Digital Receiver Technology for High-Speed Near-field Antenna Measurements
Authors: David S. Fooshe, Dan Slater
High-speed receivers for near-field antenna and RCS measurements have traditionally been one-of-a-kind, expensive, difficult to interface and lacking in software support. Advances in digital signal processing, computer technology and software development now provide the means to economically solve these problems. NSI offers a high speed receiver subsystem, the Panther 6000 series, that allows multiplexed beam and frequency measurements at a rate of 80,000 independent amplitude and phase measurement points per second. The Panther 6000 receiver directly digitizes the 20 MHz IF test and reference input channels, and includes a high speed beam controller (HSBC) to sequence the measurement process. The HSBC receives an input trigger to initiate a measurement sequence of user-defined frequencies and beam or pol states.
NSI also offers a multi-channel all-digital receiver subsystem, the Panther 6500, to interface directly with Digital Beam Forming (DBF) antennas. The Panther 6500 allows up to 16 channels of I and Q digital input (16 bits each) with 90 dB dynamic range per channel. The alldigital DBF receiver reduces the cost, complexity and performance limitations associated with conventional instrumentation in DBF antenna measurement applications.
All Panther series receivers are fully integrated with the NSI97 antenna measurement software and operate with existing microwave sources, mixers and IF distribution equipment.