Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [softrock40] PIN Diodes

Expand Messages
  • Dan Andersson
    Pin diode switches are as reliable ( more reliable! ) as manual switches if designed properly!You can use power pin diodes for bandpass switching in the PA
    Message 1 of 41 , Dec 3, 2006
      Pin diode switches are as reliable ( more reliable! ) as manual switches if
      designed properly!

      You can use power pin diodes for bandpass switching in the PA but the pin
      diodes are more often used in low power applications.

      I tested some pin diodes in a SoftRock receiver and replaced the FST switch
      chip with pin diodes instead. It works all right but I was not able to
      achieve the switch times I wanted so I use USB High speed switches instead.

      If you want a fast switching time and to ensure that no RF feedback triggers
      the diodes, you have to drive them hard. Doing so, may create problems on
      very high frequencies due to inductance but hey! on HF bands? Naaah!

      Using pin diodes for switching of the input bandpass filter and for a QRP PA?
      Good idea and it works absolutely fine.

      HOWEVER! Please refrain from taking a dive in your junk box!

      Buy new types and with the voltage spec you requires. For clamping, I normally
      use the BAT60A as it's a very low voltage drop diode ( 0.1 to 0.3V - BUT! a
      Ct of 20pF ) as well as suitable for QRP PA's.

      For serial switching, I use almost any other pin diode like the HSMP-3894-BLKG
      ( a Ct of 0.21pF ).

      On lower frequencies, the "leakage" from a 0.21pF Ct, is not a problem
      normally. You will probably have more stray capacitance from a sloppy PCB
      design anyway...

      There are a good document to be found on the internet - pinhandbook.pdf, but I
      don't remember where I found it or if it's allowed to be copied to the public
      domain. Mail me directly for a private copy.


      On Sunday 03 December 2006 05:13, Graham Haddock wrote:
      > Kees:
      > 1.) A breakdown voltage appropriate for the voltage/power levels you
      > will be switching.
      > 2.) A low series on resistance appropriate to minimize losses at the
      > impedance/power you are handling.
      > 3.) A low series off capacitance to minimize signal leakage when
      > biased off.
      > You didn't say whether you were doing high power transmitter output
      > switching or low level receiver or transmitter switching.
      > --- Graham / KE9H
      > ==
      > Kees wrote:
      > > Can someone provide information on the best PIN diodes for HF operation
      > > if we want to use them for electrical bandswitching. What
      > > characteristics do you look for ? Low capacitance, low inductance, etc ?
      > >
      > > 73 Kees K5BCQ

      Dan Andersson, M0DFI
      dan@... dan.andersson@...
      Type 43 is very lossy at 145 MHz. Try #63 or lower perm. Giancarlo wrote: Hi Art, ... (with ... I have done tests on 145MHz while
      Message 41 of 41 , Dec 4, 2006
        Type 43 is very lossy at 145 MHz. Try #63 or lower perm.

        Giancarlo <i7swx@...> wrote:
        Hi Art,

        --- In softrock40@yahoogro ups.com, Art <KY1K@...> wrote:
        > >some of these have some good
        > >switching speed their on-off time are very different.
        > Hi Gian,
        > I have thought about switching symmetry a lot. I think symmetry
        > improvements COULD make the QSD practical at higher frequencies
        > the current technology), but probably not at 2 meters.

        I have done tests on 145MHz while experimenting with the I7SWX 2
        Transformer H-Mode Mixer with IF from 455kHz to 100 MHz, using LVDS
        squarer. The FST3125 mixer was working but the conversion losses were
        minimum -8dB (LO= RF-IF) for IFs from 4MHz to 70MHz. Transformere
        were balun core #43-2403. At 455kHz the Loss was -9dB but probably
        due to transformers core. On HF the 2T H-M Mix has a loss of -5dB or
        less with downconversion and around -5 with up conversion 70MHz IF.
        At 50MHz RF 2T was at -5dBm loss with IF at 28MHz.

        The increase of losses is certainly due to internal switch (gating
        and sw itself) unbalances, delay, phasing...who knows. When LO
        frequency is going up switches gets crazy...hi


        RF in = 145 MHz.
        IF LO = RF- IF ConvL LO = RF+IF ConvL
        MHz] [MHz] [dB] [MHz] [dB]

        0.455 144.4 -9 145.5 -9
        4 140 -8 149 -8
        9 135 -8 154 -8.5
        10.7 134 -8 156 -9
        21 124 -8 165 -10
        45 100 -8 165 -10
        70 75 -8 215 -12
        100 45 -9 244 -15

        > Symmetry is perhaps more important than speed, although the current
        > generation of analog switches we use are not designed or rated for
        > By symmetry, I mean that the t(on) time and the t(off) times are
        > identical within each switch (they turn off and turn on at the same
        > time relative to the enable line). Also, that each individual
        > within a package turns on and turns off at the same speed relative
        > the other switches in that package.

        You are right. Also components tech figures are given by marketing
        and not engineering .... often are what customers would like
        to "see".... and simulators are OK for these...hi

        > In the case of the current generation of FST switches, we think
        > turn on in ~1.5 nS and take ~4 nS to turn off. If we could delay
        > turn on by 2.5 nS in each of the switches in the FST package, we
        > might be able to achieve better performance while using the same

        Everything is a compromise so we have to take for good the "best
        figures" so we can be happy .... I have good friends (well known hams
        that can feel and see differences of 0.1dB or less ... for me 1 dB or
        more is the same ... I am not in business...hi

        > After all, we don't care which 90 degree segment of the input
        > waveform we capture, we only care that each individual switch
        > captures a different 90 degree slice (without overlap or dead
        > of the input wave .

        Yes. The problem is that too many "pieces" or "stages" are involved
        in those 90 degrees....

        > I am not quite sure how to do this easily. But, an rc network on
        > enable line would surely slow down the t(on). But, how do we make
        > turn off delay on the enable line respond as though the rc network
        > wasn't there?

        You need to go inside the FST switches and see what happen ... so you
        can put anything you like to balance.

        We know that the best digital quadrature generator is the Johnson
        counter dividong by 4 the LO ... well, on paper... You maybe be OK
        with the 0° and 90° quadrature but if you use the 180° and 270° also
        you will see that these complementary waveforms are shifted respect
        the others of around 100pS ...

        We are all interested oin the Tayloe QSD but maybe we should look at
        the limits of use ....

        The SoftRock40 V7 was designed because the SDR 1000 and SR V6 were
        not performing as expected .... so it is the limit of the QSD
        configuration or the not so good quadrature signals driving it or
        both or what else? What is generating the high noise of QSD when
        going up on frequency?

        untill someone will give us a nice set of GAsFet switches with
        perfect and fast switching Ton-Toff ... we will have to accept some
        limits (HF) ...thenm we can go to SHF. The main problems will
        be ...Cases we cannot handle anymore... even the TSSOP are dying
        now ...let's collect a lot of those SOIC chips that can last us till
        end of century, at least (hope I will resist till the ..mmmm 66
        ohm) ...hi



        > Regards,
        > Art

      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.