Microwave System Design Tools and EW Applications

Electronic warfare (EW) system design involves both analog and digital electronics often operating across broad bandwidths, including millimeter- wave and optical frequencies. Design of the RF and microwave portions of these systems involves a strong understanding of how individual components perform and how they interact as part of analog signal-processing chains. Peter East's Microwave System Design Tools and EW Applications provides an excellent introduction to EW system design, starting at the component level and working through advanced signal chains. Previously available only as a CD-ROM, the electronic-warfare (EW) and microwave design resource has been transformed into a fully integrated tool with a wealth of practical design and analysis tools and guidance. The author, formerly a design authority on EW and radar systems at Racal Radar Defence Systems, now runs a private consulting practice specializing in microwave and EW systems.

This is not just a well-written text but a collection of related software tools meant to be used in companion with the book. A CD-ROM loaded with Java-based software design tools, which allow users to simulate system performance, accompanies the 229-page book. Users can change input parameters and quickly learn the effects of their changes on the performance, for example, of a wideband receiver. The CD-ROM contains 45 Java graphical applets capable of calculating accurate design performance data. The applets build upon topics covered in the book, but can also be used as stand-alone design tools.

The applets allow a wide range of design parameters to be quickly and easily changed so that included examples can be adapted to provide practical solutions for working design problems. The results from these graphical applets are available in near real time (depending upon the processing power of the user's computer), with only a moderate investment in training to use the tools. The object-oriented Java code is compiled as machine-independent byte code, so that the applets can run within a Web browser on different operating systems, including Microsoft Windows, UNIX, LINUX, and Apple Macintosh platforms.

The book's nine chapters include an introduction on using applets for microwave system modeling, coverage of basic RF circuit design, including noise-figure calculations, essential design requirements for transmission lines, and the theory of cascading stages in a microwave system. These fundamental issues are expanded further in Chapter 3, which examines the typical components found in an RF/microwave system, such as filters, couplers, and mixers, and how they interact as part of an analog signal-processing chain. This chapter also highlights design and performance limitations of some of these components. Chapter 4 delves into antennas, with applets devoted to the design of parabolic reflector antennas and two-dimensional array antennas. An additional antenna applet can be used to calculate the near-field performance of large-aperture antennas.

Amplifiers are introduced in Chapter 5, with coverage of dynamic range and the effects of intermodulation on amplifier performance. An applet allows calculation of intermodulation products to the seventh order, and illustrates the dependence of amplifier dynamic range and intermodulation performance on the amplifier's transfer characteristics and signal drive levels. This chapter also details limiting amplifiers and how they can be used for system noise suppression, and logarithmic amplifiers and how they can be used to boost system dynamic range. The included applet helps readers understand the effects of nonlinear amplifier behavior and what happens to signals and noise in an amplifier's limiting region, with treatment of noise in terms of its in-phase (I) and quadrature (Q) components. This chapter also covers the design of RF and video compression amplifiers for extending dynamic-range performance.

The book's final four chapters include coverage of signal-detection techniques in Chapter 6, a comparison of different microwave receiver types in Chapter 7, EW measurement techniques in Chapter 8, and signal propagation in Chapter 9. The applet that accompanies the text of Chapter 7 compares the sensitivity of a wide range of different microwave receivers, including wideband RF detector video receivers, digital Fast Fourier Transform (FFT) receivers, and compressivetype receivers. The digital receiver applets allow users to demonstrate the effects of a wide range of variables, including analog-to-digital-converter (ADC) linearity, clock jitter, and time offset for a wide range of signal types, including simple pulsed signals, signals with frequency modulation on a pulse (FMOP), and with pulse modulation on a pulse (PMOP).

In addition to the applets, the CD-ROM contains a graphical user interface (GUI) with links to select and run the applets. One of the book's appendices also contains operating instructions for the CD-ROM and guidance for running the applets. Artech House, 685 Canton St., Norwood, MA 02062 (781) 769-9750, Fax: (781) 769-6334, Internet: www.artechhouse.com.

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