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Ultralow Power Transistors Could Function for Years Without Battery

Apparent ARISS Radio Failure Prompts Shift to Russian Service Module Ham Gear

Microsoft Shares at New Record High

Tech Start-ups Pick up Awards from Deloitte

DDoS Attacks Stun Amazon, Twitter, Spotify

Millennials Fall for More Online Scams Than Pensioners

Stop Messing Around, Ofcom, and Do Your Job

Radio Amateurs in India Monitoring 'Highly Suspicious' VHF Communications

Novel Materials Used to Build Smallest Transistor

Novel Materials Used to Build Smallest Transistor - RF Cafe"In the quest for faster and more powerful computers and consumer electronics, big advances come in small packages. The high-performance, silicon-based transistors that control today's electronic devices have been getting smaller and smaller, allowing those devices to perform faster while consuming less power. But even silicon has its limits, so researchers at The University of Texas at Dallas and elsewhere are looking for better-performing alternatives ..."

Tolerance Calculator Graph

Tolerance Calculator Graph, May 1963 Electronics World - RF CafeHere is a type of chart I don't recall seeing before. This Tolerance Calculator Graph makes it very easy to quickly determine the upper and lower extremes of tolerance values for resistors, capacitors, inductors, etc. It can actually be used to find the limits for any number, regardless of units. This is one example of where a physical visual aid can still yield results faster than punching numbers into a calculator.

Silicon Monoxide Passivation for Gallium Nitride Transistors

Silicon Monoxide Passivation for Gallium Nitride Transistors - RF Cafe"Shandong University in China and University of Manchester in the UK have reported room-temperature thermal-evaporation silicon monoxide (SiO) passivation for aluminum gallium nitride (AlGaN) barrier high-electron-mobility transistors (HEMTs). The passivation reduced leakage currents and increased breakdown voltages compared with unpassivated and silicon nitride (SiNx) passivated devices ..."

Heathkit Most Reliable Clock™ Kit

Heathkit Most Reliable Clock Kit - RF CafeHeathkit produced a broad spectrum of electronics kits that covered a broad spectrum of technologies, from simple digital clocks to amateur radio transceivers, AM/FM radios, and even color televisions. Cheap offshore manufacturing made building your own equipment more expensive than buying a factory model, spelling the end of Heathkit. A resurgence of the DIY mindset and a new cadre of enthusiastic 'builders' has motivated Heathkit to begin resurrecting some of their most popular kits, albeit with updated components. The Most Reliable Clock™ is their newest release, and will appeal to Hams with its 'One-touch perpetual ID timer.' It has other very unique features as well. Check it out ...

T-Rays 'Speed up' Computer Memory by 1000x

T-Rays 'Speed up' Computer Memory by 1000x - RF Cafe"Scientists have found a way to significantly improve computer performance. They propose the use of the so-called T-waves, or terahertz radiation as a means of resetting computer memory cells. This process is several thousand times faster than magnetic-field-induced switching. Together with their colleagues from Germany and the Netherlands, scientists at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT) have found a way to significantly improve computer performance. In their ..."

Decibel Tutorial: dB and dBm vs. Gain and Milliwatts

Decibel Tutorial: dB and dBm vs. Gain and Milliwatts - RF CafeBy RF Cafe - The concept of a decibel (dB) is understandably difficult and confusing for someone just being introduced to it. Combining specifications for gain, power, and voltage (and current, but not so often) that mix dB, dBm, dBW, watts, milliwatts, voltage, millivolts, etc., often requires converting back and forth between linear values and decibel values. This brief tutorial will help to clarify the difference between working with decibels and working with linear values. Anxiety Alert: Using decibels involves working with logarithms. Logarithms (logs) were first conceived of in the early 1600s by Scottish mathematician John Napier, as a tool for simplifying ...

