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"Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity" - Lucius Annaeus Seneca, 4 BC - A.D. 65

Today in Science History

Tech Headline News

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Indian Government Approves €70B Spectrum Auction

Algorithm Ensures That Random Numbers are Truly Random

Harris Wins Potential $1.7B Radio Contract

Royal Academy Honours Engineers' Early Career Achievements

BAE Sees Future of Electronic Warfare

Atmel Employees Sue, Protest Microchip Acquisition

Radio Is Alive and Doing Very Well

FCC Fines New Jersey Trio for Pirate Radio Operations

India Launches Amateur Radio Satellites

1 in 15 New Cars to Use Infineon SiGe 77 GHz Radar Chips by End-2016

1 in 15 New Cars to Use Infineon SiGe 77 GHz Radar Chips by End-2016 - RF Cafe"By the end of 2016, more than half of all new automotive 77 GHz radar systems worldwide will be equipped with chips from Munich-based Infineon Technologies, meaning that about one in 15 new cars will use a driver assistance system using its 77 GHz radar chips, says the firm. Infineon's market leadership in the rapidly growing market for radar chips for driver assistance systems was recently confirmed by market research firm IHS Technology. While Infineon has sold a total of 20 million radar chips in the past few years ...

Mac's Radio Service Shop: Barney and the Boosters

Mac's Radio Service Shop: Barney and the Boosters, June 1949 Radio & Television News - RF CafeAs one who recently installed an outdoor antenna with a signal booster on it, I definitely considered whether my exercise and investment would be worthwhile because all the preamplification in the world wouldn't help if the signal-to-noise ratio was lousy to begin with. This statement from Mac McGregor sums it up well, "One thing you have to remember is that the booster has to have something to boost. Unless the antenna can deliver some sort of signal to it, it has nothing to work on. The results are about the same as when a small boy reaches the bottom of his soda. He keeps on trying, but about all his straw delivers is noise ..."

Morsecorp Develops Unmanned Aircraft That Melt

Morsecorp Develops Unmanned Aircraft That Melt - RF Cafe"U.S. military researchers have chosen a third company to develop small unpowered and unmanned aircraft to air-drop small packages for forward-deployed forces. After delivery, the unmanned aircraft melt without any detectable trace to keep them out of enemy hands. Officials of the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va., added MORSECORP Inc. in Cambridge, Mass., to the Inbound, Controlled, Air-Releasable, Unrecoverable Systems (ICARUS) ..."

VidaRF Offers Wide Selection of Power Dividers/Combiners

VidaRF Offers Wide Selection of Power Dividers/Combiners - RF CafeVidaRF offers a wide selection of 2-way through 16-way power divider / combiners, designed to cover 100 MHz to 20 GHz with average power handling of 30 watts for narrow, octave, dual and multi-octave band applications. Standard Connector type: SMA female, other connectors available upon request. VidaRF is a North Carolina based company that is focused on being a solutions provider by building to customer specs and offering zero days lead time for custom parts through their stock ...

Tips on Technology for Experts in the Courtroom

Tips on Technology for Experts, by IMS ExpertServices - RF CafeWendy Pearson, writing for IMS ExpertServices, offers this article summarizing an expert witness' use of presentation technology in the courtroom - 3D printers, computer simulations, animated graphics, etc. It is hard to believe that in the year 2016 there are still judges that restrict use of high tech methods in the courtroom, but evidently it is so. Anyone old enough to remember when design reviews, seminar speeches, and other presentations to customers and peers consisted of overhead projectors, hard copy handouts, and occasionally a physical sample to pass around to the audience was stand operating procedure, can testify to the vast improvement realized by ...

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World's Smallest Lens Revealed

The World's Smallest Lens Revealed - RF Cafe"The world's smallest lens has been created using 3D printing, and it's just twice the width of a human hair. Its makers claim the lens could lead to cameras the size of a grain of salt, revolutionising surgery, surveillance, robotics and drone technology. Researchers in Germany created a triplet lens device by combining three of the lenses into a 'pinhead' device. It is capable of razor sharp images and can attach to the end of an optical fibre, and is thin enough to fit in the hollow of a ..."

Who Killed That Component?

Who Killed That Component? - RF Cafe"James Bryant, an applications manager with Analog Devices for more than 30 years, answers a question about component failure. Q: Why do unstressed components sometimes fail for no obvious reason? A: Sometimes they die of old age, sometimes the stress is there, but, as you say, it is not obvious. 'Old age' in a component is cumulative degradation due to physical or chemical changes. It is well-known that electrolytic capacitors and some types of film capacitor eventually die as a result of chemical reactions in their dielectric caused by ...

Steve's Antique Radio Website

Steve's Antique Radio Website - RF CafeMr. Steve Geary sent me a note of thanks for posting the Radio Service Data Sheet for the Zenith model 430 and 440 radio sets - a validation of my effort to make these available. He is a prolific collector and restorer of vintage tube radio - both tabletop and floor (console) models. If you are interested in radio and electronics communications history, you will want to spend a few minutes perusing all the great photos and information he has posted. Steve's collection represents 35 years of yard and estate sales, and making deals with antique dealers. He got his start in electronics repair and servicing as a technician in a hometown Ohio shop, where he worked until it closed its doors at the end of the last century ...

