Today in Science History -
RF & Microwave themed crossword puzzle for December 5th contains only clues
and words are directly to RF, microwave, and mm-wave engineering, optics, mathematics,
chemistry, physics, and other science subjects. As always, this crossword contains
no names of politicians, mountain ranges, exotic foods or plants, movie stars, or
anything of the sort unless it/he/she is related to this puzzle's technology theme
(e.g., Reginald Denny or the Tunguska event in Siberia). The technically inclined
cruciverbalists amongst us will appreciate the effort. Enjoy!
This assortment of custom-designed themes
by RF Cafe includes T-Shirts, Mouse Pads, Clocks, Tote Bags, Coffee Mugs and Steins,
Purses, Sweatshirts, and Baseball Caps. Choose from amazingly clever "We Are the World's
Matchmakers" Smith chart design or the "Engineer's Troubleshooting Flow Chart."
My "Matchmaker's" design has been ripped off by other people and used on their products,
so please be sure to purchase only official RF Cafe gear. My markup is only a paltry
50¢ per item - Cafe Press gets the rest of your purchase price. These would make
excellent gifts for husbands, wives, kids, significant others, and for handing out
at company events or as rewards for excellent service. It's a great way to help
support RF Cafe. Thanks...
ConductRF is continually innovating and
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Many of the technically-oriented magazines
in the pre-post-war era were going all out with advertisements promising training
careers for servicemen in the post-war era. This one by National Schools in
a 1945 issue of Radio News is a good example. By January of 1945, the attitude
of people in America and Europe was that the end of World War II was imminent,
and life would soon return to a peacetime normal state. There would be a lot of
rebuilding to do in Europe that would drain tech companies of some desperately needed
engineers, technicians, and assembly workers. In America, labor markets were flooded
with workers hoping to exploit the skills learned and practiced while beating back
the forces of Nazism, Fascism, Communism, Marxism, and other "isms." Institutions
like National Schools offered opportunities...
"Emerging 5G wireless systems are designed
to support high-bandwidth and low-latency networks connecting everything from autonomous
robots to self-driving cars. But these large and complex communication networks
could also pose new security concerns. Encryption methods now used to
secure communications from eavesdroppers can be challenging to scale towards
such high-speed and ultra-low latency systems for 5G and beyond. This is because
the very nature of encryption requires exchange of information between sender and
receiver to encrypt and decrypt a message. This exchange makes the link vulnerable
to attacks; it also requires computing that increases latency..."
Source Today website just posted
their ranking list of the
Top 50 Electronics Distributors for 2021. You will not be surprised to learn
that the top four positions are occupied by Arrow Electronics, Avnet, Future Electronics,
and Digi-Key, respectively. Mouser Electronics, shown on the page header graphic
as a Platinum Sponsor, came in at 7th place, which at least shows the survey is
not biased by sponsorship. Other distributors familiar to RF and microwave types
are Newark (in 9th place -- now known as Farnell), RFMW (22nd place), and Richardson
Electronics (25th place). No information is provided on the webpage regarding metrics
used for the rankings, but there is a
PDF file you can download if you fill in a form - which I did so that you don't
need to. A lot of info is provided on distribution issues in the past year and since
the beginning of the plandemic.
It has been a while since I saw the
rule for derivatives applied. Probably the last time was in a college text book,
because I'm pretty sure I haven't had the occasion to use it since then - except
maybe back in the days when I was writing my RF Workbench software and needed to
derive closed form solutions for group delay in filters. This 1933 article from
Radio News magazine presented the quotient rule as part of a discussion for finding
the impedance of a load for maximum power transfer. Pure resistances were used in
the example, but the method applies as well to complex impedances...
Picocom, the 5G Open RAN baseband semiconductor
and software specialist, today announced the introduction of its
PC802 SoC (system on chip). The company's flexible, low power device empowers
the innovation of a new breed of 5G NR open small cell products. The PC802 is the
world's first 4G/5G device dedicated to developing small cells with integrated support
for Open RAN (Radio Access Networks) standards. It supports disaggregated 5G small
cell platforms, including indoor residential, enterprise and industrial networks,
neutral host networks and outdoor networks. "I am honoured to announce the PC802,
the culmination of three years' work and a milestone achievement for the company
by the whole Picocom Team," said Peter Claydon, President of Picocom. "We will deliver
product to our lead customers...
If you need a cheap, quick
lightning arrestor for your antenna or just about any type of wired system,
this idea from Mr. Burgess Brownson looks like a good idea. He used an automotive
spare plug. Voltage breakover points can be set by varying the spark gap distance.
The old vacuum tube transmitters and receivers had a better of chance of surviving
a lightning strike because the components were able to handle much more of a shock
than our modern semiconductor sets with miniature, closely spaced components. Still,
the spark plug setup is better than nothing, if for no other reason than to protect
the shelter. it should suffice. This and many more "kinks" are offered in this 1935
issue of Short Wave Craft magazine...