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LoRaWAN Field Test Device Introduced by Saelig

Adeunis LoRaWAN Field Test Device Introduced by Saelig - RF CafeSaelig Company announces availability of the LoRaWAN Field Test Device ARF8124AA - a ready-to-use system which provides connection with any operated network that uses the LoRaWAN V1.0 Class A & C protocol. It permits transmitting, receiving and real-time viewing of network radio frames. Equipped with a large LCD screen, it facilitates the verification of all operating information, such as GPS coordinates, temperature, and battery level, as well as network use parameters, such as uplink, downlink, SF, Packet Error Rate, etc. Its built-in ultra-fast, precise GPS capability optimizes geo-location ...

Emerging Visible Light Communications

Emerging Visible Light Communications - RF Cafe"The idea is to make the most of VLC even in daylight when indoor lighting would typically be turned off. What's more, mobile users relying on VLC see how shining light to a receiver can drain their batteries. Using off-the-shelf, low-cost LEDs and photodiodes, the researchers came up with novel data encoding and LED driving schemes they presented in a paper, 'The DarkLight Rises: Visible Light Communication in the Dark' They had to tackle various challenges, such as designing an effective driving circuit that would react sufficiently fast (in nsecs) for minimal delay and to boost ..."

Wireless Technology Crossword Puzzle for October 23, 2016

Wireless Technology Crossword Puzzle for October 23, 2016 - RF CafeI have a confession to make regarding the puzzle titles. While all RF Cafe crosswords do in fact use only my hand-entered dictionary of terms and clues (literally thousands accumulated over the years) that pertain exclusively to science, engineering, chemistry, physics, mathematics, astronomy, etc., the choice for a particular title is to help attract search engines to the page. There is nothing deceptive going on, just an attempt to exploit the nature of search engine algorithms that rank pages ...

Full-Circle Viewing: 360° Holographic Display

Full-Circle Viewing: 360° Holographic Display - RF Cafe"Princess Leia, your Star Wars hologram moment may be redeemed. In the original 'Star Wars' movie, the inviting but grainy special effects hologram might soon be a true full-color, full-size holographic image, due to advances by a South Korean research team refining 3-D holographic displays. The team described a novel tabletop display system that allows multiple viewers to simultaneously view a hologram showing a full 3-D image ..."

Insight on Mechanism of Unconventional Superconductivity

Insight on Mechanism of Unconventional Superconductivity - RF Cafe"Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory and partner institutions conducted a systematic investigation into the properties of the newest family of unconventional superconducting materials, iron-based compounds. The study may help the scientific community discover new superconducting materials with unique properties. Researchers combined innovative crystal growth, highly sensitive magnetic ..."

"Printed Wiring" Techniques for the Experimenter

"Printed Wiring" Techniques for the Experimenter, August 1956 Popular Electronics - RF CafeIn part one of a two-part articles, Popular Electronics magazine presents some of the inner workings of what at the time was a fledgling industry - printed circuit board manufacturing. In 1956, when this piece appeared, a large percentage of electronics assemblies were still being wired in a point-to-point manner where resistors, capacitors, inductors, tubes, and cables were soldered directly to terminals either on special blocks or on tube sockets. The process was heavily labor intensive and prone to miswirings. High volume production was nearly impossible prior to printed wiring ...

IEEE Wants to Collaborate with 3GPP on 5G

IEEE Wants to Collaborate with 3GPP on 5G - RF Cafe"The IEEE 802 LAN/MAN Standards Committee (IEEE 802) wants to collaborate with the 3GPP toward support of IMT-2020 and next-generation networks, according to a letter to 3GPP from the chairman of the IEEE 802 Local and Metropolitan Area Network Standards Committee (LMSC). IEEE 802 LMSC Chairman Paul Nikolich sent a letter to 3GPP PCG Chair Zhiqin Wang with a detailed proposal on how the two groups could work together. “We propose some collaborative approaches and request the 3GPP Project ..."

