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The Lead

RF digital step attenuator enables flexible, wide dynamic-range network-infrastructure designs

April 23, 2014 2:29 pm | Peregrine Semiconductor Corp | Product Releases | Comments

Peregrine Semiconductor Corp. (San Diego, CA) introduces its next-generation, UltraCMOS PE4312 DSA. Successor to the popular PE4302, the new PE4312 enables flexible, wide dynamic-range network-infrastructure designs that require highly accurate and efficient amplitude control....

Think tank: Russian stealth fighter is superior to the F-35

April 23, 2014 1:00 pm | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Air Power Australia is no fan of the F-35. Let’s get that out of the way. For years, they’ve...

Liquid spacetime

April 23, 2014 10:01 am | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

What if spacetime were a kind of fluid? This is the question tackled by theoretical physicists...

Mysteries of a nearby planetary system's dynamics now are solved

April 22, 2014 12:33 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Mysteries of one of the most fascinating nearby planetary systems now have been solved, report...

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Is this solar-powered airplane the future of green travel?

April 22, 2014 9:47 am | by Allegra Sparta, Contributor | Blogs | Comments

The Solar Impulse team is at it again! This is the team that flew the first solar-powered plane capable of flying around the clock coast-to-coast across the United States in 2013. They just unveiled that plane’s successor, the aptly named Solar Impulse 2, which has an even greater destiny for 2015: to circumnavigate the globe....

High gain amplifiers target commercial and military radar

April 21, 2014 7:30 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Pasternack Enterprises, Inc. (Irvine, CA)  introduced new portfolio of L and S band high gain amplifiers covering 1.2 GHz to 1.4 GHz and 3.1 GHz to 3.5 GHz specifically used for commercial and military radar applications as well as observation satellites and communications systems.

Wrap-around chip resistors tested per EEE-INST-002 and MIL-PRF-55342

April 21, 2014 2:38 pm | Product Releases | Comments

Vishay Precision Group, Inc. (Malvern, PA) announced that its Vishay Foil Resistors brand (VFR) has introduced a new series of military-qualified, ultra-high-precision Z1-Foil wrap-around chip resistors.

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Photos of the Day: NASA's flying saucer

April 21, 2014 1:33 pm | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

NASA recently unveiled the Low Density Supersonic Decelerator, a disc-shaped spacecraft which could potentially deliver supplies for future manned Mars missions. In theory, NASA’s flying saucer would, upon descent, deploy a 100-foot-wide parachute to decelerate from a Mach 3.5 descent down to about twice the speed of sound....

16-26 GHz double-balanced fundamental mixer offers high isolation

April 21, 2014 11:52 am | Product Releases | Comments

Custom MMIC (Westford, MA) announced its CMD179 general purpose, double-balanced GaAs mixer that can be used for up- and down-converting applications between 16 GHz and 26 GHz. The mixer, which offers conversion loss of 7 dB, an LO to RF isolation of greater than

Astronaut pee could help get us to Mars

April 21, 2014 8:16 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Urine, made up of more than 95% water, is one of the cleanest fluids in the human body. And on a protracted space mission lasting more than a year (one-way) — to Mars, for example — that fact becomes critically important....

Bright points in sun's atmosphere mark patterns deep in its interior

April 18, 2014 1:40 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Like a balloon bobbing along in the air while tied to a child's hand, a tracer has been found in the sun's atmosphere to help track the flow of material coursing underneath the sun's surface. New research that uses data from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, to track bright points in the solar atmosphere...

First Earth-size planet is discovered in another star's habitable zone

April 18, 2014 12:53 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

A team of astronomers that includes Penn State scientists has discovered the first Earth-size planet orbiting a star in the "habitable zone" -- the distance from a star where liquid water might pool on the surface of an orbiting planet. The discovery was made with NASA's Kepler Space Telescope....

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UT Dallas professor to develop framework to protect computers' cores

April 18, 2014 12:46 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

UT Dallas cybersecurity expert Dr. Zhiqiang Lin has received funding from the U.S. Air Force to develop a defense framework that burrows deep into a computer system to protect its core. The Young Investigator Research Program (YIP) award from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR) provides up to $360,000....

Engineering Newswire: HeliCat looks like copter, drives like boat

April 18, 2014 12:22 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

The HeliCat 22 is great for stable & safe, fun, fast, economical and practical water travel. It features two independent motor/fuel/electrical systems for redundancy, and can travel up to 20 to 30 miles per hour in whitecap waves at 5 miles per gallon, which is impossible with other boats....

This is what shooting a drone with a machine gun looks like

April 18, 2014 9:59 am | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

On today’s edition of destroying things with machine guns, we find ourselves in Arizona during the semi-annual Big Sandy Shoot, which is the largest machine-gun shoot in the US. We also find ourselves learning a valuable lesson: It’s really hard to shoot down drones....

Photos of the Day: A remote-controlled, fire-breathing dragon

April 17, 2014 12:59 pm | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

Hammacher Schlemmer has introduced possibly the coolest RC “toy” of all time: A remote-controlled, fire-breathing dragon. I put “toy” in quotations because of the obvious safety risk and the exorbitant price: This bad boy will set you back 60 grand. But it’d be money well-spent....

