01-20-2020 10:12 PM
That is some very clean work. It reminds of way back when, when I worked on very high powered radar installations. Actually, the proper term would be LIDAR, as the systems were laser based. But, we did have a radio signal based system to use as a standard reference. [ to the lay people, this means is the new tech stuff actually working like the old tech stuff ]
I used to work on some VERY high powered radar systems that could reach out to low Earth orbit, These main output stages of these systems used vacuum tubes the size of basketballs, which were water cooled inside of vessels that resembled water heaters.
I wish I had photos of this stuff, but all of it was highly classified technology, so I cannot give you any dates when this stuff was actually in service. It is safe to say, though, Tektronix space heaters ruled!
01-21-2020 08:19 AM
High power RF gear is very interesting. I took my daughter to visit Fermi lab when she was 10 and we got the inside tour of the ring from a friend who works there. The RF generators use tubes that were shipped in refrigerator sized packing crates. She told me later that was far better than any of her school field trips.
The big Tektronix tube type scopes really do generate some heat. I restored a Type 555 which is a true dual beam scope with twin gun assemblies in the CRT. It and its external power supply each have their own large cooling fans and reside on their official Tektronix Scope Mobile cart. I believe that it draws close to 15 amps in operation. Although it still works perfectly, not surprisingly since Tektronix design and construction quality are both works of art, I primarily use a pair of slightly newer solid state Tektronix 7854 scopes on the bench. They are hybrids providing both standard analog operation along with a digitizer with both recursive and one shot capture allowing waveform analysis and storage. The Tektronix high voltage probe in the last photo allows safe measurements of waveforms up to 40,000 volts and keeps the operator at a safe distance from the measurement point.
And for anyone who complains that it can be tedious dialing in a Canon lens with the micro focus adjustment, they should try aligning the delay line on a vintage Tektronix scope. These delay lines consist of a large series of adjustable inductor/capacitor pairs and provide a very slight delay between the trigger pickoff point and the distributed vertical amplifier so that the scope can display the actual event that triggered the timebase. The trick is providing this slight delay without altering the original waveform and proper alignment usually requires at least 5 complete trips through the entire line; the adjustment holes for the delay line are visible in the interior shot and reside in the L shaped covers around the outside area of the scope frame. Since it is a true dual beam scope it has a separate delay line for each channel so there is a duplicate on the other side of the scope providing for twice the "fun" during calibration