Monday the 31st
Apropos for today's Day in History theme
of Congress' passing of the U.S. Copyright Act on May 31, 1790, is RF Cafe visitor
Dave Hutchinson's notifying me of his recent patent (US10708043B2), award for his
invention entitled "One
pad communications." Abstract: Perfect secrecy can only be assumed if the length
of the key is as long the message sent and the cardinality of the key space is the
same as that of the message. The preferred embodiment will demonstrate how to implement
a one-pad communication system between a transmitter and a receiver where only a
few parameters need to be transferred to the receiver. The preferred embodiment
will also demonstrate that a true random number will be generated and used...
Exodus Advanced Communications, a multinational
RF communication equipment and engineering service company serving both commercial
and government entities and their affiliates worldwide, introduces their
AMP4032A high power amplifier. The AMP4032A is an ideal broadband EMC-lab amplifier
also for EW, communications and all applications. Class A/AB linear design for all
modulations and industry standards, a great TWT replacement. Covers 18.0 – 26.5 GHz,
10 W P1dB (15W typical), with 40 dB of gain. Optional monitoring parameters
for forward/reflected power, voltage, current & temperature sensing for superb
reliability and ruggedness in our compact 3U chassis...
Boeing B-52 Stratofortress long-range bomber has been in continuous service
since 1954. Production of new aircraft ran from 1952 through 1962. Now 67 years
hence at version "H," it is still our nation's primary long-range bomber. That is
a great testimony to the aircraft's initial design and construction, but a sad testimony
to our ability to design and build a complete replacement. The B-1 bomber was a
dismal failure and the B-2 Stealth bomber is too expensive to build and maintain
in large quantities. This story from a 1957 edition of Radio & Television
News reports on the "K-System" computerized bombsight gear installed in early
B-52s that used radar for targeting. According to the writer, nearly 1,000,000 American
defense company workers at companies like Eastman Kodak, General Motors, General
Mills (yes, the breakfast cereal people), Motorola, and roughly 3,000 others...
NuWaves Engineering, located in Middletown,
Ohio, is in need of an
Applications Engineer for their RF products line. This position presents the
opportunity to apply expertise in Applications Engineering to support NuWaves' primarily
radio frequency products, ultimately supporting the U.S. Military. Opportunities
exist within the Product Advancement domain and across the company to increase knowledge,
grow leadership skills, and continuously improve the business system. The Applications
Engineer is responsible for understanding the functionality, application and internal
circuitry of all NuWaves' products. An individual that is successful in this position
will work to find innovative solutions to improve manufacturability, lower costs,
and create additional value for the customer. Working closely with the Product Advancement
and Business Development teams, the Applications Engineer provides in-depth technical
support to customers...
calendar! Tuesday, June 1, at 8 pm EDT, a Special Open Zoom Presentation titled:
History of Heathkit," including the inside story of Facts, Fables and Stories
... the unvarnished truth ... from the inside. Presented by Ed Shekleton, K1ZE,
who was Heathkit Technical Manager based in New England from 1972 to 1990. There
will be plenty of time to ask your questions and an opportunity to tell of your
Heathkit experiences. All are invited.... please pass this message along to the
hams and clubs you know that may enjoy the insider Heathkit Story. Check out the
Heathkit website. Thanks to Joe Birsa,
N3TTE, for letting me know.
Triad RF Systems designs and manufactures
RF power amplifiers
and systems. Triad RF Systems comprises three partners
(hence 'Triad') with over 40 years of accumulated
knowledge of what is required to design, manufacture, market, sell and service RF/Microwave
amplifiers and amplifier systems. PA, LNA, bi-directional, and frequency translating
amplifiers are available, in formats including tower mount, benchtop, rack mount,
and chassis mount. "We view Triad more as a technology partner than a vendor for
our line-of-sight communications product line." Please check to see how they can
help your project.
Sunday the 30th
For twenty years now, I have been creating
weekly crossword puzzles for the education and enjoyment of the technically minded
visitor like you. This Physics Theme Crossword Puzzle for May 30th has many words
and clues related to RF, microwave, and mm-wave engineering, optics, mathematics,
chemistry, physics, and other technical subjects. As always, this crossword contains
no names of politicians, mountain ranges, exotic foods or plants, movie stars, or
anything of the sort unless it/he/she is related to this puzzle's technology theme
(e.g., Reginald Denny or the Tunguska event in Siberia). The technically inclined
cruciverbalists amongst us will appreciate the effort. Enjoy!
