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Homepage Archive - December 2019 (page 3)
See Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 of the December 2019 homepage archives.

Friday 20

Electronics-Themed Comics

Electronics-Themed Comics, December 1944 Radio News - RF CafeThere are few better ways to wind down a work week than with some good old-fashioned (literally) technology-themed comics. This three fifths of a handful of comics appeared in a 1944 issue of Radio News magazine. You need to know when looking at these scenarios that people in the 1940s cherished and revered their radio sets like people today do with their cellphones. Magical and supernatural attributes were assigned to them by some, especially the non-technically inclined. Entire families gathered around the radio in eager anticipation of the latest episode of "The Shadow," The Lone Ranger," "Little Orphan Annie," "Jack Benny," and "Inner Sanctum Mystery." BTW, if you want to experience the aura of old time radio shows, many of them are available for listening online on the Old Time Radio Catalog website and others...

RF Cafe: How to Remove Clutter from Online Document Displays

How to Remove Clutter from Online Document Displays, Kirt's Cogitations #316 - RF CafeIf you are annoyed by pop-ups and extraneous framework elements and/or SEO (search engine optimization) tracking code accompanying application notes, white papers, and images, and videos, many times you can get rid of them by editing the URL displayed in your browser address bar. Compare the displays in this set of screen captures based on the original URL provided in an e-mail (top) to the one where all the extraneous terms have been removed from the URL (bottom). Note that the yellow highlighted components have been eliminated. Often, I remove that stuff from hyperlink URLs before sending my visitors to websites. Companies don't particularly like me doing that, but doing so helps maintain your privacy. URLs in e-mails are particularly likely to contain appended code that contains one or more "&utm_" parts. UTM is the Urchin Tracking Module introduced by Google Analytics' predecessor Urchin and are now supported by Google Analytics. They typically...

MIL-STD-461 Testing Advantages Using Time Domain Scan EMI Receivers

MIL-STD-461 Testing Advantages Using Time Domain Scan EMI Receivers - RF CafeRohde & Schwarz has published a application note entitled, "MIL-STD-461 Testing Advantages Using Time Domain Scan EMI Receivers," which pertains to standards for EMC testing of U.S. military equipment. "Even when using various time-saving procedures, Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) measurement times are still very long –typically several hours for radiated emissions measurements. The introduction of spectrum measurements based on fast Fourier transform (FFT) - also known as a time domain scan - allows a significant reduction in measurement times and improves the probability of intercept (POI) without affecting accuracy. EMI FFT based receivers ..."

Calls Home from Auto

Calls Home from Auto by Short Wave, August 1935 Short Wave Craft - RF CafeThis could be one of the earliest reports of mobile communications between a private automobile and a home base station. Using a personally designed and installed 5-meter transceiver both at home and in his car, Mr. Wallace is able to talk to his 12-year-old son on the way from work. My guess is that in 1935 there were not too many traffic jams, even in Long Beach, California, so it is doubtful that was the cause for his announced expected later-than-normal arrival home. The article states the automobile power supply needed to produce 300 mA of current at 525 V, which is ~160 W per Ohm's law, which seems unlikely considering car batteries were 6 V at the time...

World's 1st 0.1 µF Multilayer Ceramic Capacitor

 World's 1st 0.1µF Multilayer Ceramic Capacitor - RF Cafe"Murata has developed the first multi-layer ceramic capacitor with a maximum capacitance of 0.1 μF. The GRM011R60J104M, measures 0.25 x 0.125 mm and is available in a 0804 footprint. Mass production of this new product is scheduled to begin in 2020. As smartphones supporting 5G become more widespread and devices such as wearable devices become increasingly multi-functional and more compact, the demand for smaller and higher density electronic circuitry is growing. Among the components employed in this circuitry, multi-layer ceramic capacitors are essential for electronic devices and are used for a wide range of applications ..."

