Many arriving on Sunday and Monday to the 2018 IEEE IMS in Philadelphia, Pa., are anticipating a bustling exhibition floor with a large sample of the many components, systems, software, and test instruments currently available in the RF/microwave industry. For those traveling to the Pennsylvania Convention Center for the start of the 2018 IEEE IMS exhibition on Tuesday, June 12, it’s often a chance to see equipment under actual operating conditions, since many of the exhibitors hook up their products to test equipment, such as power meters, that can show some of the performance levels.
In contrast to the tube amplifiers on display at the 2018 IMS Historical Exhibition, Empower RF Systems will be showing live demonstrations of its high-power solid-state amplifiers at Booth 1048, with a modern twist: These amplfiiers will be equipped with Internet of Things (IoT) interfaces, allowing anyone with the proper credentials and a cellphone to remotely change the settings, such as the gain and the output power, on one of these amplifiers. Visitors to the booth will be invited to try their hand at the remote IoT control.
Visitors to Empower RF Systems at IMS Exhibition booth 1048 can see power amplifiers being operated by wireless remote control, with an iPad as the controller for operating modes and amplifier diagnostics. (Courtesy of Empower RF Systems)
Empower is fairly well known for its high-power amplifiers, for both CW and pulsed applications, in systems ranging from communications to pulsed radar. For example, the firm will put the spotlight on many of its full-sized rack-mountable amplifiers (5U-high units with 1 kW output power from 1 to 3 GHz) in addition to a variety of compact RF power modules. These modules combine high-power amplifier circuitry with dual-directional couplers and instrument-grade power metering in a single miniature package.
The firm also will show off its system software in some of the in-booth demonstrations, including functions such as automatic gain control (AGC), automatic level control (ALC), manual gain control (MGC), selectable operating modes (optimized for CW, or AM, or FM, for example), and gated pulse operation. Visitors are invited to booth 1048 to watch not only how these amplifiers are controlled using an iPad and changed from one operating mode to another, but how full amplifier network diagnostics are performed on the iPad with the Empower diagnostic software. It’s a demonstration of amplifier performance at the same time as the capabilities of a wireless remote-control system.