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How will unmanned systems shape the future of warfare?

August 27, 2013 10:02 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Here at ECN, we love hearing from our own readers about different trends and new technologies you guys are working with! We like it so much we're devoting an entire issue to what our readers think about the impact of different technologies on their jobs and projects. The second category is military/aerospace technology, specifically unmanned systems....

California vies for new space industry

August 26, 2013 9:46 am | by MIHIR ZAVERI, Associated Press | News | Comments

As several new private ventures to take people on trips to space come closer to becoming reality, California lawmakers are racing other states to woo the new space companies with cushy incentives. They are debating a bill now in Sacramento that would insulate manufacturers of spaceships and parts suppliers from liability...

China helicopter training with air-to-air missiles

August 26, 2013 9:32 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A Chinese-developed attack helicopter has successfully fired air-to-air missiles for the first time, state media said Monday, in another apparent advance for the domestic arms industry. The firing took place last week during drills off the coast of the southern province of Guangdong...

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Accelerometer designed for aerospace and industrial testing applications

August 22, 2013 1:35 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Meggitt Sensing Systems has announced the global market launch of the Endevco model 7253D triaxial Isotron accelerometer designed for applications requiring the measurement of shock and vibration simultaneously in three mutually perpendicular axes.

5 US institutions to share meteorite pieces

August 22, 2013 11:28 am | News | Comments

Five U.S. institutions will share parts of a rare meteorite that exploded in a fireball over California last year, The Field Museum said Wednesday. The meteor dates to the early formation of the solar system 4 to 5 billion years ago. It was probably about the size of a minivan when it entered the Earth's atmosphere on April 22, 2012 with a loud boom.

GaN HEMTs target L-Band radar systems

August 22, 2013 11:07 am | Product Releases | Comments

Cree has released two new gallium nitride (GaN) high electron mobility transistors (HEMTs) for use in 1.2 GHz to 1.4GHz L-Band radar amplifier systems: the 250-W CGHV14250 and the 500-W CGHV14500. Featuring what is asserted to be the highest known L-Band efficiency performance at 85°C

Engineering Update #21: Boeing's laser weaponry and Samsung's secret smartwatch

August 22, 2013 10:49 am | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

This episode of ECN's Engineering Update is brought to you by Mouser Electronics. In this week's headlines: Boeing's impressive laser weapon system: Boeing recently announced that its Thin Disk Laser system has achieved unexpected levels of power and efficiency, bringing the concept of laser weaponry one step closer to the battlefield.

SPDT switch-limiter touts high power handling and fast recovery time

August 22, 2013 10:20 am | Product Releases | Comments

M/A-COM Technology Solutions announced a new SPDT switch-limiter that is suited for S-Band military and commercial radar systems. The MASL-011023 operates over the 2.7 GHz to 3.5 GHz bandwidth and handles 125W of CW power at 85°C while providing a fast recovery time of

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This is what a 550-ton hovercraft landing on a Russian beach looks like

August 21, 2013 3:53 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

Alright, so technically the beach is a military zone and, technically, it's not a beach that people should be swimming from or sunbathing on, but that is one scary-looking piece of military equipment. According to a Russian defense ministry spokesperson, it's actually a government-owned beach and the landing was part of some military practice maneuvers.

Pulsars make a GPS for the cosmos

August 21, 2013 12:37 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

CSIRO scientists have written software that could guide spacecraft to Alpha Centauri, show that the planet Nibiru doesn't exist … and prove that the Earth goes around the Sun. Dr George Hobbs (CSIRO) and his colleagues study pulsars — small spinning stars that deliver regular 'blips' or 'pulses' of radio waves and, sometimes, X-rays.

PCI express boards enable robust synchronous serial communications

August 21, 2013 10:41 am | Sealevel Systems, Inc. | Product Releases | Comments

Sealevel Systems announced the release of two new single-port PCI Express serial I/O adapters designed for avionics, satellite, radar, and other applications that require robust synchronous communications. Both boards use the popular Zilog Z85230 Enhanced Serial Communications Controller (ESCC) for maximum compatibility with a variety of interfaces and protocols.

Mechanical-mount rotary position sensor includes integral PCB

August 20, 2013 3:02 pm | Piher North America | Product Releases | Comments

Piher Sensors & Controls has introduced the MTS-360 Mechanical Mount Rotary Position Sensor with integral PCB for fast and easy mounting. Designed with the sensor directly mounted onto a PCB, the sensor/PCB combo package allows engineers to easily install a fully featured rotary sensor....

