8.5 GHz Vector Network Analyzer

The newly announced PicoVNA 108 from Pico Technology (Cambridgeshire, UK) can see out to 8.5 GHz and down deeper to -124 dB. It provides “save on trigger” synchronization for multiple measurements, added to the convenience of integrated bias-Ts, speeds batch test and device characterizations. Offset frequency capability has also been added to the Quad RX four-receiver architecture, as well as synchronization and control of the PicoSource AS108 8 GHz agile synthesizer from within the PicoVNA 3 software, allowing RF mixer and RF/IF system characterizations.

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8-Port Gigabit Ethernet Switch

Techaya's MILTECH 918 military-grade, COTS 8-port gigabit Ethernet switch, available from Mil-Source (El Segundo, CA) is a rugged, small, light, power-efficient switch. With dimensions of 3.94" × 3.5" × 1.4" and weighing just 0.86 lbs. the MILTECH 918 features mechanical packaging enhancements designed for MIL-STD-810F/G/GM for airborne and ground environmental, MIL-STD 461E EMI compliance, and MIL-STD-1275 electrical & 704 electrical compliance. It is remotely programmable via web or programmatic interfaces to allow pre- and dynamic configuration.

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FPGA Systems

Abaco’s (Huntsville, AL) new PC821 is a high-performance, PCI Express card with advanced DSP capabilities and multiple I/O options. It supports one VITA 57.4-compliant FMC+ and one VITA 57.1 compliant HPC FMC site. Both FMC sites are closely coupled to the Xilinx® Virtex or Kintex Ultra-Scale FPGA and a DDR4-2133 SDRAM SO-DIMM. The new FMC120 provides four 16-bit A/D channels up to 1 Gsps, four 16-bit D/A channels up to 1.25 Gsps and up to 2.8 Gsps sample rate with interpolation. The design is based on Texas Instruments’ ADS54J60 analog-to-digital converter and Texas Instruments’ DAC39J84 digital-to-analog converter.

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Data Acquisition System

CAS DataLoggers (Chesterland, OH) in partnership with Delphin Technology, introduced a new model of the Expert Transient data acquisition system, the 4 channel ET-4. Designed for data acquisition and fault diagnostics, a key feature of the Expert Transient family is the ability to synchronously acquire multiple analog channels at sample rates up to 50 kHz. In addition to the 4 analog input channels, the ET-4 has 4 digital inputs to capture pulses, discrete inputs or digital triggers. An extension bus allows the system to be extended to over 100 analog or digital inputs with high-speed synchronization protocols.

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PXI Multifunction Instrument

Marvin Test Solutions, Inc. (Irvine, CA) announced the release of the new GX3722 Series Multifunction Analog and Digital I/O Instrument. Analog measurement capabilities include four time-interval channels, each rated at 10 MHz, with channels supporting both 50Ω and 75Ω input impedance. Two digitizer channels, each with a maximum sampling rate of 10 MS/s, include programmable input impedance and sampling rates with a 24 Vpp input range. Two channels of multifunction waveform generation deliver sine, triangle, sawtooth, square, and arbitrary signals up to 10 MHz, while four channels of dedicated square wave generation further complement the source capabilities of this card.

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Fixed Load VNA Calibration Kits

Pasternack (Irvine, CA), an Infinite Electronics brand, released a new line of short-open-load-through (SOLT) calibration kits suitable for use in test and measurement, lab and RF & microwave production test applications.

Pasternack’s expanded line of VNA calibration kits are available in 12 versions including short circuit, open circuit and load kits (SOL) as well as short circuit, open circuit, load and thru kits (SOLT) with 2.4 mm, 2.92 mm, 3.5 mm, 7/16 DIN, 7 mm, BNC and N-Type interface options. The kits are suitable for many vector network analyzers from the industry’s leading providers such as Agilent, Rohde & Schwarz, Anritsu and Copper Mountain.

