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About RF Cafe

Kirt Blattenberger - RF Cafe WebmasterCopyright
1996 - 2016
Webmaster:
Kirt Blattenberger,
 BSEE - KB3UON

RF Cafe began life in 1996 as "RF Tools" in an AOL screen name web space totaling 2 MB. Its primary purpose was to provide me with ready access to commonly needed formulas and reference material while performing my work as an RF system and circuit design engineer. The Internet was still largely an unknown entity at the time and not much was available in the form of WYSIWYG ...

All trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other rights of ownership to images and text used on the RF Cafe website are hereby acknowledged.

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"Nonlinear equations [are] fundamental because in nature, curves abound." – Shing-Tung Yau

Today in Science History

Mac's Radio Service Shop: A.C.-D.C. Bread and Butter

Mac's Radio Service Shop: A.C.-D.C. Bread and Butter, October 1952 Radio & Television News Article - RF CafeThis installment of Mac's Radio Service Shop could stand alone as a chapter in a troubleshooting manual for vacuum tube radios. John Frye's (or a trusty consultant's) knowledge of circuit operation is abundantly clear here. Recall that Mr. Frye later authored the Carl & Jerry teenage techno-sleuth series in the next decade. A couple things stood out to me. The first is the heretofore unfamiliar phrase "play hob with," which means to cause trouble for. The second is mention of a metal tuning dial indicator needle ...

Boeing to Upgrade Radar on 71 USAF F-15s

Boeing to Upgrade Radar on 71 F-15 Jets - RF Cafe"Jet fighter experts at the Boeing Co. will upgrade 71 U.S. Air Force F-15 combat jets with new radar under terms of a half-billion-dollar order announced Wednesday. Officials of the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, awarded a $558.5M contract modification to the Boeing Defense, Space & Security segment in St. Louis to install the upgraded radar systems on Air Force F-15C/D jet ..."

Graphene-Based Antenna Still Looking for Path to Commercialization

Graphene-Based Antenna Still Looking for Path to Commercialization - RF Cafe"Graphene is a pure conductor, just like a metal, which has led researchers to examine applications like antennas to see if graphene could serve as a replacement. Along this line of inquiry, researchers at the National Research Council Institute for Organic Synthesis and Photoreactivity (CNR-ISOF) in Italy, which is part of Europe’s Graphene Flagship, have developed a graphene-based near-field communication (NFC) antenna. Unlike today's NFC antennas their devices are flexible and have greater ..."

1st Graphene Photodetector to Operate in the Microwave

1st Graphene Photodetector to Operate in the Microwave - RF Cafe"While graphene may be losing its luster in the field of digital electronics because of its lack of an inherent band gap, in the world of optoelectronics graphene’s gapless band structure seems to be winning a new set of acolytes. This is seen no more keenly than in photodetectors, where graphene is enabling near-terahertz-speed photodetectors that are more energy efficient. Now, researchers at the Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology (DGIST) ..."

E. F. Johnson Christmas Ad

E. F. Johnson Christmas Ad, December 1953 QST - RF Cafe"Merry Christmas!" We're now saying it for the first time in a long time without concern for verbal reprisal by hateful, bigoted fanatics, emboldened by government thought police. But, I digress. Here is a 2-page advertisement run by the E.F. Johnson company in the December 1953 issue of the ARRL's QST magazine. E.F. Johnson was a major player in amateur radio, and then later Citizens Band (CB) radio. They also manufactured a large array of point-to-point commercial radio products (Land Mobile Radio ...

Torsion-Bar Antenna Adds Twist to Gravity Wave Search

Torsion-Bar Antenna Adds Twist to Gravity Wave Search - RF CafePhysicists in Japan have developed a new kind of compact gravitational-wave detector that works by measuring the tiny rotations of two suspended blocks of aluminum. A far cheaper alternative to the more conventional interferometer-based devices, this "torsion-bar antenna" could plug a gap in the gravitational-wave spectrum – between the high-frequency waves observable today from the ground and the lower-frequency radiation potentially ...

