Eli Brookner lectures on phased arrays

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New for October 2022. Dr. Eli Brookner had a fifty-year career in radar at Uncle Ray's Rest Camp in Massachusetts, with a special focus on very large phased arrays. He is known by tens of thousands of people due to his many lectures on radar topics.   Eli passed away on 29 November 2021, but some of his lectures live on and are available on YouTube.   There would be more videos of Dr. Brookner but perhaps everyone thought he would live forever!  Eli Brookner wrote four books on radar, you can find used copies of them easily.  

You can watch Eli Brookner's funeral service at Westview Cemetery in Lexington MA by clicking here.

Lexington Historical Society, June 25, 2020

Here's a lecture Dr. Brookner did for the Lexington Historical Society.  It is dumbed down a little for the audience. There is a painfully long introduction but Eli gets going around the 14 minute mark with some of his infamous hand sketches.. His slides date back to when "viewgraphs" were projected from  mylar slides on what was called a "overhead projector". Trust us, even PowerPoint is better than that...

How Radar helped win WWII

Radar and Phased Arrays and Einstein's Duality Theory, 7 August 2019

Here's a more technical Eli lecture from 2019.  Some highlights:

  • At 21 minutes he talks about measuring the size of re-entry vehicles using 5 ns pulses, then makes the case for the need for time delay at sub-array level, an often overlooked aspect of phased arrays. He also had a habit of using "Snoopy" images which might be considered a copyright violation, but as far as we know, Charles Shultz' heirs never protested.
  • At 27.5 minutes he gives a really nice tour of the Cobra Dane Radar. It is enormous! Later he gives a tour of Pave Paws, a solid-state radar, where he points out how "empty" the building is because the solid-state electronics are so much smaller than vacuum tube equipment.
  • Around 48 minutes he talks about coupling between elements, introduces the bent dipole element, then shows the infamous fire at the AN/FPS 85 phased array near Eglin AFB,  That array was destroyed in a fire in 1965 when it was first turned on. The story about how that array caught fire has changed over the years, originally Eli taught that it was due to reflections back into the array. In this lecture he claims it was a simple short circuit. In any case, it took years to build a second array and you can bet they did a much better design for fire suppression, perhaps purchasing a pumper truck that could actually reach 100 feet high. If you want a bird's eye view of the radar today, just pull it up on Google maps. It faces south, seemingly keeping an eye on Cuba...

Radar & Phased Arrays & Einstein's Duality Theory -- Update

Phased Arrays, Metamaterials, Stealth, Ultra Wideband, Cognitive Adaptive Adaptivity, MIMO, 5G: Basics and Breakthroughs

Not sure of the date on this lecture, but it is from the same era as the others, and it was a lecture sponsored by IEEE Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society.  If you watch them more than one Brookner lecture you will see a lot of repeated material, but there are certainly some gems of knowledge slipped individually into every Eli lecture.

Eli often used photos from hiis many trips around teh world, fancying himself to be an amateur anthropologist. In his early lectures he sometimes used photos of topless native women, to illustrate concepts such as "dual lobes". In later years he cleaned up that part of his act. In this lecture he includes a photo of someone from Papua, New Guinea, with a nose piercing.  Today's nose rings wearers probably owe New Guinea some gratitude for popularizing the idea. Eli compares that nose piercing to a dipole antenna.

Phased Arrays, Metamaterials, Stealth, Ultra Wideband, Cognitive Adaptive Adaptivity, MIMO, 5G: Basics and Breakthroughs



Author : Unknown Editor