Microwave Journal

Summertime and the Living is Easy

May 3, 2011

It's been a busy month as the editorial staff wraps up our annual May MTT-S IMS Show Issue. I'm happy to report that the magazine is now at the printer and it is one of our finest show issues ever. Thanks to you, our ad sales were strong, which means the magazine is full of excellent pre-show company/product marketing and plenty of special editorial. The only thing left now is to start cranking out our IMS show daily newsletters, exhibitor previews and website coverage…and attend the exhibition. Meanwhile, we are now focused on June, July and August. Here’s a preview of what coming to MWJ this summer.

June – Our June issue hits the streets the week after IMS, when the industry is still buzzing from the show. This is a great opportunity to reinforce your message by keeping your company’s name and products in front of the people you had meetings with the week before. Editorially we focus on RF/microwave Semiconductors, MMICs and RFICs, an area that is always at the forefront of microwave systems. Our cover story looks at the history of a leading RFIC powerhouse – Skyworks and how this billion-plus dollar a year organization operates. We have an invited paper from the IBM Silicon fab in Burlington, VT on “RF SOI Solutions as a Platform for Wireless Front-End Applications.” IBM processes chips for a number of leading microwave companies, so we are very pleased to hear directly from the foundry technologists about their process roadmap and what it means for designers. In a special report from Endwave (Gigoptix), we take a look at the evolving state of application specific, multi-function MMICs and their highly integrated and complex package/module/interconnect technologies.

July – This is our annual RF/Microwave Software and Design issue. This year we will focus on the EMC/EMI challenges for applications such as automotive electronics in the days of mobile Internet connectivity, GPS and telematics. For this topic, we are soliciting input from several CAD vendors as well as some test and measurement providers. At Mobile World Congress in 2010, Qualcomm and Audi announced that the companies were collaborating to build a 'Wi-Fi enabled' car. The new Audi A8 will feature the Mobile Media Interface Plus in-car navigation system, which will act as a mobile "hotspot", enabling passengers to connect Wi-Fi enabled devices to the Internet for real-time route planning, finding location-specific points of interest or local restaurant reviews, as well as up-to-the-minute traffic information. If a gizmo goes into an Audi A8 one year, we can safely predict that a cheaper version of that device will eventually be standard capability in all cars as soon as the price of the technology is brought down. With that in mind, we believe this is a golden business opportunity for front-end chip and antenna manufacturers as well as all supporting test and simulation technology. So we are excited to investigate this area. This issue will also be distributed at the annual IEEE EMC Show, where engineers have been investigating these challenges for several years now. So how’s that for timing.

August – This is our annual Satellite and Radio Communications issue. While government budgets for space programs are anticipated to enter a no-growth phase for the next five years, civil and defense space programs still spend $71.5 B per year. Satellite communications represents 49 percent of that spending, and Earth observation spending is about 4 percent of the total. For our cover feature, we will look at market trends in civil and defense space programs, the global landscape for spending, priorities and objectives. This report looks at the issues and challenges facing government programs across all applications. Additional technical features this month look at GaN for space applications, a Ku-band data link for airborne internet access and the use of harmonic mixers in a millimeter-wave VNA test set-up.

August Supplement – Without fail, our Military Microwave supplement is always the largest supplement of the year. Last year’s issue set a record for ads booked. We hope to continue this trend once again and will be talking with many of you at IMS about advertising in this supplement, which will have special bonus distribution at both Milcom (Baltimore) and EuMW (Manchester, UK). Our cover story will be a special update on ITAR regulations by an MWJ guest writer, Jim Fallon. Jim is a regular contributor to our Military Microwave newsletter and expert on military programs and procurement.