert witnesses' testimony has been observed. Surprisingly,
nearly half of the experts' opinions were successfully challenged. The leading reason for dismissing expert testimony:
lack of reliability. Who would've guessed that a person getting paid to advocate a point of view might not be
the most credible client.
Model No. QC-5D3G6G is a quadrature
coupler that operates over the frequency range of 5.3 to 6.0 GHz. This model provides low loss of 1 dB
and an isolation of 18 dB minimum. The VSWR is 1.4:1 maximum into a 50 ohm impedance. The amplitude
balance is ±0.7 dB maximum and the phase balance is ±5 degrees maximum.
Ohms is a regular feature of Design News that presents submissions from readers about troubleshooting challenges
and how they were solved. This one is titled "Lightning
Knocks out Aircraft Compass." Lots of people have magnetization stories to tell, evidently.
Microwave is celebrating its 25th anniversary as a valued supplier of passive microwave components covering the
frequency range of 10 kHz to 40 GHz with both narrow band and ultra-broadband products for the wireless communications
markets. ISO and RoHS.
Model No. PE2-42-2G-2R0-15-SFF
is a low-noise amplifier that operates over the frequency range of 1.4 to 2.4 GHz. This model provides gain
of 42 dB minimum with a typical noise figure of 1.8 dB. The output power at 1 dB gain compression
is +22 dBm typical and the output IP3 is +30 dBm typical. This amplifier is supplied in our standard
PE2 housing that can be used with SMA connectors or as surface mount.
the sake of avid cruciverbalists, each week I create a new
crossword puzzle that has a theme related
to engineering, mathematics, chemistry, physics, and other technical words. You will never be asked the name of
a movie star unless he/she was involved in a technical endeavor (e.g., Hedy Lamar).
our inception in 1996 in Korea, ISOTEC has been a leading manufacturer of custom designed RF and Microwave Filters
and sub-system products for wireless service providers. We provide recognized and trusted products and service
to our customers in more than 30 countries worldwide. ISOTEC offers an extensive product mix with filters and
Multiplexers that satisfy requirements from 100 kHz to 20 GHz. RF Connectors and cable assemblies are
also present in our product portfolio.
Basics: From Semiconductor Manufacturing to Use, Steven H. Voldman (he was my
Semiconductors class professor for two semesters at UVM) The text is unique in covering semiconductor chip
manufacturing issues, ESD semiconductor chip design, and system problems confronted today as well as the future
of ESD phenomena and nano-technology. Extensive coverage on the fundamentals of electrostatics, triboelectric
charging, and how they relate to present day manufacturing environments of micro-electronics to nano-technology,
semiconductor manufacturing handling and auditing processing to avoid ESD failures ESD, EOS, EMI, EMC, and latchup,
component and system level testing to demonstrate product resilience from human body model (HBM), transmission
line pulse (TLP), charged device model (CDM), human metal model (HMM), cable discharge events (CDE), to system
level IEC 61000-4-2 tests, and ESD on-chip design and process manufacturing practices.
Jin Technology Innovations designs, manufactures, and assembles
RF connectors, cable assemblies, arresters, attenuators,
adaptors, bias Tees, filters, terminations,
directional couplers, power combiners, power dividers. Competitive price, on-time delivery and best quality. No
minimum order size. One-day delivery.
Job Site Alerts are mailed out periodically with a handful or so of job hunting tips.
The 10 Non-California Tech Companies You Wish You Worked For (note: 37 Signals'
Jason Fried writes a great monthly column in Inc
Are You Ready for the Phone Interview?
Burgeoning Microelectronics Sector Expects Jobs Growth
Science, Technology & Engineering Professionals with Government Each year,
IEEE-USA sponsors government fellowships for three qualified
IEEE members. The fellows — chosen by the
IEEE-USA Government Fellows Committee
and confirmed by the Board — spend a year
in Washington serving as advisers to the U.S. Congress and to key
U.S. Department of State decision-makers. Known as either a Congressional
Fellowship or an Engineering & Diplomacy Fellowship, this program links science, technology and engineering
professionals with government, and provides a mechanism for IEEE's U.S. members to learn firsthand about the public
policy process while imparting their knowledge and experience to policymakers.
