Building a Microwave Frequency Synthesizer—Part 2: Component Selection

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  • Author: Alexander Chenakin
As discussed in the previous article, a frequency synthesizer can be thought of as a black box containing various components (e.g., oscillators, phase detectors, frequency dividers, multipliers, mixers, amplifiers, etc.), which being properly connected, translate an input reference signal to a number of output frequencies. The synthesizer implementation as well as its ultimate performance depends heavily on characteristics of the individual components used in the design. Although there is no set definition for the term “components” (they can be actually complex conectorized modules), in this article we will mostly refer them as surface-mount parts, which can be placed on a printed circuit board. The characteristics and behavior of the main synthesizer parts are reviewed from the perspective of their use in practical synthesizer designs.