The recent two-day ARMMS RF and Microwave Society Conference, held at Steventon, near Oxford, UK, was well attended. During the Tony Chapman Electronics sponsored event, the varied conference program was complemented by a table-top exhibition and the Microwave Society Dinner. This was not just a social event but also a chance for networking and the exchange of ideas.
Highlights of the conference seminars included: a discussion on the merits and applications for ‘on-chip’ RF prototyping; precision measurements in the 75 to 110 GHz range; secrets of the manufacture of waveguide filters that require no tuning through to 50 GHz; methods of obtaining high efficiency and good linearity in power amplifiers; the effect of adding resistance to the base or emitter of individual HBTs in a parallel array, to obtain thermal stability and avoid current ‘hogging’; and EM modeling of a variety of structures, to name a few.
Illustrating the variety of subjects covered, one paper explained the sources of galactic noise, another addressed the topic of behavioral modeling, and a third considered the effect of spectacles and jewelry on specific absorption rates (SAR) by RF energy from mobile phones. In a groundbreaking paper, Nick Long of Great Circle Design described a standardized method of measuring radio system immunity to interference. The method automates a process that would otherwise take many days, and displays the results in a form of a ‘well diagram’.
However, the prize for the Best Paper, which was voted for by the attendees, went to Ben Allan of Oxford University, who addressed the current state of Ultra Wide Band (UWB) technology. He explained how the characteristics of antennas such as the ‘disk cone’ may have very broadband match characteristics but vary widely in radiation pattern over the 3 to 10 GHz UWB range. The propagation characteristics of these antennas in a room were presented in animated form that couldn’t fail to impress the delegates.
Papers presented at the conference are available on the web at www.armms.org.