Enabling new architecture for phased-array radars


Electronically controlling the beam direction of a phased array antenna has been in use since the mid-twentieth century. However, most antennas still rely on analog methods to steer the beam. The next step for phased array radar is to achieve full digital control of the beam, often called a “digital phased-array radar.” A digital phased array requires every antenna element to have its own data converters. Analog phase-shifting is no longer performed between the antenna and data converters in this architecture. Instead, phase-shifting and beamforming are performed using purely digital functions.


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