Saturable Reactors

Saturable Reactors, March 1952 Radio & Television News - RF CafePrior to the advent of thyristors and semiconductor lamp and motor control circuits, a relatively simple and safe - although heavy and bulky - method for controlling AC voltage was with the use of saturable core transformer arrangements. By using a DC winding to control the saturation level of the transformer core material, the inductance, and therefore inductive reactance, of secondary windings can be controlled. Doing so has the same Variac - RF Cafeeffect as using a Variac that uses mechanical control of the coupling and transformer voltage input/out ratio. The method shown here has a potentiometer for adjusting the DC current level, but, as the author ...

FCC Dismisses Petition for Experimental Operation on Amateur Radio Bands

FCC Dismisses Petition for Experimental Operation on Amateur Radio Bands - RF Cafe"The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has denied two petitions from James E. Whedbee, an amateur radio operator from Missouri. In a June 2016 letter, Scot Stone, Deputy Chief of the Mobility Division explained that the Commission concluded that Whedbee’s petitions did not present enough evidence to merit a rule change. In November 2015, Whedbee requested that the FCC amend Part 97 of its rules to permit amateur radio operators to conduct low-power experiments on amateur frequencies without having to obtain an experimental license ..."

Southern California Amateurs Rise to Earthquake Emergency

Southern California Amateurs Rise to Earthquake Emergency, May 1933 QST - RF CafeThis could be a headline for today, tomorrow, or from 83 years ago. It was the latter, following the magnitude 6.4 earthquake that hit the Long Beach, California region. Per Wikipedia, "An estimated $40M worth of property damage resulted, and between 115 and 120 people died. Many of these fatalities occurred as people ran out of buildings and were hit by falling debris." That paled, though, in comparison to the magnitude 7.8 San Francisco earthquake in 1906, where massive destruction occurred and upwards of 3,000 people died. As usual, radio amateurs were some of the first emergency responders ...

Evidence Humans Still Have 'Lost' Ability to Discern Magnetic Fields

Evidence Humans Still Have 'Lost' Ability to Discern Magnetic Fields - RF Cafe"Evidence of humanity's lost 'sixth sense' may have been found. Joe Kirschvink, a researcher from the California Institute of Technology, claims to have confirmation that humans can subconsciously detect Earth's magnetic field. Using a Faraday cage and EEG monitor, Kirschvink observed reproducible changes in human alpha brain waves when adjustments were made to the magnetic field around them ..."

Notable Tech Quote: Corey S. Powell

Notable Tech Quote: Corey S. Powell"Often in science it takes a long time to understand exactly how confused you are." - Corey S. Powell, writing in "A Cosmos, Darkly," April 2016 Discover magazine. A maxim in all fields of science is that all theories, no matter how firmly established - or in modern political parlance "settled" - needs to be continually tested through empirical experimentation. Einstein's relativity theory an example of an area that is vehemently challenged, and continues to hod up. Other fields like cosmological evolution, is routinely found to be previously misunderstood, thus Mr. Powell's statement.

National Company Advertisement

National Company Advertisement, December 1952 QST - RF CafeAs the opening sentence indicates, National Company ran a very long series of advertisements in QST magazine that were in a format more reminiscent of a short essay than a company promotion. This installment for the December 1952 edition was number 224. Subjects ran the gamut from technical innovations from the company's research and development laboratory to social and political issues relevant to electronics technicians, hobbyists, students, and engineers. Being that it was a presidential election year in the U.S., National Company felt compelled to remind readers of their patriotic duty to vote. Although this was the December issue, it would reach readers' mailboxes prior to the ...

Physics Professor Makes Nanomagnetism Discovery

Physics Professor Makes Nanomagnetism Discovery - RF Cafe"Dr. Karine Chesnel has always been fascinated with understanding how things work, particularly the secrets of magnetism. 'There are still a lot of unknown mysteries in magnetism,' Chesnel said. 'Scientists are still trying to understand the nature of magnetism, the origin of magnetism and what's causing it.' Chesnel is one of those scientists. Her specific area of study includes magnetic behaviors occurring on a microscopic scale, also known as nanomagnetism. To study nanomagnetism, Chesnel uses synchrotron radiation facilities ..."

Modelithics® AVX Library for High Accuracy Electronic Simulation

Modelithics® AVX Library for High Accuracy Electronic Simulation - RF Cafe
The Modelithics AVX Component Library is a comprehensive collection of simulation models that offer many advanced features capable of significantly increasing accuracy during the design phase. Many AVX components are available as Modelithics Microwave Global Models™, including capacitors, inductors, resistors, diplexers, couplers and attenuators. Each model represents an AVX component series (or individual part in some cases), and offers scalable or selectable ...

RF Cafe Crossword Puzzle for June 26

RF Cafe Crossword Puzzle for June 26, 2016 - RF CafeThis week's RF Cafe Crossword Puzzle is another custom creation (they all are, actually) which contains only words and clues pertaining specifically to engineering, science, mechanics, physics, mathematics, chemistry, and other technical fields of study. If you want to exploit your knowledge of numbnut movie starts, world leaders, and remote villages in BFE, then try the New York Times. Cruciverbalist engineers, technicians, students ...

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