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Wideband Recording Platform

Novator Solutions (Sollentune, Sweden) announced the release of its MUNIN 1005-IF wideband recorder that ensures gapless recording of wideband IF signals from 2 MHz to 600 MHz real-time bandwidth. This, together with the pre-trigger buffer, are important in mission critical applications with GNSS, radar or telemetry signals. The configurable platform is ideal for capturing one or more RF/IF channels in real-time for DUT characterization, spectrum analysis or setting up repeatable lab tests. The updated platform supports the latest in-chassis NVME SSD drive technology as well as external hardware RAID configurations up to 96 TB (standard).

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Digital Differential Measuring Systems

The Measuring Division of Kaman Precision Products, Inc. (Middletown, CT) announced the KD-5600 family of eddy current measurement systems, suitable for use in COTS applications such as fast steering mirrors, magnetic bearing active control, shaft vibration, image stabilization, and adaptive optics. Designed for non-contact linear position displacement sensing applications, Kaman released three configurations for tailored use. The KD-5656 (digital system), KD-5640 (analog system) and KD-5690 (FE system) are equipped with custom sensors, signal processing, analog-to-digital converter, and a custom calibration system to ensure precision and accuracy.

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Mobile Surface Measurement System

Mahr Inc. (Providence, RI) introduced the new MarSurf M 310 mobile surface measurement system. The all-new M 310 features a large, illuminated, rotatable 4.3" high-resolution touch screen built right into the unit, as well as automatic creation of measuring reports in PDF format, integration of a barcode or data matrix scanner, and the ability to print reports on letter size paper. Integrated memory enables more than 500,000 measurement results to be stored, 1,500 PDF protocols and an optional Micro SD card slot allows additional memory to be added to increase that up to 320 times — or 160 million results.

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OpenVPX Backplanes

Pixus Technologies (Waterloo, Ontario) now offers 3U and 6U OpenVPX power and ground backplanes in several configurations. The 1-slot backplanes come in VITA 65 (VPX only), VITA 66.4 (optical), and VITA 67.3 (RF) formats. The optical and RF versions feature a cutout for optional insertion of the aperture housing and contacts.

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Buffing Wheels

Saint-Gobain Abrasives (Worcester, MA) introduced its new Norton FAB (Fixed Abrasive Buff) buffing wheels featuring a patent pending design that incorporates abrasive grains into the buffing wheel, resulting in excellent single digit Ra values ranging from 1 to 5 Ra.

The new Norton FAB wheels have a premium silicon carbide abrasive uniformly dispersed and applied to both sides of the cloth, resulting in more consistent buffing performance on hard alloys as well as soft metals such as aluminum and brass.

Norton FAB Wheels are available in outer diameters from 5" to 22", in 12 or 16-ply (number of cloth layers of buff), 2 or 4 pack (waviness of the buff face) and various ID hole designs.

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Integrated Dual RF Transceiver

Richardson RFPD (Geneva, IL) announced a new dual narrow/wideband RF transceiver from Analog Devices, Inc. The ADRV9002 is an RF transceiver that has dual-channel transmitters, dual-channel receivers, integrated synthesizers, and digital signal processing functions.

The ADRV9002 operates from 30 MHz to 6000 MHz and covers the UHF, VHF, licensed and unlicensed cellular bands, and industrial, scientific, and medical (ISM) bands.

The IC can support both narrowband (12 kHz) and wideband standards up to 40 MHz bandwidth on both receive and transmit.

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Pulsed Amplifier

Empower’s (Inglewood, CA) Model 2225 is a long duty cycle pulsed amplifier operating from 5.2 to 5.9 GHz and represents new technologically advanced liquid cooled and scalable architecture. The amplifier system layout consists of a system controller in 3U and up to 16 hot-swappable 2U amplifier drawers with each amplifier drawer containing an integrated power supply in its 2U chassis. This arrangement eliminates the risk of an RF section or single power supply failure taking the entire amplifier offline.

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ARM Programming Software

The newly released SEGGER (Monheim am Rhein, Germany) Embedded Studio V5 for Arm processors comes with the company’s Compiler, Linker, Runtime and Floating-Point libraries included. All components are designed from the ground up for use in embedded systems and work seamlessly to help generate extremely small programs.

A program which blinks an LED on a typical Cortex-M microcontroller unit can be written in C or C++, with a total size of less than 100 bytes.

