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Blogs

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Pat Hindle, MWJ Editor

Pat Hindle is responsible for editorial content, article review and special industry reporting for Microwave Journal magazine and its web site in addition to social media and special digital projects. Prior to joining the Journal, Mr. Hindle held various technical and marketing positions throughout New England, including Marketing Communications Manager at M/A-COM (Tyco Electronics), Product/QA Manager at Alpha Industries (Skyworks), Program Manager at Raytheon and Project Manager/Quality Engineer at MIT. Mr. Hindle graduated from Northeastern University - Graduate School of Business Administration and holds a BS degree from Cornell University in Materials Science Engineering. Read More

Most Viewed Articles for 2014 on microwavejournal.com

Summary of most viewed news items and technical articles on microwavejournal.com published in 2014 - the top 5 news items and top 10 technical features are listed
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IME/EMC 2014 Shines

 The China International Conference & Exhibition on Microwave and Antennas (IME/China) took place October 29 to 31 at the Shanghai Everbright Convention & Exhibition Center. This is a microwave show combined with an EMC show which is the primary focus with the EMC booths up front and the microwave companies in the back.


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Quick Review from Roma - EuMW 2014

 European Microwave Week just wrapped up in Rome last week. It was a busy event with strong attendance this year despite the awkward location of the venue which is far from the city and hotels.  Keysight, R&S and National Instruments were front and center at the exhibition along with a large presence from companies like Anritsu, CST, ANSYS, TriQuint, Macom, Maury and Cascade to name a few.  Selex Finmeccanica also had a large booth to support the show in locally in Italy. The booth traffic was strong by almost all accounts and exhibitors seemed to have good quality leads from the event. 


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RichardMumford

Richard Mumford, MWJ International Editor

Richard applies his technical background as an engineer and journalist for various engineering magazines to his position as international editor. Serving as MWJ’s liaison to the international microwave community, Richard files his monthly international report and contributed articles from our London office.

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electronica 2014 – Celebrating A Golden Age of Electronics

50 years on from its inauguration electronica – the world's leading trade fair for Electronic Components, Systems and Applications – continues to be at the forefront of innovation.


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UK & Ireland NI Days 2014 embraces challenges and innovation

At UK & Ireland NI Days 2014 Microwave Journal got an insight into National Instrument’s approach to the Internet of Things, the rush to ‘add wireless’, the importance of the cost of test for RF components, and the advance of 5G, particularly the development of millimetre-wave frequencies.


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Advance Techniques for Radio Transmitters Event, Cambridge, UK

Cambridge Wireless’ Radio Technology SIG event offers dramatic insight into the latest radio transmitter technologies including transmit beamforming, full duplexing, envelope tracking and digital predistortion.


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Gary Lerude

Gary Lerude, MWJ Technical Editor

Gary Lerude serves as Technical Editor of the Microwave Journal. Previously he was at TriQuint Semiconductor, where he held business development, strategic marketing, and product marketing management roles for TriQuint’s GaAs and GaN infrastructure products. Gary had similar responsibilities at M/A-COM, where he covered both commercial and defense markets. Prior to M/A-COM, he was with Texas Instruments, where he describes his role as “midwife” to the birth of TI’s GaAs MMIC technology and merchant business. Gary holds a BSEE, MS in Systems Engineering, and Engineers Degree in EE.

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News from Last Week

News that caught my eye

Weekly Notes

What caught my eye this week
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Base station market rewards Freescale and NXP

Driven by the deployment of cellular base stations, both Freescale and NXP are seeing strong revenue growth in their RF businesses, only limited by the capacity to fully meet customer demand. It’s a good time to be in the wireless infrastructure business, especially if you are an LDMOS PA supplier.


