Synthesizer Vector Receiver

The Synthesizer Vector Receiver (SVR) is a spezial network analyser that has been developed for microwave plasma excitation and characterisation. The instrument has one PLL-based microwave source and two integrated measurement vector receiver. It is a peripheral computer device with the intended main application in one-port network analysis using an external measurement bridge. Measurement data can be used for documentation and characterization (*.s1p-file) or it can be used for customers loop control input in special application or processes. Furthermore, the device is able to operate without a computer in standalone configuration, because all intelligence (system correction, etc.) is embedded into the SVR firmware.

The gadget is not just an analyser, it is cause of it's open software architecture a universal instrument with full access to it's hardware. Customers implementation are just limited by C-programming language.


Possible Application (in order of complexity): 

  • a simple generator with frequency and level control, without the annoying automatic RF-disable during frequency change like most of all generators.
  • a microwave energy source to make plasma excitation and process control very stable and reliable
  • measurement of reflection coefficient and transferred energy at reference plan  
  • frequency and level control loop to obtain defined values in microwave processes
  • costumers applications - no limits thru Open Source 


Application Examples:

  • stimulation of microwave plasmas (plasma jets, plasma lamps)
  • real-time resonator de-embedding to gather true power and impedance (plasma excitation)
  • reflexion measurement in front of a tuner to look through it, calculate absorbed energy and impedance
  • amplifier measurement with involved DC consumption (analog input) to see real-time gain and in parallel efficiency during tune bias or elements
  • Microwave Heating


Calibration Procedure / Information:

  • SOL: 3 steps
  1. Short,
  2. Open,
  3. Load (= powermeter + attenuator)
  • uses table based definitions of standards. Any equivalent circuit implementable.
  • absolute power level correlation by mini-circuits powermeter PWR-4GHS (accessory). After calibration, power level will be determined by receivers.
  • Calculation of error terms by GUI-program on external computer. Linear equation calculation powered by GNU Scientific Library (GSL).
  • Transfer of error terms to non-volatile memory of SVR, where system correction takes place.


Core Properties:

  • frequency range: 1.5-2.7 GHz
  • power level -25..+10 dBm
  • implemented correction algorithm (table based like common analysers)
  • standalone operational, includes all intelligence
  • firmware nearly complete open source
  • analog/digital/USB/JTAG interface
  • SCILAB-Interface on windows and Qt-GUI on Linux.
  • Windows version (based on Qt-Creator/MinGW)
Instruments block diagram