Design and Layout of Planar RF Front Ends for X/Ku Band Phased Array Radars

Integrated beam-former ICs (BFICSs) are making it easier to design planar RF front ends for phased array radar systems. The appeal of a design where RF electronics and patch antennas are located on opposite sides of the same PCB is obvious. While BFICs and integrated TR modules can ease layout challenges, the task is still far from trivial due to the physical bounds imposed by the lattice spacing of lambda over two. On the simulation side, large element counts challenge traditional approaches and require improved speed and accuracy of modeling.

Using real-world design and simulation examples, this webcast will focus on challenges such as RF amplifier biasing and sequencing, circuit layout, thermal management, power management, part-to-part performance variations and calibration. The webcast will also highlight how Analog Devices’ hardware and Keysight’s Pathwave design software can simplify and de-risk the prototyping process.

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Joel Dobler is a staff product applications engineer in the Aerospace and Defense Group, focusing on beamformer products, but also supporting vector modulators and programmable low-pass filters. He has worked for Analog Devices since 2006, supporting a wide range of RF products including logarithmic and rms detectors, digital and analog variable gain amplifiers, mixers, and IQ demodulators. He received his B.S.E.E. from Washington State University in 2005 and his M.E.E.E from Portland State University in 2007.

Weston Sapia is a senior RF applications engineer at Analog Devices in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Originally, he worked at Linear Technology Corporation covering all the RF mixer products. Since becoming part of ADI, he’s mostly worked with upcoming millimeter wave imaging products. Weston graduated from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering. There, his focus was on analog and RF.