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Power amplifiers for satellite communication

A company designed very efficient class D power amplifiers for satellite communication.  This is important, because power efficiency is critical in space, as power is costly.  Being more power efficient will allow higher output power from the radio transmitters.  They needed a custom built DVB-S2 modulator with their amplifiers that could be delivered to customers.  The modulator was designed by Voler using a Xilinx Artix FPGA which was designed using Verilog HDL.  In addition to the modulator, a processor was designed into the FPGA which provided low level control and reporting.  A custom-built PCB was designed with the FPGA, DAC and upconverter.  The modulator was tested to show that it produced a very clean signal with a multi-GHZ carrier frequency, supporting frequencies in excess of 500Mbps.

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