When I saw this
Hughes Research and Development Laboratories employment ad in a 1955 issue of
Radio & Television News, I wasn't sure how to take it. The text of the ad makes
no reference to the bar graph and the weird drawing. Note the
"bottle" is actually a slide rule. The graph can be interpreted to indicate
that the more education a person has, the less likely he is to have children. If
the typical age of the respondent is in the twenties, then that might reflect
how people still in school to earn a higher degree would not be having children.
It might also show that people with higher degrees focus more on their careers
than on having a family. If you extrapolate the graph backward, does it imply
people with an Associate's degree might average 1.5 children, those with just a
high school diploma have about 1.7 children, and high school dropouts average
maybe 2.0 kids? You have to also assume that most of the people with higher
degrees earned them prior to beginning work or else you would have to ask what
the Ph.D. with 0.9 kids did...
Have I mentioned that my YL, Melanie,
decided she would earn her Amateur radio Technician license? After living in a
household with a bilingual husband (English and Electronics) for nearly 38 years
and having become fairly proficient at ETL (electronics as a third language*),
Melanie decided to earn her Technician license. She has never delved into the
technical aspects of electricity / electronics, but because of hearing me speak of it (too) often and having proof-read my writings and scanned and OCR'ed
more than a thousand articles from vintage electronics magazines, her gray cells
are permeated with the vocabulary, lingo, jargon, vernacular, slang, and argot
of the realm. Being an expert test taker, she will undoubtedly pass the written
test with flying colors. With much self-restraint, I have avoided offering my
sage advice and knowledge during her studies of the ARRL's Ham Radio License
Manual. The current edition is the 4th, being valid from 2018 through 2022.
Melanie has asked for a little clarification on SWR, decibels and couple other
minor topics, but otherwise has progressed...
"It's amazing how many iconic and forgotten
radio telescopes pop-up in movies, TV shows, and documentaries. The human eye
was our first space image detector. On a beautifully clear night at the Aoraki Mackenzie
International Dark Sky Reserve in New Zealand with the Milky Way displayed above
us, we can see about 5,000 stars. But to really see - that is, to detect and communicate
into space - a radio telescope is needed. Such devices can receive radio waves from
astronomical sources in the sky and are the main observing instrument used in radio
astronomy. Whereas optical telescopes study the light wave portion of the spectrum,
radio telescopes focus on the radio frequency portion of the electromagnetic (EM)
spectrum emitted by almost all astronomical objects..."
the Podcast! Just in time for Halloween, John
T. Frye's teenage sleuths
Carl & Jerry unexpectedly recorded a late-night conversation between two men
where they plot how to dispose of the "body" when death occurred as a result of
prolonged choking. Employing their trademark technical prowess and scheming
ability, the pair sets a trap for the perpetrators and dutifully summon the
authorities as they complete their nefarious act of the night before. Halloween
comes into play because the recordings were made for use in creating sound
effects during the reading of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Pit and the Pendulum" and "The
Cask of Amontillado." This story, which appeared in a 1955 issue of Popular
Electronics magazine, is a little dark compared to a typical story...
RIGOL has published a downloadable app note
entitled "Advanced Measurements
with a Vector Network Analyzer." It begins: "In our wireless world the need
of RF component testing is one of a key factors to bring a product to market. Devices
are getting smaller and are containing more and more complex components. It is a
must to have knowledge of complex impedance (or admittance) and reflection / transmission
parameters to bring the most optimum functionality to the RF device. RF components
like filters, resonators, etc. can be calculated according to capacitance and inductive
values. Software simulators can take these values and help fine tune the design.
But at the end of the day, the quality and performance needs to be measured..."
Bittele Electronics, a Toronto-based Turn-key
PCB Assembly firm specializing in prototype and low-to-mid volume printed circuit
board (PCB) manufacturing and assembly, announced today the release of its
Online Ordering Service featuring Live Chat and
Zoom meeting support. This new, state-of-the-art tool allows customers to complete
turnkey PCB assembly orders faster and with up to 25% price discounts. Bittele's
Online Ordering Service enables a customer to complete all steps to complete a PCB
Fabrication and Assembly order in under 20 minutes while qualifying for exclusive
discounts that are automatically applied to the order. Once an online order is placed,
it will be immediately processed and released to Bittele's production team...
