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Click here to read about RF CafeView the YouTube RF Cafe Intro VideoKirt Blattenberger ... single-handedly redefining what an engineering website should be.

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- Welcome to the RF Cafe Website -
"The very term VCs sounded sinister. The only other VCs I'd ever known were the Viet Cong." - - Jerry D. Neal, RFMD

Today in History

Tech Headline News
All the News Fit to Link™

- Archives -

Assembly of World's Biggest Radio Telescope Gets Underway

1st Color-Tunable Graphene-Based LED Demonstrated

Amateur Radio Vanity Call Sign Fee to Disappear in September

Quantum Computing: Diode-Like Breakthrough Surmounts Roadblock

Candle Power to Charge Smartphones

Android Bug Could Affect a Billion Smartphones

Quantum Networks: Back and Forth Are Not Equal Distances

Warfare 2050: Robots, Augmented Humans and Force Fields

NSA Sets Date for Purge of Surveillance Phone Records

GaN Devices Market Growing at CAGR of 15.1%

Suppliers Challenge PVC Cables with Green Alternatives

NEC Deploys 176 km Microwave Link Between the Islands of Sao Tome and Principe

3D Xpoint Memory: Faster-Than-Flash Storage Unveiled

Cellphones Can Steal Data from 'Air-Gapped Computers'

Satellite-Launching Drone Program Enters Next Phase

Amateur Radio Parity Act of 2015 Gains Momentum, Cosponsor List Tops 90

Microelectronics circa 1963

Microelectronics, January 1963 Electronics World - RF CafeIt seemed weird to read of microelectronics device density expressed in parts per cubic foot of semiconductor substrate. Describing density that way makes some sense when considering 3-dimensional devices with vertically stacked elements, but this was in a 1963 article in Electronics World, so that could not have been the case. The motivation, evidently was to be able to compare microcircuit density with that of the human brain in terms of neuron density. In fact, there is an interesting chart presented that shows the evolution in circuit density beginning with vacuum tube circuits, progressing through the state of the art in 1963, projecting for future years, and finally peaking with the brain's density. Interestingly, the brain density shows as about 5x1011/ft3, while the "nonredundant semiconductor device" limit is

Famous Scientists (FI+LN)
Crossword Puzzle

Famous Scientists' First Initial & Last Name Crossword Puzzle for July 26, 2015 - RF CafeThis Famous Scientists crossword puzzle took a long time to make because of all the names that I managed to squeeze into the matrix. The way this one works is the person's first initial and completely spelled-out last name, indicated by (FI+LN) in the clue, is used as the answer. For instance, filter transfer function developer Stephen Butterworth would be written as SBUTTERWORTH. There are at least sixteen names here with which you should be familiar. Good luck

Neil Blaho - "EMI Guy"
Bio & Vintage Test Equipment Ads

Neil Blaho - "EMI Guy" - Bio & Vintage Test Equipment Ads - RF CafeThis could prove to be a popular feature if other RF Cafe visitors care to get involved. Yesterday, Neil Blaho (aka "EMI Guy" - see his helmet for proof), having seen all the vintage magazine articles and advertisements posted here over the years, sent me an e-mail with the ads pages below attached. Wrote Neil, simply, "I'll never admit to using these items years ago…." His statement alludes to what many of us veteran communications electronics industry types recognize as the uncomfortable number of years that have slipped by while we were busy making a living and raising families. I wrote back asking him for permission to post the images and requested a short biography that could be posted along with them. To wit: "Greetings Neil: That's quite an interesting lineup of stuff. I'm sure there are lots of guys like you out there who wax

Join Now! The Official Radio
Service Men's Association, Inc.

Official Radio Service Men's Association, Inc., April 1932 Radio-Craft - RF CafeAs the advertisement for membership in the Official Radio Service Men's Association says, structured organizations for people of like mind and interests have long been the hallmark of an advanced society where there is a need for directed socialization and the 'strength in numbers' benefit. I suppose most people reading this piece belong to at least one such association like the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), American Radio Relay League (ARRL), Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA), Association of Old Crows (AOC), Electronics Technicians Association (ETA), etc. Having significant representation in government in the form of lobbyists is essential these days in order to obtain and retain fair treatment

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Electronics Crosswords
1963 Electronics World Magazine

Electronic Crosswords, January 1963 Electronics World - RF CafeFellow cruciverbalists, here from a 1963 edition of Electronics World is an electronics-themed crossword puzzle for your end-of-the week enjoyment. You can click on the grid for a larger, printable, write-on-able paper version. If you are an avid worker of crosswords and don't already know it, I have created hundreds over the last decade+ that are available here. Unlike this crossword from Electronics World (and most others for that matter), my puzzles have only hand-picked words related to engineering and science ...

