Uncertain Times for DefenseADCs and DACs Penetrate Sacred Ground
By Barry Manz

The impact of converting analog signals to digital form is one of the greatest advances the electronics industry has ever achieved.

Defense News

Northrop Grumman MMICs Speed AEHF Production
Northrop Grumman has fabricated more than 36,000 MMICs covering frequencies from 300 MHz to 300 GHz for the U.S. Air Force's fifth and sixth Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellites, speeding production of both spacecraft, according to Space Daily.

Article Highlights China Cruise Missile Threat
While the world focuses on China’s ballistic missiles, the country is rapidly developing advanced capabilities for its cruise missiles, according to The National Interest. This is occurring at the same time the U.S. Navy has limited the type and quantity of its own anti-ship cruise missiles, according to the article.

Iran Claims It Reverse-Engineered RQ-170 UAV
Iran says it has copied announced on Sunday that it has copied an RQ-170 Sentinel UAV that it says the country "commandeered" in 2011, after his allegedly being "brought down by the Iranian Armed Forces' electronic warfare unit" in December 2011, according to Iran's Tasnim News Agency. That Iran captured the UAV is not in doubt: U.S. President Barack Obama asked Iran sent to return it after it was captured.

Israeli Navy Gaining Greater Capabilities
The Israel Navy has begun a program to enhance its sea-to-surface missile capabilities, a senior naval source told The Jerusalem Post, who said that the efforts were part of a planned program to increase the role of the navy in integrated warfare capabilities.

House House to Keep A-10, Other Programs
The House Armed Services Committee (HASC) is opted to fund a broad array of projects and has stated its goal of protecting every possible defense system. For example, the committee left the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter largely intact and up the funding for Boeing's EA-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft.

EW Development Key Element of 2015 Budget
The proposed defense budget may be leaned out but electronic warfare will receive considerable funding as the need for it is growing, according to an interesting story in the LA Times.

Insight into Hypersonic Weapons
An article in The Interpreter published by the Lowy Institute for International Policy contains an interview by Harry Kazianis, a non-resident senior fellow at the China Policy Institute (University of Nottingham) with John Stillion, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) into the workings of hypersonic weapons.

