Every once in a while I find myself excited by seemingly “unexciting” experiences. In my case I have had a ample amount of time to think about what “could have been” had I dedicated more time to study at an early age. I always enjoyed science, physics and electrical theory. At odds with those interests was my lack of proficiency with higher math. I took three years of Algebra, Geometry, Trig and Composite math in High School but something was missing during those years. I wasnt very good at Math. All of that considered, I kept up with my interest in electronics and radio in general and through that interest made a nice living for my family. Which brings me to the subject of todays posting.
I am assuming that because you are reading this you are mildly interested in E&M. Electricity and Magnetism. The stuff of Radio Waves. In my case I concern myself with seemingly inexplicable things like why do capacitors and inductors not radiate? Why does a patch antenna radiate? Where does noise come from? How does common mode noise get morphed into differential signals and become noise in my receiver? How come my transmitter interferes with my tv or stereo? How do I mitigate all of this?
Several months ago a fellow ham introduced me to a wonderful resource that is in fact free. The resource is called Open Courseware at MIT. Specifically, he suggested I go through a video course called Physics 802 to better understand E&M. I am doing this now and I have to say that this is not just any college course. Professor Lewin is extraordinary. It is free. I would encourage anyone, even if you are only mildly interested in how things work, dive in for a few sessions. Once viewed you will be hooked and it is not a major investment in time. Set aside 45 minutes once an evening say, once per week, and watch. If you are interested in anything to do with radio you will be fascinated.
Professor Lewin’s course can be found here: Physics 802
I would also encourage you to view the intro before starting. Capture his goals and see if he manages to succeed. I believe you will agree that he does.
Thanks for reading. Best, Chas W7MAP/5