Dual channel analogue RF tuner for communications and radar

Paul Boughton

Pentek has launched a dual channel analogue RF tuner with a wide RF signal tuning range up to 4 GHz and RF input levels as low as -60dBm for high performance communications and radar systems.

The Model 7120 is the newest member of the Bandit family of RF modules and  accepts RF signals over the range of 400MHz to 4GHz, amplifying, filtering and downconverting them to an IF signal suitable for A/D conversion by any of several Pentek signal acquisition modules. The Model 7120 is packaged in a shielded PMC/XMC module with front panel connections for easy integration into RF systems without the use of an external tuner.

“The 7120 is a powerful addition to the existing Bandit RF tuner product line. With wider RF input signal frequency coverage, wider IF output bandwidths, improved noise figure and higher channel density, Pentek offers customers a new solution to their system requirements at an affordable price,” said Paul Mesibov, chief technical officer at Pentek.

The 7120 accepts RF signals on two front panel SSMC connectors and low noise amplifiers are provided along with two programmable attenuators allowing downconversion of input signals ranging from -60dBm to -20dBm in steps of 0.5dB. The Model 7120 input frequency is programmable across the 400 to 4000MHz band with a tuning resolution of less than 100KHz.

An optional five-stage lowpass or bandpass input filter can be specified with several available frequency and attenuation characteristics for RF image rejection and harmonic suppression.

The Model 7120 includes a programmable low noise LO frequency synthesizer. It accepts a 10 MHz reference from either a front panel reference input, or from or an on-board 10 MHz oven controlled crystal oscillator, which provides an exceptionally precise frequency standard with excellent phase noise characteristics.

Output is provided as baseband I and Q at bandwidths up to 390 MHz. Alternatively, either the I or Q output can be used as a real IF output signal. User provided output IF filters support custom output bandwidths for specific application requirements. Because of the gain, filtering and translation provided by the 7120, the output is well-matched to the A/D inputs of high-performance FPGA-based signal acquisition products from Pentek, including the popular Cobalt and Onyx families.

The Model 7120 is a shielded PMC/XMC form factor module designed to be integrated on a host carrier for power. The module features a MicroUSB port for programming the input tuning frequencies, gain and reference clock selection. Pentek’s ReadyFlow board support package includes the necessary programming support for the Model 7120.

The Model 7120 PMC/XMC module is designed for air-cooled, conduction-cooled and rugged operating environments. It is available as a 3U/6U Compact PCI (Models 7220/7320/7420), 3U VPX (Model 5220), PCIe (Model 7820) and AMC (Model 5620). It starts at $4,995 and oscillator and connector options for PMC or XMC are available.

For more information, visit www.pentek.com