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Engineering Newswire 64: New hypersonic jet strikes anywhere in less than an hour

November 11, 2013 1:15 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

Son of Blackbird: Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works has recently revealed its plans for a hypersonic aircraft that will go twice the speed of the SR-71. The SR-72 twin-engine aircraft is expected to travel at Mach 6, with the ability to strike targets. At this speed, no enemy would have time to react or hide.

Satellite hits Atlantic— but what about next one?

November 11, 2013 11:32 am | by DAVID RISING, Associated Press | News | Comments

The European Space Agency says one of its research satellites re-entered the Earth's atmosphere early Monday on an orbit that passed over Siberia, the western Pacific Ocean, the eastern Indian Ocean and Antarctica. The 1,100-kilogram (2,425-pound) satellite disintegrated in the atmosphere but about 25 percent of it...

Photos of the Day: Silicon Valley tank collection heading east

November 11, 2013 9:18 am | by MARTHA MENDOZA, AP National Writer | News | Comments

The family of a Silicon Valley engineer who amassed one of the nation's most extensive historic military vehicle collections is giving the tanks, missile launchers and armored vehicles to a Massachusetts-based museum that will preserve and display some of them.

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'Tiger stripes' underneath Antarctic glaciers slow the flow

November 8, 2013 9:46 am | by Eurekalert! | News | Comments

Narrow stripes of dirt and rock beneath massive Antarctic glaciers create friction zones that slow the flow of ice toward the sea, researchers at Princeton University and the British Antarctic Survey have found. Understanding how these high-friction regions form and subside could help researchers understand how the flow of these glaciers responds to a warming climate.

This rock-climbing robot will haunt your dreams

November 8, 2013 9:27 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

 Every so often, you see a robot on the internet that is so macabre-looking it belongs in a horror film. There is a quality about these robots that’s not quite robot, but not quite human. Generally, in the technology community, nine out of ten of these robots come out of the Department of Defense sponsored Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (a.k.a DARPA). (If you need proof, check out DARPA’s PETMAN)

A sight for sore eyes: New accuracy for 60mm mortars

November 6, 2013 3:17 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

The handheld mortar has long been a staple for the U.S. Marine Corps, and yesterday the weapon got a major boost as combat instructors at Marine Corps Base Quantico successfully conducted a live-fire demonstration of a new mortar sight, sponsored by the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

We finally have drones with "frickin’ laser beams"

November 5, 2013 4:43 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Dr. Evil would be proud. Lasers have always been the next frontier (some would say pipe dream) of weapons development. But recent developments have brought Sci-Fi closer to reality. And now this — the Pentagon has awarded a total of $26 million to defense contractors to develop a laser countermeasures system for manned and unmanned aircraft.

Optical backplane interconnect system supports VITA 66.1 standard

November 5, 2013 3:19 pm | Product Releases | Comments

TE Connectivity announces the new VITA 66.1 Ruggedized Optical Backplane interconnect system that has been designed to meet the needs of high-bandwidth applications such as for high-definition video and images and more specifically for computing applications requiring optical infrastructure.

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Photos of the Day: India launches first mission to Mars

November 5, 2013 8:49 am | by KATY DAIGLE, Associated Press | News | Comments

India on Tuesday launched its first spacecraft bound for Mars, a complex mission that it hopes will demonstrate and advance technologies for space travel. Hundreds of people watched the rocket carrying the Mars orbiter take off from the east-coast island of Sriharikota and streak across the sky. Many more across the country watched live TV broadcasts.

This hypersonic Blackbird can launch weapons from space

November 4, 2013 3:43 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

In aviation, it doesn’t get more chic than the SR-71 Blackbird, the Rolls Royce of the sky. From 1964 till its retirement in 1998, this supersonic, Mach 3+ reconnaissance aircraft played a crucial role in the Cold War (and afterward) for over three decades. But ever since the Blackbird went to the Boca Raton of the skies, aviation buffs have been pining for a successor. And now they have one. And it’s glorious.

Frequency converters cover the range of 60 Hz to 400 Hz

November 4, 2013 1:02 pm | Behlman Electronics | Product Releases | Comments

The Behlman FC5003 is an ultra-rugged COTS power supply designed to convert common 120/208 VAC, 3-phase, 60 Hz ground power to 115/200 VAC, 3-phase 400 Hz power used by aircraft and other vehicles, and equipment that require 400 Hz.

Voltage-controlled crystal oscillators offer a wide choice of frequency, voltage, and output combinations

November 4, 2013 12:52 pm | Rfmw Ltd | Product Releases | Comments

RFMW, Ltd. announces design and sales support for Sunny Electronics SVP-53 series of FastClock voltage controlled crystal oscillators (VCXO’s). The SVP-53 series of FastClock VCXO’s is available in a CMOS output waveform and comes in a standard 5x3.2mm package.

Gravity and the robot satellite attitude problem

November 4, 2013 11:05 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Using an in-orbit robot to capturing a malfunctioning satellite that is tumbling out of control is currently just a theoretical idea. However, research inspired by nature to be published in the forthcoming issue of International Journal of Mechanisms and Robotic Systems, could take us a small step towards making such science fiction science fact.

