Power-generation and heating units using radioactive decay as their primary energy source have been successfully used in space and on Earth for over 60 years. This part looks at the principles and implementation of radioisotope-based heat and power. Q: What has been the solution to this challenge? A: It’s the elegant merging of two basic […]
Power-generation and heating units using radioactive decay as their primary energy source have been successfully used in space and on Earth for over 60 years. Selecting a non-rechargeable (primary) battery to match the application is one of the many issues designers must contend with for the many situations in which recharging is neither feasible nor […]
Yagi antennas have long been popular as beam antennas for amateur radio. Here’s how they work.
Is the lack of error codes in basic appliances an attempt to make repairs harder, or is there a deeper, safety-focused rationale here? After about five years of hard daily use, our undercabinet, no-frills GE-brand microwave oven stopped working (Figure 1). It did not die completely, as the user control panel and its keypad worked, […]
Antennas come in a broad range of sizes, styles, and configurations to meet frequency, bandwidth, directivity, and many other objectives; the PIGA and Yagi antenna are two different yet widely used versions.
Antennas come in abroad range of sizes, styles, and configurations to meet frequency, bandwidth, directivity, and many other objectives; the PIGA and Yagi antennas are rather different yet widely used versions. With a few highly specialized exceptions, all antennas in general use – ranging from tiny ones in wearables to huge broadcast-transmitter designs – are […]
Accuracy, precision, and resolution are key parameters, each with a distinct meaning and implication with respect to system design and confidence. Design, test, and measurement implications Low or moderate accuracy may seem a detriment, but that isn’t necessarily the case. If precision is good enough and there is a way to calibrate the readings, the […]
Accuracy, precision, and resolution are key parameters, each with a distinct meaning and implication with respect to system design and confidence. To the average person, terms such as accuracy and precision are somewhat interchangeable, and that’s fine. However, they have very specific and different meanings as well as design and test implications for scientists, engineers, […]
A somewhat justified concern about damaging a complex system can also intimidate you from a basic investigation into a system problem. OK, I admit it: I avoided checking for an obvious problem due to my fear of making things worse in a high-risk situation. Fortunately, the only cost, in this case, was to my pride. […]
Digital twins are getting lots of deserved attention, but are they the cure-all for whatever simulation issues you have? Although digital twins are undoubtedly valuable tools along with basic simulation, modeling, HITL, and others, the associated all-good/no drawbacks promotion concerns me. When a tool, product, or other development gets a lot of “pumping up” to […]