"Printed Wiring" Techniques for the Experimenter - Part 2

"Printed Wiring" Techniques for the Experimenter (Part 2), September 1956 Popular Electronics - RF CafeHere is the second of a 2-part article introducing hobbyists to the relatively new technique of printed circuit board (PCB) or, alternately, printed wiring board (PWB) fabrication. Author Louis Garner is from Bell Telephone Labs, which was an early adopter of PWBs. Bell had millions of relay switch and controller circuit boards for routing all the country's telephone calls. I remember a couple times in high school while working as an electrician's helper where we did some wiring inside a phone switching station and saw row upon row ...

Army Evaluates Vehicle-Mounted Software Programmable Radio

Army Evaluates Vehicle-Mounted Software Programmable Radio - RF Cafe"The Army is evaluating a new vehicle-mounted radio technology that enables Strykers, tactical trucks, HMMWVs and Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles to share real-time, combat-relevant information across the force. The new radios, called the Mid-tier Networking Vehicular Radio, were recently assessed in various combat scenarios such as rugged, mountainous terrain, woodland areas and dense vegetation to test its ability to relay IP packets of information through various high ..."

GlobalSpec IEEE Forums

GlobalSpec IEEE Forums - RF CafeEven with the dominance of social media sites like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, there are still a rare few well-attended online forums that manage to survive. In my experience, they are usually the best place to go for asking questions and receiving useful answers. GlobalSpec's forum has been around since the late 1990s if memory serves me correctly. It is now affiliated with the IEEE and goes under the name of "Engineering 360" and/or "CR4." Per the FAQ page, CR4 stands for 'Conference Room 4®.' Their tag line is "CR4 - The Engineer's Place for News and Discussion®." I could not find why it is CR4 and not CR3 or CR5 ;-) ...

Electronics-Themed Comics, October 1948 Radio & Television News

Electronics-Themed Comics, October 1948 Radio & Television News Article - RF CafeHere are a few electronics-themed comics from a 1948 edition of Radio & Television News magazine. I particularly like the one from page 92. Webster's Dictionary offers 28 separate definitions of the word "carry" in both transitive and intransitive forms. The definition implied by the proprietor is #19 a :  to bear the charges of holding or having (as stocks or merchandise) from one time to another. The definition inferred by the lady is #1:  to move while supporting. How ...

Frequency Combs Power New Spectrometer-on-a-Chip

Frequency Combs Power New Spectrometer-on-a-Chip - RF Cafe"A new spectrometer-on-a-chip that employs two frequency combs has been unveiled by physicists at Caltech in the US. The precision spectroscopy system is based on pulsed lasers and uses a technique known as dual-comb spectroscopy. This makes it one thousand times more precise and nearly one million times faster than the standard instruments used today. Based on a millimetre-sized silicon chip, the device is an ..."

Morse Code in Memorial Art Museum

Morse Code in Memorial Art Museum - RF CafeThe November 2016 issue of ARRL's QST magazine (p20) had picture of Jackie Ferrara's brick walkway at the U. of Rochester in NY. Inlaid along its border are dark contrasting bricks representing dots and dashed in Morse code that spell out its own name, "Path of Colors," as well as "Memorial Art Gallery," and the colors of the rainbow. Pretty cool. There is no mention of whether Ms. Ferrara was inspired by a Ham or maybe is a Ham herself. A short video shows parts her work ...

Skyworks Announces LNA FEM for GPS Applications

Skyworks Announces LNA FEM for GPS Applications - RF CafeSkyworks is pleased to introduce the SKY65903-11, a new low-noise amplifier, front-end module with integrated pre- and post- filters for GPS receiver applications. This 1559-1606 MHz high performance module is idea for global positioning and navigation satellite systems in end products such as fitness/activity trackers, watches, pet trackers, smartphones and tablets. The device features high linearity, excellent gain, and a low noise figure for improved signal-to-noise ratio. Integrated pre- and post-filters ...

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