This article video in Microwaves & RF and has been published here with permission.
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While it's not a brand-spanking-new technology, Direct RF receiver architectures are now coming to the fore in numerous aerospace and defense applications, such as radar and electronic warfare. Direct RF architectures bring a host of advantages. For one, they eliminate the need for a mixer or local oscillator for frequency downconversion. A wideband RF analog-to-digital converter (ADC) digitizes the RF signal directly as opposed to operating on an IF signal of lower frequency, reducing complexity, risk, cost per channel, and, critically, SWaP. At the same time, the architecture boosts performance, latency, and channel density.
Among vendors in the signal-processing space that have embraced Direct RF, Mercury Systems is at the forefront. The company offers Direct RF-based signal chains in the forms of both an RF system-in-package (SiP), exemplified in its RFS1140, and at board level, most recently in its new DRF3182 Direct RF processing module.
In this video, Mercury Systems' Ken Hermanny and Rodger Hosking discuss the company's deployment of DirectRF technology in its signal-processing products for defense and aerospace applications.
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