VNAs add cutting-edge pulse measurement and true mode stimulus capabilities

August 20, 2013 12:20 pm | Anritsu Company | Product Releases | Comments

Anritsu Company expanded its VectorStar family of Vector Network Analyzers (VNAs) with the introduction of the MS4640B Series. Featuring a number of new cutting-edge measurement capabilities, including PulseView, which provides pulse profile, point-in-pulse and pulse-to-pulse measurements of

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Wi-Fi connectivity will allow Robonaut to move

August 20, 2013 8:00 am | by Digi International | News | Comments

NASA is using Digi International’s Connect Core Wi-i.MX53 wireless module to Wi-Fi enable its Robonaut, a humanoid-type robot that will perform routine maintenance tasks on the International Space Station (ISS). NASA’s Robonaut currently exists on the ISS as a torso, bolted to a pedestal, and is connected to the station with wires for power and control.

NASA, Navy to test space capsule recovery in Va.

August 15, 2013 11:44 am | by BROCK VERGAKIS, Associated Press | News | Comments

The Navy and NASA are testing out how they'll recover astronauts once they splash down in the ocean following future missions to deep space, something a Navy crew hasn't had to do in nearly 40 years. On Thursday, a team of Navy divers and the crew of the USS Arlington planned to practice retrieving a mock-up of the Orion space capsule...

Online forums provide key havens for terror plots

August 15, 2013 11:37 am | by ADAM GOLDMAN & LARA JAKES, Associated Press | News | Comments

In secretive chat rooms and on encrypted Internet message boards, al-Qaida fighters have been planning and coordinating attacks — including a threatened if vague plot that U.S. officials say closed 19 diplomatic posts across Africa and the Middle East for more than a week.

Review: Is this quadcopter a drone for the masses?

August 14, 2013 5:37 pm | by PETER SVENSSON - AP Technology Writer - Associated Press | News | Comments

Unmanned aircraft, also known as drones, are revolutionizing warfare. Now, some of that technology is coming home from the war, to amuse us and give us an aerial perspective on our surroundings. I've been trying out a helicopter-type drone called the Phantom this summer. It's been an eye-opener...

High-temperature power inductors target military, aerospace applications

August 14, 2013 10:35 am | Coilcraft Critical Products & Services | Product Releases | Comments

Coilcraft CPS introduced its AE619PYA Series of high-temperature, military-grade power inductors that meet all NASA low outgassing specifications. These robust, composite-core surface mount inductors are constructed of high-temperature materials to exceed the requirements of most military and aerospace applications....

ANA, Japan Airlines check 787s for wiring problem

August 14, 2013 10:25 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines said Wednesday they are checking their Boeing 787 fleets for wiring problems unrelated to battery defects that plagued the aircraft earlier this year. ANA said the departure of a 787 plane was delayed over problem wiring for a system to put out engine fires.

Mars food study researchers emerge from experiment

August 14, 2013 9:57 am | by JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER, Associated Press | News | Comments

Six researchers have spent the past four months living in a small dome on a barren Hawaii lava field at an elevation of 8,000 feet, trying to figure out what foods astronauts might eat on Mars and during deep-space missions. They emerged on Tuesday with their recipes....

Will 3D-printing change the world of engineering?

August 12, 2013 2:33 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Articles | Comments

Here at ECN we're always looking for what's going to change the world of electrical design and make life better for our engineers. This month we're focusing on Time-to-Market strategies. We're looking at it a little bit differently and discussing the issues from the viewpoint of 3D printing and rapid prototyping.

The Mars Curiosity Rover sang Happy Birthday to itself

August 8, 2013 12:20 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

August 5th marked the one-year anniversary of the Curiosity Rover’s landing on Mars. In addition to turning me from a Space Hater into a Space Junkie, the landing was a celebration of a great landmark in the world of NASA and space. Curiosity, part of NASA’s Mars Exploration program, carries the most advanced suite of instruments of any device sent to the Martian surface. 

Engineering Update #19: Bringing immersive entertainment to the bathroom and the DIY eSpyder

August 8, 2013 9:36 am | Videos | Comments

In this week's headlines: AquaTop Display brings immersive entertainment to your bathroom: Researchers at Tokyo's University of Electro-Communications are exploring new territory in the field of natural user interface design with their AquaTop Display.

Making aviation history: A solar-powered plane

August 6, 2013 2:01 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Articles | Comments

While most of the country is still struggling with the concept of solar power on land, one team was busy using the panels to power something a little more ambitious: a plane. The program, called Solar Impulse, is devoted to designing a plane powered entirely by solar panels, in hopes of demonstrating the potential of alternative energy.

Reducing multitasking at HP Digital Camera

August 5, 2013 8:50 am | by Sanjeev Gupta, CEO of Realization Technologies in San Jose, Calif. | Blogs | Comments

Like many consumer electronics organizations, HP Digital Camera saw that its people were working hard, but they also knew that they were not meeting deadlines and were not as productive as they needed to be. In the year before implementing the steps necessary to eliminate organizational multitasking, HP Digital Camera had released six different models of digital cameras,

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