Radio Telemechanics

Radio Telemechanics, September 1934 Radio-Craft - RF CafeOnce again, electronics and overall tech visionary Hugo Gernsback prognosticated in the 1930s what was then a pipe dream but what is today commonplace - remote control of multi-functioned apparati via secure wireless digital communications. Adolph Hitler had risen to power a year earlier and precursors of what would officially become World War II in 1937 had nations thinking about what kinds of technologies would be necessary should the little mustachioed dictator decide to invade his neighbors' countries in an attempt to rule over the Earth. That this was so is apparent in many magazine articles in the decade of the 1930s: The Saturday Evening Post, Life, Popular Mechanics ...

Featured Book: Essentials of RF and
Microwave Grounding

Essentials of RF and Microwave Grounding - RF Cafe"Essentials of RF and Microwave Grounding," by Eric Holzman. Grounding is a widespread and serious problem in microwave and RF engineering and, up until now, there hasn't been a practical, authoritative resource dedicated to the topic. This first-of-its-kind volume offers professionals a comprehensive understanding of the proper grounding techniques to use when working on varied microwave circuit and antenna design projects. Practitioners learn what problems can occur when grounding design is inadequate, and how to avoid them. The book covers a wide range of critical topics, from the fundamentals of low frequency ... [Please support RF Cafe through your purchases.]

Applications and Characteristics
of Copper-Oxide Rectifiers

Applications and Characteristics of Copper-Oxide Rectifiers, July 1933 Radio-Craft - RF CafeWhile reading through this article on copper-oxide rectifiers, I am once again reminded of how much we take for granted the conveniences of electrical test equipment on today's shop benches. The advent of FET-input multimeters was a huge step forward because the meter input impedance is so high that it has practically no impact on the circuit being measured. Prior to that, most simple meters drew their power from the circuit under test, thereby altering the true value of current or voltage being measured. Of course there were vacuum tube voltmeters (VTVM) with high input impedances, but few hobbyists or laymen could afford them. This piece reports on how the advent of a non-tube-based rectifier permitted AC measurements to be made by DC-driven d'Arsonval meter movements so as to not excessively

Notable Quote: Henri Poincaré

Henri Poincaré, mathematician, in "Science and Hypothesis" - RF Cafe"Science is built up of facts, as a house is built of stones; but an accumulation of facts is no more a science than a heap of stones is a house." - Henri Poincaré, mathematician, in Science and Hypothesis

Not Quite Getting It...

A mathematics professor explained to students through various lectures and examples:

Not Quite Getting It (math limit problem) - RF Cafe

It became obvious not everyone understood after one student submitted the following on a pop quiz:

Not Quite Getting It (math limit answer) - RF Cafe

 - originator unknown. 

Radio Service Data Sheets for
RCA Victor and Philco Radios

Philco Model 15 Series, 11-Tube Superheterodyne Chassis Radio Service Data Sheet, August 1932 Radio-Craft - RF CafeAt least for now, I am going to only scan and post Radio Service Data Sheets in graphical format, and run OCR on them to separate the textual content and make it searchable. These featuring Philco Model 15 Series, 11-Tube Superheterodyne ( photo) - RF Cafethe RCA Victor Model R-78 B1-Acoustic 12-Tube Superheterodyne floor console radio and the Philco Model 15 Series, 11-Tube Superheterodyne Chassis, are among what has been added already, with lots more to come. There are still many people who restore and service these vintage radios, and often it can be difficult or impossible to find schematics and/or tuning information. I will keep a running list of all data

Guerrilla RF Ramps Production
of Ultra-LNA Device

Guerrilla RF Ramps Production of Ultra-LNA Devices Featuring Industry Leading Noise Figure and Linearity - RF CafeGuerrilla RF, a leading provider of high performance MMICs, today announced it has received volume production orders for its premier ultra-low noise amplifier (Ultra-LNA) devices with industry-leading noise figure, gain and linearity. The GRF2051, along with the higher gain GRF2052, support a wide range of high performance LNA applications including macro base stations, small cells, distributed antenna systems (DAS) and other high performance applications requiring the absolute lowest possible NF along with the highest possible input-referenced linearity."Guerrilla RF is pleased ...