QuinStar Technology: mm-Wave Active & Passive Components

QuinStar Technology designs and manufactures mm-wave products for communication, scientific, and test applications along with providing microelectronic assembly, rapid prototyping, and mass customization. Amplifiers, Oscillators, Switches, Attenuators, Circulators, Isolators, Filters, Waveguide, Antennas, Phase Shifters, Transceivers, Mixers, Detectors. QuinStar specializes in cryogenic amplifiers, circulators, and isolators. Please visit QuinStar today to see how they can help your project.

Carl & Jerry: Santa's Little Helpers

Carl & Jerry: Santa's Little Helpers, December 1955 Popular Electronics - RF CafeWere strings of miniature Christmas tree lights not available for purchase in 1955? This adventure of "Carl & Jerry" seems to imply that was the case since it concerns the design and constructions of such a circuit using low voltage panel lamps (light bulbs). Although usually the two techno-teenager are co-conspiring on various tasks of high tech sleuthing or radio-related pursuits, in this case it is Jerry who has been doing the hard work. Author John Frye might not know how prescient he was when describing the two inventions he conjured up for Carl and Jerry. The first is the aforementioned miniature Christmas light string and the second is a voice recording device that can capture a short message and then quickly play it back. The playback scheme involves kids reciting their Christmas wish list to a fake Santa Claus and then having him read it back to them in a different voice (slowed down). Regarding the light strings, note that they are incandescent bulbs wired in series so if one goes out, they all go out. Most, if not all, Christmas light strings these days are wired...

Space Electronics

Space Electronics, September 1961 Popular Electronics - RF CafeSuccess won in the realm of space-based communications has been fraught with many failures. As with most endeavors, it is thanks to the relative few who have sacrificed and endured against overwhelming odds to bring significant technological advances in communications to the many. Space presents a particularly difficult venue because of the harsh deployment and operational environment, and inaccessibility after deployment. Personal sacrifice has taken the form of depression, financial ruin, lost opportunity for other endeavors, broken families, sickness, substance abuse, and other maladies brought on by an obsession with success. Such sacrifice has built the modern world...

Gift Ideas: Custom-Designed RF Cafe Gear!

Custom-Designed RF-Themed Cups, T-Shirts, Mouse Pads, Clocks (Cafe Press) - RF CafeThis 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...

GaN Transistor Enables Faster & Cheaper Wireless Communications

New GaN Transistor Enables Faster & Cheaper Wireless Communications - RF Cafe"Researchers at the University of Delaware have created a high-electron mobility transistor with record-setting properties, including record low gate leakage current (a measure of current loss), a record high on/off current ratio (the magnitude of the difference of current transmitted between the on state and off state) and a record high current gain cutoff frequency (an indication of how much data can be transmitted with a wide range of frequencies). This transistor could be useful for higher bandwidth wireless communication systems. For a given current, it can handle more voltage and would require less battery life than other devices of its type. Yuping Zeng, an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Delaware and her team of researchers ..."

Copper Mountain Technologies Achieves ISO 9001:2015 Certification

Copper Mountain Technologies Achieves ISO 9001:2015 Certification - RF CafeCopper Mountain Technologies (CMT), a USB vector network analyzer manufacturer in Indianapolis, IN, USA, is proud to achieve ISO 9001:2015 certification. International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 9001:2015 is the original quality management standard and the world's most widely recognized quality management system certification. The standard ensures that businesses continuously improve their processes and comply with ISO 9001:2015's stringent requirements that help products and services provided meet and exceed customer expectations. Achieving ISO 9001:2015 certification demonstrates that CMT has implemented quality management systems and processes that support its core mission - extending the reach of engineers it serves. Following the ISO standard will ensure that our customers continue to get vector network analyzer solutions...

KR Electronics: RF & Microwave Filters

KR ElectronicsKR Electronics designs and manufactures high quality filters for both the commercial and military markets. KR Electronics' line of filters includes lowpass, highpass, bandpass, bandstop and individually synthesized filters for special applications - both commercial and military. State of the art computer synthesis, analysis and test methods are used to meet the most challenging specifications. All common connector types and package form factors are available. Please visit their website today to see how they might be of assistance. Products are designed and manufactured in the USA.