PCB Directory is the largest directory of
Board (PCB) Manufacturers, Assembly houses, and Design Services on the Internet.
We have listed the leading printed circuit board manufacturers around the world
and made them searchable by their capabilities - Number of laminates used, Board
thicknesses supported, Number of layers supported, Types of substrates (FR-4, Rogers,
flexible, rigid), Geographical location (U.S., China), kinds of services (manufacturing,
fabrication, assembly, prototype), and more. Fast turn-around on quotations for
PCB fabrication and assembly.
Friday the 28th
For some inexplicable reason, the first page
of Part 1 of the "Electric
Space Ships" articles in Radio-Electronics magazine is nowhere to be found.
It is missing from the scanned copy, so I am attempting to get a hard copy on eBay
(December 1950 issue). Until then, here is what is available from the PDF version
on the WorldRadioHistory website (I normally only use my own purchased hard copies).
One RF Cafe visitor wrote when I originally posted Part 2 that he has searched
in vain for the missing portion of Part 1 and thinks there might be some kind
of conspiracy to hide the information - part of the ET/UFO cover-up. Maybe the government
has gone around and ripped page 32 from every issue of the magazine ;-) Otherwise,
note in Figure 2 the "electric wind" affecting the candle flame. This flame-related
phenomenon is likely the principle which Lee deForest exploited in his early radio
signal detectors which, eventually, led to his Audion invention...
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.
"Initial results from UK Atomic Energy Authority
(UKAEA)'s new 'MAST Upgrade' experiment at Culham have demonstrated the effectiveness
of the so-called
Super-X divertor, an exhaust system that will allow components in future commercial
tokamaks to last longer and bring costs down. Inside a tokamak fusion reactor, light
atomic nuclei are fused together to form larger ones, releasing a huge amount of
energy in the process. This is achieved by confining plasma within a magnetic field
and then heating it to temperatures of around 150 million degrees Celsius. The hot
fusion plasma exhaust is then passed through a divertor to allow it to dissipate
some of this excess heat..."
This story from a 1941 edition of National
Radio News reports on the FCC's having passed regulations to allow the
rollout of commercial television service as of July 1, 1941. These standards,
observes the Commission, "represent, with but few exceptions, the undivided engineering
opinion of the industry." They "satisfy the requirement for advancing television
to a high level of efficiency within presently known developments." Furthermore,
"Frequency modulation is required for the sound accompanying the pictures. Thus,
television is now benefited by the recent developments of frequency modulation."
It was an era of wonder and excitement in the world of wireless communications...
Please take a few moments to visit the
everythingRF website to see how they can assist
you with your project. everythingRF is a product discovery platform for RF and microwave
products and services. They currently have 267,269 products from more than 1397
companies across 314 categories in their database and enable engineers to search
for them using their customized parametric search tool. Amplifiers, test equipment,
power couplers and dividers, coaxial connectors, waveguide, antennas, filters, mixers,
power supplies, and everything else. Please visit everythingRF today to see how
they can help you.
Thursday the 27th
This is Part 2 of Mr. Joseph F. Verruso's
Information for the Inventor" series in Electronics World magazine.
In the Part I write-up I included a little historical information on the Patent
Office. Searching on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website can be
less than satisfying - especially since some browsers don't handle the TIFF image
files - so you might want to start with Google Patents where you can enter a more
verbose search string (and you can display the search results as a page of images).
See also "Infringers Beware," July 1966 Popular Electronics, Worldwide
Patent & Invention Resources, and RF Cafe Visitors' Patents...
electronics join quantum circuits in the deep freeze. Three of the biggest companies
making quantum computers today - Google, Intel, and Microsoft - are betting on supercooled
devices operating at close to absolute zero. But there's a problem: These cold cathedrals
of quantum computing cannot tolerate the extra heat given off by the conventional
computing chips that control them. This means the classical and quantum - computing
components must be separated, despite their marriage by design. The control chips
usually reside at room temperature on top of the quantum-computing stack, while
quantum bits (qubits) remain in the coldest depths of dilution refrigerators.
The dilution fridges involve helium-3 and helium-4 isotopes to supercool the environment..."
crossword puzzle from a 1958 issue of Popular Electronics magazine
is a little trickier than some because it uses abbreviations rather than full words.
Not everyone uses the same abbreviation, so some answers are a bit more subjective.
