D/A converter module with onboard FPGA introduced by Pentek for radar signal processing

UPPER SADDLE RIVER, N.J., 1 March 2012. Pentek Inc. in Upper Saddle River, N.J., is introducing the Cobalt model 71670 digital-to-analog converter (D/A) converter with on-board Xilinx Virtex-6 field-programmable gate array (FPGA) for synchronous beamforming radar and multichannel transceiver systems.

The Cobalt 71670 D/A converter module for RF and IF waveform playback in radar signal processing systems delivers four independent analog outputs each through its own digital upconverter and 16-bit D/A with sampling rates to 1.25 GHz. The FPGA has factory-installed turnkey waveform playback functionality for output signal bandwidths to 250 MHz. Users also can customize the module's operation with their own IP. The 71670 D/A module complements Pentek's models 71660 and 71661 four-channel A/D boards.

Channel independence in the Model 71670 for military embedded systems comes from two DAC3484 D/A converters from Texas Instruments (TI), each providing two digital upconverters (DUCs) and 16-bit D/A channels with as much as 16x interpolation that can translate a quadrature (I+Q) signal to a user-selectable IF center frequency.

The model 71670's internal clock generator supports a wide range of timing modes and operates from an on-board programmable VCXO or an external clock. A front-panel connector accepts a 5 or 10 MHz reference clock to phase lock the internal programmable VCXO. The module also accepts a direct D/A sample clock input that can be as high as 1.25 GHz.

To offer precision timing control in a multi-module design, Pentek has implemented its µSync timing bus in the model 71670. The bus uses current model logic (CML) signaling and includes clock, sync/reset, and gate/trigger signals that keep the operations of several modules sample-synchronized.

Two modules can use the bus in a master/slave relationship to achieve 8-channel synchronization. For higher channel counts, the model 7192 Cobalt Synchronizer can drive numerous modules using a star configuration.

For more information contact Pentek online at www.pentek.com.

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