Today in Science History -
Science Theme Crossword Puzzle for June 20th has many words and clues related
to RF, microwave, and mm-wave engineering, optics, mathematics, chemistry, physics,
and other technical subjects. Also, it contains a message for this special day (celebrated
in the USA and other countries). 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!
Here is an unusual twist in waveform recognition
presented by Radio-Electronics' and Popular Electronics' quizmaster,
Robert Balin. If you happen to be a former analog television repairman, then you
will probably recognize the answers based on your many years of diagnosing faulty
horizontal or vertical
sweep circuits. If not, then you might need to strain the "little gray cells"
a bit, as Agatha Christie's premier sleuth Hercule Poirot might say. The instructions
say to assume that if you choose the horizontal sweep sawtooth to be the errant
signal, then assume the vertical sweep sawtooth is correct, and vice versa. Right
off the bat, waveform 8 is unique enough to easily identify the sweep that would
produce it since only one has two repeating components. Most of the others can be
readily deduced, too, by mentally following the x and y points as the "correct"
"An international team of researchers has
mid-infrared spectrometer smaller than the diameter of a human hair. With potential
applications that range from detecting greenhouse gases to making self-driving vehicles
safer, there has been a great deal of interest in recent years in developing compact,
on-chip spectrometers. Traditional spectrometers, which measure the spectral information
of light, are bulky and expensive. An on-chip spectrometer would greatly expand
the applications and accessibility of the technology. Toward this goal, a team of
researchers in the U.S., Israel, and Japan has developed an ultracompact mid-infrared
spectrometer. The findings were recently published in Nature Photonics. The device
incorporates black phosphorus (BP), a material..."
medical x−ray machine shown here reminds me of the "Illudium Q-36 Explosive
Space Modulator" contraption Marvin the Martian wanted to use in "Hare-Way to the
Stars" to disintegrate the Earth (because it blocks his view of Venus). Of course
our hero Bugs Bunny thwarts his plan, whereupon Marvin asks, "Where's the kaboom?"
Can you imagine being fraught with cancer and getting strapped into a chair with
that huge hypodermic-needle-looking thingy pointed at you, as shown in this 1959
issue of Popular Electronics magazine? The Caduceus sword in the pic doesn't help
matters, either. The trauma of such an experience might have been worse than the
treatment for some people. As usual the pioneers took the arrows so that we can
benefit from the treatments enjoyed today, and the equipment does not look nearly
<-- My saved search on eBay for unbuilt Heathkit equipment just turned up this
IM-5258 Harmonic Distortion Analyzer kit. The IM-5258 is in its original packaging.
A "professional grade" THD analyzer (low as 0.03%), 5 Hz to 100 kHz w/5%
full scale accuracy. Here is a
YouTube video. It originally
appeared in the 1970s, and in the
Heathkit Christmas 1979 catalog (p65) the price was $229.95 ($852.64 in 2021 money) unbuilt
and $330.00 built and tested. The auction begins at a whopping $1,648, which seems
way overpriced, but if you are interested in obtaining one of these unbuilt kits,
then keep a watch on it because the price could be lowered. If it does not sell,
chances are it will be re-listed at a lower price. BTW, I receive no compensation
for promoting this or any other items.
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...
Exodus Advanced Communications is a multinational
RF communication equipment and engineering service company serving both commercial
and government entities and their affiliates worldwide. Power amplifiers ranging
from 10 kHz to 51 GHz with various output power levels and noise figure
ranges, we fully support custom designs and manufacturing requirements for both
small and large volume levels. decades of combined experience in the RF field for
numerous applications including military jamming, communications, radar, EMI/EMC
and various commercial projects with all designing and manufacturing of our HPA,
MPA, and LNA products in-house.
According to the article in a 1944 issue
of Radio News magazine,
phosphors were discovered in the 17th century by an Italian physicist. However,
they remained primarily a scientific curiosity until a practical use for them was
found in cathode ray tubes. Phosphors efficiently convert energy of various forms
(beta rays, ultraviolet rays, and others) into visible light. They are available
in a wide variety of colors and exhibit a "memory" which allows them to be used
for storing an image (or other information) for seconds, minutes, hours, or even
days. Anyone old enough to remember the old analog storage oscilloscopes is familiar
with phosphorescent memory. As with many other technologies, phosphor knowledge
gained significant advances during World War II, and the public was promised
virtually limitless new conveniences based on those technologies once the nasty
war was out of the way...
Triad RF Systems, a leading designer and
manufacturer of innovative RF/Microwave amplifiers and integrated radio systems
for challenging environments, presents their newest Tech Brief entitled, "Key
Considerations for a Successful Custom RF Amplifier Design." To optimize the
RF amplifier section of your communications subsystem several factors must be considered
before the design process even begins. What are the unique environmental conditions,
the exact input DC Power and output RF Power requirements, and the ultimate size,
weight, power (SWaP) objectives? Are you aware of the best tradeoffs to make? What
about the compromises related to cost, design complexity, circuit stability...