Terminal output (printf) can be done in real time using RTT, SWO or semi-hosting with host-side formatting, keeping even the standard ‘Hello World’ program to no more than a few hundred bytes.

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Flight Control Solutions

UAV Navigation (Sebastián de los Reyes, Spain) announced that its flight control solutions for Remotely Piloted Air Systems/Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (RPAS/UAVs) are compatible with the Trimble ® UAS1, a high-precision Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receiver. The core benefits of Trimble’s GNSS solution include centimeter-level precision and easy integration. In addition, the GNSS receiver can provide Real-Time Kinematic (RTK) positioning using a base station. The Trimble UAS1 receiver includes a 336-channel high-precision GNSS engine. It tracks L1/L2 frequencies from the GPS, GLONASS, Galileo and BeiDou constellations.

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Sampling Oscilloscope

Anritsu Company (Allen, TX) introduced a Clock Recovery Unit (CRU) option for its BERTWave™ MP2110A that supports trigger clock generation from a 53-Gbaud PAM4 optical signal. When combined with existing oscilloscope functionality, the new 53-Gbaud CRU allows the MP2110A to serve as an all-in-one solution that can evaluate various PAM4 optical modules during development and manufacturing. Anritsu developed the 53-Gbaud CRU for the BERTWave MP2110A sampling oscilloscope to address expanding PAM4 signal analysis requirements due to the emergence of 100G to 400G fast, large-capacity networks.

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Mechanical Joining Tools

Monaghan Tooling Group (Dayton, OH) has introduced their Mechanical Joining Tools to join tubing to flanges and fittings, creating secure, leak-proof joints that withstand up to 20,000 pounds of hydrostatic pressure. Superior to welded, brazed or crimped joints, mechanically joined parts will not leak, pull apart, or loosen due to pressure, vibration, or temperature changes. This proven method allows joints to be rolled to a torque or diameter spec. Virtually any annealed or ductile product can be mechanically joined, including mild steel, stainless steel, aluminum, titanium, copped, cupronickel, Inconel and more.

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Intrinsically Safe Weighing Instruments

Hardy Process Solutions (San Diego, CA) released two new UL–rated intrinsically safe weighing indicators designed for hazardous areas. The HI 8200IS is an advanced indicator with checkweighing features, while the HI 8100IS is a basic five-button indicator designed for use in hazardous locations. Both instruments feature two available power options: AC line power for permanent installation in the hazardous area; or high-performance external rechargeable battery packs that are easy to switch out for recharging in the safe area.

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SMARC 2.1 Carrier Board

The new size-optimized conga-SMC1/SMARC-×86 SMARC 2.1 carrier board in 3.5-inch form factor from congatec (San Diego, CA) is scalable across the entire Intel Apollo Lake processor range, from Intel Atom (E3950, E3940 and E3930) to Celeron (N3350) and Pentium (N4200) processors. Measuring just 146 × 102 mm, the conga-SMC1/SMARC-×86 offers dual GbE, 5× USB and USB hub support as well as SATA 3 for external hard drives or SSDs. For custom expansions, the board offers a mini-PCIe slot as well as an M.2 Type E E2230 slot with I2S, PCIe and USB, and an M.2 Type B B2242/2280 with 2× PCIe and 1× USB.

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MCUs for Industrial Automation

Renesas Electronics Corporation (Tokyo, Japan) recently announced the RX72N Group and RX66N Group of 32-bit microcontrollers (MCUs) combining equipment control and networking function on a single chip. Built around the Renesas proprietary RXv3 CPU core, the RX72N features a maximum operating frequency of 240 megahertz (MHz) and two Ethernet channels, and the RX66N features a maximum operating frequency of 120 MHz and one Ethernet channel. The new RX72N and RX66N devices offer up to 4 megabytes (MB) of on-chip flash memory that perform read operations at a frequency of 120 MHz, as well as 1 MB of on-chip SRAM.

