Interconnect Advances Fuel Technology Growth
By Orwill Hawkins, Vice President of Marketing, LadyBug Technologies

With increased frequencies, higher data rates, and lower noise levels, the microwave industry serves as a leader in technological capability. Demand for quality interconnects has increased right along with other higher-performance areas in the industry.


MMD March 2014
New Military Microwave Digest


E-Band Active X5 Multiplier
Model SFA-743843516-12SF-N1 is an E-band X5 active multiplier with center frequency at 79 GHz with minimum +/-5 GHz operational bandwidth. It converts 14.8 to 16.8 GHz/+5 dBm input signal to deliver 74 to 84 GHz frequency band with more than +16 dBm power.
Sage Millimeter

Hand-Flex™ Coaxial Cable
Covering DC to 12.5 GHz, this 8” coaxial cable, 141-8SMNB+, has a bulkhead Female Type-N connector at one end and SMA-Male at the other. Features include low loss, excellent return loss, hand formable, and an 8mm bend radius for tight installations.

Phase Trimmer Series
This new phase trimmer series is designed for RF applications where phase match between two cables is needed for proper system performance. Phase trimmers, offered from DC to 50 GHz, will give an accurate phase adjustment over a specified frequency range.
RLC Electronics

Planar Monolithics Industries
Model PTRAN-100M18G-SFB-3UVPX-MAH is a transceiver covering the frequency range of 100 MHz to 18 GHz. The transceiver fits into a 3U Open VPX form factor utilizing the high speed VITA 67 RF connector.
Planar Monolithics Industries

SMT High-Power Attenuators
Now available with full design support capabilities are three new SMT high-power attenuators from Anaren. These 30 to 50W devices are high-performance, high-power chip attenuators covering DC to 3.0 GHz and feature high return loss and small footprints.
Richardson RFPD

See all products in this issue

December 2013

By Ritu Favre, Senior Vice President, RF Division
Freescale Semiconductor


Q: Is there a particular emerging application or technology that intrigues you?

A: Many applications and technologies intrigue me, for a variety of different reasons, but one area that is particularly interesting is the conversion to solid-state. Areas such as traveling-wave tubes, heating, lighting and even ignition systems are areas that could provide significant increases in available market for RF semiconductor component suppliers. Just using cooking as one example, the prospect of reducing cooking time by 50% with RF transistor-powered ovens (from magnetron today), that’s pretty exciting. There’s a lot of innovation still to be done, but the benefits are clear.

Q: Are you experiencing any effects of the reduction in defense spending or are you anticipating any impact on your business?

A: Freescale has just recently entered into the defense market with RF solutions, so even with sequestration and/or other defense cuts it is all new opportunity for us. The reason that we decided to enter into this space is that we recognized that by leveraging our significant technology investment in commercial markets, we could deliver to the A&D industry highly differentiated solutions at a potentially lower cost than current alternatives. Additionally, even with certain cuts in defense spending, ‘SWaP’ initiatives, size, weight and power, provide possible spending upsides for those solutions that address those factors.

Q: Deployment of small cells and distributed antenna systems is increasing rapidly as wireless carriers attempt to provide “broadband wireless data everywhere.” If your company is involved in any portion of the “HetNet” market, please tell us how you feel this market will develop.

A: The opportunities in heterogeneous networks will only continue to grow as data hungry customers continue to demand faster download speeds and an overall higher quality of service. The service provider’s challenge is to optimize the users overall experience and deliver on those increasing customer expectations through the coordination of all cell types. As a recognized leader in RF solutions for cellular infrastructure markets, Freescale is most definitely involved in the evolution of “HetNet” and sees itself playing a significant role in its continued deployment. Our RF PA portfolio is one of the largest and most comprehensive in the industry and supports femto to macro cell. Couple this with our QorIQ Qonverge baseband and QorIQ communications processors and Freescale offers a very compelling time to market advantage and helps ensure optimal integration and compatibility in all types of base station applications.

Q: China has long been considered the greatest potential global market for many companies in the RF and microwave industry. Do you feel this is still true? Are there other emerging markets that you believe will be lucrative in the next few years?

A: Certainly China remains, and will remain, a significant market for the RF and Microwave industry. In the cellular space, indigenous suppliers have quickly risen to be amongst the top suppliers — for both handsets and infrastructure equipment – to many of the world’s largest service providers. While previously relying on cost alone, they have now become recognized for their technical and quality leadership as well. For markets outside cellular, China has significant potential just based on its size and growth rate alone. Areas such as land mobile and air traffic control are markets that could see significant growth going forward.

Q: What do you believe will be the greatest challenge for the RF and microwave industry?

A: A significant challenge in my opinion will be replacing the RF and Microwave engineering talent over time. Specifically what I mean by this is that the RF engineering community has some tremendously talented people. However, those people aren’t being replaced at a high enough rate. The main reason for this is that RF, and analog technologies in general, are not being emphasized in universities as they once were. Freescale has taken a very aggressive approach to trying to reverse this trend. We are engaging with universities around the world to develop RF-specific curriculum and developing initiatives that get young students interested in the fascinating industry in which we all currently work.


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Uncertain Times for DefenseIn Defense of DARPA; Lamenting Bell Labs
By Barry Manz

A federal agency like DARPA is a sitting duck for politicians and assorted other critics. It has come up with some truly bizarre programs over years that ultimately either delivered no tangible results, were canceled before they could cause any damage, or attempted to answer questions that nobody was asking or needed answers to. Read More...

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