Wednesday 18

Howard W. Sams Photofact Service

Howard W. Sams & Co., Inc. Photofact Service, May 1948 Radio-Craft - RF CafeI and many people who visit RF Cafe tend to do our own repair and maintenance work whenever possible. Having had this obsession for as long as I can remember, there is no doubt that the ready availability of service information and how-to aids available on the Internet not only makes the job easier, but also makes things possible that could never have been achieved a couple decades ago. When I needed to put new rotors and brakes on my 2011 Jeep Patriot last month, a quick search turned up multiple videos of people demonstrating how to do it. Sure, I've done dozens of brake jobs and am fairly comfortable with what might be involved, but being able to watch a beginning-to-end video before diving into it is really nice. My trusty Hanes repair manual was on-hand, but a couple black and white photos and terse instructions usually do not describe the complete environment. A couple years ago when my gas-fired furnace would light and cut off after a few seconds, an Internet search turned up the likely cause...

Thanks to QuinStar Technology for Their Support

QuinStar Technology designs and manufactures mm-wave products for communication, scientific, and test applications along with providing microelectronic assembly, rapid prototyping, and mass customization. Amplifiers, Oscillators, Switches, Attenuators, Circulators, Isolators, Filters, Waveguide, Antennas, Phase Shifters, Transceivers, Mixers, Detectors. QuinStar specializes in cryogenic amplifiers, circulators, and isolators. Please visit QuinStar today to see how they can help your project.

Modelithics Opening for Programming/IT Support Technician

Modelithics, Inc., the leading independent provider of simulation models for RF and Microwave devices, seeks an Modelithics, Inc. is looking for a Programming / IT Support person with a strong programming background with the ability to efficiently multi-task in an ever-changing environment. Primary duties are to assist in the development of our flag ship library product of electronic component software models for use in multiple computer aided engineering(CAE)simulation products using SOP's (standard operating procedures) as well as independent judgment, after suitable training on each task. Duties may include model development, interfacing with each of the supported simulators, packaging, building installers, testing, and documentation...

Werbel Microwave Intros 2-18 GHz Directional Coupler

Werbel Microwave Intros 2 - 18 GHz Directional Coupler - RF CafeWerbel Microwave, a designer and manufacturer of RF and microwave power couplers, dividers, terminations, and DAS equipment, introduces model C-0218-06-001, a 6 dB directional coupler covering 2 to 18 GHz, with SMA female connectors. Flatness is ±1.0 dB and maximum VSWR is 1.5:1 across the entire band. Less than 2 dB insertion loss and a minimum directivity of 12 dB. Operating temperature is -55 to +100 °C. Werbel Microwave is bringing electronics manufacturing back to America!...

Dutch-Chinese Radio Telescope Unfolds Antennas Behind Moon

 Dutch-Chinese Radio Telescope Unfolds Antennas Behind Moon - RF Cafe"The Netherlands-China Low Frequency Explorer (NCLE) is a prototype radio telescope built to record weak radio signals from a period just following the Big Bang, called the Dark Ages. These signals are blocked by the Earth's atmosphere, which is why the telescope was placed on a satellite and brought to a location behind the moon. With this satellite, called QueQiao, the China National Space Administration (CNSA) has been navigating a lunar lander that has been driving around the back of the moon since early 2019. The Netherlands-China Low Frequency Explorer was developed in the Netherlands by Radboud University (Nijmegen), ASTRON (Dwingeloo) and the ISISpace company (Delft) ..."

Innovative Power Products: RF & Microwave Passive Components

Innovative Power ProductsInnovative Power Products (IPP) has over 30 years of experience designing & manufacturing RF & microwave passive components. Their high power, broadband couplers, combiners, resistors, baluns, terminations and attenuators are fabricated using the latest materials and design tools available, resulting in unrivaled product performance. Applications in military, medical, industrial and commercial markets. Take a couple minutes to visit their website and see how IPP can help you today.

Tuesday 17

Television Steps Out!

