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Tech Industry Headlines - RF Cafe - Archive -

• ChatGPT Causing Concerns in Academia

• WIA Offers 5G, Broadband Training to Prisoners, Veterans

• 5G to Be Major Driver for $1.8B Low-Loss Materials Market

• Wifi-as-a-Service to Become New Norm?

• Origin of Superconductivity in Nickelates Discovered

• Ofcom Considers Revoking Unpaired 2100 MHz Spectrum

• 5G Non-Terrestrial Networks (NTN) Infrastructure to Bolster 5G & 6G

• 5G FWA Emerging as Competitive Alternative to Fixed Broadband

• SpaceX Accuses Dish of Pivot in 12 GHz Tussle

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News Briefs: e-Vehicles & More

News Briefs, January 1967 Radio-Electronics - RF CafeHugo Gernsback was the Ulrich L. Rhode of the early 20th century; he was very accomplished in many areas of electronics, was a prolific publisher of technical content, knew everyone of any import in the technology realm, had successful business ventures, and seemed to always be getting presented with awards from one group or another. With guys like Gernsback and Rhode, organizations considered themselves honored to have their offers accepted in order to be worthy of the recipient's attention. This collection of industry New Briefs in the January 1967 issue of Radio−Electronics magazine included the Antique Wireless Association (still in existence) giving an award to Gernsback. It also reported on General Motors using silver-zinc battery packs, SCR's and specially designed ac motors in its experimental Electrovair II - a conversion of its gas-powered Corvair. The government-controlled BBC's domination over "free" radio broadcasting was getting a challenge from the Popular Music Authority...

Microsatellites Reduce Space Junk

Microsatellites Reduce Space Junk - RF Cafe"Satellite powered by 48 AA batteries and a $20 microprocessor shows a low-cost way to reduce space junk. Common sense suggests that space missions can only happen with multimillion-dollar budgets, materials built to withstand the unforgiving conditions beyond Earth's atmosphere, and as a result of work done by highly trained specialists. But a team of engineering students from Brown University has turned that assumption on its head. They built a satellite on a shoestring budget and using off-the-shelf supplies available at most hardware stores. They even sent the satellite - which is powered by 48 Energizer AA batteries and a $20 microprocessor popular with robot hobbyists - into space about 10 months ago, hitching a ride on Elon Musk's SpaceX rocket..."

Bell Telephone Labs Coaxial Cable

Bell Telephone Laboratories Advertisement, December 1949 Radio & Television News - RF CafeWhen you read today where someone writes about, "back in the eighties...," you naturally think of 1980-something. This 1949 Radio & Television News magazine advertisement from by Bell Telephone Laboratories mention of "back in the eighties" was referencing the 1880s, not the 1980s. What was six decades ago at the time is now thirteen decades ago - yikes! The picture juxtaposes a telephone pole massively populated with horizontal cross timbers, insulators, and wires, with an engineer holding up a section of coaxial cable that was in the process of replacing the poles and wires. Thanks to Bell Labs' relentless R&D efforts, those early single-channel, short distance twisted pairs were obsoleted by 1,800-channel coax. Fiber optic cables today typically support more than 30,000 voice channels...

Measuring with Humor

Measuring with Humor (Fluke Calibration) - RF CafeA relatively new feature has been appearing on the Microwaves & RF website entitled "Measuring with Humor," compliments of Fluke Calibration. I just saw it and don't know how long it has been running, but there are four of them thus far. The comic depicts situations commonly experienced by people in the test equipment realm. Fluke, of course, is one of America's most well-known and oldest test equipment manufacturers. I have used Fluke (founded in 1948) gear since first entering the electronic and electrical field in the 1970s. It always seemed strange to me that a high end electronic test equipment company would assume the name "Fluke," even though it is the name of company founder John Fluke. Even though a fluke can be defined as an unexpected stroke of good luck, it often has a negative connotation describing an outlier event not typical of the norm. The Fluke company's good reputation is due to smart employees who design and manufacture good products - definitely not a fluke.