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Mazzochette

Joe Mazzochette - EasternOptX

Joe Mazzochette is the general manager of Eastern OptX. The company designs, develops, and deploys test systems that replicate the propagation paths of radar, avionics, altimeter, and radio transmissions. Joe has more than 30 years experience in product development, sales, and investor relations in commercial, and aerospace electronic systems and device companies. He was VP of Engineering and General Manager at EMC Technology, an RF and microwave component supplier, where he helped boost EMC sales by more than ten times. Joe later joined Lamina Ceramics as VP of Engineering and helped grow the 5-person start-up company into producer of a wide variety of solid-state light sources for the general illumination market. Joe holds BS and MS degrees in Electrical Engineering from Drexel University and is a co-inventor on 46 US patents.  

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Propagation Pathways

 This is a blog about how to reproduce the propagation path of radars, radios, avionics, and altimeters. What we do at Eastern OptX—through technology and magic—is to reproduce the true path between the transmitted signal and the received signal. We replicate the path of the signal by providing “space” in between the transmitter and receiver. We generate that space.


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Ken Conklin

Ken Conklin

Ken Conklin is a business development consultant who works with small to mid-sized technology companies and design teams, helping them secure R&D funding from U.S. Government SBIR programs, grants and industry sources. Ken also prepares strategic and tactical go-to-market plans for clients, including establishing sales channels. Previously, Ken was the general manager of the Cobham GaAs products operation. Prior to joining Cobham in 2005 (then M/A-COM), he held business development and product marketing positions with Hughes, IBM, and RFMD. During his career, Ken has introduced RF, microwave and millimeter-wave devices and components for AESA, GPS and terrestrial/space system communication applications. He is a frequent guest columnist to the Roanoke Times, contributing “slice of life” commentaries.

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Beethoven's Riff

The difference between marketing and sales? It's all about having fun.
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If I Had a Hammer

On the intersection of Maxwell's equations, the Beatles, and the greatest microwave product since sliced bread.
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David Vye, ANSYS

David Vye is business development manager for ANSYS and consulting editor to Microwave Journal. David comments on the state of high-frequency electronic design through the eyes of an RF industry supporter. Prior to his current role, David served as editor and business development manager for MWJ, product-marketing manager with Ansoft Corporation and as a MMIC design and test engineer with Raytheon and MACOM. He is a 1984 graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, with a concentration in microwave engineering.

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SI and PI make impact at IEEE EMC

 Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) is a field that studies the unintentional generation, propagation and reception of electromagnetic energy with reference to the unwanted effects (Electromagnetic interference, or EMI). Since this interference can fall within microwave frequencies it is not uncommon for engineers to have to address this issue when designing a complex, signal rich systems, from cell phone to automobile. The goal of EMC is the correct operation, in the same electromagnetic environment, between components (ICs) and electronic equipment that may radiate and create interference effects. 


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MAndrews

Mark Andrews, AMC Solutions LLC

 Mark Andrews is a writer, photographer, video producer and marketing consultant. He is AMC Solutions’ managing director and chief photographer. He began leading communications industry retail and B2B campaigns in 1993; his efforts enabled wireless operators to achieve full service commercialization across the Midwest, Mid-South and Pacific Northwest. He has led strategic and tactical communications planning, creative development, advertising, retail POS/tradeshows and customer retention design for a variety of companies including TriQuint, Cibernet, Sawtek, CenturyLink and Cellulink. 

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Arrivederci Roma!—Finish 2014 with a Flourish!

October was all about opportunity thanks to a near record number of lead generating special events. While year-end holidays may seem distant, get your A-Game in gear since time is flying fast.


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The Road to Rome

 International marketing for RF and microwave takes more than tact, cultural sensitivity and linguistic aptitude. It also takes a back-up plan. If you think that’s not the case, consider air travel in the US last week. We saw how a perfectly ordinary day can go crazy when one determined guy inside the FAA’s Chicago Center cancelled travel plans for millions. Travel normalcy is making a comeback, but the incident demonstrates why ‘business-as-usual’ isn’t always usual these days. 