Television Steps Out!, January 1948 Radio-Craft - RF CafeMost of us have heard of the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB). Founded in 1922 at the dawn of commercial radio broadcasting, it is still in existence today. When commercial television broadcasting "stepped out" in a major way in the early 1940s, industry chieftains and station owners decided that their new media paradigm was unique enough to warrant a separate union, so the Television Broadcasters Association (TBA) was formed. A lot of effort went into establishing and building a coalition with enough influence in the marketplace and with government regulators, independent of radio, to exist as a force to be dealt with. Many people believed that radio as an entertainment and news media source would decrease at a rate as great or greater than television was increasing. Once again, experts were not successful at predicting behavior of the citizenry, which was true both in the United States and around the world...

RF Cascade Workbook 2018

RF Cascade Workbook 2018 Is Available Now! - RF CafeRF Cascade Workbook 2018 is the next phase in the evolution of RF Cafe's long-running series, RF Cascade Workbook. 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...

Anatech December 2019 Newsletter: The Reckoning

Anatech Electronics December 2019 Newsletter - RF CafeSam Benzacar of Anatech Electronics, an RF and microwave filter company, has published his November newsletter that features his short op-ed entitled "My Predictions for 2019: The Reckoning," which is a follow-up on his December 2018 newsletter main article entitled, "The RF and Microwave Industry in 2019: My Predictions," that included 5G, IoT, Defense, and rural broadband. Buried within this year's "reckoning" are a few predictions for 2020. Will Sam be as prescient regarding 2020 as he was for 2019? Check in this time next year to find out. In other news, Sam includes a few other items related to our RF industry...

3 Painless Tips for Writing Documentation

3 Painless Tips for Writing Documentation - RF Cafe"Here are a few tips for developing documentation that decrease the pain for developers and improve the quality of the documentation. Writing documentation is not the most exciting endeavor an engineer can embark on. It's often boring, time consuming, and there are so many more interesting things that could be done. It sometimes amaze me that development projects are documented so poorly - if they are even documented at all. Documentation is meant to help preserve important concepts and information about the development cycle. This information could be used to get up to speed on the product, make decisions about updates and changes, or even to prove that proper procedures ..."

Software-Defined Analog Filters

Software-Defined Analog Filters - RF CafeAnother great article in the latest Aerospace & Defense Technology magazine is entitled, "Software-Defined Analog Filters: A Paradigm Shift in Radio Filter Performance and Capability." Joel Brand, of Kumu Networks, describes a standard CMOS implementation consisting not of digital elements but of multi-tap cells consisting of an adder, a multiplier, and a delay element. His company's application is a co-channel interference canceller for co-located radios. Begins the article, "Among the most abundant components in all wireless system designs, analog RF filters are used to block interference from various internal and external sources. Limited spectrum divided among an ever-increasing number of users is further driving the need for these ubiquitous but in some ways anachronistic devices. Currently, interference is quite common among cellular base stations, satellite systems, radar installations, and other types of access ..."

Bittele Electronics: PCB Fabrication & Assembly

Since 2003, Bittele Electronics has consistently provided low-volume, electronic contract manufacturing (ECM) and turnkey PCB assembly services. It specializes in board level turnkey PCB assembly for design engineers needing low volume or prototype multi-layer printed circuit boards. Free Passive Components: Bittele Electronics is taking one further step in its commitment of offering the best service to clients of its PCB assembly business. Bittele is now offering common passive components to its clients FREE of Charge.

Monday 16

Engineering Technician or RF Test Engineer Wanted

Modelithics Needs an Engineering Technician or RF Test Engineer – Characterization and Modeling - RF CafeModelithics, the leading independent provider of simulation models for RF and microwave devices, seeks an Engineering Technician or RF Test Engineer who will utilize, build and/or adapt unique test equipment for complex tests using SOP's as well as independent judgment, after suitable training on each task. Duties include applying working knowledge of applicable test requirements and performing tests using general laboratory equipment and routine care of designated test equipment and work area, as well as operate a computer to extract/input readily available information and to use available software. The RF test specialist will be responsible for examining test samples, reading measuring instruments and reviewing test data with supervisor...

