RF and microwave technology is evolving towards higher bandwidths and lower DC power consumption. This results in more and more demanding design specifications. However, the mainstream microwave theory, is still mainly limited to narrow bandwidths linear system theory and fixed impedance levels during design. These hypothesis are less strongly enforced than they were before, and this calls for a way to check the sensitivity of the design on a departure of these assumptions under realistic operation conditions. It is especially useful for a designer who is tuning a design to be able to quantify the non-linear distortions as a function of the signal bandwidth and the
Design a practical measurement test-bed for gently non-linear systems operating under a fixed impedance setting that are operated under a wide band ( > 200 MHz) excitation.
The hart of the setup consists of a (modified) PNA-X network analyzer and an arbitrary waveform generator that has a baseband bandwidth of 4 GS/s. The idea is to extract a two-port best linear approximation of the nonlinear circuit. To fix the operating point of the device, one needs to fix both the impedance seen by the device and the power spectrum of the exciting signals. A random phase multisine signal is used to mimic practical operation conditions.
The linearized dynamics and the nonlinear perturbation of the system are then measured and the measurements are calibrated to fully characterize the system. The measurements are verified using additional test signals and are cross-verified with simulations.
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