Save Time Designing Low Latency, High Precision Signal Chains

Save Time Designing Low Latency, High Precision Signal Chains

There is an ever-growing demand for faster access to insights. In electronic Instruments those insights can be derived from AC and DC analysis or in some cases a combination of both. The combination of precision performance at speed or over a wide bandwidth is what is required to deliver those insights.

In analog electronics, high speed and high precision are in opposition to each other, so it is far more difficult to combine both attributes in a single system.

Now ADI has created a set of signal chain designs which achieve just this: as much as 15MSPS on the input side and 33Mupdates/s on the output – with up to 18-bit precision and ultra-low noise.

The Precision Wide Bandwidth Signal Chains provide engineers with a ready-made starting point for designs which require both low latency and high precision. They have flexibility built-in: component choices can be tweaked to optimize for noise and bandwidth, for low power, or for density. This reflects the diversity of applications in which wide bandwidth precision signal chains are deployed. For instance, optimum quality images for advanced diagnostics call for speed and low noise in medical imaging equipment such as a scanning electron microscope (SEM) or computed tomography (CT) machines.

Equally, automotive system designers using hardware-in-the-loop testing techniques need wide bandwidth precision inputs and outputs to emulate as close to real time performance as possible.

All the precision wide bandwidth signal chains are backed by a rich ecosystem of resources, from simulation and design tools and wizards, to sample board layouts, to detailed technical guidance in the form of application notes, videos, articles and webinars.

Fast track to an optimized component selection

ADI can offer curated complete signal chain solutions for wide bandwidth precision applications because it draws on a broad portfolio of high-performance components which offer a variety of optimization options. One such option focuses on density combined with wide bandwidth and low latency, for which ADI provides a complete signal chain solution.

On the measurement side, the selection is anchored around an integrated data acquisition device, the ADAQ23878, a µModule product which combines an ADC and its driver in a single package. The ADAQ23878 combines speed and precision: 18-bit resolution at a sampling rate of 15MSPS.

On the output drive side, this signal chain is anchored by the AD3552R, a 16-bit DAC which features an output data rate of 33Mupdates/s. In wide bandwidth applications such as hardware-in-the-loop systems in which latency is often such an important parameter, the 100ns settling time of the AD3552R is extremely attractive.

Leveraging the breadth of the precision portfolio to complete the selection

These anchor components meet the need for the combination of high speed and high precision. They are supported by a complementary set of components to form a complete signal chain.

On the measurement side, this stretches from the ADG5421F analog switch, which offers ±60V of over-voltage protection, through amplification provided by an LTC6373 programmable gain instrumentation amplifier, to the ADN4654 providing up to 5kV of isolation. The signal chain is completed with the LTC6655 low-noise voltage reference.

The signal chain is similarly complete on the drive side, where the DAC is complemented by an ADR4525 reference, a FastFETTm op amp, the AD8065, and the same ADG5421F protection switch as on the input side.

Accelerate and optimize analog designs

The precision wide bandwidth signal chains provide an optimized solution which can kick-start any low latency/high precision design project. And because they are backed by ADI documentation, guidance and the support of the Precision Wide Bandwidth Signal Chains forum, designers can feel confident that they can handle all implementation challenges on the way to a successful project conclusion.