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Ultrasonic Technology

Loop Technology’s FibreCut 6-axis robot system draws upon Telsonic’s (Dorset, UK) ultrasonic technology, to provide a solution capable of making precision cuts on 3-dimensional composite preforms. Telsonic’s ultrasonic solution is based upon their MAG2012S generator (20 kHz variant) and SE2012 converter. Cutting knives are designed to be readily interchangeable to suit different materials or depths-of-cut. Typical cutting performance on dry materials, and using a 70-mm blade, is up to 200 mm per second, with up to 70 mm cutting depth in a single pass. For prepreg material, the typical values for a 35 mm blade range from 10 to 15 mm per second with a 5 mm depth of cut per pass.

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Balancing System

DELO (Sudbury, MA) has collaborated with Präzisionsmaschinenbau Bobertag (PMB) to create a new additive balancing technology for rotating parts found in electric motors, fans, pumps and turbines.

PMB uses a balancing compound from DELO to correct any unbalances identified in a highly accurate measurement. The material, which is dispensed quickly and precisely in minimum quantities using the DELO-DOT D4 microdispensing valve, is then cured within seconds through irradiation with DELO’s DELOLUX UV lamps, reducing noises and increasing the lifetime of a product.

With minimum possible correction accuracies of 0.1 mg, residual unbalances of 1 mg*mm, as found in the optical industry, can be achieved.

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Non-Destructive Testing Tool

HEBI Robotics (Pittsburgh, PA), a spin-off of Carnegie Mellon University’s renowned Robotics Institute, is expanding its robotics offerings with MAPS, a new smart robotic tool for industrial inspection. MAPS (Modular Absolute Positioning System) makes it possible to perform fully encoded NDT (nondestructive testing) inspections on any complex surface, faster and more reliably than conventional methods. MAPS is a lightweight, portable, passive arm that continuously measures the full absolute position and orientation of a probe as it is moved along any surface. Thickness data from the probe is combined with positional data from MAPS to create fully encoded scans of complex surfaces like pipe elbows, tees, reducers and nozzles.

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3U VPX CPU/GPGPU

Concurrent Technologies (Colchester, UK) announced a new single slot 3U VPX CPU and GPGPU for air and conduction-cooled applications in partnership with EIZO Rugged Solutions. BA 1TR/m03 is a single slot board, based on the Concurrent Technologies TR E8x/msd CPU board, fitted with an EIZO’s Condor NVP2000 XMC module. Concurrent Technologies TR E8x/msd CPU is normally fitted with a 6-core Intel ® Xeon® E-2276ME processor running at 2.8 GHz with up to 32 GB of soldered down DDR4 memory. The default variant of the Condor NVP2000 GPGPU features H.265/H.264 hardware encode/decode capability and comes equipped with DisplayPort++ and DVI video outputs.

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D/A Converter XMC

Pentek, Inc., (Upper Saddle River, NJ) announced its most recent addition to the Jade® Architecture family, the Jade® Model 71871, a four-channel 1.25 GHz D/A converter XMC for RF and IF waveform generation. The Model 71871 combines two Texas Instruments DAC3484s to deliver four independent analog outputs each through its own digital upconverter and 16-bit D/A with sampling rates to 1.25 GHz. A Xilinx Kintex Ultrascale FPGA contains factory-installed functions that include a sophisticated D/A waveform generation IP module. Complex output waveforms, each with bandwidths up to 250 MHz, can be independently translated to programmable IF frequencies.

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Spectrum Analyzer

Saelig Company, Inc. (Fairport, NY) has introduced the SIGLENT SSA3000X-R Real-Time Spectrum Analyzers (RTSA) for complex RF spectrum and signal analysis. With a capability of 40 MHz analysis bandwidth and 7.2 s 100% probability of intercept (POI), the analyzers can provide multi-dimensional data displays, advanced triggering, and RF data capturing. The SSA3050X-R model has a frequency range of 9 kHz to 5.0 GHz, while the SSA3075X-R has a range of 9 kHz to 7.5 GHz. The built-in tracking generators operate from 100 kHz to 5.0 GHz and 100 kHz to 7.5 GHz respectively, and a preamplifier is included.

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Aerospace & Defense Technology Magazine

This article first appeared in the October, 2020 issue of Aerospace & Defense Technology Magazine.

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