Tyco Electronics has announced the M/A-COM TU-6401, a lightweight low power SIGINT microwave tuner designed for signal search and collection applications. The tuner provides simultaneous narrowband and wideband IF (intermediate frequency) outputs centered at 160 MHz (100 MHz bandwidth) and 1 GHz (500 MHz bandwidth). The tuner's frequency range operates from 0.5 to 18 GHz and features a RF down converter which is integrated with a direct digital synthesizer to uncouple tuning speed from phase noise, creating what is claimed to be the fastest high performance tuner on the market today.
Because of its built-in local oscillator distribution system, the TU-6401 tuner can be used in beam forming and direction finding systems, as well as in a wide range of other electronic signals intelligence and electronic warfare applications.
The TU-6401 is housed in a two-slot 6U VME package, weighing less than 3.2 kg. The intermediate frequency and log video outputs are suitable for direct input into an external analog-to-digital converter for special signal processing, spectral analysis and pulse parameterization. The tuner's noise figure is rated less than 15 dB (less than 12 dB typical). Sweep speed over the 0.5 to 18 GHz tuning range per 500 MHz steps is less than 100 µs and F1 to F2 step tune speed is less than 5 µs for any step size.
Also designed for single and multi-channel (frequency and amplitude coherent) systems, the TU-6401 tuner contains an on-board FPGA (field programmable gate array), which allows custom operating parameters that can be modified to mission requirements.
Data sheets and supporting technical documents are available online at http://www.macom.com/sigint.