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Recent Developments in Electronics
August 1962 Electronics World

August 1962 Electronics World

August 1962 Electronics World Cover - RF Cafe  Table of Contents 

Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics. See articles from Electronics World, published May 1959 - December 1971. All copyrights hereby acknowledged.

You can see by the news items in this 1962 issue of Electronics World "Recent Developments in Electronics" column that electronics was make a big transition in the early 1960s from vacuum tubes to semiconductors. As covered in other magazine articles of the era, the tiny nuvistor triode tube was a last-ditch effort to keep vacuum tubes relevant as transistors were making a move into the industry. Computers, with the increasing availability of semiconductor elements, were beginning to no longer be the purview of universities, government agencies, and large corporations. Rather than requiring hundreds of square feet of floor area and massive cooling systems, newer designs could fit in an office space. Thin film microcircuits took up a small fraction of the volume needed by traditional printed circuit assemblies (get a load of the silver Mercury dime used for size comparison). A "high-speed" serial binary adder had been built using tunnel diode and coaxial delay lines that blazed along at 125 MHz. The Nippon Electric NEC-1 TV broadcast satellite looks a bit like an Anime character.

Recent Developments in Electronics

Small-Size Nuvistor - RF CafeSmall-Size Nuvistor

To demonstrate the low noise factor of a new half-watt nuvistor triode, developed by RCA for the U.S. Navy, engineers constructed this 1000-mc. coaxial r.f. amplifier. The tiny tube, one-half the size of commercial nuvistors, is expected to find use in miniaturized battery-operated u.h.f. equipment. Tubes delivered to the Navy have a transconductance of 11,000 micromhos at a plate dissipation of 1/3 watt and a noise factor of 7.5 db at 700 mc. in a cathode-drive circuit. There are 8 full-size industrial and entertainment nuvistor types.

"Shotgun" Microphone - RF Cafe"Shotgun" Microphone

Dubbed the "shotgun" by Washington newsmen, this 7-foot-long microphone has been used regularly in President Kennedy's televised press conferences. The mike's ultra-directional characteristics permit pickup of questions from reporters, even though they may be in the rear of the huge auditorium. The unit, an Electro-Voice Model 643, is a dynamic line type that combines a cardioid pickup pattern for frequencies up to 100 cps with a much more highly directional pickup pattern at higher frequencies. This latter pattern is produced by distributed front openings in the long tubular housing.

Microcircuit Package - RF CafeMicrocircuit Package

New thin-film microcircuits being developed by Sylvania are formed on high-strength ceramic wafers smaller than a postage stamp and 1/100 inch thick. The wafers are stacked and interconnected through vertical, ceramic interwiring boards containing fused-on wiring-a method that packages the circuits in a small volume. The microcircuit package at the top of the photo contains the equivalent of 2 of the printed board shown.

High-Speed Computer Element - RF CafeHigh-Speed Computer Element

This experimental computer element, a full serial binary adder, has been operated at a 125-mc. rate, one of the highest yet recorded. The adder is composed of fourteen matched-pair tunnel diode circuits. The wire loops above the circuit board are coaxial cable delay lines, an important feature of the new tunnel diode computer circuit developed at IBM's Research Center. Ordinarily, one of the more serious problems that arises with tunnel diode logic circuits is the tendency of one circuit to influence the switching of other circuits connected to the same power supply. This problem is eliminated by the delay lines, since the power supply does not "see" the switching of any given element until one nano-second (1/1000 μsec.) has elapsed. This is much longer than the possible difference in time between the switching of any two circuits on the same power-supply terminals.

Japanese TV Satellite - RF CafeJapanese TV Satellite

Research leading to the development of three or four Japanese satellites, to be used for planned television coverage of the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games, is now under way. The 105.5-pound cylindrical satellites, equipped with solar batteries, are under development by the Nippon Electric Co., Ltd. NEC-1, as the firm's satellite will be known, is to be mounted on either an American "Scout" or "Thor-Delta" type rocket. Selection of the vehicle to be used will probably be made by NASA. Choice of launching sites will also be left up to the discretion of the United States.

"Polaris" Computer - RF Cafe"Polaris" Computer

Complex electronic computer which will give new assurance of accuracy to the Navy's longest-range, 2500 nautical mile "Polaris" missiles, is given a final checkout by Sperry Gyroscope Co. technician prior to installation aboard the newest "Polaris" submarine "Lafayette." The computer is an improved version of a system developed three years ago by the company and produced for the navigations systems of the submarines. A unique combination of high-capacity and ultra-fast memory devices enables the computer to solve a navigational "fix" problem in spherical trigonometry in less time than it takes an operator to push the buttons on the console.



Posted June 10, 2021
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