How to Select the Best ADC for Radar Phased Array Applications - Part 2

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  • Author: Benjamin Annino

Many papers discuss the system trade-offs and relative merits of digital vs. RF beamforming, and the hybrid blend thereof.1 Building on prior work, this article uses RF-to-ADC cascade modeling to show dynamic range (linearity and noise)and sample rate trade-offs against DC power consumption in a multichannel-system with varying channel summation in both the RF and digital realms. The optimal selection of sample rate, ADC ENOB, and RF vs. digital channel combining is weighed against DC power consumption. The popular Schreier and Walden ADC figures of merit (FOMs) are proposed as extensible to a multichannel system to express a single system FOM portraying optimal dynamic range normalized for DC power expense. The article has two parts. “How to Select the Best ADC for Radar Phased Array Applications—Part 1” explains the method of modeling the system, and Part 2 analyzes the results and draws conclusions from system FOM.

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