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Homepage Archive - April 2018 (page 1)

These archive pages are provided in order to make it easier for you to find items that you remember seeing on the RF Cafe homepage. Of course probably the easiest way to find anything on the website is to use the "Search RF Cafe" box at the top of every page. About RF Cafe.

Homepage Archive Pages

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See Page 1 | 2 | 3 of the April 2018 homepage archives.

Tuesday 10

Vintage Alliance Model U-100 Tenna−Rotor

Vintage Alliance Model U-100 Tenna-Rotor Installation (Kirt's Cogitation #301) - RF CafeIf you grew up in the era of rooftop television antennas, then there is a good chance you are familiar with the electromechanical antenna pointing systems that were often installed as well. Alliance, Channel Master, Cornell Dubilier, Radio Shack, RCA, Winegard, and others made low cost, light-duty rotators for television antennas. Ham radio antenna rotators were/are more robust in order to handle higher weight and wind loads. Many television antennas also cover the FM radio band (88-108 MHz), allowing them to do double duty. Being an unapologetic technology renaissance man, I recently purchased (on eBay) a vintage Alliance Model U−100 Tenna−Rotor that was unused in the original ...

everythingRF Adds DAS and Wireless Infrastructure Categories

everythingRF DAS inventory - RF CafeeverythingRF recently started covering the DAS and Wireless Infrastructure categories on their extensive searchable database of companies. Category examples are RF signal tappers, multicouplers, base station antennas, tower mount amplifiers, microwave backhaul radios, and repeaters. Please contact everythingRF for assistance if needed.

The Dit Makers

The Dit Makers, August 1966 Popular Electronics - RF CafeA lot of innovation went into perfecting telegraph keys. The earliest keys were the familiar "straight key" tapping type where the operator uses a single finger to close a set of contacts that "keyed" the transmitter for a burst of RF energy. The length of each "dit" or "dah" was determined by the operator's dwell time. It didn't take long for someone to improve on the scheme by designing keys that assured an adjustable, constant length for a dit or a dah. Poor quality transmitters with lousy rising and falling edge signatures at the beginning and end, respectively, of a CW pulse made matters worse. Constant length bursts make it easier for ...

Automotive Ethernet: The Future of In-Car Networking?

Automotive Ethernet: The Future of In-Car Networking? - RF Cafe"What is Ethernet and why is it so much better than current networks? How will it affect network architecture and what will the impact be on the automotive industry? Automation and connectivity are driving the automotive industry forward, and in answer to the growing need for bandwidth, flexibility, and cost-effectiveness, in-car networks are evolving. Ethernet is emerging as a preferred choice. So, what is it and do we need it? Will it have an effect on network architecture ..."

China, Europe Gain Share in Fabless Chip Market

China, Europe Gain Share in Fabless Chip Market - RF Cafe"The global fabless chip market was worth 27% of the world's IC sales in 2017, about $100B, in 2017, according to IC Insights. The total was up 11 percent from about $90B in 2016. When organized by company headquarters location it can be seen that US companies accounted for 53% of the market, as they did in 2017. This figure is down from 69% in 2010, due in part to the acquisition of Broadcom by Singapore-based Avago. Now ..."

Monday 9

Series Circuit Quiz

Series Circuit Quiz, May 1966 Popular Electronics - RF CafeThe circuit drawings in this Series Circuit Quiz are a little hard to read in a few places because the original page used light red on top of a gray background. The magic of image processing did a pretty good job of cleaning them up to where you shouldn't have any trouble reading them. This quiz from Robert Balin appeared in the April 1966 issue of Popular Electronics. It is one of the easier, so don't tell anyone if you score less than 100% ;-) ...

SMSgt. John Pensko Added to the USAF Radar Shop List

SMSgt. John Pensko USAF Radar Technician - RF CafeSMSgt. John Pensko (ret.) contacted me with his service info as a USAF radar tech. John served from 1976 through 1997, with duty ranging from line Technician to Branch Chief and Career Field Manager. Was was exposed to a very wide assortment of equipment including mobile and fixed ground-based primary radar, IFF secondary radar, video mappers, UHF and VHF radios. It is one of the most extensive lists of assignments ever received! John says he will be sending photos - stand by ...

Design for EMI Testing (step-by-step guide)

Rohde & Schwarz has published an app note titled, "Design for EMI Testing," available as a free download. "Today, R&D engineers face challenging time-to-market goals. Extending the product development schedule and delaying the product launch can prove to be extremely costly in terms of opportunity cost and lost market share. Nearly 50 % of products fail EMC compliance the first time. Every day spent on debugging, isolating and correcting the EMI problem increases the time to market. The time lost could have been used to work on another project or on ..."