is a big potential [pun intended] problem for modern electronics. Ultra small gate thicknesses and overall geometry
miniaturization of ICs makes for vulnerability to shocks. All new IC designs incorporate some level of
ESD protection, but discrete devices
like transistors often do not. Low voltage electronics that operate off of just a couple volts are using super
small capacitors and resistors that are only rated for 6.3 V. Improperly designed circuits can easily be
taken out when you grab your cellphone or iPod on a cold, arid day. Design News' Charles Murray has sage advice
for dodging such hazards:
Read your datasheet. I would also suggest also researching the plethora of papers and books written on the
year the Foundational Questions Institute (FQXi)
holds an essay contest inviting writers to submit missives addressing the question chosen by the FQXi board as
being particularly thought-provoking. In their words, "FQXi catalyzes, supports, and disseminates research on
questions at the foundations of physics and cosmology, particularly new frontiers and innovative ideas integral
to a deep understanding of reality, but unlikely to be supported by conventional funding sources." The 2011 question
was "Is Reality Digital or Analog?" Scientific American magazine, being one of three partners, published
the runner-up entry in the December 2012 issue: University of Cambridge professor of theoretical physics professor
David Tong's paper argues that the world is in fact fundamentally analog. Professor Tong actually tied for second
place, but for some reason SciAm does not tell us whether the other second place paper supported an analog or
digital viewpoint. For that matter, it did not say which side the winning paper came down on. Strange. I looked
it up on the FQXi website. First place went to Jarmo Makela, who believes reality is digital in nature based on
a personal discussion with Isaac Newton in his London home in the year 1700. When...
though my fingers stop working when exposed to temperatures below freezing, I love the northern climate - four
full seasons, snow, iced-over lakes, migrating birds, fiery autumns, cool summers, the whole experience. Having
the option of not participating in the cold outdoor environs is what makes it good. However, the
U.S. Army Signal Corps guys pulling
duty in Alaska during World War II did not have that luxury. As told by radio engineer Major Colvin in this
story from a 1945 edition of ARRL's QST magazine, winter life in Alaska at -40° was a real challenge. It was
a world where Prestone antifreeze froze, the sun shone only a few hours a day, vehicles had to be left running
24/7 or risk not being able to be re-started, and mile-long treks between buildings was common. There were no
snowmobiles. The success of the communications station was attributed to "the high percentage of amateur radio
operators and technicians."
Enterprises introduces their new line of high frequency
These high isolation RF switches have frequency ranges from 500 MHz to 40 GHz and a power rating of
0.1 Watts (+20 dBm).
Technologies designs and develops innovative wireless products that measure, analyze and control. RFOS - a
customizable, modular wireless platform - results in better products that cost less to develop. The cost and performance
of full custom with the ease of a module. An in-house developed customizable, modular wireless platform,
RFOS™, allows better, faster development
with lower NRE costs. Core embedded wireless capability is wrapped in full service "spec to production" product
about to do it again. The country that two millennia ago built the
Great Wall has awoken from a long slumber to,
beginning two decades ago, accomplish a long string of world-record-breaking projects. What used to be the domain
of American and Western ingenuity is now
the realm of Chinese engineers and craftsmen. Of course much of the capability originated in Western schools and
corporations, but the Chinese people have proven to be quick learners and motivated, highly capable creators.
While America is in the process of destroying personal freedoms and demonizing hard work, academic excellence,
and capitalism, China is doing just the opposite. Our leaders are pathetic one-world weaklings while theirs are
strong and nationalistic. The result is obvious to all with eyes open. China's latest feat will be to build the
world's tallest skyscraper in just 90 days!. "Sky
City One" (aka J220) as planned is 2,750 feet tall and will beat Dubai's
Burj Khalifa by 33 feet at half the cost. Nearly 95%
of the structure will use prefab sections to create 10.8e6 square feet of office space on 220 floors, all connected
by 104 elevators. It will be complete by the end of this coming winter - compliments of WalMart shoppers.
designs and manufactures RF and microwave filters, diplexers, and subassemblies, DC-50 GHz. Suspended
substrate, LC, ceramic, tubular, miniature cavity, waveguide, switched filter banks, combline, interdigital. Contact
them with your specifications.