IN MY OPINION

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.
Read More...

MILITARY MICROWAVE DIGEST


MMD March 2014
New Military Microwave Digest

ON THE MARKET


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.
Mini-Circuits

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


 
February 2013

“Rise of the Drones”


Every now and then, NOVA produces a show that grabs my attention but last month’s “Rise of the Drone” really caught my eye. Basically a history of drones, drone technology and future developments, with a smidgen devoted to ethical issues, it’s a fascinating hour. We meet Dr. Vijay Kumar, a University of Pennsylvania scientist who is working towards the future of drones — autonomous drones — by developing more sophisticated sensors; aeronautics specialist Abe Karem, known as the “father of the Predator;” and the engineer who really captivated me, Yiannis Antoniadis of BAE Systems.

According to the program, aerial robots are replacing manned aircraft and revolutionizing warfare, allowing one to see/kill targets from half a world away. While the U.S. currently has more than 2300 manned fighter planes, drones, aerial robots that carry visual sensors, navigation systems and, sometimes, weapons, are gradually replacing them. The Pentagon has a family of more than 10,000 drones, usually for spying purposes but also to strike and kill. The military uses drones to support troops on the ground, while the CIA maintains a covert drone program to find and target HVIs (high value individuals).

The Francis Gary Powers incident in Russia in 1960, in which he was captured after bailing out of his U-2 spy craft and imprisoned for nearly two years, was one of the catalysts towards developing unmanned aircraft, and Abe Karem was one of the main players. He started working on drones in the 1970s and realized that their relative efficiency and lightness allowed the creation of affordable, high endurance UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles), and thus the Albatross was born, evolving into the Amber, which later became the Predator. DARPA gave Karem seed money and made development of UAVs possible.

After 9/11, UAVs were armed and used to kill enemy combatants, transitioning from purely spying purposes.

Most fascinating was a segment on Antoniadis, the engineer who designed ARGUS, a sensor with 1.8 gigapixels, the world’s highest resolution camera. It is equivalent to up to 100 Predators looking at an area the size of a medium-size city at once. The government allowed Antoniadis to speak about ARGUS in fairly general terms, but would not reveal whether or not it is currently used in the field.

There was, of course, much more to this program, and I urge you to buy a copy or find it online at pbs.org. It’s that good.

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FROM WHERE WE SIT

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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