Understanding the JFET

Understanding the Junction Field Effect Transistor, April 1973 Popular Electronics - RF CafeAdolph Mangieri, who authored articles in other electronic magazines in the 1970s and 1980s, provides a good introduction to junction field effect transistors (JFETs) in this 1973 piece in Popular Electronics magazine. As mentioned, JFETs were a relative newcomer at the time to the commercial electronics world because of high fabrication costs. Obtaining consistent pinch−off voltages and gains was largely responsible for the relatively high production costs due to substrate purity and doping issues. Semiconductor processing and some circuit application examples are included. One of the first big commercial applications of the JFET was probably transistorized multimeters, which enabled a very high input impedance. Doing so helped minimize the loading effect on the meter on the circuit under test...

Post Your Engineer & Technician Job Openings on RF Cafe for Free

Engineering Job Board - RF CafeRF Cafe's raison d'être is and always has been to provide useful, quality content for engineers, technicians, engineering managers, students, and hobbyists. Part of that mission is offering to post applicable job openings. HR department employees and/or managers of hiring companies are welcome to submit opportunities for posting at no charge. 3rd party recruiters and temp agencies are not included so as to assure a high quality of listings. Please read through the easy procedure to benefit from RF Cafe's high quality visitors...

Many Thanks to ConductRF for Continued Support!

ConductRF coaxial cables & connectors - RF CafeConductRF is continually innovating and developing new and improved solutions for RF Interconnect needs. See the latest TESTeCON RF Test Cables for labs. ConductRF makes production and test coax cable assemblies for amplitude and phased matched VNA applications as well as standard & precision RF connectors. Over 1,000 solutions for low PIM in-building to choose from in the iBwave component library. They also provide custom coax solutions for applications where some standard just won't do. A partnership with Newark assures fast, reliable access. Please visit ConductRF today to see how they can help your project! 

Electronics-Themed Comics

Electronics-Themed Comics (p20), April 1963 Radio-Electronics - RF CafeIt's Monday again. Here is another batch of electronics-themed comics to help cheer you up. They appeared in the April 1963 issue of Radio−Electronics magazine. Usually the meaning of the comics is immediately apparent, or maybe after a little critical investigation, but I'm going to need some help with the page 20 comic. I must be missing something obvious. There is nothing else on the page it came from that it is supposed to go with. Maybe it is simply implying the lonely life of a TV repairman on a service call. The page 49 comic plays on the era's popular notion of a husband-wife battle involving his quest for bigger and better (and more expensive) electronics gear. If you don't "get" the humor, note the stacking of the equipment - which is stereo. Page 88's topic is as apt today as it was 60 years ago. Page 105 is yet another instance of man's obsession with stereos back in the day...

IDTechEx Report on 6G Market 2023-2043

IDTechEx Report on 6G Market 2023-2043 - RF Cafe"IDTechEx, an independent market research and business intelligence provider claims that 6G will arrive in 2028 at the earliest in its recently published market research report, "6G Market 2023-2043: Technology, Trends, Forecasts, Players". 6G, compared to its predecessor, is expected to offer significantly better communication capabilities, such as Tbps-level peak data rates, microsecond-level latency, and 99.99999% network dependability. Although 6G promises a lot, it is unlikely that 6G will be in daily life soon, despite the fact that several important companies and nations have already begun 6G research, as shown in the figure below, the telecom industry needs to address several issues before seeing the success of 6G. The difficulties are not only in THz technology but also in identifying applications that will fuel 6G adoption. IDTechEx has been researching 5G and 6G for years. This article will discuss some of the hardware-related hurdles to 6G connectivity..."

Barry Goldwater, K7UGA, Ham Radio Operator

Barry Goldwater, K7UGA, Ham Radio Operator May 1967 QST - RF CafeA lot of famous people have been or are currently amateur radio operators, including many present-day astronauts who broadcast from the International Space Station (ISS). Some media people, like Tim Allen, star of the Home Improvement and Last Man Standing fame, became a Ham after playing a character who is one on his show. A 1958 edition of Popular Electronics magazine published a story titled "VIP's Are Hams Too!," which included Arthur Godfrey (9K4LIB), Herbert Hoover, Jr. (W6ZH), and Arthur Collins (W0CXX). I wrote an article on radio host Jean Shepherd (K2ORS), of "A Christmas Story" fame. Senator Barry Goldwater (K7UGA), of Arizona, was also an active Ham, as evidenced here in this May 1967 edition of the ARRL's QST magazine. Senator Goldwater also appeared in the June 1967 issue of QST...