Meteorites yield clues to red planet's early atmosphere

April 17, 2014 12:03 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Geologists who analyzed 40 meteorites that fell to Earth from Mars unlocked secrets of the Martian atmosphere hidden in the chemical signatures of these ancient rocks. Their study, published April 17 in the journal Nature, shows that the atmospheres of Mars and Earth diverged in important ways....

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Engineering Update 54: NASA to send flying saucers to Mars

April 17, 2014 10:25 am | by Jon Dipierro, Multimedia Production Specialist | Videos | Comments

Future voyages to Mars would need to address the physiological strain on the astronauts, the length of the trip, itself, and ferrying the necessary payload to sustain human life for a protracted mission. The first two problems could be insurmountable, but to deal with the latter, NASA is currently testing its own prototype for a hypersonic flying saucer....

Photos of the Day: Solar-powered plane to circle the globe

April 16, 2014 2:43 pm | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

Aviation pioneers Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg recently unveiled the Solar Impulse 2 which, in 2015, will become the first solar-powered aircraft to circumnavigate the globe. The Solar Impulse 2 will fly non-stop for 120 straight hours without stopping for food, fuel, or supplies (or bathroom breaks)....

5 engineers with fatally terrible inventions

April 16, 2014 2:19 pm | by Aubrey Schaefer, Engineer Jobs | Blogs | Comments

If I stopped to count how many engineers have positively affected my life, I would have no time for anything else. Instead, let’s look at those other engineers – the ones with fatally terrible inventions.The staggering talent of thousands of engineers bears fruit with every processor cycle of the slick little laptop I’m typing this on....

Odd tilts could make more worlds habitable

April 16, 2014 1:11 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

Pivoting planets that lean one way and then change orientation within a short geological time period might be surprisingly habitable, according to new modeling by NASA and university scientists affiliated with the NASA Astrobiology Institute. The climate effects generated on these wobbling worlds could prevent them from turning into glacier-covered ice lockers....

Photos of the Day: The amazing, foldable V-22 Osprey

April 15, 2014 8:18 am | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

Consider this an “oldie but goodie.” The V-22 Osprey is the world’s first production tiltrotor aircraft. It’s also capable of both vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) and short takeoff and landing (STOL). But one of the Osprey’s coolest features is its ability to fold its rotors back for compact storage capabilities....

Watch a V-22 Osprey fold itself for storage

April 14, 2014 3:07 pm | by Kasey Panetta, Managing Editor | Blogs | Comments

 It’s pretty crazy to think that a huge aircraft with an 85’ foot wingspan is possible of folding itself up to reduce the amount of space it occupies on a massive ship. Yet, the V-22 Osprey does just that. This video is a little dated—it was taken in 2010 at Nellis Airforce Base in Las Vegas....

SpaceX's Dragon headed to space station to create astronaut farmers

April 14, 2014 2:20 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

"Enter the Dragon" takes on a whole new meaning this month as SpaceX's Dragon capsule heads to the International Space Station for its third commercial resupply mission on April 14. During the SpaceX-3 mission, the Dragon capsule not only will deliver cargo

Photos of the Day: The Navy's electromagnetic railguns

April 14, 2014 8:08 am | by ECN Staff | News | Comments

The Navy announced plans to install and test an electromagnetic railgun aboard a joint high-space vessel by fiscal year 2016. Using an electromagnetic force known as the Lorentz Force, the railgun rapidly accelerates and launches a 7 pound projectile at hypersonic speeds up to 2.4 kilometers per second....

Engineering Newswire: Disposable drones printed for cheap spying

April 11, 2014 1:05 pm | by Eric Sorensen, Coordinator of Multimedia Development | Videos | Comments

At the University of Sheffield, engineers are 3D printing unmanned aircraft. The thought is that production costs could be low enough that this would lead to disposable UAVs to be sent on one-way flights for delivery, search, or reconnaissance purposes....

Appearance of night-shining clouds has increased

April 11, 2014 12:31 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

First spotted in 1885, silvery blue clouds sometimes hover in the night sky near the poles, appearing to give off their own glowing light. Known as noctilucent clouds, this phenomenon began to be sighted at lower and lower latitudes -- between the 40th and 50th parallel....

Construction to begin on NASA spacecraft set to visit asteroid in 2018

April 11, 2014 12:28 pm | by EurekAlert! | News | Comments

NASA's team that will conduct the first U.S. mission to collect samples from an asteroid has been given the go-ahead to begin building the spacecraft, flight instruments and ground system, and launch support facilities. This determination was made Wednesday....

Military plans to use drones as flying Wi-Fi hotspots

April 11, 2014 10:38 am | by Jason Lomberg, Technical Editor | Blogs | Comments

For civilians, a dearth of Wi-Fi is a minor inconvenience. First-world problems. But for our troops in the field, a lack of connectivity can kill you. No connection means no close-air support and no reinforcements. Hence the military’s push to turn drones into mobile Wi-Fi hotspots....

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