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Is Your MarCom Plan Ready for EuMW?

Before you finish packing for an end of summer getaway, take 10 minutes to review your fall marketing plan especially if you’re headed to EuMW. Ten minutes now can save thousands in rush charges and missed opportunity costs.


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Jamie Leger

Jaime Leger

Jaime Leger is one of the founders of Sheppard Leger Nowak (sln) an integrated marketing, advertising, social media and PR firm located in Providence, RI. Over the course of his career, Jaime's entrepreneurial drive has resulted in growing many clients’ businesses, from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies, across both the B2B and B2C. He also serves on many committees including the Southern New England Entrepreneurs Forum (SNEEF) at UMass Dartmouth. He is currently a guest speaker on Social Media Marketing, and is the President of the newly formed Providence Chapter of the International Social Media Club. Read More

IMS 2014: Building Relationships

IMS 2014 hits Tampa Bay on June 1-6, 2014, and I bet you will be there. One of the largest industry events, the show is a must visit. This year it will be my 23rd IMS – wow! If you’d ask: what has changed over the last 20 years? I believe the show today is more personal. With social media becoming commonplace in our industry, we’re more connected and we can build stronger relationships without borders.


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MDL

The Wonders of Waveguide

MDL experts cover the waveguide and microwave technologies that are impacting the industry. From military radar systems to satellite communications, this blog will discuss the unique challenges engineers face within the microwave and RF fields. We will also examine current and emerging applications that rely upon waveguide technology including UAVs and advanced medical equipment.

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Why Use a Waveguide Variable Attenuator?

Waveguide-based high-frequency systems often require some control of amplitude or signal level. Waveguide attenuators can deliver that means of control, with fixed attenuators providing a single value attenuation setting and variable attenuators providing a range of attenuation control across a desired frequency range.


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Find a Coax Fit for Waveguide

 Waveguide can provide outstanding electrical performance in terms of low insertion loss and low VSWR at microwave and millimeter-wave frequencies, but it may often be necessary to transition between waveguide and coaxial components. Doing so requires the right Waveguide-to-coaxial adapter and knowledge of how to integrate it into a design without introducing un-wanted chaos. The right adapter can provide convenience as well as performance. 


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Stop Looking for Your Old HP Slide-Tool

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ROG Blog

The Rog Blog is contributed by John Coonrod and various other experts from Rogers Corporation, providing technical advice and information about RF/microwave materials. Read More

Making the Most Of Coplanar Waveguide

 High-frequency circuit designers have a number of different circuit types from which to provide solutions from radio frequency (RF) through millimeter-wave frequencies and coplanar waveguide (CPW) might be an approach to consider as an option to popular microstrip techniques. Traditional CPW circuitry consists of a conductor separated by a pair of ground planes, on the same plane on top of a dielectric material. A variation on that circuit approach is grounded coplanar waveguide (GCPW), also known as conductor-backed coplanar waveguide (CBCPW). It adds a ground plane to the bottom of the basic CPW circuit structure, with plated through holes (PTHs) connecting the top and bottom ground planes. 


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Delay Lines Draw Upon Stable Dielectric Constant

Delay lines are useful component building-block functions for adjusting signals in both analog and digital circuits on printed-circuit boards (PCBs). High-frequency and high-speed delay lines are characterized by their bandwidths and delay times, as well as their insertion loss across their operating frequency range, their return loss, VSWR, rise time, and their delay stability.


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Suppressing Spurious Modes in Microwave PCBs

Spurious modes can occur in printed circuit boards (PCBs) in spite of the best-laid plans. These modes support extra, unwanted signals, in addition to the intended signals, that can wreak havoc on a PCB and its application, causing interference and degradation of the intended signals. Although minimizing spurious modes in PCBs is largely a result of careful design practices, the choice of PCB material can have some bearing on the final spurious mode behavior, especially at higher frequencies.


