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Industry News / Test and Measurement

RT Logic Launches Wider Bandwidth Real-time RF and IF Channel Simulator

April 13, 2010
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Integral Systems Inc. announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, RT Logic, has more than doubled the bandwidth of its real-time T400CS Channel Simulator from 40 to 85 MHz. The T400CS Channel Simulator generates precise and realistic signals for research and development (R&D) and test activities on communications equipment for satellites, ground stations, UAVs, aircraft, missiles, targets and test range applications. RT Logic also announced substantial price reductions on its 40 MHz bandwidth T400CS systems, which will continue to be available from the company.

The T400CS Channel Simulator creates real-world test signals with absolute attention to the physics of Doppler shift, delay, attenuation, noise, interference and other perturbations, resulting in instrument output that is indiscernible from real-world signals. Fully phase-continuous operation of the T400CS is maintained as a broad range of signal impairments are applied, meaning that the instrument adds precise realism to test signals without introducing data errors. The Channel Simulator does this dynamically based on the complex and often high-velocity relative motion of communications systems nodes.

“Precision RF instrumentation is a key enabler for strong innovation in communication system function, performance and reliability,” said Steve Williams, Signal Instrumentation Business Area Manager at RT Logic. “Our enhanced Channel Simulator, based on RT Logic’s DG5000 High Rate Signal Processor, is the next step in supporting the ongoing dramatic ramp up in communications R&D and test needs.”

Whenever transmitters and receivers are in motion with respect to each other, communications signals flowing between these devices are perturbed by time-varying Carrier and Signal Doppler shift, delay, attenuation, noise and interference. Antenna patterns and pointing, weather, terrain, platform motion, body shielding, multipath and other phenomena dynamically affect communications signals as well. For accurate modeling, design, development and test of such communications systems, these signal variations, either singly or in combination, must be accurately produced in lab and test environments over a wide range of nominal, worst-case and hypothetical conditions.

For example, RT Logic’s Channel Simulator lets an inter-satellite link be accurately tested in the lab with relevant portions of both satellite’s communications systems on a bench, and with uplink and downlink paths routed via cable or at RF through the Channel Simulator. Here, the communications system components may be separated by only a few feet, and are not in motion. Introducing the Channel Simulator between the systems, signals received by each are identical to those that would be received if the satellites were actually on orbit. This test methodology is the same for UAV system test and verification, aircraft systems, missiles, targets – basically any situation where receivers and transmitters are moving.

The Channel Simulator can be seamlessly controlled from Analytical Graphics Inc.’s STK software with access to all the modeling power, visualization and scenario development capacity of STK, along with integrated RT Logic Signal Generator and Spectrum Analyzer control. The Channel Simulator can also be commanded by user programs via TCP/IP socket communications over Ethernet connections, from supplied user interface software, and from user-created spreadsheets.

RT Logic’s new 85 MHz T400CS Channel Simulator is available now at 266 MHz IF, L-band and/or S-band with 120-day delivery.


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