MPDevice (MPD) has become a trustworthy
and reliable company in the global RF market as a manufacturer of
passive RF devices. Included
are attenuators and terminations, coaxial connectors, adapters, and cable assemblies,
DC blocks, surge arrestors, power combiner / dividers, and directional couplers.
The Korean Telecommunication market is now entering into the era of hyperconnected
society. With continuous enhancement in R&D capabilities and quality control,
MPD will continue in an effort to become the No. 1 technologically innovative
company with a focus on the emerging 5G marketplace.
Here is a quick
Hi−Fi Quiz for all you audiophiles out there. Although it appeared in a 1955
issue of Radio & Television News magazine, save for question #10 all
of Q's and A's still apply to today's equipment. Even that one can be easily guessed.
Q4 might seem a bit foreign, but think of the "groove" type as applying to 78, 45,
or 33-1/3 rpm platters and you'll do OK. Question #7 could be a baffler (pun intended
- you'll see how) were it not for one obviously invalid option that it takes an
RF guy (or gal) to recognize its inanity. Good luck. BTW, I missed Q1, but should
have known better.
Res-Net Microwave has a complete line of
precision RF & microwave
components including attenuators, terminations, resistors, and diode detectors
for commercial, military, and space applications. Products range from the small
flange type to large 2,000 watt connectorized power attenuators and/or terminations
at frequencies up to 26.5 GHz. In-house photo etch and laser trim capability.
The company is a leader in development and production of the films required for
these type of RF/microwave components. Please check out Res-Net Microwave's website
to see how they can help with your current project.
"Failure is an integral part of the engineering
experience. It is so common that it has become an expectation and even affectionately
referred to as Murphy's Law: 'Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.' It has
been stated that the great American inventor Thomas Edison was once asked by a reporter
how it felt to fail 700 times in the creation of the light bulb. His response: 'I
have not failed 700 times. I have not failed once. I have succeeded in proving that
those 700 ways will not work. When I have eliminated the ways that will not work,
I will find the way that will work.' Henry Petroski, the famous American engineer
failure analysis, wrote the following in his book, To Engineer Is Human: The
Role of Failure in Successful Design: 'I believe that the concept of failure..."
Development of the
cavity magnetron during World War II helped change the destiny of Allied
forces through using high frequency radar with enough power to detect distant targets
while using frequencies which were out of the normal detection bands of Axis forces'
receivers. Most equipment at the time could not operate efficiently (or at all)
above a few hundred MHz. It was considered a top-level secret with great concern
that the technology not fall into the hands of German and Japanese scientists. According
to this early post-war advertisement in a 1945 issue of Radio News, Bell
Labs was totally consumed by the development of magnetrons, and was relieved to
finally be able to boast of its critical role now that the war was over...
RIGOL Technologies is transforming the Test
and Measurement Industry. Our premium line of products includes digital and mixed
signal oscilloscopes, spectrum analyzers, function / arbitrary waveform generators,
programmable power supplies and loads, digital multimeters, data acquisition systems,
and application software. Our test solutions combine uncompromised product performance,
quality, and advanced product features; all delivered at extremely attractive price
points. This combination provides our customers with unprecedented value for their
investment, reduces their overall cost of test, and helps speed time to completion
of their designs or projects.
Times Microwave Systems, a pioneering brand
in innovative RF and microwave interconnect assemblies, cables and connector design,
announces the addition of a new
1/2" plenum RF cable to its product line. The LPA-500 LLPL air-dielectric corrugated
plenum cable is a low-loss, plenum listed (type CMP) coaxial cable. Available now,
its design offers excellent intermodulation performance, and can be used as feedlines
within buildings to support distributed antenna systems (DAS); public safety communications
systems; RF backbone interconnects within plenum airspaces; and additional applications.
The LPA-500 LLPL is an affordable option that provides the quality and performance
for which Times is universally recognized. The new 1/2" plenum RF cable...
Withwave manufactures an extensive line of
metrology quality coaxial test cable assemblies, connectors (wave-, end-, vertical-launch,
board edge, panel mount), calibration kits (SOLT), a
fully automated 4-port vector
network analyzer (VNA) calibrator, between- and in-series connector adaptors,
attenuators, terminations, DC blocks, torque wrenches, test probes & probe positioner.
Special test fixtures for calibration and multicoax cable assemblies. Frequency
ranges from DC through 110 GHz. Please contact Withwave today to see how they
can help your project succeed.