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Solid-state power amplifier block upconverters offer 47 dBm of output power

November 1, 2013 1:26 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Comtech Xicom Technology announces new military satellite communication (MIL-SATCOM) solid-state power amplifier block upconverters will be presented during MILCOM'13. At MILCOM’13, Xicom will be showcasing its new generation of 50-Watt X-Band and 40-Watt Ku-Band solid-state high power amplifiers (SSPAs).

Capacitor series includes extended capacitance range up to 39µF

November 1, 2013 12:51 pm | Avx Corporation | Product Releases | Comments

AVX Corporation has expanded its Mini-TurboCap and RoHS Compliant Mini-TurboCap Series with a new 25V rating and an extended capacitance range (up to 39µF) for its 50V parts. Now available in 25V, 50V, and 100V, these state-of-the-art base metal electrode (BME) capacitor series exhibit extremely high volumetric efficiency....

F-35 successfully targets aerial drone (is still a moneypit)

November 1, 2013 11:28 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

The F-35 Lightning II program, which surpassed 10,000 flight hours in September, has another reason to celebrate today. On October 31, the F-35A, a 5th generation fighter, successfully launched an AIM-120 radar-seeking missile from the internal weapons bay. 

US OKs air passengers using gadgets on planes

October 31, 2013 10:58 am | by JOAN LOWY, Associated Press | News | Comments

U.S. government safety rules are changing to let airline passengers use most electronic devices from gate-to-gate. The change will let passengers read, work, play games, watch movies and listen to music — but not make cellphone calls. The Federal Aviation Administration says airlines can allow passengers to use the devices during takeoffs and landings...

Photos of the Day: Earth-size planet found with rocky core like ours

October 31, 2013 8:33 am | by MARCIA DUNN, AP Aerospace Writer | News | Comments

Scientists have found a planet way out in the cosmos that's close in size and content to Earth - an astronomical first. But hold off on the travel plans. This rocky world is so close to its sun that it's at least 2,000 degrees hotter than here, almost certainly too hot for life.

RF power amplifier optimized for 20 to 1000 MHz operation

October 24, 2013 4:34 pm | Richardson RFPD, Inc., Nitronex | Product Releases | Comments

Richardson RFPD today announces availability and full design support capabilities for a new 28V gallium nitride-on-silicon (GaN-on-Si) RF power amplifier from Nitronex. The NPA1006 is a wideband GaN power amplifier optimized for 20 to 1000 MHz operation.

Solid-state power relay rated for up to 5A continuous load current

October 24, 2013 4:27 pm | Ixys | Product Releases | Comments

The CPC1968 is a single-pole normally open (1-Form-A) solid-state power relay rated for up to 5A continuous load current with a 5°C/W heat sink. The output is constructed with MOSFET switches and photovoltaic die, while the input utilizes a highly efficient GaAIAs infrared LED to provide the optically coupled control.

Iran’s newest “drone” held together with duct tape

October 24, 2013 4:20 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

A recently released video of Iran’s new “suicide remotely piloted vehicle” called the Ra’ad 85—aka Thunder 85—reveals it might be less impressive than originally announced. A few weeks ago, Brigadier General Ahmad Reza Pourdastan, Commander of the Iranian Army Ground Force, announced the Ra’ad 85 would be a game-changer for Iran’s military.

Nano-sized communications subsystems upgrade airborne mission computers

October 24, 2013 1:14 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Advanced, rugged, nano-sized Intelligent I/O and communications subsystem from North Atlantic Industries (NAI) delivers significant advantages for mission computers in airborne vehicles. The Nano Interface Unit (NIU1) adds distributed network, sensor data interfaces to airborne mission computer without expensive chassis or backplane redesign.

A new idea for space tourism: Balloon over rocket

October 23, 2013 12:36 pm | by SETH BORENSTEIN, AP Science Writer | News | Comments

The latest space tourism venture depends more on hot air than rocket science. World View Enterprises announced plans Tuesday to send people up in a capsule, lifted 19 miles by a high-altitude balloon. Jane Poynter, CEO of the Tucson, Ariz.-based company, said the price for the four-hour ride would be $75,000.

Power transistor designed for broadband avionics data link applications

October 23, 2013 12:06 pm | Richardson RFPD, Inc., Microsemi Corporation | Product Releases | Comments

Richardson RFPD introduces a new 50V gallium nitride on silicon carbide (GaN on SiC) RF power high-electron-mobility transistor (HEMT) from Microsemi Corporation (Microsemi). The 0912GN-650V is internally-matched and capable of providing over 17 dB gain....

MOSFETs offer excellent stability and low intermodulation distortion

October 23, 2013 8:50 am | Richardson RFPD, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Richardson RFPD announces availability and full design support capabilities for two new high-frequency vertical diffusion metal oxide semiconductor (VDMOS) MOSFETs from Microsemi Corporation (Microsemi). The new high-power, high breakdown voltage (V(BR)DSS), common source configuration devices offer excellent stability and low intermodulation distortion (IMD).

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