FCC Special Counsel Laura Smith: Amateur Enforcement to Be Aggressive

FCC Special Counsel Laura Smith: Amateur Enforcement to Be Aggressive - RF Cafe"FCC Special Counsel Laura Smith told a standing-room-only audience at the ARRL Pacific Division Convention in October that, despite FCC cutbacks, Amateur Radio enforcement will not be compromised. Smith spoke for nearly an hour and a half on a variety of FCC issues related to Amateur Radio, and the entire presentation is available on YouTube, thanks to Bob Miller, WB6KWT, and his son Robert ..."

Canon Joins Japan's Space Race for Satellite Launches

Canon Joins Japan's Space Race for Satellite Launches - RF Cafe"Canon is helping Japan build a low-cost "mini-rocket" for future satellite launches as private companies seek to give the country's lagging space industry greater thrust. Engineers from Canon Electronics, a unit of the Japanese imaging devices maker, have joined a team led by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, or JAXA, that is building what stands to be the world's smallest satellite launch vehicle -- about the size of a utility pole. The company's ..."

Please Visit Empower RF's Website in Appreciation of Their Support

Empower RF SystemsEmpower RF Systems is a global leader in power amplifier solutions. Products include high power RF amplifier modules, amplifier systems, and custom designed amplifiers. Empower RF Systems NextGen power amplifiers - RF CafeInvestments in both hardware and software engineering are yielding next generation products with significant size, weight, and interface functionality advantages over legacy products in the market ...

Free Engineering Magazine Subscriptions & White Papers

Engineering White Papers & Books, December 2016 - RF CafeThe free whitepapers, pamphlets, books, magazines, and chapter examples listed here are a small sample of a lot of new items that are offered for FREE through TradePub. The publishers make them available to qualifying people as a promotional campaign for their full line of offerings. The publishers make them available to qualifying people as a promotional campaign for their full line of offerings. Topics include careers, manufacturing, engineering ...

CCA, CTIA Urge FCC to Deny Boeing's Satellite System

CCA, CTIA Urge FCC to Deny Boeing's Satellite System - RF Cafe"Both CTIA and the Competitive Carriers Association are coming out against Boeing's proposal to operate a non-geostationary satellite orbit (NGSO) system in the 37.5-42, 47.2-50.2 and 50.4-51.4 GHz bands, saying it threatens spectrum for terrestrial 5G operators. Boeing filed an application last summer with the FCC to launch and operate an NGSO fixed satellite service (FSS) system operating in low Earth orbit (LEO) in the 37.5-42.5 GHz, 47.2-50.2 ..."

Diamond / Nuclear Waste Battery Could Last 5,000 Years

Diamond / Nuclear Waste Battery Could Last 5,000 Years - RF Cafe"A diamond battery made from nuclear waste could last more than 5,000 Years. The man-made diamond produces a charge simply by being placed in close proximity to a radioactive source. There are no moving parts and no emissions involved and no maintenance is needed. The researchers created a prototype 'diamond battery' using radioactive isotope Nickel-63 as the radiation source. They are now working on improving the efficiency of the battery. To do this, they are using carbon-14, a radioactive version ..."

RF Engineering Crossword Puzzle for December 4, 2016

RF Engineering Crossword Puzzle for December 4, 2016 - RF CafeTake a break from the daily grind to work this week's RF Engineering-themed crossword puzzle. All the words are pulled from a hand-built list of terms, names, and abbreviations that have only to do with science, mathematics, and engineering. If you want a crossword with names of movie stars and obscure countries, try the local newspaper. Go ahead and print out this page on real paper, grab a pencil or pen, and do it the old fashioned way ...

