TMD Technologies has significantly upgraded its PTX8400 microwave power module (MPM) for X-Band radar. The "next generation" model incorporates a number of enhancements compared to the earlier version, which was specifically developed for radar applications two years ago.

The new features confirm the 1 kW PTX8400 as an ideal power module for high performance radar applications where space and weight are especially critical, such as in unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) and helicopter platforms.

The main enhancement is that the unit now uses a TMD ring loop travelling wave tube (TWT), which has a higher gain per unit length than a comparable helix style TWT, thus allowing additional internal space for future higher duty (10 percent) variants. The ring loop structure also offers a flatter bandpass characteristic and lower harmonics, both of which have reduced its noise performance.

The new PTX8400 has a high electrical efficiency and therefore low prime power consumption, operating from 28 VDC, and very low phase noise, which is essential for demanding radar applications. The duty ratio is 5 percent, with growth potential to 10 percent established. The module also has improved built-in test electronics (BITE), which now incorporate an integrated visual display to check the health of the unit at any time.