Digital Signal Processing (DSP) company Pentek has announced the latest addition to its Cobalt family of Xilinx Virtex-6 FPGA (field programmable gate array) boards, the Model 71662 four channel, 200 MHz, 16-bit data acquisition board with built-in digital down converters (DDCs).
With an input bandwidth from 300 kHz to 700 MHz, the board is suitable for direct connection to IF or RF ports of communications, unmanned autonomous vehicle (UAV), and radar systems for real-time DSP tasks such as demodulation and decoding.
Together with Pentek's ReadyFlow board support package, with its built-in command-line interface and signal viewer, the Model 71662 forms what the company says is a "complete solution" for data acquisition, processing, and analysis.
"With 32 channels of multiband DDC, the Model 71662 represents the highest channel count product in our Cobalt family. This is perfect for communication applications where a multitude of channels need to be intercepted and received in parallel," said Rodger Hosking, vice president of Pentek. "In addition to the on-board resources, Pentek provides the components that enable customers to easily build, customize, and integrate their own system application. GateFlow enables custom FPGA IP (intellectual property) development, and the ReadyFlow board support libraries and command-line interface allow engineers to quickly get up and running," he added.
Four 512 MB DDR3 SDRAM memory banks, one for each IP module, can buffer data in a FIFO mode or store data in a transient capture mode. All memory banks have DMA engines for streaming data at up to 1600 MB/second through the PCIe interface to off-board storage or additional processing. To simplify post-acquisition analysis of multi-channel data, the DMA engines can automatically construct meta-data packets that contain information such as channel ID, a sample-accurate time stamp, and data length.
"The combination of input channel selection, independent decimation controls, and channel bandwidth controls allows quick configuration of the Model 71662 for a wide variety of applications," said Bob Sgandurra, product manager for Pentek. He added, "In communications monitoring, for instance, the board can be set to continuously examine wide spectral bands for signals of interest on some channels, and use other channels to zoom in on a detected signal for a detailed narrowband view. The 71662's internal timing bus further expands the module's applicability by supporting the synchronization of multiple modules for even wider channel counts."