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White Papers

Bringing Rapid Prototyping In-House

September 17, 2013
What follows is a review of two different ways to build prototype RF/microwave PCBs: through an outside PCB fabrication company and by investing in an in-house PCB milling machine. Hundreds of RF/microwave companies have invested in in-house rapid prototyping machines through a leap of faith in what they might mean to their companies, and have reaped the benefits. More fiscally conservative companies balk at such an investment, until they fully understand how it will impact the bottom line and help the company. The cost of a rapid prototyping machine can be considerable compared to the perceived low overhead cost of an outside PCB fabrication facility, but often overlooked are its advantages in terms of market-readiness, product performance, design flexibility, timing, and innovation.

RF and Microwave Fiber Optic Delay Line Techniques

September 17, 2013
Delay lines are used for developing, qualifying, and calibrating radar systems, radio altimeters, radios, feedforward amplifiers, telemetry and other systems. Traditional RF and microwave delay line technology required long, bulky, electrical transmission lines to delay electrical signals for a precise period of time. Flexible, coaxial cables are commonly used to produce the desired delay. Eastern OptX fiber-optic based systems overcome the disadvantages of the traditional techniques and provide stable broad-band performance in a rugged and compact system.

EDA Software Design Flow Considerations for the RF/Microwave Module Designer

September 17, 2013
Miniaturization of consumer products, aerospace and defense systems, medical devices, and LED arrays has spawned the development of a technology known as the multi-chip module (MCM), which combines multiple integrated circuits (ICs), semiconductors dies, and other discrete components within a unifying substrate for use as a single component.

VNA's High-Speed Architecture Advances Radar Pulse Measurement Timing Resolution and Accuracy

September 17, 2013
This white paper introduces a new VNA platform that takes advantage of a high-speed digitizing architecture to offer the industry's highest level of measurement resolution and timing accuracy. The architecture also capitalizes on deep memory to observe DUT behavior over longer periods of time (without sacrificing resolution) - whether looking for thermal and trapping effects in devices or measuring DUTs with lower pulse repetition frequencies. The white paper will also present how the platform's four independent receiver measurement windows enable reference position control to support various calibration and system timing needs, which may otherwise have masked DUT rise/fall behavior. Finally, it introduces a new pulse measurement user interface that offers real-time parameter modifications for increased confidence in setting up your measurement.

How to Increase Power Amplifier Test Throughput

September 17, 2013
Power amplifier designs for mobile handsets are becoming more complex, which directly impacts test demands and the cost of test. Complexity increases with the introduction of new, wider bandwidth standards and the addition of the number of radios to each device. Business issues, such as pressure on prices of these devices places greater demands on engineering teams producing power amplifiers. Engineers who test mobile power amplifiers and front end modules on the production line are looking for solutions to reduce test cost through maximizing throughput while ensuring that the devices meet required performance levels. This application note provides an overview of the key issues in a power amplifier and front end module test system related to the RF signal analyzer and generator.

Thermal Management of RF and Digital Electronic Assemblies using Optimized Materials and PCB Designs

September 9, 2013
The main objective of this paper is to provide a greater understanding and appreciation of challenges posed in efficient thermal management of electronic assemblies and how to figure out an optimized solution in terms of cost, volume production, product performance and reliability.

Subminiature, Low-power DACs Address High Channel Density Transmitter Systems

September 9, 2013
The volume of broadband data transmitted in cable systems has increased tremendously over the last decade. Since 2003, the number of subscribers to broadband data cable services has increased at a compound annual growth rate approaching 14% [1]. The annual growth rate has since slowed, but recent trend information shows double digit growth in premium, soâ??called "wideband" broadband services.

Spectrum Analyzer Fundamentals-Theory and Operation of Modern Spectrum Analyzers

September 3, 2013
This primer examines the theory of state-of-the-art spectrum analysis and describes how modern spectrum analyzers are designed and how they work. That is followed by a brief characterization of today's signal generators, which are needed as a stimulus when performing amplifier measurements.

50V RF LDMOS - An Ideal RF Power Technology for ISM, Broadcast and Commercial Aerospace Applications

August 14, 2013
This paper describes the basic VHV6 device structure and the enhanced ruggedness variant (EVHV6), including advantages over competing device technologies. Ruggedness expectations and requirements for RF power devices targeting ISM applications are more stringent than for devices designed for less challenging applications like cellular infrastructure. This paper will include device and design considerations that specifically target enhancing ruggedness performance. The features of the products using this platform will also be presented.

Gallium Nitride RF Technology Advances and Applications

August 14, 2013
This paper discusses GaN technology, 200 W packaged device performance, a 2.6-2.7 GHz, 400 W Doherty power amplifier, thermal management, and cost vs. performance. It emphasizes how GaN and LDMOS technology complement each other for RF applications.

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