Before we get into "fun
links", here is a short list of web sites that have good
microwave engineering content on them.
Looking for some defense-related papers that are in public domain? Defense Technical Information Center's website is where you need to go! Be aware that some of the content is a little old. Go there and type L-band digital phase shifter into the search box and see what you get. That 1962 effort using triodes for switch elements is going to be a problem to duplicate...
Progress In Electromagnetics Research (PIER) publishes peer-reviewed original and comprehensive articles on all aspects of electromagnetic theory and applications. You can find quite a few microwave topics there as well. Someone please tell us why there are separate JPIER-B and C and M sites that have to be separately searched?
Antune offers free software for antenna and RF amplifier impedance network design. The software can communicate directly with a VNA, giving real time information on a PC screen with or without virtual impedance networks added. It can calculate optimized L/C networks from given frequency parameters, with no restrictions on target impedance. Just a few types of VNA's are supported, but more will be added upon request. It can also perform common calculations from imported Touchstone files, adding virtual filters, print them or save diagrams in a number of formats such as jpeg/html or back to Touchstone with the virtual network included. Thanks to Alf!
Looking for used and surplus scientific equipment sales (i.e cheap test equipment?)? Tell Rich at BMI Surplus Inc. that that M101 sent you to his site...
Dr. Francesco Fornetti has a website, docfrankie.com, which includes video tutorials on microwave related topics, including lots of information on using Microwave Office:
Datasheetzone is now a sponsor
of Microwaves101! They have a variety of RF-related datasheets:
Here's some shortcuts to the
Mark Ingalls has a personal site
with lots of microwave related info, such as de-embedding, calibration,
You can find all manner of defense-related
papers at the Defense Technical
Iulian Rosu hosts an interesting
amateur web site with many original technical articles and tons
of schematics. Thanks to Tom for pointing it out!
Here is yet another über-user
of Microsoft Excel applying the spreadsheet to RF matching networks...
Hi microwaves101 engineers,
I have developed an EXCEL-spreadsheet which supports matching
network designs. You can find it on http://www.maka-fss.de.
May be it is of interest for the community. Comments are appreciated.
(Contact info is on the linked page).
On this site you can download
a free tool for plotting S-parameters, thanks to Orla, who resides
in Denmark. If you use the tool, he requests your feedback so he
can continue to improve it! Here is his description:
I have spent some time
making a tool that plots S-parameters in selectable graphs.
Nothing big, but much faster than MWO or ADS, and providing
the possibility to associate your s2p files to the program,
and displaying graphs by double click.
I don't expect to make
money on the program, but would really appreciate some feedback.
Actually it's made in Visual Express so selling it would be
Orla's program can be seen
(and downloaded) at this web page:
is an open-source microwave project, being developed by Alex. it used to be called mwavepy. Here's
scikit-rf is a compilation
of functions and class's for microwave/RF engineering written
in python. It is useful for things such as: Touchstone file
manipulation, calibration, data analysis, data acquisition,
and plotting. mwavepy can either be used interactively, through
the python interpreter, or used in scripts.
What can scikit-rf do ?
- Load touchstone (.s2p,
s?p) files for data processing
- Provide basic algebraic
operations on networks' scattering parameters
- Cascade 2-port networks
- De-embed 2-port networks
- Plot network's scattering
parameter data (dB, Phase (unwrapped), Smith chart)
- Save plots in vector format
for publication (a feature of
- 1-port calibration, given
any number of standards (least squares)
- 2-port calibration (svn
version) with support for switch-terms.
- Can be used with pyvisa
for instrument control of some VNA's ( partial support for HP8510,
HP8720, and R&S ZVA40 )
- Provide basic TEM transmission
line models, and some non-TEM transmission lines (rectangular
- Create analytically based
models for networks (good for making custom cal sets and modeling)
On the mightyohm.com
web site you can see (among other hacks) a homemade chop saw used
for dicing alumina circuits, an amazing accomplishment. Thanks to
Here is a cool website for that
was suggested by Raghav. Is the largest parametric search engine
for RF & Microwave components, try it and you will like it.
The website also contains news, links to design articles and information
on new products. It also provides numerous links back to Microwaves101
articles, thanks guys!
While we're building up more
content on amplifier design,
here's a good link to Queen's
University web site that has a lot of information on the topic.
Thanks to Sibasis!
Here's a microwave-related web
site started by a student at Purdue. It contains a compilation of
links to other sites which have been categorized to help you find
what you need:
Matweb is a great resource for
material properties, check it out!
For those of you interested in
frequencies higher than microwaves, check out Timbercon's glossary
of fiber optic terms. Currently this site defines over 1,300
items. They have an education section and fiber optic tools as well
if you poke around a bit.
will teach you some semiconductor physics, accompanied by glamour
shots of Britney. It is an interesting combination, and it shouldn't
get you in too much trouble with the Thought Police at work. The
person that created this web site might someday need ankle bracelets,
but not you, you're just learning about semiconductors, right? Thanks
is an excellent on-line content about microwave design, not
a collection of links.
offers some Mathcad tools, and a lot of miscellaneous links to other
people's notes, even some links that aren't broken!