EMI in Connected Vehicles

EMI in Connected Vehicles - RF Cafe"Automakers need to rein in electromagnetic interference before it pumps the brakes on in-vehicle connectivity innovations. In early 1979, Ralph Liuzzi installed a mobile transmitter in his customer's Cadillac Seville. However, Mr. Liuzzi found that whenever he attempted to transmit, the car's engine would stall, resulting in a serious safety hazard for both driver and pedestrians. At the time, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) cited a 'lack of documentation on the effects of Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) on automobile electronic engine control systems,' but reviewed the case and eventually found that indeed EMI played a key role in the system malfunction. 'The problem of EMI is a relatively new one in automotive technology since electronics have only recently been introduced into usage in automobiles,' the NHTSA said in its report. Now, more than 40 years later, the problem of EMI has only grown..."

Hetro Air-Ace Series M, 4−Band Superhet

Hetro Air-Ace Series M, 9-Tube 4-Band Superhet, May 1936 Radio-Craft - RF CafeThis is another Radio Service Data Sheet which appeared in the May 1936 edition of Radio-Craft magazine. I post this schematic and functional description of the Hetro Air-Ace Series M, 9-Tube 4-Band Superhet manufacturers' publications for the benefit of hobbyists and archivists who might be searching for such information either in a effort to restore a radio to working condition, or to collect archival information. A thorough search on the Internet turned up no examples of a surviving instance of the Hetro Air-Ace Series M radio. BTW, the "Air Ace" part of the name refers to the radio air, as in "on the air" or "over the air," not a fighter pilot ace with a certain number of kills painted on the side of his airplane...

Promote Your Company on RF Cafe

Sponsor RF Cafe for as Little as $40 per Month - RF CafeNew Scheme rotates all Banners in all locations on the page! RF Cafe typically receives 8,000-15,000 website visits each weekday. RF Cafe is a favorite of engineers, technicians, hobbyists, and students all over the world. With more than 17,000 pages in the Google search index, RF Cafe returns in favorable positions on many types of key searches, both for text and images. New content is added on a daily basis, which keeps the major search engines interested enough to spider it multiple times each day. Items added on the homepage often can be found in a Google search 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.

Many Thanks to Berkeley Nucleonics for Continued Support!

Berkeley Nucleonics Corp - RF CafeBerkeley Nucleonics Corporation (BNC) is a leading manufacturer of precision electronic instrumentation for test, measurement, and nuclear research. Founded in 1963, BNC initially developed custom pulse generators. We became known for meeting the most stringent requirements for high precision and stability, and for producing instruments of unsurpassed reliability and performance. We continue to maintain a leadership position as a developer of custom pulse, signal, light, and function generators. Our designs incorporate the latest innovations in software and hardware engineering, surface mount production, and automated testing procedures.

Electronics Mathematics Quiz

Electronics Mathematics Quiz, June 1969 Popular Electronics - RF CafeDon't let the title scare you away from this "Electronic Mathematic Quiz." It appeared in the June 1969 issue of Popular Electronics magazine, and was created by quizmaster Robert Balin. There are no scary equations to complete and no mental calculations to bend your brain. Instead, the "mathematics" required is to recognize physical and electrical signal shapes which are described by common mathematics terms. For instance, a cardioid approximates the electromagnetic radiation pattern of many directional antennas, which may include a parabolic dish. Differentiator and integrator circuits generate distinct waveforms. Phase angles and critical angles are familiar to circuit designers and radio operators. Shape letter "E" will likely be familiar according to its name, although you might not know what it is in the world of electronics...

Ultrathin Metasurface Display Rivals LCD

Ultrathin Metasurface Display Rivals LCD - RF Cafe"Currently, LCD screens are the most dominant and popular display technology for televisions and monitors, but they are unlikely to get significantly better in the future. Now a new study finds the kind of physics that make microscopic 'invisibility cloaks' possible may lead to next-generation 'metasurface' displays roughly 1/100 the thickness of the average human hair that could offer 10 times the resolution and consume half as much energy as LCD screens. LCD technology depends on liquid crystal cells that are constantly lit by a backlight. Polarizers in front and behind the pixels filter light waves based on their polarity, or the direction in which they vibrate, and the liquid crystal cells can rotate the way these filters are oriented to switch light transmissions on and off. LCD screens do continue to see advances by improving the liquid crystals, the display technology or the backlight. 'However, improvement on LCD technologies are now mostly just..."