For instance, many people abbreviate the word 'transformer' as 'xfmr,' while others
use 'trans' or 'trr' (I use xfmr). Where you really have to be careful, though,
is with evolutional changes in terminology as is the case for frequency units, where
'cps' was most often used in 1958 rather than today's 'Hz." Enjoy.
UK's Space Agency (UKSA) has highlighted in its latest report that more than
3,000 jobs have been created as the space sector grows across the country. The 'Size
and Health of the UK Space Industry 2020' update suggests a growth in both space-related
jobs and revenue [see infographic]. Commissioned by the UKSA, it was prepared by
know.space, a specialist space economics consultancy. Among its findings were that
total UK space industry income grew to £16.4 billion in 2018/19, a growth rate of
2.8% per annum since 2016/17..."
With more than 1000
custom-built stencils, this has got to be the most comprehensive set of
Visio Stencils 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). Stencils 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...
KR 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 the 26th
Not having ever applied for a patent, I do
not know how much of what appeared in this "Patent
Information for the Inventor" article from a 1962 issue of Electronics World
magazine is still valid. The fundamentals are probably about the same. One thing
that has changed since this article was written is the name change in 1975 from
the U.S. Patent Office to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), which occurred
when ownership was passed from the Department of the Interior (1849-1925) to the
Department of Commerce (1975-present). The schedule of fees has grown to a very
complex table of definitions and requirements for various types of patents and services.
A Basic Filing Fee runs $320 for big businesses, $160 for smaller concerns ("Small
Entity"), and $80 for individuals with no more than four current patents ("Micro
Entity). That compares to $25 in 1962 ($220 in 2021 money per BLS). July 31, 1790,
the first U.S. patent was issued to Samuel Hopkins for an improvement "...in the
making of Pot ash and Pearl ash by a new Apparatus and Process...
EMC Directory, a new addition to the
everythingRF network of engineering resources, is the largest online directory
of EMC / EMI Testing labs. The website makes it easy for users to find
EMC labs based on their location and testing capabilities. Users can specify the
application like Automotive, Radio Technology, Industrial, Medical etc. to find
labs that can carry out the test in a specific region. They can also find labs based
on the testing directive like CISPR 11, FCC Part 15 (Sub part b) or ISO 10605. EMC
testing is performed to ensure that the electronic devices: Have sufficient immunity
to electromagnetic interference. They do not create excessive electromagnetic radiation
EMC Testing is a very important area for most engineers and companies. Regulatory
bodies around the world like FCC, CE, have placed limits on the levels of emissions
that electronic and electrical products can generate...
In December of 1931, the discovery of deuterium
(aka "heavy water") was announced by Harold Urey, Japan abandoned the gold standard,
the New York Metropolitan Opera broadcasted an entire opera over radio for the first
time (on Christmas day), and the ARRL's QST magazine published an article
about how to improve a receiver by using a
screen-grid coupling stage on vacuum tubes. A "tickler coil" is introduced via
a tuned circuit to provide a small amount of positive feedback to the grid in order
to make the amplifier stage more sensitive in the band of interest. Care needed
to be taken to avoid so much feedback that oscillations could occur. As with most
of these old articles I post, while the exact application might not be relevant
in today's world of electronics, the basic principles are certainly timeless...
NuWaves Engineering currently has an immediate
opening for a
RF & Microwave Design Engineer. This position presents the opportunity to
apply expertise in RF and Microwave Engineering to support NuWaves' primarily DoD
projects, ultimately supporting the U.S. military. Opportunities exist within the
Engineering domain and across the company to increase knowledge, grow leadership
skills, and continuously improve the business system. 2 to 6 years of experience
required in RF and Microwave circuit design. Individuals must have knowledge of
RF/MW circuits that include power amplifiers through C-band, RF upconverters and
downconverters, RF filters, and low noise amplifiers. The ideal candidate will possess
strong technical writing skills...
Reformable RF Coaxial Cables are available off the shelf from DigiKey. ConductRF
FM series of Hand Formable RF cable assemblies provides system designers with a
versatile solution that allows RF cables to be physically routed and set in to position
during installation. Standard lengths and connector types feature performance up
to 40 GHz. Low loss, tinned braided cable of 0.086" diameter with shielding
of >100 dB, precision RF connectors. 100% factory tested for VSWR &
insertion loss. RoHS & Reach compliant. Ideal for internal module linking
and great for RF Testing. Made in the USA...
total lunar eclipse will happen on May 26th, but I won't be able to see it from
my [disad]vantage point in Erie, PA. It will coincide whit when the moon is near
its closest approach to Earth, so it will appear very large, aka a "supermoon."