Fairview Debuts Complete Family of High
Rel RF & Microwave Power Amplifiers

Fairview Microwave Debuts a Complete Family of High Reliability RF & Microwave Power Amplifiers - RF CafeFairview Microwave Inc., a supplier of on-demand microwave and RF components, has released a complete portfolio of coaxial high reliability power amplifiers with broadband frequencies ranging from 0.5 MHz to 20 GHz that can operate over extreme temperatures across -55°C to +85°C. These high-rel amplifiers are commonly used in demanding environments for applications involved with electronic warfare, instrumentation, military communications, radar, point-to-point radio, telecom, test & measurement, medical, and SATCOM industries. The new families of hi-rel power amplifiers from Fairview are designed to overcome the electrical and ...

Keysight Technologies Supports PAM-4
M8000 Series BER Test Solutions

Keysight Technologies Introduces PAM-4 Support on M8000 Series BER Test Solutions - RF CafeKeysight Technologies today expanded its PAM-4 measurement solutions with support for PAM-4 data formats and built-in error counters on the M8000 Series BER test solutions. PAM-4 support and the ability to integrate a device’s built-in error counter helps R&D and test engineers characterize and test high-speed digital receivers for the data-center networking, storage and computer industries. R&D and validation teams characterizing next-generation digital designs face several test challenges. With data rates continuously increasing, emerging data center standards like OIF CEI and IEEE 802.3 Ethernet are moving to PAM-4 multilevel signaling formats. In addition, many ASIC

NI AWR Software on Display
at European Microwave Week

NI AWR Software on Display at European Microwave Week - RF CafeNI (formerly AWR Corporation) announces that NI AWR Design Environment™ V12 will be featured in a host of activities at European Microwave Week 2015 (EuMW2015), being held September 8 to 10 in Paris. New load-pull and antenna features, ease-of-use and speed enhancements and third-party integrated flows will be on display in Booth #E112. In addition, key new features will be showcased in several MicroApps presentations and at the combined European venue of AWR Design Forum 2015 (ADF)/European User Group Meeting

Werbel Microwave Intros 500-6000 MHz
6-Way Power Divider

Werbel Microwave Intros 500-6000 MHz, 6-Way Power Divider - RF CafeThe 6-way power divider model WMPD06-0.5-6-S is the newest edition to the 500 - 6,000 MHz family of power dividers from Werbel Microwave LLC. This unit comes with SMA connectors; type N is also available. Measures 9.0 x 6.0 x 0.9 inches. Input and output return loss is -11 and -15 dB typ. respectively, isolation is -20 dB typ. and insertion loss is 2.2° max. Phase and amplitude balance are typically 3°/0.4 dB. Rated ta 50 watts input power as a splitter only. Part of Werbel Microwave's growing series

Triad RF Systems Intros 4.4-5.0 GHz
Bi-Directional Power Amplifier

Triad RF Systems Intros 4.4-5.0 GHz Bi-Directional Power Amplifier - RF CafeThe TTRM1008 is a high linearity GaAs FET bi-directional SSPA suitable for use with any modulation and signal type. It is currently utilized in UAV data links and long range point-point COFDM video links. High speed T/R switching and sequencing of the PA, LNA, and switch driver circuitry is performed by an on-board CPLD, where switching timing can be adjusted in firmware based on system requirements. The transmit section produces over 25 watts of BPSK power, and over 5 watts of 64 QAM. The unit also features a manual digital gain setting and a three color status LED on the front panel that shows if the SSPA is in transmit or receive mode, or if an alarm condition exists. The amplifier

Saelig Intros TDDS100-48 DDS
1 Hz-100 MHz Signal Generator

Saelig Introduces Tiny TDDS100-48 Direct Digital Synthesized 1 Hz-100 MHz Signal Generator - RF CafeFairport, NY, USA: Saelig Company, Inc., announces the availability of the USB-stick-sized TDDS100-48 - a laboratory quality Direct Digital Synthesized RF signal source with a frequency range of 1 Hz to 100 MHz and a minimum of 0dBm output power that is available from its SMA female socket. The TDDS100-48 is the smallest USB-controlled DDS synthesized source available and is priced significantly below other offerings. The high purity source can be swept in steps as low as 1Hz between any two frequencies in its specified range. Frequency changes are phase-continuous, so there are no glitches and phase noise is better than -140 dBc @ 100 kHz