RF Engineering Technician Wanted by NuWaves Engineering

RF Engineering Technician Wanted by NuWaves Engineering - RF CafeNuWaves Engineering, located in Middletown, Ohio, currently has an opportunity for an RF Engineering Technician. This position is part of the product development team and supports testing and documentation processes in the design of new products, such as, RF power amplifiers, upconverters, downconverters, RF filters, and low noise amplifiers. Individuals in this position take direction from engineers, project managers, senior-level technicians to test, characterize, and troubleshoot electronic circuits and systems ...

Axiom Test Equipment Early April Specials

Axiom Test Equipment Early April Specials - RF CafeAt Axiom Test Equipment we provide high-quality services and affordable solutions such as test equipment rental, test equipment sales, and test equipment repair. These examples of test equipment specials are a very small sample of our extensive stock available for rental or for purchase. Axiom Test Equipment can also perform repair and calibration of your gear. Contact us today with your needs ...

SENSR Team's Spectrum-Sharing Plan Moving Forward

SENSR Team's Spectrum-Sharing Plan Moving Forward - RF Cafe"Four agencies looking to band together to create a combined radar system want more information from commercial spectrum users and the public on their plan for the project. Just over a year ago, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration unveiled an idea to combine surveillance, air safety and weather radar applications into a single, spectrum-conserving 'system of systems ..."

Sunday 8

RF Cafe Engineering & Science Crossword Puzzle April 8

RF Cafe Engineering & Science Crossword Puzzle April 8, 2018Each 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. Words for clues having an asterisk (*) after them are part of this week's Easter theme. 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 ...

Friday 6

Electronics Technician Definition T-Shirt, et alia

Electronics Technician Definition T-Shirt, et alia - RF CafeThere are lots of funny T-shirts around, but you don't often find ones with an electronics theme. Here are a couple. "Electronics Technician: 1. A person who solves I only give negative feedback T-shirt - RF Cafeproblems you can't, 2. One who does precision guesswork based on unreliable data provided by those Happiness Is Being an Electronic Engineer T-Shirt - RF Cafeof questionable knowledge." Also, "I only give negative feedback." And, although not entirely proper (should be "Electronics") "Happiness Is Being an Electronic Engineer."

Latest Iridium Satellite Launch Part of Major Tech Upgrade in Space

Iridium Celebrates Latest Satellite Launch as Part of Major Tech Upgrade in Space - RF Cafe"As newer satellite ventures are getting underway, an old standby - Iridium Communications - just celebrated the successful launch of the fifth set of 10 Iridium Next satellites into orbit. The launch on Friday was conducted by SpaceX, which just a day before received FCC approval for its own satellite system, albeit one that uses far more satellites - 4,425 to be precise. SpaceX designed its system with the primary purpose of providing broadband service directly to end users, particularly individual households and small businesses. That's not the same base that ..."

Electronics Implausible Remarks - Sequel 2

Electronics Implausible Remarks Sequel 2, November 1966 Popular Electronics - RF CafeYou just never know what names you will find in vintage electronics magazines. Incredibly - assuming of course that this is who Steve Wozinak ("Woz") - RF Cafeit likely is - I ran across Steve Wozniak (aka "Woz"), later to be co−founder of Apple Computer, in this November 1966 issue of Popular Electronics. "Woz" first met Steve Jobs five years later in 1971 while working at Hewlett Packard. If this is "Woz," he, having been born in 1950, would have been a 16 year-old high schooler when his entry was published. The article does not specify who is responsible for which quote. Woz was a Ham radio ..."

CMT Intros Scalable 5G Test Solution w/Frequency Extender for 18-54 GHz

Copper Mountain Technologies Launches Scalable 5G Test Solution with New Frequency Extender for 18 to 54 GHz - RF CafeCopper Mountain Technologies launches their new FET1854 extenders with frequency range from 18 to 54 GHz. This product is an addition to the existing CobaltFx mmWave frequency extension system already used by many telecommunications and consumer electronics companies. With the launch of the new FET1854 extenders, the CobaltFx system will allow engineers to build a scalable and affordable 5G testing solution. Anchored by a 2- or 4-port 9 or 20 GHz USB vector network analyzer, CobaltFx includes extenders ...

2108 Security Predictions

2108 Security Predictions - RF CafeFacebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Yahoo, credit car companies, retailers, maybe even your personal bank account, power grids, corporate databases, government offices, are all vulnerable to massive hacking. We read about it daily. This free whitepaper titled, "2108 Security Predictions" gives a little insider view of just how bad things really are.