While the supermoon is usually a good thing for those wishing to view the surface
features, it makes for a lousy eclipse because it is in the Earth's shadow (the
umbra) for a shorter period of time, making totality shorter - in this case a mere
15 minutes. Oh well, maybe you will get to see it. The longest
total lunar eclipse
of the 21st century has already occurred, on 7/27/2018 (1h42m57s), and the shortest
was 4/4/2015 (4m43s).
Since 1996, ISOTEC has designed, developed
and manufactured an extensive line of RF/microwave connectors, between-series adapters, RF components
and filters for wireless service providers including non-magnetic connectors for
quantum computing and MRI equipments etc. ISOTEC's product line includes low-PIM
RF connectors components such as power dividers and directional couplers. Off-the-shelf
and customized products up to 40 GHz and our low-PIM products can meet -160 dBc
with 2 tones and 20 W test. Quick prototyping, advanced in-house testing and
high-performance. Designs that are cost effective practical and repeatable.
Tuesday the 25th
Earth-moon-earth (EME) radio communications
was a big deal in the 1940s and up through the early artificial satellite era of
the 1960s. The moon is technically a satellite, too, but it is far from ideal for
reflecting radio signals. Amongst its negatives is signal attenuation due to extreme
distance (225,623 at minimum when directly overhead at the lowest point in orbit
- farther when near the horizon), low coefficient of reflectivity (from about 0.03
at 4 cm to 0.1 at 10 m), and it is in constant motion (position tracking
and Doppler correction required). Of course that is part of the challenge to today's
Amateurs, but EME was considered a desirable option for military strategic communications.
1946 was the year EME really got started, as noted in this 1946 issue of Radio-Craft
magazine quip. In other news, RCA president...
NuWaves Engineering currently has an immediate
opening for a
RF & Microwave Engineering Technician. This position presents the opportunity
to apply expertise in RF and microwave technology to support NuWaves' primarily
DoD projects, ultimately supporting the U.S. military. Opportunities exist within
the engineering domain and across the company to increase knowledge, grow leadership
skills, and continuously improve the business system. Actively seeking talented
and highly motivated RF & Microwave Engineering Technicians. This position is
part of the product development team and supports testing and documentation processes
in the design of new products, such as, RF/MW power amplifiers, upconverters, downconverters,
RF filters, and low noise amplifiers. Individuals in this position take direction
from engineers, project managers...
Planar Monolithic Industries (PMI) recently
introduced seven - count 'em, 7 - new products in their extensive line of
and microwave components. Included are a 1-18 GHz Channelized Receiver,
a 2.0 to 18.0 GHz Switch-Amplifier, a 0.25 to 18.0 GHz 1P16T switch, a
30 MHz to 40.0 GHz LNA, a 0.5 to 18.0 GHz dual gain amplifier, a
0.1 to 27.0 GHz 5-bit attenuator, a 0.2 to 2.5 GHz SDLVA. Contact PMI
today for more information...
When looking a these vintage
electronics-themed comics from Radio-Electronics magazine (and others),
it probably is a case of "you had to have been there" to appreciate the humor in
them. In a world of 24/7 broadcasting of every TV channel, the first comic wouldn't
even make sense to someone who was born after about 1990, after which time most
local over-the-air broadcast stations signed off at 1:00 or so, played the National
Anthem, and then displayed a test pattern until about 6:00 am. The second comic
is from the era of high voltages inside radio and TV chassis for vacuum tube plates
and CRT accelerator grids. That big bulky thing the guy in the last comic is carrying
is a thing called a cathode ray tube (CRT), which old people used to use...
3D Directory is the Internet's largest directory
of 3D Printing companies. The website makes it easy for users to find 3D Printing
companies based on their location and printing capabilities. Users can specify the
3D service they need (Printing, Scanning or Design), the material, the technology
that they want to use, the industry for which they want to print and much more.
3D Printing is becoming a requirement in a wide range of industries, including the
electronic component industry and RF/Microwave industry where antennas and other
components are being 3D Printed. The 3d.directory website has listed over 1,000
3D Printing companies who provide 3D Printing services, 3D Scanning Services and
3D Design Services...
TotalTemp Technologies has more than 40 years
of combined experience providing thermal platforms.
are available to provide temperatures between −100°C and +200°C for cryogenic cooling,
recirculating circulating coolers, temperature chambers and temperature controllers,
thermal range safety controllers, space simulation chambers, hybrid benchtop chambers,
custom systems and platforms. Manual and automated configurations for laboratory
and production environments. Please contact TotalTemp Technologies today to learn
how they can help your project.
