This article presents the concept and methodology for the realization of an automatic test procedure based on LabVIEW for RF characterisation of a C-band rotary field phase shifter. Using this software, all the characteristics of a phase shifter intended for phased array application, such as differential phase shift, insertion loss, return loss, rms phase error, insertion phase etc, are measured and displayed graphically.
The growth in mobile broadband services is driving a sea change in the technologies employed to build and operate mobile networks. In particular, the introduction of all-IP transport promises to replace traditional time division multiplexed (TDM) networks to provide network scalability and lower operational costs. To support this network evolution, a new class of licensed microwave backhaul solutions has been introduced to the market, known variously as Packet All-IP or Next Generation radios.
The sudden increase in data traffi c volumes, courtesy smart devices like the iPhone, have made it diffi cult for operators to keep a lid on network costs while they try and keep up with incessantly exploding mobile data demand from burgeoning smart devices, applications, and changing user behavior.
To meet growing subscriber demand, mobile operators are forced to add network capacity to enable the delivery of bandwidth-intensive data services. Nowhere are these challenges felt more acutely than in the backhaul network. As operators migrate to all-Ethernet/IP backhaul networks, fiber backhaul can provide the required capacity and beyond, wherever it is deployed; however, the fiber reach is often limited and deploying new fiber links is often prohibitively expensive. Copper has limited capacity and reach, and “traditional” microwave links suffer from spectrum congestion and limited channel sizes. Therefore, current packet-based transport networks fall short in meeting the ever increasing backhaul demands. Operators who rely on wireless backhaul are turning to new frequency bands to provide this capacity while reducing costs. The newly-allocated E-Band spectrum (71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz) – has many clear technological and economic advantages.
This paper addresses the challenges of working with semiconductor memory-effects when designing high-frequency power amplifiers. The paper presents a discussion of what memory-effects are, how they impact amplifier performance, and how to characterize memory-effects using X-parameters in order to achieve optimum amplifier performance.
In RF systems, switches are as common as amplifiers, mixers, and PLLs. While many technologies yield good active RF devices, few yield good RF switches. Superior switches are available in Peregrine’s UltraCMOS™ process technology.
You can’t build a house without blueprints. So why do so many RF design flows try to build a board without a schematic? Often, this crude process came about due to lack of availability of RF design tools. But the wireless industry is the new cool kid on the block. As a result, EDA software vendors are scrambling to disencumber the rigid PCB world of tailored processes and streamlined user flows. RF engineers demand freedom from constraints, so EDA vendors are peeling back the layers of traditional PCB design and opening some excellent solutions. But with these solutions, RF engineers are challenged to rethink their request for primitive simplicity and consider a higher level process.
Conventional analog RF transceiver implementations have many performance limitations that include RF frequency dependency, non-linearities, high insertion losses, circuit tuning requirements and expensive inter-connections that ultimately bound the performance of the complete earth terminal. These limitations are greatly multiplied when operational scenarios call for multiple frequency bands, multiple beams and multiple channel configurations. These analog RF channel designs are highly frequency dependent and not optimized for an OSA. As a result, multi-band SATCOM terminals are often found to be complex and costly. An all-digital RF implementation can potentially solve these problems as it can provide a highly linear digital RF signal distribution system and can provide multiple band, frequency and channel operation within a single integrated product.
VNAs have been the workhorse of microwave measurements for many years. They provide the ability to measure S parameters of active and passive devices and systems. When measuring active devices, these measurements are made on small signal devices where gain is linear. When measuring small signal amplifiers, the linear VectorStar VNA provides many built-in functions to thoroughly analyze these active devices. Applications such as built-in programmable power sweeps for gain compression analysis at multiple frequency points, IMD measurements, harmonic measurements, characterization down to 70 kHz to evaluate memory effects, etc., are all available in the VectorStar VNA. Table 1 provides a brief overview of the capabilities of the MS4640A family of VectorStar VNAs.