Software for Safety-Critical Systems (Aonix®)

Release v8.3 of ObjectAda Real-Time RAVEN environment for PowerPC targets from Aonix® (San Diego, CA) provides RAVEN developers with a choice between the traditional Aonix IDE for development and the AonixADT™ Eclipse IDE. AonixADT incorporates Ada-project awareness, an Ada-language sensitive editor, Ada-language compile and build capabilities, and a complete Ada debugger interface. The new release also features a large set of optimizations, fixes, and improvements into the PowerPC RAVEN technology.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers

On-Chip Debugging Emulator (Renesas Technology America)

Renesas Technology America, Inc. (San Jose, CA) offers the E8a emulator, an onchip debugging emulator for developing embedded systems that use Renesas microcontrollers. It allows referencing and modification of memory, on-chip I/O, and memory contents while a program is being executed. The tool allows C source-level debugging to be carried out with a microcontroller in the M16C, H8/Tiny, or H8/Super Low Power series, operating at full speed in the system. The device also can be used as a programmer to load code into the internal flash memory of many Renesas microcontroller families. The programming voltage range is 1.8 to 5 V, and the unit features a clock oscillator to enable asynchronous communication in line with a microcontroller's operating frequency. The case measures 92 × 42 × 15 mm.

Posted in: Products, Products, Electronics & Computers

Front-End Mixed-Signal Receiver on a Chip

A mixed-signal receiver on a chip (RoC) now undergoing development is intended to be a prototype of the front ends of lightweight, compact, low-power, relatively inexpensive heterodyne radio receivers for future phasedarray radar systems. [As used here, "mixed-signal" refers to a design for utilization of both analog and digital signals, and "front end" signifies the portion of a heterodyne receiver that processes the raw radio-frequency (RF) input to produce an output at an intermediate frequency (IF) that is the difference between the RF and the frequency of a local oscillator (LO).] The RoC will include two integrated circuits, denoted IC1 and IC2 respectively, that comprise integrated chipsets designed and fabricated on the basis of the International Business Machines 7HP generation of SiGe bipolar complementary oxide/semiconductor (BiCMOS) technology.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Radar, Radio equipment

A Predictive Model for Cognitive Radio

A computational model that predicts effects of changing operational parameters of a cognitive radio has been developed as part of continuing research on cognitive / software - defined radio (C/SDR) data-communication networks. The term "cognitive radio," "software-defined radio," or "smart radio" denotes a radio transmitter, receiver, or transceiver, (1) much of the functionality of which is implemented in software and (2) that is able to reason about its configuration on the basis of requirements and its environment.

Posted in: Briefs, Software, Radio equipment

Metamaterials for Advanced Microwave Antennas

A report discusses a research and development project that has made contributions to the art of metamaterials for directing electromagnetic radiation at frequencies of the order of several gigahertz. The next-generation metamaterials expected to emerge from this and related projects could enormously improve the performances of microwave radar and communication antennas.

Posted in: Briefs, Materials, Antennas

Open-Standard Multicomputers Address Next-Generation Multi-Function Radar Applications

Next-generation radar applications will drive performance demands that will have architectural implications for radar computing and electronics. Advanced multi-function radar (MFR) systems, which will be deployed in harsh and demanding environmental conditions inside unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), manned aircraft, and ship- and ground-based radar systems must simultaneously provide multi-mode search, multi-target tracking, synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imaging, and space time adaptive processing (STAP). Both the performance and ruggedization requirements make it challenging to service MFR applications using yesterday's commercial- off-the-shelf (COTS) technologies.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Architecture, Radar, Systems engineering, Durability, Reliability

Heterodyne RF/Optical Links Utilizing Integrated Photonics

A program of research and development has been directed toward the goals of demonstrating (1) ultra-low-noise communication links in which information is conveyed by phase-modulated radio-frequency (RF) carrier signals that are, in turn, used to modulate laser-generated optical carrier signals and (2) implementation of transmitters and receivers in such links by means of several key integrated optoelectronic and photonic components. Notably, the scheme for integrating these components is based on the use of asymmetric twin optical waveguides (see figure) that afford design versatility in that they enable the use of a broad range of components useful in RF/photonic applications.

Posted in: Briefs, Photonics, Optics, Waveguides, Research and development

Microwave Sources Utilizing Linear Induction Accelerators

Progress has been reported in a continuing effort to develop pulsed, high-power microwave signal sources based on (1) oscillators in the form of relativistic magnetrons containing transparent cathodes, and (2) hybrid antenna/ amplifiers powered via electronbeam generators. The underlying concept is that a compact, high-power microwave source could be constructed by integrating an electron-beam accelerator with a radiating antenna and an electrodynamic-interaction space.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Amplifiers, Antennas

Accomplishments of the Microwave Power Research Initiative

Research performed under the auspices of the Microwave Power Research Initiative (MiPRI) between May 1, 2005 and April 30, 2006 has been reported. [The MiPRI is a congressionally mandated Air Force program to advance the science of high-power electron- beam-driven microwave and millimeter- wave signal sources.] The reported research was performed by a consortium of three universities led by the University of New Mexico and including the University of Michigan and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The research pertains to two signal sources of current interest to the Air Force: a relativistic Lband magnetron and a W-band source.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Telecommunications, Research and development, Technical reference, Radiation

Microstrip Patch Antennas Containing Multi-PBG Structures

Microstrip patch antennas of a proposed type would contain photonic- bandgap (PBG) structures characterized by multiple bandgaps. In a given antenna, the PBG structure(s) could be one or more periodic dielectric and/or metal structures that could be embedded in the dielectric substrate of the antenna and/or formed on either or both faces of the dielectric substrate. As explained below, the incorporation of PBG structures would facilitate the design of a smaller antenna capable of providing a given amount of gain at a given frequency.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Antennas, Architecture, Insulation