Monday the 24th
That's hot dog, not hotdog. In this third
installment in the adventures of John T. Frye's much-anticipated monthly exploits
of teenage electronics investigators
Carl Anderson and Jerry Bishop. In this December 1954 issue of Popular Electronics
magazine, pet mutt Bosco has developed a case of hot paw pads. Using a makeshift
Geiger counter and a homemade radio homing device, the two boys set out to discover
the source of Bosco's warmth. A buried, as-yet undiscovered lode of uranium is high
on their suspect list, and visions of untold wealth dance through their heads. Read
on to find out what they found out...
NuWaves Engineering currently has an immediate
opening for a
Senior RF Design Engineer. This senior-level Engineering position requires 15+
years of RF Engineering experience and thus is a subject-matter expert, assisting
all RF Engineering efforts at NuWaves. This includes proposal and technical writing,
circuit and system-level design, and leadership. The Senior RF Design Engineer also
works closely with customers and potential customers on business development efforts.
Essential functions include making sound decisions for system approaches and tradeoffs,
assisting in improving daily processes to ensure the Engineering Technical Team
meets customer requirements, communicating effectively, leading the bid and proposal
(B&P) process by providing engineering cost estimates, technical writing...
Electro-Photonics is a global supplier of
Microwave components. Their products include SMT hybrid and directional couplers,
wire bondable passive components, mounting tabs, filters, transmission lines, and
very useful test boards for evaluating components (spiral inductors, single-layer
capacitors). The Electro-Photonics team can support your small R&D design requirements
with RF & Microwave test fixtures and save you valuable design and characterization
time. Please take a moment to visit Electro-Photonics' website and see how your
project might benefit.
Occasionally an unbuilt vintage Heathkit
item appears on eBay with really nice photos of the contents. Recently, a
SA-2060A Deluxe Antenna Tuner kit appeared. It tunes the entire 160 to 10 meter
range. Dual wattmeters measure forward and reverse power. The guy who listed it
says, "These tuners are the apex of the Heathkit tuner kits; I already have a built
one and it's my main tuner in the shack. Full legal limit 1500+ watts across the
HF bands, roller inductor tuner." This is a manual tuner with lots of mechanical
parts as well as electronic parts. Take a look at all the dial and knob extender
shafts, standoffs, mounting brackets, and attachment hardware. Wouldn't you love
to have something like this to spend a few hours assembling? Per the 1987 Heathkit
catalog, the SA-2060A was priced at $269.95 ($639.67 in 2021). That is not too far
off the price for a contemporary 2 kW tuner, such as the Palstar AT2K (6 to
160 meters) retailing at $595.99...
new website named Go Photonics concerned
primarily with Lasers, Fiber Optic and Imaging Products has been launched. Its huge
searchable database contains the Internet's largest publically available collection
of related companies and products. Laser diodes, CMOS image sensors, superluminescent
diodes, tunable lasers, spectrometers, DPSS lasers, and nanosecond lasers are examples
of what is available. New photonics product announcements and photonics industry
news are updated constantly. Add your company to the database at no charge. If you
are interested in photonics, be sure to bookmark Go Photonics for quick reference!
This headline brings to mind a sign I saw
taped to the counter in my local Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) restaurant. It stated
that the establishment was short-handed because the
government was paying people more money to not work than KFC could afford to
pay them to work. Many companies are expressing the same lament. Not to worry, though,
because soon all the jobs will be filled by the untold number of unvetted, possibly
sick, possibly criminally fugitive people crossing our southern border. It reminds
me of the 9 most terrifying words in the English language: "I'm
from the government and I'm here to help."
Innovative 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 are serviced around the world. Please take a couple minutes
to visit their website and see how IPP can help you today.
Sunday the 23rd
For twenty years now, I have been creating
weekly crossword puzzles for the education and enjoyment of the technically minded
visitor like you. This
Science Theme Crossword Puzzle for May 23rd has many words and clues related
to RF, microwave, and mm-wave engineering, optics, mathematics, chemistry, physics,
and other technical subjects. As always, this crossword contains no names of politicians,
mountain ranges, exotic foods or plants, movie stars, or anything of the sort unless
it/he/she is related to this puzzle's technology theme (e.g., Reginald Denny or
the Tunguska event in Siberia). The technically inclined cruciverbalists amongst
us will appreciate the effort. Enjoy!