Move Over Moore's Law, Make Way for Huang's Law

Move Over Moore’s Law, Make Way for Huang's Law - RF Cafe"An exuberant Jensen Huang, who gave a keynote and popped up on stage during various events at Nvidia's 2018 GPU Technology Conference (GTC) held in San Jose, California last week, repeatedly made the point that due to extreme advances in technology, graphics processing units (GPUs) are governed by a law of their own. 'There's a new law going on,' he says, 'a supercharged law.' Huang, who is CEO of Nvidia, didn't call it Huang's Law; I'm guessing he'll leave that to others. After all, Gordon Moore wasn't the one who gave Moore's Law its ..."

Thursday 5

Notable Quote from SETI's Jill Tarter 

Notable Quote from SETI's Jill Tarter - RF Cafe"If whatever signal remains has reached anyone, it clearly hasn't inspired a reply." - Jill Tarter, SETI, regarding, 'We joke that the first message extraterrestrials will pick up is I Love Lucy; it was among the first big broadcasts. But Lucy's light-speed antics are pretty garbled by now." Spring 2018 issue of Popular Science magazine.

RF Design Engineer Wanted by NuWaves Engineering

RF Design Engineer Wanted by NuWaves Engineering - RF CafeNuWaves Engineering, located in Middletown, Ohio, currently has an opportunity for an RF Design Engineer. This position presents the opportunity to apply expertise in RF engineering to support NuWaves' primarily DoD projects, ultimately supporting the U.S. military. Opportunities exist within the Engineering Services and Product Solutions domains across the company to increase knowledge, grow leadership skills, and continuously improve the business system. Please contact us today if you qualify ...

Electronics Implausible Remarks

Electronics Implausible Remarks, July 1966 Popular Electronics - RF CafeIn July 1966, Popular Electronics magazine invited its readers to submit examples of ridiculous statements made by people supposedly "in-the-know" about electronics and/or technical subjects. Space was allotted to it in four later issues, all of which I will eventually post. This initial request included a couple of the editor's favorite lines. Some of them seem to be more like the speaker punking another person rather than not really knowing any better. See if you agree ...

Thanks to Copper Mountain Technologies for Continued Support

Copper Mountain TechnologiesCopper Mountain Technologies develops innovative and robust RF test and measurement solutions for Copper Mountain Technologies Vector Network Analyzers - RF Cafeengineers all over the world. Copper Mountain's extensive line of unique form factor Vector Network Analyzers include an RF measurement module and a software application which runs on any Windows PC, laptop or tablet ...

Taking Proper Measure to Ensure Safer Products

Taking Proper Measure to Ensure Safer Products - RF CafeAxiom test Equipment's Newest Blog is titled "Taking Proper Measure to Ensure Safer Products." The blog addresses electrical safety testing, specifically how basic EST functions such as AC high-potential (hipot) testing, DC hipot testing, and insulation resistance (IR) measurements can help to identify and eliminate manufacturing problems before they become too widespread in production or even become part of shipped products. Performing EST as part of manufacturing production can provide a great deal of insight into ...

New State of Matter Demonstrated

New State of Matter Demonstrated - RF Cafe"Physicists have identified a new state of matter whose structural order operates by rules more aligned with quantum mechanics than standard thermodynamic theory. In a classical material called artificial spin ice, which in certain phases appears disordered, the material is actually ordered, but in a 'topological' form. 'Our research shows for the first time that classical systems such as artificial spin ice can be designed to demonstrate topological ordered phases, which previously have been found only in quantum ..."

Wednesday 4

How Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle Can Be Relaxed

How Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle Can Be Relaxed"Heisenberg's uncertainty principle posits that there is a fundamental limit to the precision with which so-called complementary variables, such as position and momentum, can be measured. That is, the more accurately the speed and direction (and thus the momentum) of a quantum particle are known, the less certain we can be about its position. Remarkably, this intrinsic limitation can be relaxed when measurements extract periodic functions of position and momentum with a characteristic length and momentum scale ..."

Of Zerts, Plenches and Spunfits

Of Zerts, Plenches and Spunfits - RF CafeThe manned space program has unarguably provided mankind with many new and innovative tools, medicines, electronics, materials, physics, materials, appliances, and mathematics. Known officially as "spinoffs," products include items like the portable heart defibrillator unit, the portable vacuum cleaner, freeze-drying food processors, powdered lubricants, memory foam, quartz clocks and battery-powered tools. Many NASA inventions have not found an application in your basement or garage, however, because their purpose is too specialized. Take, for instance, the ZeRT, or Zero Reaction Tool ...

