Signatec PX14400 High-Speed PCI-Express Digitizer

The Signatec PX14400 high-speed digitizer relies on the Virtex-5 FPGA family to deliver embedded processing and serial transceiver capabilities. The PX14400 captures signal frequencies up to 200 MHz, when using the programmable gain amplifier in 1 dB steps for maximum gain attenuation flexibility, or up to 400 MHz, if the direct transformer coupled connection is employed for the cleanest possible signal path to the ADC. With Signatec’s suite of development libraries for FPGA programming, the PX14400 is ideal for engineers in the aerospace, defense and intelligence communities. Signatec’s PX14400 is currently shipping.

Signatec PX14400 High-Speed PCI-Express Digitizer

The PX14400 digitizer features two embedded Virtex-5 FPGAs — one is expressly available for custom in-line signal processing. Signatec created standardized data and control interfaces that are designer accessible along with VHDL source code examples that demonstrate the use of these interfaces to simplify real-time processing tasks through the optional firmware development kits.

One GB of on-board memory configured as a large FIFO and a PCIe x8 bus ensures Signatec’s PX14400 can continuously sustain long recordings at over 1.2 GB/s through the PCIe x8 bus to PC disk storage without any break in the analog record.

The PX14400′s frequency synthesized clock enables the ADC sampling rate to be set to virtually any value from 58 MHz to 400 MHz, offering maximum flexibility for sampling rate selection. Additional divide-by-2 circuits are provided for sampling at even lower frequencies. This frequency selection flexibility comes at no cost to the acquisition clock quality/performance when locked to either the onboard 10 MHz, 5 PPM reference clock or to an externally provided 10 MHz reference clock. The ADC may also be clocked from an external clock source.

Up to five PX14400 boards may be interconnected in a Master/Slave configuration via a ribbon cable that connects at the top of the board. In this configuration, clock and trigger signals from the Master board drive the Slave boards for synchronized sampling across all boards. Additional boards can be synchronized, even across computer chassis, when using Signatec’s Sync1500-6 product. The PX14400 supports single shot, segmented, and pre-trigger triggering modes.

In Segmented Mode, time stamps allow for storing the time relationship between the memory segments. Time Stamps are 64 bit timer values with a clock resolution of 5.0 nanoseconds, and are accumulated in a 2048 element FIFO memory separate from the data. If necessary, time stamps may be read during acquisition in order to prevent overflow. This is possible in any acquisition mode.

More information: Signatec