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Tek

Tek Talk

The Tek Talk blog features contributions from a collection of RF and microwave test and measurement experts at Tektronix. The focus is on providing tips and strategies to help RF designers and engineers perform measurements more effectively, whether they are engaged in WLAN, radar and electronic warfare, EMI conformance testing or spectrum management.

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Ten Tips for Improving Off-air Spectrum Measurements

By Richard Duvall, Tektronix

 As the spectrum becomes more and more crowded, detecting sources of interference is tougher than ever and only becoming more challenging. Therefore it’s critical that spectrum managers are well-equipped to perform accurate spectrum measurements and quickly chase down interference signals. Here are 10 tips that will help anyone working in the spectrum management field improve off-air spectrum test and measurement. 


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Practical test needs trump instrument silos

Justin PanzerWireless communications industry veteran Justin Panzer brings his insights to this edition of the Tek Talk blog. He has more than 19 years of industry experience, including 10 years in test and measurement working on everything from commercial handset testing to mil/gov RF. He is currently business development director for the Sources & Analyzers Product Line at Tektronix. He holds a Bachelor of Science from Drexel University and an MBA from Auburn University.

Ubiquity of wireless communications is adding an RF component to electronics designs that haven’t historically been wireless enabled. More complex chip, board and embedded systems designs that incorporate communications technologies into everything from PCs to automobiles are changing the impact of RF on the world's R&D engineers. Designers today need the tools to get the most out of unfamiliar technologies.


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The Diagnostic Powers of Test

HendrenBrian Hendren, Senior RF and Microwave Applications Engineer, Tektronix Component Solutions takes over the Tek Talk blog and discusses prototyping for success:

In this day and age manufacturers are trying to drive costs out of every aspect of the production flow, and RF and microwave is no exception.  That means that every process step gets closely scrutinized. Specifically,“test” is one of the operations constantly under evaluation to understand the bare minimum needed to verify performance.  That approach is understandable because test is likely one of the most time consuming steps in the production flow, particularly when you include system set up time.  


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Judy Warner

Judy Warner

Judy Warner is the Western Regional and RF/Microwave Market Director of Business Development for Zentech Manufacturing, a Contract Manufacturer that offers fully integrated supply chain solutions for Mil/Aero, RF/Microwave and Medical markets. Zentech is based in Baltimore, MD near the high technology corridor of the Mid-Atlantic/Pentagon region. Judy has over 20 years of experience in the electronics industry, and has spent the past four years focused exclusively on RF and Microwave technology solutions. Judy also sits on the advisory board of eSurface technologies and contributes articles to a variety of Microwave and Electronic industry trade publications, including 3 years as a contributing guest blogger for Microwave Journal.

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SMT Automation: Saving Private Ryan

A few weeks ago I spent a week in Baltimore Maryland at Zentech Manufacturing, my new employer and professional “home.”  Zentech is a rising star among North American contract manufacturers that has captured the heart and loyalty of the DoD, DARPA and an impressive host of major Mil/Aero contractors in the high-technology corridor of Northern Virginia, Baltimore and Washington DC. As you might imagine, many of these applications are RF/Microwave based.


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Moving Day

Professional transitions are inevitable.  Even so, I was startled when Opportunity came knocking at my door recently nudging me to move on to new territory. For over 4 years I have enjoyed the grand adventure of working for Transline Technology and becoming immersed in the world of RF/Microwave PCBs. Now I am moving on.


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PCBs: Making the Impossible Possible

When Subtracting Doesn’t Add up

 Unlike other areas of advancing technology, PCB manufacturing isn’t very “sexy.” It doesn’t begin to compare with the innovation-per-minute, adrenaline pumping pace that semiconductor companies keep. PCB processes are fairly static. Outside of incremental advances in chemistry, photolithography or the advent of things like laser drilling, we pretty much rely on well-founded, albeit old, technology. What progress we have made, has enabled us to barely keep-up with the driving forces of miniaturization and speed. PCB technology has not enjoyed any fundamental, game-changing innovation for decades. In other words, we have risen to meet industry demands by improving the existing subtractive (print-and-etch) processes that is unfortunately fraught with inherent limitations—especially for high performance boards. 


