Evaluating Our Industry’s Health Requires a Broad Perspective
By John Farley, Director of Marketing, Pasternack Enterprises

As most RF and microwave companies are privately held and industry analysts rarely track sales of microwave components other than semiconductors and interconnects, determining the health of an industry as diverse as ours is extremely difficult.


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

October 2013

Marki Microwave Combines Microwave Office with Microlithic Manufacturing for Successful Custom Mixer Designs

Marki Microwave has a multi-decade legacy developing industry-leading, high performance components, including broadband, low conversion loss, and highly linear mixers, high directivity, low return loss couplers and directional bridges, well balanced power dividers and hybrid couplers, and many other quality products.  The company’s goal is to invent technologies that empower the RF and microwave industry to design faster, simplify production, eliminate complexity, and shatter performance barriers. This goal is achieved through intensive research, product development, and advanced and carefully controlled production.

Figure 1: Marki Microwave’s Ferenc Marki, President (left) and Christopher Marki, Director of Operations and inventor of the Microlithic process (right)

The Design Challenge
Marki Microwave was using a very time-consuming, empirical design process to produce the highest quality mixers for customers who expect the best performance available in the smallest footprint. As with all labor-intensive manufacturing, scaling towards higher volumes was a challenge, and, in addition, it was difficult to develop next-generation mixer designs that were compact enough to fit into shrinking footprints. Despite the industry-leading performance of their mixers, Marki had reached the fundamental limit on how small a mixer could be built by hand, but knew that it must overcome these challenges in order to continue to innovate and advance the technology of its mixers for the future.

The Solution
Marki developed a revolutionary new mixer design and manufacturing flow that leverages AWR’s Microwave Office circuit simulation software combined with Marki’s patent-pending Microlithic mixer manufacturing process in order to achieve more compact mixers with the same top quality and performance as their current hand-crafted ones.

Figure 2: Marki Microwave high performance mixer

Marki Microwave implemented a complex design cycle. First, passive structure models were created using conventional techniques. Next, these structures were integrated with nonlinear diode models and simulated using the Microwave Office® APLAC® harmonic balance simulator. Through careful control of the model parameters, these models were refined until the targeted results were produced, which were used to refine the passive structures. When units were finally fabricated, the simulation results were accurate enough to pinpoint and troubleshoot test problems. Lastly, measurement data was used to refine the model parameters before release of the models to Marki’s customers.

Figures 3 (top) and 4 (bottom): Microwave Office delivered exceptionally good simulated results versus measured performance of Marki’s Microlithic mixer.

Thanks to the Microlithic/Microwave Office process, Marki has achieved a 14x reduction in size and a 5x reduction in design time while at the same time delivering the highest performance in the industry and scalable manufacturing. An additional benefit of the new Marki design process is the ability to provide its customers with an AWR behavioral model. This enables customers to design Marki Microwave world-class mixers into their end circuits, systems, and subassemblies and harness the same power and advantages of a simulation-driven design methodology that Marki has found so enabling.

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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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