RF Superstore launched in 2017, marking
the return of Murray Pasternack, founder of Pasternack Enterprises, to the RF and
microwave Industry. Pasternack fundamentally changed the way RF components were
sold. Partner Jason Wright manages day-to-day operations, while working closely
with Mr. Pasternack to develop RF Superstore into a world class RF and
component supplier. RF coaxial connectors & adapters, coaxial cable &
cable assemblies, surge protectors, attenuators. Items added daily. Free shipping
on orders over $25. We're leading the way again!
This is really clever. Appearing in the March
1955 edition of Popular Electronics, "The
Electronic Husband" is one wife's attempt to quantify her husband's interest
in all things electronic by adapting forms of Ohm's Law to fit observed behavior.
In the process of writing the parody, Mrs. Jeanne DeGood demonstrates a good basic
knowledge of Mr. DeGood's second passion. I think after all the articles that
Melanie has proof read for me that she probably knows a lot of these equations just
There are plenty of trite old saying about
failure and how sometimes it is
necessary to fail
in order to ultimately succeed. After all, people will say, Thomas Edison tried
a couple thousand different alloys for his electric incandescent light bulb (now
deemed by Cancel Culture warriors to be evil and a destroyer of the Earth) before
finally arriving at tungsten. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. No
pain, no gain. That sort of thing. Personally, I hate pain and have never felt like
I had more character because of having suffered pain. First pass success is my preference
on everything. If there is a parallel philosophy useful to illustrate how dumb it
is to extol any virtues that failure might have, it is a quote from
George Patton regarding
the oft-touted nobility of dying for one's country: "Now I want you to remember
that no bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. You won it by making the
other poor dumb bastard die for his country..."
With more than 1000
custom-built symbols, this has got to be the most comprehensive set of
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...
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
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.
According to author David Lachenbruch - and
others writing on the state of
commercial FM broadcasting - market pundits declared the radio medium dead in
the late 1940s / early 1950s as television experienced a rapid rise in the post-war
years, especially after the FCC lifted its moratorium on issuing new TV station
licenses in 1952. AM radio had already ensconced itself as the news and music delivery
source of choice in the majority of households, businesses, and automobiles, and
there were ample transmitting stations to provide wide area coverage. Sure, static
in the AM broadcast due to man-made (QRM; e.g., sparking motor brushes) and natural
(QRN; e.g., lightning) noise was annoying, but being relieved of its usually temporary
interference was hardly worth the investment in new radios broadcasting equipment
and receivers. That belief pretty much proved true for nearly a decade, but then
as the novelty of TV began to wear off and consumers...
"Nearly 100% of
all-carbon-based transistors are reclaimed while retaining future functionality
of the materials. There is an ever-growing pile of discarded electronic devices
that either don't work anymore or have been cast away in favor of a newer model.
Part of the problem is that electronic devices are difficult to recycle. While scraps
of copper, aluminum, and steel can be recycled, the silicon chips at the heart of
the devices cannot. Engineers now have developed a completely recyclable, fully
functional transistor made out of three carbon-based inks that can be easily printed
onto paper or other flexible, environmentally friendly surfaces. Carbon nanotubes..."
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.
Alphabet Quiz" from a 1963 issue of Popular Electronics magazine is a bit trickier
than others because it requires you to think abstractly rather than concretely.
Quiz-maker Robert Balin presents a series of circuits and components along with
the first letters of the related topics. Your mission, should you decide to accept,
is to match the item to the letter. The example provided is matching the letter
"J" to a drawing of that type of half-wave antenna. I have to admit that my attempt
at matching all of the items and letters was taking a lot of time, so I quit before
finishing all of them; my hard head is better at concrete thinking...
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
Heap many moons ago I was in the
electrical service business. Prior to enlisting in the USAF as an air traffic
control radar technician, I worked for electrical contractors wiring houses and
buildings. After a couple years of doing that, I started with a different company
where most of my tasks were doing troubleshooting and what is called "old work."
Old work is trade lingo for where you install circuits in preexisting residences
and buildings. In fact, if you go to Lowes or Home Depot and ask the attendant for
an old work box, he will direct you to the electrical boxes that are designed to
be inserted into a hole cut in a wall or ceiling to install a new receptacle, switch,
light fixtures, etc. ...but I digress. For the vast majority of service calls I
made, the customers were very friendly and glad to have me (or anyone able to help)
there fixing what was broken or making a good situation better. Occasionally, however,
the person would be a real pain in the donkey...
"A team led by Carnegie's Thomas Shiell
and Timothy Strobel developed a new method for synthesizing a
novel crystalline form of silicon with a hexagonal structure that could potentially
be used to create next-generation electronic and energy devices with enhanced properties
that exceed those of the 'normal' cubic form of silicon used today. Their work is
published in Physical Review Letters. Silicon plays an outsized role in human life.
It is the second most abundant element in the Earth's crust. When mixed with other
elements, it is essential for many construction and infrastructure projects. And
in pure elemental form, it is crucial enough..."