Plastic Insulator Turns into Heat Conductor

Plastic Insulator Turns into Heat Conductor - RF Cafe"Technique could prevent overheating of laptops, mobile phones, and other electronics. Plastics are excellent insulators, meaning they can efficiently trap heat - a quality that can be an advantage in something like a coffee cup sleeve. But this insulating property is less desirable in products such as plastic casings for laptops and mobile phones, which can overheat, in part because the coverings trap the heat that the devices produce. Now a team of engineers at MIT has developed a polymer thermal conductor - a plastic material that, however counterintuitive, works ..."

Electronics History Quiz

Electronics History Quiz, December 1965 Popular Electronics - RF CafeRobert Balin created scores of electronics-related quizzes for Popular Electronics magazine. Having appeared in the December 1965 issue, some of the subjects are a bit dated, but hey, this is an electronics history quiz. I got 80% - yeah, sort of pathetic, but I don't recall ever hearing of Heising and I couldn't figure out what item "A" was (hint: it's a TV iconoscope ...

Anatech Electronics April 2018 Product Update

Anatech Electronics Product Update April 3, 2018 - RF CafeAnatech Electronics offers the industry's largest portfolio of high-performance standard and customized RF and microwave filters and filter-related products for military, commercial, aerospace and defense, and industrial applications up to 40 GHz. Anatech has introduced three new filter designs: a 120.5 MHz bandpass filter with N type connectors, a 36 MHz crystal notch filter with SMA connectors, and a 1-200 MHz 3-way power divider with SMA connectors. Contact Anatech today ...

Cellular and Wi-Fi Use by Operator and Data Plan Type

Cellular and Wi-Fi Use by Operator and Data Plan Type - RF Cafe"How much data customers are using and how customers are paying for that data are perennial questions in the wireless industry. Thanks to a partnership between FierceWireless and Strategy Analytics, we hope to shed some light on the situation. The data below, from Strategy Analytics' AppOptix service, show how often Android wireless users stray from cellular networks and onto Wi-Fi networks - and how that differs among customers of Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. But perhaps more interestingly, Strategy ..."

Tuesday 3

Could Enemies Sabotage Undersea Cables Linking the World?

Could Enemies Sabotage Undersea Cables Linking the World? - RF Cafe"Russian ships are skulking around underwater communications cables, causing the U.S. and its allies to worry the Kremlin might be taking information warfare to new depths. Is Moscow interested in cutting or tapping the cables? Does it want the West to worry it might? Is there a more innocent explanation? Unsurprisingly, Russia isn't saying. But whatever Moscow's intentions, U.S. and Western officials are increasingly troubled by their rival's interest in the 400 fiber-optic cables that carry most of world's calls, emails and texts, as well as $10 trillion worth of daily ..."

Mac's Service Shop: Biological Effects of Electrical Shock

Mac's Service Shop: Biological Effects of Electrical Shock, May 1973 Popular Electronics - RF CafeHere is a timeless subject for anyone routinely subject to exposed high voltages. Most RF Cafe visitors already know that technically, it is the amount of electric current through the body that determines severity of electric shock, not the voltage. However, we also know that voltage does play a role because a certain voltage, per Ohm's law, is needed to induce a commensurate current. The body's resistance is determined primarily by perspiration (salt and water) and the path between contact points (e.g., across adjacent skin areas or hand-to-hand via the heart). MIL-STD-883 and JEDEC* have decided that the proper Human Body Model (HBM) for testing semiconductor ...

Free Webinar: RF & Microwave Filters

Webinar: RF & Microwave Filters - RF CafeRF/Microwave Training Webinar Series Title: RF and Microwave Filters. Date: April 11, 2018. Time: 11am ET. Sponsored by: National Instruments. Presented by: Dr. Bob Froelich. Description: This webinar introduces the student to core filter concepts, parameters, and topologies. Lowpass filters with lumped elements using filter tables, transformation to bandpass, the importance of Q, impedance inverter concept, coupled-resonator filters, and more. This is a perfect compliment to my newly published page on filter denormalization.

FCC to Promote Flexible and Intensive Use of 4.9 GHz Public Safety Band

FCC to Promote Flexible and Intensive Use of 4.9 GHz Public Safety Band - RF Cafe"The FCC has proposed to promote more flexible and intensive use of the 4.9 GHz band, a segment of spectrum that is currently designated for public safety communications. They are now asking for proposals, technical in nature, to encourage greater use of and investment in this public safety band, drawing on input from the public safety community and other potential users. The Commission's goal is to promote increased public safety use of the band and protect users from harmful interference while opening the spectrum to additional uses that will encourage a more robust market for equipment and greater ..."