Reducing the High Cost Of Titanium

Reducing the High Cost Of TitaniumAlthough somewhat off topic, this article entitled, "Reducing the High Cost Of Titanium," which appeared in the December issue of Aerospace and Defense Technology magazine, contains some really interesting information about the metal. "Titanium is neither a precious metal nor rare, yet among industrial metals it has the reputation for being very expensive. It's the fourth most abundant metallic element and the ninth most abundant of all the elements in the earth's crust. Its commercially useful oxide ore occurs in the minerals rutile and ilmenite and numerous iron ores, and exploitable ore deposits are liberally scattered around the world. Due to its properties and high cost it has often been referred to as unobtanium ..."

Axiom Test Equipment: Rent, Buy, Trade & Repair

Axiom Test Equipment - RF CafeAxiom Test Equipment allows you to rent or buy test equipment, repair test equipment, or sell or trade test equipment. They are committed to providing superior customer service and high quality electronic test equipment. Axiom offers customers several practical, efficient, and cost effective solutions for their projects' TE needs and is committed to providing superior customer service and high quality electronic test equipment. For anyone seeking a way to offload surplus or obsolete equipment, they offer a trade-in program or they will buy the equipment from you. Some vintage items are available fully calibrated. Please check out Axiom Test Equipment today!

Notable Tech Quote: Apollo 12 Astronaut Alan Bean

Notable Tech Quote: Apollo 12 Astronaut Alan Bean - RF CafeThe November 2019 issue of Astronomy magazine included an interview with Apollo 12 moon-walking astronauts Alan Bean and Pete Conrad. It is the 50th anniversary of the world's second manned excursion to the moon's surface on November 19, 1969. Amongst the science experiments and tasks to be performed was the deployment of a plutonium fuel cell that would power the equipment remaining on the surface after the Lunar Module blasted off. Most of the gear had been set up without incident, but the fuel rod got stuck inside its transport cylinder. None of that science gear would be of any use with out a power supply. After unsuccessfully trying to free the rod without risking damage, it finally came down to whacking it with one of those infamous $400 NASA hammers to get it out. Bean's comment to Houston upon completion was, "Don't come to the Moon without a hammer."

World's 1st Crystal-less, Wireless IoT MCU

World's 1st Crystal-less, Wireless MCU - RF CafeBAW is "new technology?" "IoT building blocks include sensors that use quartz crystals. Discrete clocking and quartz crystal devices used to achieve wireless connections can be costly, time-consuming, and complicated to develop, however, and are often susceptible to environmental stress in factory automation or automotive applications. A new technology called bulk acoustic wave (BAW) makes it possible to create simpler, smaller MCU designs while increasing overall performance and lowering costs. BAW can enable the next generation of industrial and telecommunication applications by changing how we approach system designs today. BAW consists of a piezoelectric material sandwiched between two electrodes that converts electrical energy to mechanical-acoustical energy, and vice versa ...

Alliance Test Equipment: Used & Refurbished, Purchase & Rental

Allied Test Equipment Products - RF CafeAlliance Test sells used / refurbished test equipment and offers short- and long-term rentals. They also offer repair, maintenance and calibration. Prices discounted up to 80% off list price. Agilent/HP, Tektronix, Anritsu, Fluke, R&S and other major brands. A global organization with ability to source hard to find equipment through our network of suppliers. Please visit Allied Test Equipment today to see how they can help your project.

Sunday 15

Special Theme Crossword Puzzle December 15

Engineering & Science Crossword Puzzle December 15, 2019 - RF CafeThis week's puzzle features words and clues, marked with an asterisk (*), regarding a momentous event which took place this week on December 17, 1903. As with my hundreds of previous engineering and science-themed crossword puzzles, this one contains only clues and terms associated with engineering, science, physical, astronomy, mathematics, chemistry, etc., which I have built up over nearly two decades. Many new words and company names have been added that had not even been created when I started in the year 2002. You will never find a word taxing your knowledge of a numbnut soap opera star or the name of some obscure village in the Andes mountains. You might, however, encounter...

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