November 1st's custom
Engineering Technology themed crossword puzzle contains only only words from
my custom-created lexicon related to engineering, science, mathematics,
chemistry, physics, astronomy, etc. (1,000s of them). 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, find someone or something in
the otherwise excluded list directly related to this puzzle's technology theme,
such as Hedy Lamarr or the Bikini Atoll, respectively. The technically inclined
cruciverbalists amongst us will appreciate the effort.
Radio-Electronics October 1953 Circuit Symbol Stamp p126
Comics June 1951 Radio-Electronics
RF Cafe typically receives 8,000-15,000
website visits each weekday and about half that on weekends.
RF Cafe is a favorite of engineers, technicians, hobbyists, and students all
over the world. With more than 13,000 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. Advertising begins at $40/month.
RF Cascade Workbook 2018 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. 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...
With more than 1000
custom-built symbols, this has got to be the most comprehensive set of
Visio 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 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
RF 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...
"The dangers of lithium-ion batteries, like
those used in smartphones and electric vehicles (EVs), catching fire or exploding
has been well-publicized. But the true impact of an EV battery catching fire and
the dangers that could result aren't known on a wide scale, which remains a question
mark as they become more widely adopted. To find out, researchers in Switzerland
EV batteries on fire in a series of experiments to test the potential for damage
and disaster in the case of EVs catching fire in parking structures or a tunnel.
What they discovered is that while in some cases, electric vehicle battery fires
are no more dangerous than other types of car fires, the smoke and soot they give
off contains toxic metal oxide "
"Electronics engineers continually look for
better insulating materials to use in their projects. Finding the right ones leads
to a longer product lifespan, along with improved performance and reduced heat during
use. Over the last several years, researchers have achieved particularly promising
results while using boron nitride to insulate electronics.
Boron nitride is a synthetic ceramic material available in solid and powder
forms. Since it has a similar microstructure to graphite, some people refer to it
as 'white graphite.' Unlike graphite, boron nitride performs well as an electronics
insulator with a higher oxidation temperature than that material. Scientists are
working hard to test and verify boron nitride's usefulness as an electronics insulator..."
"A research team led by University of Buffalo
has developed a new
3D-printed molecular ferroelectric metamaterial. The advancement has been published
in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science and is a step toward making
these extraordinary lab-created materials more affordable and adaptable to countless
multifunctional technologies. It could benefit everything from acoustic blankets
for aircraft soundproofing to shock absorbers and elastic cloaks that shield sensitive
electronic systems from external mechanical disturbances. A metamaterial is any
material engineered to have a property that is not found in naturally occurring
materials. Ferroelectricity relates to crystalline substances that have spontaneous
electric polarization that's reversible by an electric field..."
"Despite a lot of progress in recent years,
practical laser weapons that can shoot down planes or missiles are still a ways
off. But a new
liquid laser may be bringing that day closer. Much of the effort in recent years
has focused on high-power fiber lasers. These lasers usually specially doped coils
of optical fibers to amplify a laser beam, and were in originally developed for
industrial cutting and welding. Initially, fiber laser were dark horses in the Pentagon's
effort to develop electrically powered solid-state laser weapons that began two
decades ago. However, by 2013 the Navy was testing a 30-kilowatt fiber laser on
a ship. Since then, their ability to deliver high-energy beams of excellent optical
quality has earned fiber lasers the leading role in the current field trials of
laser weapons in the 50- to 100-kilowatt class. But now aerospace giant Boeing has
teamed with General Atomics..."
"As the semiconductor industry witnesses
the winding down of the expectation that the number of transistors that can be shoehorned
into silicon microchips will double every couple of years, researchers are coming
up with new ways to keep the effect of Moore's Law rolling along. One such method
with exciting prospects employs
liquid metals to produce two-dimensional semiconducting materials with atomic-scale
thickness. This enables the creation of a transistor channel between source and
drain that is almost an order of magnitude thinner than those employed in silicon
transistors. In addition, they possess intriguing properties such as a variety of
band gaps and carrier concentrations, as well as unique transducing properties.
“The two-dimensional confinement of free charge-carriers..."
"Engineering students at the University of
Cincinnati are building tiny custom CubeSat
satellites to test the radiation shielding properties of carbon fiber material
and take high-resolution photos of the Great Lakes from space. LEOPARDsat-1 will
record how much radiation from space seeps through different thicknesses of carbon-polyethylene
samples. HABsat1 relies on an internal flywheel system in which motor-driven spinning
flywheels can orient a satellite on three axes..."