Howard Explorer Model W All-Wave Superhet

Howard Explorer Model W Deluxe 19 Tube All-Wave Superhet Radio Service Data Sheet, September 1934 Radio-Craft - RF CafeHere are the schematics, chassis layout, and service info for the Howard Explorer Model W Deluxe 19 Tube All-Wave Superheterodyne console style (sits on the floor) radio. The wooden cabinet format is somewhat unusual in that the top is a flat surface rather than the having more typical curvaceous lines that radios of the era sported. It looks a lot like the models with built-in phonographs, where the top would tilt upward. The Radio Service Data Sheets that were published in Radio-Craft usually seem to have more information included than those published in other magazines, at least in the same era (1940-ish). It might have to do with how much material is provided by the manufacturer rather than a decision by the magazine editors. This one appeared in the September 1934 issue. Believe it or not, there are still people searching for such data. I could not find an example of a real surviving Howard Explorer Model W radio...

Morse Code Rhythm Patterns from A to Z

Morse Code Rhythm Patterns from A to Z (QST April 2023) - RF CafeGiven that this "Morse Code Rhythm Patterns from A to Z" article (p58) appeared in the April issue of QST magazine, I was careful to ascertain that it was not written for fools. It seems authentic, but for the life of me I don't know how many people would find the proposed Morse Code learning system to be a natural method. Author Bill Cody (K3CDY) is a musician who is accustomed to reading music, so for him and other talented musical types, maybe such a system facilitates the learning of code. To people like me, it's like suggesting a method for more easily learning how to apply a bandage by adapting brain surgery principles. Unfortunately, you'll need to be an ARRL member for access to the online article, or maybe you can borrow a copy of the magazine from a friend (but you'll still need to sign in for the music/code sheets). I'm still trying to figure out which article is the April Fools bait. BTW, I remember using one of those Isolate Pad Circuit-Board Construction tools when making proto boards (p91).

Micro-Waves Span the English Channel

Micro-Waves Span the English Channel, September 1935 Short Wave Craft - RF CafeWe "Baby Boomers" remember a time when cell towers did not present a ubiquitous (and, frankly, ugly) presence across the landscape. Microwave relay towers for television and telephone links could be spotted sitting atop hilltops and mountain ridges in some areas, and giant television and radio station towers sat behind broadcast stations, and multi-element antennas dotted house rooftops everywhere. Our grandparents (Millennials' great grandparents) remember when even microwave relay towers were missing. This 1936 article reports on the first microwave links spanning the English Channel to replace expensive and trouble-prone submerged cable. Part of the impetus, not mentioned within, was the building inevitability of war with Germany and the vulnerability of those communications links to being compromised by Nazi submarines and divers...

RF Cascade Workbook

RF Cascade Workbook - RF Cafe RF Cascade Workbook is the next phase in the evolution of RF Cafe's long-running series, RF Cascade Workbook. Chances are you have never used a spreadsheet quite like this (click here for screen capture). It is a full-featured RF system cascade parameter and frequency planner that includes filters and mixers for a mere $45. Built in MS Excel, using RF Cascade Workbook 2018 is a cinch and the format is entirely customizable. It is significantly easier and faster than using a multi-thousand dollar simulator when a high level system analysis is all that is needed. An intro video takes you through the main features...

Many Thanks to Exodus Advanced Communications for Their Support

Exodus Advanced Communications - RF CafeExodus Advanced Communications is a multinational RF communication equipment and engineering service company serving both commercial and government entities and their affiliates worldwide. Power amplifiers ranging from 10 kHz to 51 GHz with various output power levels and noise figure ranges, we fully support custom designs and manufacturing requirements for both small and large volume levels. decades of combined experience in the RF field for numerous applications including military jamming, communications, radar, EMI/EMC and various commercial projects with all designing and manufacturing of our HPA, MPA, and LNA products in-house.

Electronics Theme Crossword for March 26th

Electronics Theme Crossword Puzzle for March 26, 2023 - RF CafeThis custom RF Cafe electronics-themed crossword puzzle for March 26th contains words and clues which pertain exclusively to the subjects of electronics, science, physics, mechanics, engineering, power distribution, astronomy, chemistry, etc. If you do see names of people or places, they are intimately related to the aforementioned areas of study. As always, you will find no references to numbnut movie stars or fashion designers. Need more crossword RF Cafe puzzles? A list at the bottom of the page links to hundreds of them dating back to the year 2000. Enjoy.