Products for Defense
Dual-Channel Coaxial Rotary Joint The latest addition to the company’s expanding range of in-house manufactured microwave rotary joints is the AMCORJD-Ku dual-channel coaxial device, which has been specifically designed for use in the low-profile antennas that are a key element of Ku-band satellite-on-the-move (SOTM) high-data-rate communication systems. These systems are typically deployed on military or commercial mobile platforms such as vehicles or airplanes. As well as featuring a height of only 31.6mm, the new rotary joint is equipped with right-angled coaxial connectors to minimize the vertical space required for cables. It also offers high-current capability on the receive channel, which means that both the antenna’s LNB and the motors that keep the antenna locked on to the satellite can be powered via the rotary joint, thereby eliminating the need for additional slip rings and saving even more space. The transmit channel has a frequency range of 13.75 to 14.5 GHz, with a power rating of 40W CW, a maximum VSWR of 1.4:1 and a typical insertion loss of just 0.6 dB. The receive channel can handle DC to 2.15 GHz at a microwave power of up to 1W CW, while typical VSWR and insertion loss are specified as 1.5:1 and 0.5 dB, respectively. Maximum current rating for the receive channel is 2A at 24VDC.
Link Microtek
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Band Reject Filter Series Higher frequency band reject (notch) filters, designed to operate over the frequency range of .01 to 28 GHz, have been introduced. These filters are characterized by having the reverse properties of band pass filters and are offered in multiple topologies. The filters are available in compact sizes and are constructed to operate over the most severe environmental conditions. Filters are tailored to specific customer needs (electrical, mechanical and environmental), with insertion loss typically less than 1.0 dB and VSWR less than 1.5:1.
RLC Electronics
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FieldFox Handheld Analyzers Because satellite ground stations have long-range communication links, they must provide high uplink transmit power, receive a very low signal level on the downlink, and compensate for link variation due to weather and satellite/ground antenna changes. The ground stations contain many sensitive components and subsystems (e.g., antenna subsystems, waveguides, coaxial cables, filters, LNAs, LNBs, BUCs, HPAs and TWTAs) that must be verified during installation and maintenance. The spectrum performance of the whole system must also be monitored. Such tasks become all the more challenging when the ground stations are located in remote areas. FieldFox handheld combination analyzers provide a precise and comprehensive solution for satellite ground station maintenance, quickly assuring system performance with a high level of confidence to help speed satellite ground station and maintenance. The FieldFox handheld analyzers offer the precision, frequency coverage (up to 26.5 GHz), and all-in-one capability (e.g., spectrum analyzer, full 2-port vector network analyzer and power meter) needed to perform a range of benchtop-quality measurements in difficult test environments. Now, with the introduction of measurement Option 208, FieldFox is the ideal tool for satellite communication field test. Option 208 verifies frequency converters installed in satellite ground stations and performs most required maintenance tasks. Users can even use it to perform cable and antenna test, vector network analysis like S-parameters, power measurements, spectrum analysis, and interference detection all of which are critical for efficient ground station maintenance and troubleshooting. Because all of this is performed using just a single instrument, users no longer need to carry multiple bench top boxes into the field.
Keysight Technologies
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Low Cost, Ultra-Reliable LTCC Mixers Ultra-Rel® MAC-family mixers close the gap between commercial budgets and the costs typically associated with hi-rel components. Qualified for an extensive list of MIL-STD, JSED, and other specifications, these rugged, hermetically sealed ceramic mixers are ideal for situations where long term exposure to humidity, dust, airborne contaminants, and changing environments are a concern. The MAC model family consists of 17 models covering RF/LO frequencies ranging from 0.3 to 12 GHz, IF frequencies from DC to 2 GHz, and LO power levels from +4 to +17 dBm. Utilizing the latest developments in LTCC ceramics, multilayer distributed circuitry, and automated processing, all models come in tiny packages (0.3 x 0.25 x 0.06”) with low parasitics and excellent repeatability. They provide low, flat conversion loss (as low as 5.8 dB) across broad bandwidths, L-R isolation as high as 40 dB, and outstanding thermal stability, rated for operation from -55 to +125ºC.
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EMI/RFI Filter Sample Kits Four new sample kits of electromagnetic interference (EMI) filters have been released specifically for military, industrial control, telecomm and T&M transport systems applications in the U.S. and European markets. Miniature-sized EMI filters with high performance in “C” and “Pi” configurations and a threaded mounting technique are highly desired in the U.S. and Europe. These four kits—4100-900, 4100-901, 4400-900 and 4400-901—include a range of solder mount and U.S. or metric-thread bushing “C” and “Pi” filters that are unique to these markets.
CTS Tusonix
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New Small Size, High Linearity Amplifier for Military, Space and Communications Systems The CMD207 is a new 20 to 40 GHz MMIC driver amplifier in die form with an all-positive bias scheme. It delivers 25 to 30 dB of gain, has an output 1 dB compression point of +18.5 dBm, a saturated output power of +21 dBm, and a noise figure of 5 to 6 dB across the entire 20 to 40 GHz bandwidth. The amplifier utilizes an all-positive bias scheme of 4.0V, 270mA on the drain, and 3V, 3mA on the gate, thereby eliminating the need for a negative voltage and costly bias sequencing circuitry. The CMD207 is a matched 50 ohm design and does not require any external components except for bypass capacitors. The die is fully passivated for increased reliability and moisture protection. Ideal applications for the CMD207 are point-to-point and point-to-multipoint radios, VSAT, and military and space.
Custom MMIC
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High-Power Ka-Band 700W Pulse TWT Amplifier Featuring an outdoor hub-mount configuration, the dB-3709i Ka-band traveling wave tube (TWT) amplifier was designed for ground and mobile radar applications. It operates in the 34.5 to 35.5 GHz frequency range and provides 700W minimum peak output power at a duty cycle of up to ten percent. The TWT amplifier is suitable for radar, test and measurement, antenna patterns and radar cross-section measurements. It is specifically designed for reliable performance in extremely harsh environments and for easy field maintenance. The dB-3709i is encased in an environmentally-sealed package to ensure reliable performance even in the harshest environments. The TWTA is designed for outdoor and antenna pedestal-mounted applications, and uses integral forced-air cooling for thermal management.
DB Control
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MMD March 2014

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Current Articles

Cut the Defense Budget? Sure, No Worries
The Obama administration and the President himself have always believed that the Department of Defense is like every other government agency: in tough economic times its budget must be cut like everything other agency.

HF SIGINT: A Return from the Dead?
Winston Churchill’s assessment of Ultra in winning World War II was joined by those of then-General Dwight D. Eisenhower who credited it as “decisive” and later by British intelligence official historian Sir Harry Hinsley, who flatly stated that it shortened the length of the war by “not less than two years and probably by four years.

Digital Technology is Removing the RF-to-Digital Divide
While defense systems are far from the first to realize the benefits of digital technology, they nevertheless obtain extraordinary benefits from it. However, one of greatest challenges remains the transformation of analog signals captured over the air into digital data streams--without using large amounts of intervening RF and microwave hardware.

The CDAA Antenna and the Wullenweber
A CDAA (Figure 1) of which the Wullenweber is a type, consists of a group of omnidirectional antennas symmetrically spaced about the periphery of a circular reflector screen. The location of each antenna with respect to the screen and to the adjacent antenna is such that by using a suitable antenna output scanning system, the array provides high unidirectional gain in all directions of azimuth.

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