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


January 2013

Bright Future for International TWTA Market
By Steve Walley, Vice President of Business Development, dB Control

Fred Ortiz, President, dB Control

With the ability to provide high power over wide bandwidths, and a reputation for withstanding harsh environmental conditions, traveling wave tube amplifiers (TWTAs) will continue to be in demand worldwide — both for defense and commercial applications. As these applications increase in sophistication there will be a need for even more bandwidth, which in turn requires the development of TWTAs that operate at higher frequencies, such as K-band (18-26.5 GHz), Ka-band (26.5-40 GHz), Q-band (33-50 GHz) and V-band (50-75 GHz). Wider channel bandwidth translates into higher data throughput — a feature always in demand for defense applications.

The satellite communication systems market continues to grow as the demand for data, video and internet over satellite increases. Both commercial and military users are looking for more bandwidth and moving to Ka-band (27.5 to 31.0 GHz). Due to rain attenuation at Ka-band, more TWTA linear power output is required — and new TWTA development has addressed this requirement. The Radar Systems market continues to grow as new threats are encountered. The trend is for TWTAs with higher peak power output, and higher duty cycles to work in the system to help determine the range, altitude, direction and speed of incoming threats. New TWTAs with higher efficiency, smaller size and lighter weight are being developed. This continues to be a good market for TWTAS for ground, ship, and airborne radar systems.

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) present another great opportunity for TWTA manufacturers — both in the U.S. and overseas – because drones provide an unmatched level of situational awareness. There are currently 50 military organizations around the world using unmanned systems. IHS Industry Research & Analysis forecasts $81.3 billion will be spent in worldwide UAV business from 2012 to 2021.1 Here in the U.S., DoD officials plan to spend at least $5.78 billion on UAV technologies in fiscal year 2013.2 In terms of revenues, a Market Research Media report indicates that the U.S. military UAV market alone will reach $86.5 billion by 2018. The report notes that “UAV technology is the answer for both a smaller Defense Department heavily reliant on solid intelligence gathering, and for an increasingly militarized CIA overseeing the counterinsurgency drone strikes in Afghanistan, Pakistan and now Libya.

Next-Gen Opportunities Emerge Full Speed Ahead
While defense budgets have been reduced in the U.S. and Western Europe, IHS predicts that there will be no such cuts in China, Russia, Southeast Asia, Australia and India. Additionally, the tentative social/political environment in the Middle East and Latin America creates a need for more ISR (intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance), possibly performed by UAVs. Of course, U.S. manufacturers must always be mindful of the potential for technology to be shared with an enemy. The Obama Administration will continue to reform export requirements for defense technology, especially for dual-use and/or ubiquitous products. Internationally, the Missile Technology Control Regime affects which medium and large UAVs can be sold to overseas markets. This restrictive, multi-lateral agreement spans 34 countries that have arranged not to share ballistic missile knowledge and components.

There is no doubt that defense contractors, military organizations and commercial companies will continue to seek competitively priced TWTAs that are smaller, lighter, and more efficient and reliable. To meet these requirements, dB Control continues to work with our TWT suppliers to improve the overall efficiency and reliability of the TWTs used in our amplifiers. As the efficiency of the tube is enhanced, the power required from the power supply is less — thus enabling it to shrink in size. A smaller power supply and more efficient tube results in less thermal dissipation, so a lighter weight heat-sink and/or fan can be used. This reduces the overall size and weight of the TWTA, and results in better reliability. As the TWTA market expands, designers and manufacturers must be equipped to meet these stringent — and often differing — requirements of both international and domestic users.

dB Control
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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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