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Pat Hindle, MWJ Technical Editor

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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.

How I developed the Sixth (or Twelfth) Wavelength Transformer

September 13, 2011
The following article was sent to us by Peter (B) Bramham, inventor of the sixth wavelength transformer (I never knew that in his first publication he was mistakenly listed as B. Bramaham so it has taken many years for people to realize it). There have been various references in the last few years to a method of matching transmission lines, variously called the “alternated-line” and “twelfth-wave” and “Bramham’s” transformer. This is shown in the Figure below. It is usually compared with the quarter-wave stepped matching section and the half-wave taper, over which it has several advantages. It is shorter...
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RFID Enables Self Serve Draft Beer

September 7, 2011
My new favorite wireless product - self serve draft beer enabled by RFID technology. Coming soon to a bar near you, self service drafts using an RFID card, computer screen or maybe even your smartphone. According to their website , DraftMagik™ is the first hosted service of its kind to manage and deliver draft beer to the Point-of-Pour™ while also providing an interactive patron experience. The beer can be poured in full-service fashion by the bartender (behind the bar) or in a “pour your own beer” mode by age-verified patrons (in front of the bar at a table or...
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Wireless Sensor Networks to Reach $2 Billion in 2021

August 29, 2011
According to IDTechEx research in the new report "Wireless Sensor Networks 2011-2021", WSN will grow rapidly from $0.45 billion in 2011 to $2 billion in 2021. These figures refer to WSN defined as wireless mesh networks, i.e. self-healing and self-organizing. Wireless Sensor Networks will eventually enable the automatic monitoring of forest fires, avalanches, hurricanes, failure of country wide utility equipment, traffic, hospitals and much more over wide areas, something previously impossible. It has started already with more humble killer applications such as automating meter readings in buildings, and manufacture and process control automation. The market for non-mesh wireless sensor systems...
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Industry leaders predict a 'White Space economy'

August 26, 2011
Cambridge Consultants has released a report discussing the foremost business opportunities in wireless technologies enabled by White Space frequencies, predicting the development of the first White Space consumer devices in the next five years. The report entitled is the result of a White Space workshop hosted by Cambridge Consultants, and brings together experts from across the wireless and broadcast industries including representatives from Nokia, Samsung, BBC, BSkyB, Neul and CSR to discuss White Space technology. The report views the use of White Space radio as an inevitability, addressing a critical need for redressing methods of spectrum usage and opening up...
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Product Highlights from EMC 2011

August 18, 2011
I spent the last two days in lovely Long Beach, CA at the IEEE EMC 2011 conference and exhibition. It is a great venue right on the harbor including the nice southern CA weather with the Queen Mary parked right across the harbor. The traffic in the exhibition was average with some busy times in the morning but typically slowing as the day went on. I visited all the microwave companies at the show and have noted below some of the more interesting products I came across. A full report will be coming in a couple of days highlighting all...
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Electromagnetic Fish Hook Repels Sharks

August 11, 2011
This news is a couple of months old but I found it interesting and just now stumbled upon it. A New Jersey-based Shark Defense company developed the SMART (Selective Magnetic and Repellent-Treated) Hook that is intended to repel sharks but does not affect other types of fish. It is magnetic and coated with a metal that produces an electrical current when placed in seawater. Electromagnetic fields are known to affect sharks' sensory systems they try to steer clear of them when possible. Market-valuable fish, such as tuna, do not have this electrical sense and are not repelled by the...
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Google Wallet and NFC Smartphones Starting to Take Off

August 10, 2011
ABI stated that recent developments in contactless payment technology are generating renewed interest, and suggest that the long-delayed dream of comprehensive contactless payment systems may finally be approaching reality. The introduction of Google Wallet and the expectation that several new NFC-enabled smartphones will reach consumer markets soon have created a sense of optimism. According to ABI Research, in 2010 only about 10% of total POS terminal shipments included some form of contactless technology. While the analyst firm does not agree with some of the wilder media predictions for contactless POS growth – for example that within 12 months, one...
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After Chinook Downing, RPG Defeat Should Get More Priority

August 9, 2011
It was very sad to hear about the recent downing of the Chinook helicopter in Afghanistan that killed 38 soldiers. Eastern Afghanistan has steep mountain ranges, providing shelter for militants with rocket-propelled grenade launchers creating a dangerous area for military aircraft and personnel. Large, slow-moving air transports like the CH-47 Chinook are particularly vulnerable, so the military should not be surprised that one was shot down especially if it is not equipped with countermeasures as it is a relatively defenseless aircraft. The two greatest dangers faced in asymmetric warfare are improvised explosive devices (IED) and rock propelled grenades (RPG)...
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The Mine Clearing Beast Autonomous Vehicle

July 20, 2011
Wireless controlled autonomous vehicles of all kinds are being developed by the military. An interesting type being developed are IED and mine clearing vehicles. They can safely clear areas for the military and civilians caught in war tore areas. The Digger D-3 is a mine-clearing robot with a unique approach. Instead of poking around to locate mines and explosives, it shreds that area and eats them. It is a land tiller on steroids (and lots of them). At the front of the D-3 is a giant spinning metal pulverizer, which has tungsten hammers that beat down a quarter meter into...
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Is RF Radiation from Cell Phones Dangerous?

July 20, 2011
A very controversial subject is whether RF radiation from cell phones is dangerous to our health. There are studies showing that it might be and others that show is not dangerous. Many people do not realize that RF radiation at these frequencies is non-ionizing so it cannot damage the cell structure on the molecular level like solar radiation does. However, it can heat the cells (as a microwave oven does to food) but cell phones are relatively low power so does it do any damage to us? Nothing conclusive to date has shown that it is dangerous at the...
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