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Echotek Series Enhancements Support Open Standards

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Mercury Computer Systems
: 21 May, 2010  (New Product)
Improvements in Electronic Warfare applications result from Echotek series meeting open industry standards for signal processing
Mercury Computer Systems has announced the latest round of enhancements for Electronic warfare (EW) applications in the form of three new components for its Echotek Series product line, designed according to the VME, VXS, and XMC open industry standards.

Now available are (1) a dual-channel wideband microwave tuner, highly attractive to new EW programs based upon its ability to tune faster than any receiver in the industry; (2) an 8-channel 6U VME or VXS digital receiver; and (3) a small form factor, multi-channel digital receiver. Integrated into a system with powerful downstream processing power, these innovations unleash new capabilities such as fast and sophisticated direction finding.

“We can now enable large coherent channel count systems: 2, 4, 8, 16, 24, and beyond. This includes precise synchronization across multiple channels of Gbaud streaming data after digitization,” said Marc Couture, Director of Application Engineering at Mercury. “Over and above that functionality, we provide the infrastructure for the analog/digital application data flow from tuner to network.”

In current wartime conflicts, EW applications often must detect, tune to, and locate an RF transmission in an extremely brief period of time. This technical challenge is compounded by the need to rapidly develop and deploy new application capabilities, sometimes on small platforms operating in harsh environments. Mercury helps address these challenges by continuing to develop innovative technologies, then integrating them together across the signal processing chain to create powerful, effective solutions.

One of Mercury’s innovative new products, the RFM-1802 6U VME module, operates in the signal acquisition portion of this processing chain. Combining channel density with ultra-fast tuning speed and low phase noise, it is the most powerful wideband microwave tuner available on the market. A single channel of the RFM-1802 views a very wide instantaneous bandwidth over an even larger frequency range. This window can be shifted, or retuned, in a nearly instantaneous manner, allowing systems to track sophisticated, modern-day waveforms.

The RFM-1802 is complemented by a new 8-channel option added to Mercury’s DCM-V5-VXS and DCM-V5-VME Virtex-5 based digital receivers. This family of digital receivers offers the ideal set of A/Ds for sampling the available IF outputs of the RFM-1802, and it includes the necessary FPGA resources for implementing application-specific signal processing functions.

Also new is the DCM-V6-XMC digital receiver, implementing a flexible Virtex-6 FPGA-based architecture in a space-efficient mezzanine card form factor. This small, open-standard component delivers great channel density when integrated with VXS or OpenVPX carriers such as Mercury’s Ensemble Series HCD5220 or HCD6220.
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