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Compact Antennas

ETS-Lindgren (Cedar Park, TX) offers two compact-sized, open-boundary, quad-ridge horn antennas. The 3164-06 (300 MHz – 6 GHz) covers the main wireless bands and the entire UHF band common in tapered chambers, while the 3164-07 (700 MHz – 6 GHz) also covers the main wireless band and is suitable for use in rectangular chambers. They are equipped with dual ports so that simultaneous measurements can be made in two orthogonal polarizations of the field. They also include flanges for wall mounting and brackets for tripod mounting. The rear assembly is milled from a solid block of material.

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Power Transistor

RF Micro Devices (Greensboro, NC) offers the RF3931, a 48-volt, 30-watt gallium nitride (GaN) power transistor in a hermetic, flanged, ceramic package. It enables the development of high-efficiency HPAs for a range of applications, including cellular and WiMAX infrastructure, CATV, military communications, public mobile radio, radar, and radar jammers.

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Multilayer Capacitor Chips

The UQ Series multilayer capacitor (MLC) chips from AVX Corp. (Myrtle Beach, SC) are suitable for RF/microwave applications ranging from 10 MHz to 4.2 GHz. With precious metal electrodes and a fine-grained, high-density, high-purity dielectric material to keep out moisture, the chip offers low ESR, high series resonance, and lower equivalent series resistance than previous versions. Applications include RF/IF amplifiers, mixers, oscillators, low-noise amplifiers, filter networks, and medical devices such as MRI coils.

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Signal Analyzer

Agilent Technologies (Santa Clara, CA) has introduced the N9030A PXA signal analyzer, which provides frequency coverage up to 26.5 GHz and features up to 75 dB spurious-free dynamic range at 140-MHz analysis bandwidth. It also features -128 dBc/Hz phase noise at 10 kHz offset (1 GHz), 0.19 dB absolute amplitude accuracy, and sensitivity of -172 dBm displayed average noise level at 2 GHz, (with preamplifier and Noise Floor Extension technology). One-button measurements and advanced measurement applications are also available. It features code compatibility; emulation of remote programming language; default settings, timings, and couplings; arbitrary and second IF output; fast-risetime logarithmic video output; and Y-axis output. MATLAB® software is available as an option.

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Chip Attenuator

International Manufacturing Services (Portsmouth, RI) offers the VGX-3725WA high-power 0.375 x 0.250" aluminum nitride chip attenuator that includes wraparound terminals for solder or epoxy attachment. It dissipates 100W at a 100 °C baseplate temperature. Standard impedance is 50 ohm and attenuation values to 30 dB are available, including 0.5-dB increments. Achievable VSWR is 1.3:1 to 6 GHz depending on implementation, and attenuation accuracy starts at ±0.2 dB. They are suitable for RF and microwave applications.

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RF Switch Matrices

Pickering Interfaces (Clacton on Sea, UK) offers 60-730 and 60-770 RF matrices that are designed for switching signals to frequencies up to 2.5 GHz. The 60-770 is a 50Ω RF matrix available in 32×8, 24×8, 16×8, and 8×8 configurations within a 3U rack-mountable case. Front-panel SMA connectors are included. The 60-730 is a 75Ω RF matrix available in 32×16, 16×16, 16×8, and 8×8 configurations within a 6U rack-mountable case. Front panel connectors are F Type, for use in coaxial video applications. For Free Info

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DC-DC Converters

VPT (Blacksburg, VA) has introduced the VPT100+ 2800 Series DCDC converter modules that offer up to 100W of output power per unit and parallel operation of up to five units. They are available in single output versions of 3.3V, 5V, 7V, 12V, 15V, and 28V, as well as dual output versions of ±12V and ±15V. They feature low output noise, up to 91% efficiency, and an input voltage range of 16 to 40 volts, meeting MIL-STD-704 requirements for avionics applications. Operating temperature ranges from -55 °C to 100 °C. In a compact, quarter-brick size, the modules include six-sided metal cases for improved EMI and mechanical/environmental performance. They also feature a high-input transient voltage of 50 volts for one second, magnetic feedback, undervoltage lockout, indefinite short circuit protection, and current limit protection.

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Designing the Next Generation of Military Robots

Many recent blockbuster films and best-selling books depict the robotic apocalypse and have shed a negative light on military robotics. However, not all unmanned system development is aimed toward building autonomous machines that spy on foreign nations or neutralize enemy threats. The United States Department of Defense (DoD) continues to aggressively invest in developing unmanned systems and technologies because robots can perform the tasks that are too dull, dirty, or dangerous to warrant warfighter intervention.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Robotics, Autonomous vehicles, Military vehicles and equipment
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USB-to-Synchronous Cable Enables IP Data Communications for Tactical Radios

Warfighters can benefit greatly from having radio IP-based data communications at the theater level. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the 750,000 tactical radio systems currently in use do not have the necessary built-in hardware and software to send IP-based data communications. The installed base of tactical radios is comprised of various makes and models that are not interoperable, further making it difficult to achieve theater-level data communications.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Communication protocols, Computer software / hardware, Internet, Performance upgrades, Military vehicles and equipment
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Improved Interference Rejection Using Multi-Static Radar Signal Processing

In multi-static radar (MSR), the transmit/ receive aperture is divided into a number of sub-apertures that can be placed in various locations relative to each other. These locations can be chosen to optimize the performance of the radar in terms of some specific task. Two multi-static approaches have been investigated:

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