Electronic Video Recording | Color TV

Electronic Video Recording | Color TV, February 1969 Radio-Electronics - RF CafeIn the pre-VHS era, companies were vying to create and set standards for the home-based video recording and playback industry. The same sort of scenario played out over color television standards a decade earlier, and over B&W television a couple decades before that. Such battles for dominance in emerging technologies were not new, and continue into the current time. Various schemes for Electronic Video Recording systems were being used by commercial media, but creating devices affordable to Harry and Harriet Homeowner was a challenge. Betamax, produced by Sony, hit the store shelves in 1975, then VHS a year later. A sort of 8-track vs. compact cassette battle ensued, but VHS clearly emerged as the winner - followed by DVD and Blu-ray. Also reported was the world's most expensive - and feature-filled - color TV, built by Philips, that was "more computer than television," being able to operate on eleven different modulation standards...

Belmont Model 5D128 Tabletop Radio

Belmont Model 5D128 Tabletop Radio, November 1946 Radio News - RF CafeThe Belmont model 5D128 was a compact, inexpensive tabletop AM radio set. A schematic and parts list for it appeared in the November 1946 issue of Radio News magazine. There are still many people who restore and service these vintage radios, and often it can be difficult or impossible to find schematics and/or tuning information, so I scan and post them whenever they appear in magazines which I own. While researching the Belmont 5D128 tabletop radio, I ran across an excellent video created by Mr. Paul Carson, as part of his Mr. Carlson's Lab series (note how the setting looks like he's in the ISS). Here is a great video of Mr. Carlson troubleshooting an intermittent noise problem in a receiver. That "Carlson RF SuperProbe" he is using looks like a must-have piece of test equipment The Belmont 5D128 was rebranded by other companies such as Airline, Coronado, Lafayette...

National Company: TMS Condensers

National Company Ad: TMS Condensers, March 1939 QST - RF CafeNational Company, an early manufacturer of electronics components for radio products, ran a series of unique advertisements in the ARRL's QST magazine. Rather than using precious cash for directly promoting specific products or product lines, company president John Millen occupied full pages with text explaining why it makes the things it does and how they can be used to solve problems or enhance performance. This article/ad on TMS condensers (aka variable capacitors) was number 61 in the series, which means if they printed one every preceding month, the first would have appeared in the March 1934 issue of QST...

Electronics News Briefs

News Briefs, April 1960 Radio-Electronics - RF CafeLots of interesting topics were reported in News Briefs from the April 1960 issue of Radio-Electronics magazine. One that is relevant even today is the assigning of new numeric prefixes tera for a trillion; giga for a billion; nano for a billionth, and pica for a trillionth. If you have read vintage science and engineering publications, you know that, for instance, what is now called pica (a la pF, 10-12) used to be written as micromicro (a la μμF, 10-6x10-6 = 10-12). Here is an example of μμF being used. Less commonly seen was something like millimicroamperes, which is 10-3x10-6 = 10-9, now known as a nanoamperes, nA. A new television picture tube which used a solid state electron emitter in place of a heated cathode was announced for portable TVs, potentially doubling battery life. Did you know that in 1960, the South African government felt that TV would be detrimental to children and "the less developed races," thereby justifying its anti-TV policies? Following on the results of the International Geophysical Year (IGY) discoveries, atmospheric ducts for radio signal transmission propagation were being found worldwide...

Please see the RF Cafe Homepage Archives for previous items of interest...

Copper Mountain Technologies (VNA) - RF Cafe
Exodus Advanced Communications Best in Class RF Amplifier SSPAs
Lotus Communication Systems Modular RF Component Building Blocks - RF Cafe
ConductRF Phased Matched RF Cables - RF Cafe
everythingRF RF & Microwave Parts Database - RF Cafe

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Copyright: 1996 - 2024


    Kirt Blattenberger,


RF Cafe began life in 1996 as "RF Tools" in an AOL screen name web space totaling 2 MB. Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The World Wide Web (Internet) was largely an unknown entity at the time and bandwidth was a scarce commodity. Dial-up modems blazed along at 14.4 kbps while tying up your telephone line, and a nice lady's voice announced "You've Got Mail" when a new message arrived...

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