New Scheme rotates
all Banners in all locations on the page! RF Cafe typically receives 8,000-15,000
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RF Cafe is a favorite of engineers,
technicians, hobbyists, and students all over the world. With more than 16,000 pages
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types of key searches, both for text and images. New content is added on a daily
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within a few hours of being posted. I also re-broadcast homepage items on LinkedIn.
If you need your company news to be seen, RF Cafe is the place to be.
Copper Mountain Technologies develops innovative
and robust RF test and measurement solutions for engineers all over the world. Copper
Mountain's extensive line of unique form factor
Network Analyzers include an RF measurement module and a software application
which runs on any Windows PC, laptop or tablet, connecting to the measurement hardware
via USB interface. The result is a lower cost, faster, more effective test process
that fits into the modern workspace in lab, production, field and secure testing
When many people hear the name of
Bell Telephone Company, the first thing they think of is the court-directed
breakup of Bell System into what became known as "Baby Bells" after being sued for
monopolistic policies. What is too often forgotten - or more likely never realized
- is the immense role Bell played in the building of America into an industrial
and technology giant. Vintage magazines like this 1949 issue of Radio-Electronics
as well as many other types including The Saturday Evening Post, Popular
Mechanics, Family Circle, and many other publications commonly found
in homes, contained full-page advertisements by Bell Telephone Laboratories promoting
their work and reminding subscribers of how their hard-earned money was being invested
on improvements. Along with the Interstate Highway System, America's robust, dependable,
and high quality personal communications...
The December 1950 issue of Radio &
Television News magazine ran a series of articles on
Navy communications. This was a mere four years after the end of World War II
and right at the beginning days of the Korean War. Communist and fascist regimes
never give the world a moment's rest (some - not me - think just being nice to them
will cause them to be nice in return). Discussed here are issues still relevant
to modern outfitting of naval assets with new or updated communications equipment.
Unlike land-based systems, naval environments impose increased requirements for
ruggedness due to harsh vibration, impact, and corrosion issues. Weight added above
the waterline needs to be offset with weight below the water line to preserve stability.
Reliability and personnel training also need to be increased because being at sea
means access to replacement parts, operators, and service technicians are harder
"The trade of fake goods continues as the
COVID-19 pandemic, chip shortages and other events push more criminals to find new
ways to take advantage of unknowing buyers. Trading fake goods is bad for any industry,
but it's particularly dangerous in the industrial electronics sector, where counterfeit
components pose threats like short circuits, electrical shocks, fires, explosions
and equipment failures. 'Counterfeiters
work hard to mimic not only the product packaging but the actual product as well.
Distinguishing fakes from real parts becomes very hard for consumers..."
Sam Benzacar of Anatech Electronics, an
RF and microwave filter company, has published his
November 2021 newsletter that features his short op−ed entitled "C-band and
Altimeters: Bad Company? ," where he notes that even though FCC concluded that the
AVSI study "does not demonstrate that harmful interference would likely result under
reasonable scenarios," there is enough concern in the non-standardized radar altimeter
realm to raise a red flag. As Sam points out, there is a full 500 MHz separation
between the C-band wireless band and radar altimeters. Sam also presents some relevant
industry news items as well, including Amazon planning to launch Kuiper satellite
prototypes, and the DoD funding research that combines 5G and optical sensors.
color televisions hit the stores in 1954, most households could not afford one.
For that matter, most households could not afford a black and white TV, either.
By 1959 when this article appeared in Popular Electronics magazine, TV
in general was still a novelty to most people. It is amusing to read about how much
more lifelike everything would appear when broadcast in "living color." Well, duh.
It's as if it never occurred to anyone that the images previously did not contain
color like the real world did. I was born in 1958, and remember that my family's
was last of all the households I knew of to own a color television set. We never
even had a console floor model, just small tabletop pieces of junk. It was a big
deal the day I, at about age 16, bought and installed a remote rotor for the rooftop
antenna so we could receive more than three stations. There was no cable TV service
in our neighborhood...
With more than 1000
custom-built symbols, this has got to be the most comprehensive set of
Symbols available for RF, analog, and digital system and schematic drawings!
Every object has been built to fit proportionally on the provided A-, B- and C-size
drawing page templates (or can use your own). Symbols are provided for equipment
racks and test equipment, system block diagrams, conceptual drawings, and schematics.
Unlike previous versions, these are NOT Stencils, but instead are all contained
on tabbed pages within a single Visio document. That puts everything in front of
you in its full glory. Just copy and paste what you need on your drawing. The file
format is XML so everything plays nicely with Visio 2013 and later...
This is indeed unexpected and sad news.
Joel Hallas, W1ZR, a long-time columnist for American Radio Relay League (ARRL)
publications and an author of multiple books, has left this old world after 79 years.
Since joining the ARRL in 2010 and receiving the monthly QST magazine,
his "The Doctor Is In" column was always the first thing I read. Mr. Hallas
was a master at using EZNEC (soon to be free)
antenna simulation software and used it often to answers readers' questions. Decades
of hands-on experience setting up, operating, troubleshooting, and teaching amateur
radio subject made him an encyclopedia of knowledge. Joel's family surely knows
how admired he was by the hundreds that knew him personally and the thousands of
us who knew him through his works. RIP, Joel Hallas.