Monday 2

Filter Prototype Denormalization Page Reworked

Filter Prototype Denormalization Equations Formulas - RF CafeThis entire page has been reworked to make the denormalization of prototype lowpass filter component values much easier to understand. I have received numerous questions about the process over the years, particularly regarding the swapping of capacitor and inductor values for highpass transformations. Bandpass and bandstop transformations can be equally confusing. The original page pretty much regurgitated the kind of presentation made by many textbooks, but this new format should make amply clear the transformation from normalized lowpass component values ...

Free E-Books for Entrepreneurs: Effective Sales Forecasting

The 7 Things You Need to Know for Effective Sales Forecasting - RF CafeMany RF Cafe visitors are new and experienced entrepreneurs competing with the big boys for a piece of the pie. Big corporations have professional sale and marketing people on staff or retainer who write these kinds of books. The Sales Forecasting Acceleration Guide - RF CafeRevResponse is offering these two free e-book titled, "The 7 Things You Need to Know for Effective Sales Forecasting," and "The Sales Forecasting Acceleration Guide." Maybe one of one of these e-books will help even the playing field for you. They are both free for downloading.

Taming Your TV Tuner

Taming Your TV Tuner, March 1967 Popular Electronics - RF CafeIf you have never seen an old-fashioned television tuner - particularly a color TV tuner - you have missed a truly impressive bit of electromechanical ingenuity. I include it here for you to marvel over, not because you are likely to need the information (although some RF Cafe visitors still use and/or service such things). Unlike a simple parallel plate capacitor tuner used by many radios, the TV tuner contains inductors, capacitors, resistors, tubes (or transistors), and many switch contacts (which provide ample opportunity for intermittent or no electrical contact when they inevitably get dirty). If a radio is a multi-band job, it nearly always has a separate switch or switch bank to select a particular band. The band ...

WAMICON 2018 Next Week

WAMICON 2018 - RF CafeThe 19th annual IEEE Wireless and Microwave Technology Conference (WAMICON 2018) will be held in Clearwater, Florida on April 9th and 10th, 2018. The conference will address up-to-date multidisciplinary research needs and interdisciplinary aspects of wireless and RF technology. The central theme of WAMICON2018 will be "mm-Waves and Internet of Things (IoT) for Commercial and Defense." We welcome submissions on all aspects of mm-wave and IoT related technologies including antennas, passive and active circuits, communication theory, and system concepts ...

Please Welcome the RF Superstore as My Newest Supporter

RF Superstore coaxial cable, connectors, adapters - RF CafeRF Superstore launched in 2017, marking the return of Murray Pasternack, founder of Pasternack Enterprises, to the RF and microwave Industry. Pasternack fundamentally changed the way RF components were sold. Partner Jason Wright manages day-to-day operations, while working closely with Mr. Pasternack to develop RF Superstore into a world class RF and microwave component supplier. We're leading the way again!

Wireless, Battery-Free RFID Sensor for Monitoring Machine Tools

Wireless, Battery-Free RFID Sensor for Monitoring Machine Tools - RF Cafe"Researchers at Fraunhofer IPMS have created a wireless, battery-free RFID sensor that can monitor the temperature and deformations on metallic rotating parts such as shafts or spindles. Prudent operators of highly automated production facilities keep a close eye on the condition of their equipment and machinery. Early identification of faulty processes or premature wear on tools can prevent damage to machines and production losses as well as optimize operational procedures. Integrating sensors on tool shafts or spindles is not very easy. It takes great effort to integrate cables or batteries ..."

Sunday 1

RF Cafe Engineering & Science Crossword Puzzle - Easter 2018

RF Cafe Engineering & Science Crossword Puzzle April 1, 2018Each 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. Words for clues having an asterisk (*) after them are part of this week's Easter theme. 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 ...

Real-Time Track of Tiangong-1 Satellite Crash Path

Real-Time Track of Tiangong-1 Satellite Crash Path - RF CafeWatch the ground track of the Tiangong-1 satellite, due for a fiery plunge to Earth Sunday afternoon, on this real-time map. The thumbnail is a screen capture of it passing almost directly overhead here in Erie, Pennsylvania this morning. It looks like we're out of danger for now. Check on your own degree of peril. It's amazing to watch how quickly the bird moves ...

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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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