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Sherry Hess

AWR Expert Blog

Sherry Hess is vice president of marketing at AWR, bringing with her more than 15 years of EDA experience in domestic and international sales, marketing, support, and managerial expertise. For the majority of her career Sherry served in various positions at Ansoft Corporation including director of European operations and later as vice president of marketing. Before joining Ansoft, Sherry spent two years with Intel Corporation, where she worked in the ASIC Group and developed relationships with companies such as Bell Northern Research and Northern Telecom. Sherry holds a BSEE and an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA. www.awrcorp.com.

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Microwave & RF Engineers…Communication is Key!

I recently agreed to co-chair the IEEE MTT-S Women in Engineering (WIE) / Women in Microwaves (WIM) organization. I have long been an advocate for advancing the cause of women in the world of RF and microwave engineering, actually back to my college days at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) when I was one of only eight women in my EE graduating class of 110. Things have not improved much since then with women representing only 10 percent of the engineers in the U.S. today. Asia and Europe fair far better with approximately 40 percent and 20 percent respectively.


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Shock and Ah

Khan Academy- I’m a fan

A few months ago, I heard a news program on NPR about the Khan Academyand how it was started accidentally by Mr. Khan to help his niece with her math homework. Since he lived far away from her, he captured his helpful hints via YouTube and shared via the Internet. One thing led to another and now Khan has found himself the creator of something big.


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Keysight blog

Keysight: expert to expert

A collective blog from the experts in measurement and design, discussing the latest tools for circuit-level modeling through system verification for General RF/uW, 4G Communications, and Aerospace/Defense applications. Learn about these applications and the EDA simulation software, test and measurement equipment and techniques behind state-of-the-art RF, microwave and high speed design.

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RF & Microwave Switches: Selecting the right switch technology for your application

QuekTheng Theng Quek is a business development manager in Keysight Technologies’ (formerly Agilent Technologies) Component Test Division. She joined Agilent as a product marketing engineer in 2006. Prior to that, she was an R&D engineer for Motorola where she gained experience in two-way-radio design. Theng-Theng holds a degree in B.Eng (Hons) from Multimedia University of Malaysia, majoring in Microwave and Communication.


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Adapting for Success with Firm-Fixed-Price Contracts

DuaneWith over 25 years of new product introduction, manufacturing and support experience, Duane Lowenstein, Business Development Manager, Americas
Agilent Technologies, has assisted many Fortune 500 companies in improving their business results by assisting in the implementation of leading-edge operations theory and processes improvements using Agilent’s hardware, software and solutions. 

Currently Duane is engaging with customers to deliver Manufacturing Process Consulting (MPC), Test Process Consulting (TPA), Instrument Migration Planning Services (IMPS), Cost of Test solutions (COT) and, Test simulation and Diagnostic Software (FD). His experience has spanned many industries including computer, wireless, automotive, aerospace and defense, as well as commercial electronics. His focus on measurable results has led customers to dramatic reductions in the cost of test, test time, reduction in work- in-progress and increasing yields while growing the Agilent presence in the account.


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Bucking Conventional Wisdom to Boost Quality and Reliability

eric_taylor_agilentEric Taylor is Vice President of Customer Experience and Quality at Agilent Technologies. He joined the company in 1992 at the former Colorado Springs Division. He held a variety of positions before being promoted to product support manager in the Electronic Measurements Division in 1997, where he worked on several cross-EMG processes, such as out-of-box defects. Over the next four years, he held several division marketing positions, including sales and business development manager for the Measurement Products Unit, and division marketing manager for the former Basic, Emerging, System Test (BEST) Division.


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