Wideband 3 GHz to 8 GHz mixer boosts upconversion performance

Wideband 3 GHz to 8 GHz mixer boosts upconversion performance

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By eeNews Europe

The LTC5576 enhances microwave transmitter and upconversion performance with its exceptional linearity of 25 dBm OIP3 and outstanding conversion loss of only 2 dB at 8 GHz, providing superior output signal quality compared to alternative passive mixers, which typically have 8 dB of loss. Additionally the LO input’s integrated buffer needs only a 0 dBm level drive, effectively eliminating an external amplifier circuit. Other specifications include conversion gain of -0.6 dB, noise floor of -154 dBm/Hz, and LO input level 0 dBm.

The mixer employs a unique integrated RF balun transformer design to extend output frequency bandwidth while enabling single-ended operation from 3 GHz to 8 GHz. Its IF input also has wide bandwidth, and is continuous 50Ω differential matched from 30 MHz to over 3 GHz. With a proper external balun transformer, the upper range can be extended to over 6 GHz.

The LTC5576 employs an active double balanced mixer core with excellent port-to-port isolation. For example, at 5.8 GHz frequency and 0 dBm LO input, the LO leakage at its RF output measures an exceptionally low -35 dBm. This low leakage level helps minimize external filtering in order to meet regulatory out-of-band emission requirements. Even at 8 GHz, its LO leakage stands out at -27 dBm.

The extended frequency capability of mixer addresses a wide range of applications such as short-range microwave backhauls, 5.8 GHz cellular base stations and wireless repeaters. In addition, its dynamic range supports the performance requirements of wireless test equipment, radar receivers and satellite communications.

The LTC5576 is more rugged than other integrated microwave mixers with its improved ESD rating of 2500 V human body model (HBM) on all pins. It is housed in a 16-lead, 4mm x 4mm QFN package and features a minimal external component design.

The device is rated for operation from -40°C to 105°C case temperature to support extended environmental operating temperature. The mixer is optimized for single 5-V supply operation, with a nominal supply current of 99 mA. Its power consumption can be reduced by powering from a 3.3-V supply, with slightly reduced performance. Additionally, the LTC5576 has an enable pin to disable the IC, which when deactivated, draws only 1.3 mA typical standby current. This enable pin can be used to turn the device on and off rapidly in less than 0.6 µs, supporting time-division duplex (TDD) or burst-mode type radios.

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