Anatech Electronics Intros 3 New Filter Designs

Anatech Electronics Intros 3 New Filter Designs - RF CafeAnatech Electronics offers the industry's largest portfolio of high-performance standard and customized RF and microwave filters and filter-related products for military, commercial, aerospace and defense, and industrial applications up to 40 GHz. Anatech has introduced 3 new filter designs: a 4,675 MHz cavity bandpass filter with SMA connectors, a 782/751 MHz surface mount ceramic duplexer filter, and a 987.5 MHz cavity bandpass filter ...

Tech Industry Headlines

- Archive -

Radio Australia Shortwave Broadcasts Go Dark on January 31

Are iPhones Now Exploding?

Pentagon Buried Report Exposing $125B in Waste (10E6 office jobs - $200k/admin. Drain the swamp!)

FCC Penalty for Unlicensed Amateur Making False Distress Call

Verizon Sells 24 Data Centres to Equinix for $3.6B

Another Unauthorized Radio Operation Fined

Brexit Effect 'Not Really Hurting Us,' Says Distributor

Deciphering Electronic Properties of Materials May Change Transistors

As Batteries Keep Catching Fire, U.S. Safety Agency Prepares for Change

Filter Building Made Easy

Filter Building Made Easy, December 1953 QSTDesigning, building, and tuning low frequency filters is much easier for the person without a professional grade suite of software, fabrication, and test equipment than is RF / microwave frequency filters. Most of my design and integration work has been with system level transmit and receive racks for radar and satellite earth station installations, and typically for prototyping and/or very low quantity production. Accordingly, I used connectorized components cascaded together where each functional block was predefined and tested. I would be handed a system input/output document that specified parameters for gain, phase noise ...

Raytheon Tests Directed Energy Weapon on Drones

Raytheon Tests Directed Energy Weapon on Drones - RF Cafe"There are all kinds of creative ways of dealing with rogue drones: Radio jamming. Other drones with nets. Trained eagles. None of these are really designed to handle military drones, however, and large, fast-moving UAVs are still a potential threat, especially if more than one is coming at you at once. It's no surprise that the U.S. Army has been developing solutions for this potential threat— we're not sure what they're working on now, but as of late 2013, Raytheon was successfully testing a long range, high power directed microwave weapon capable of taking out ..."

Navy Updates Radar Software on Stealthy Zumwalt

Navy Updates Radar Software on Stealthy Zumwalt - RF Cafe"One of the biggest question marks remaining for the DDG 1000 USS Zumwalt is whether its radar and missile systems will work as redesigned and radar manufacturer Raytheon is wasting no time in making sure its sensor meets U.S. Navy needs. The ship is slated to test and certify its combat system after it arrives later this year in its homeport of San Diego. But Raytheon officials say ..."

Germanium Can Take Transistors Where Silicon Can't

Germanium Can Take Transistors Where Silicon Can't - RF Cafe"Nearly 70 years ago, two physicists at Bell Telephone Laboratories—John Bardeen and Walter Brattain—pressed two thin gold contacts into a slab of germanium and made a third contact on the bottom of the slab. The flow of current through this configuration could be used to turn a small signal into a larger one. The result was the first transistor—the amplifier and switch that was, arguably, the greatest invention of the 20th century. Thanks to Moore's Law, the transistor has delivered computers far beyond anything thought ..."

Russian Army to Get Advanced Stealth Drone Hunting Radar

Russian Army to Get Advanced Stealth Drone Hunting Radar - RF Cafe"The Zavod Electromash plant in the Russian city of Nizhny Novgorod has created a unique stealth robotic system capable of detecting unmanned aerial vehicles, Zavod Electromash spokesman Valery Pyatkin told Sputnik. In an interview with Sputnik, Valery Pyatkin, spokesman for the Nizhny Novgorod-based Zavod Electromash plant, said that they had developed an advanced stealth robotic system capable of detecting reconnaissance and attack drones. The mobile optical-radar, non-emitting complex is due to enter service at ..."

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