Barry Brown's VNAhelp.com has
some good notes on vector network analyzers bit it's been moved,
you can find it on this
new site, which has eliminated non-Agilent information (October
is run by a couple of ex-Cadence guys. It offers a forum for asking
questions on modeling just about anything to do with integrated
The bad news is that this link
no longer works... the "ELECTRONIC
WARFARE AND RADAR SYSTEMS ENGINEERING HANDBOOK" is available
for your use, courtesy of the US Navy. It has plenty o'stuff of
interest to microwave engineers, and you don't have to be an Old
Crow to appreciate it. Great stuff on radar. Thanks for the
tip, Terry of Oklahoma City! The good news is that we have the document
on its own page now!
is more politically-correct effort than the priceless gem that
is Microwaves101.com. RF Cafe's material is mostly linked from other
sites on the worldwide web, with an extremely busy web page design
that boasts millions of page views. Kirt Blattenberger is the proprietor
of this web site, and we hereby offer to arm wrestle him any day
for a pint of beer, that is, if he is a real person and not a corporate
creation such as Betty
Crocker. RFCafe has a fair number of calculators up there, but
most don't run in Mozilla Firefox, which really sucks because many
of us despise Microsoft Internet Explorer, the proven way to infect
your computer with spyware.
Who The Microwave Man?
Speaking of Mozilla Firefox (the
official browser of Microwaves101), why not download
it right now, for free? Stop supporting Bill Gates, and let
someone else have a turn as the world's richest man!
is the personal web site of Robert Coats, a man with over 50
years experience in microwaves, and a contributor to Microwaves101.com.
Excellent site, great pictures, check it out!!!
Inc. has a calculator that analyzes transistor stability and
maximum gain, and suggests a suitable conjugate L-matching network
for a given load and source impedance of the circuit to which the
transistor will be connected. But it analyzes just one frequency
at a time, and you have to type in the data. They should have done
this as an Excel download. Good luck!
is a free linear analysis program with a GUI interface. Sourceforge.net
claims that ViPEC analyzes lumped elements as well as physical elements
including microstrip and stripline. We haven't had time to try this
out yet. Thanks to Don for sharing this link!
If you are looking for free layout
software, and cheap circuit boards, look
on this page.
Other useful links
Hey, that was a short list! Here's
some other links you might find useful, Mr. Big Microwave Guy:
has a big book of math, yours for free. Recently updated!
A cool site for engineers on
the history of various stuff. http://tingilinde.typepad.com/starstuff/history_of_technology/index.html
The National Institute of Standards
and Technology is the U.S. agency devoted to measurements and standards.
They have a comprehensive listing of physical constants, searchable
Go to the United States Business Partner Network web site http://www.bpn.gov to look up CAGE codes (commercial and government entity) for businesses,
Uncle Sam's way of keeping track of everybody. Search on 3MLV7
to find out more about the company that owns Microwaves101.com...
yes, they've got it right, this is all about REUPHOLSTERY AND FURNITURE
REPAIR! At least they haven't compromised the Unknown
Editor's secret identity.
Check out military
specifications at this site put up by the U.S. D.A.P.S and D.S.P
(the government people who control documents). They call it ASSIST for "acquisition streamlining and standardization information
A very cool history-of-physics
Here's another very cool history
site that has to do with strange technology:
Here's the American Institute
of Physics very cool web
site on the history of physics.
Be like Gilligan and give them
each a Three Hour Tour!
Think you've got a new idea?
Check to see if someone else had it first by looking on the U.S.
Patent Office web site. It seems like every month we get a request
to put a link to someone's patent download site. We have one word
for all of you would-be entrepreneurial parasites: Google.
No one is going to join your web site and get spammed now that they
can download pdfs of patents including images on Google. Game over,
Dudes! Maybe instead you should buy a Carvel
franchise. Fat people always gotta eat!
Want to track an overnight shipment
on any carrier? Check out:
Need an area code?
Need a Zip code?
Those last two links were thanks to Linda.
Like a little light reading?
Most military specs are available here:
(no possible microwave use whatsoever!!!)
Want to learn about music from
the Furry Leader? Check out Matt the Cat's Friday
Night Cat Fight! Vote for your favorite versions of familiar
tunes. Thank for entertaining us all, Matt!
For a great account of how to
get rid of pesky telephone salepeople, check out this web
site! OK, you have to click the flag to translate it to English...
just keep repeating, 'we do not use... (insert product name)".
Here's a link that will tell
you what info web sites such as Microwaves101 can pull from your
browser when you "anonymously" surf our pages: http://www.internetfrog.com/.
You can also check your uplink and downlink speeds and see if you
are getting your money's worth on that new DSL connection!
Remember when Nasa promised us
"faster, cheaper, better" stuff? Here is a Canadian video
about Lockheed's satellites, which are more accurately described
It is possible to generate a
random "corporate-speak" memo using a lava lamp? Click
here and try it out!
Do you hate the "successories"
posters that executives hang in the conference room, with banal
claptrap such as "Success is formed when principles are hammered
and forged on the anvil of excellence?" This stuff makes real
engineers puke. Funny thing, the successories web site has a "clearance
rack" for stuff they produced that was less than successful...
It's good to know that parodies of these posters are available at
For example, "if you want to get to the top, prepare to kiss
a lot at the bottom".
If you work at a big company,
your motto might be "towards man's capacity for maximum effort
to achieve minimal gain". Check out Rube
Like the Unknown Editor, are
you interested in obscure bits of history? How about a book about
the Ninth Air Force? Many books describe the Eight Air Force strategic
bombing runs, the Ninth was the tactical air command that supported
our troops on the ground using Mustangs, Marauders, Lightnings and
Black Widows! Check out well-known travel author Harry A. Franck's
long-lost book describing his Winter
Journey following the U. S. airmen as they pounded the crap
out of Nazi Germany in 1945!
89.3 FM North Texas radio's web site has some awesome Texas
R&B, Texas blues and Texas dancehall music that you can download
for free, or you can connect to their internet radio station! Be
a sport and pledge a few bucks to buy one of their CDs. Power to
KNON's White House