Digitally Controlled MMIC Attenuators are versatile small signal RF components which attenuate an RF signal by a precise (digitally-selected) amount (in dB). As new applications (ranging from communications to defense) place demands for tighter signal amplitude control, RF and microwave engineers have come to increasingly rely on the use of digital attenuators for both precise and highly-linear signal amplitude control. Another industry-common name for Digitally Controlled MMIC Attenuators is “digital step attenuators” (DSAs).
Applications for Digitally Controlled MMIC Attenuators include (but are not limited to): cellular base stations, repeaters, and femtocells; bench test equipment and automated test equipment; military radios, Radar, and ECM; RF power amplifier distortion canceling loops; Microwave radio and VSAT; CATV headend and distribution systems; and Cable and satellite set-top-boxes.
Specific attributes which are important in selecting the right Digitally Controlled MMIC Attenuator for your application include: Frequency Range (MHz) of operation, Control Accuracy (Bits) of the device, attenuation Step Size (dB), Control Range (dB) of attenuation, Insertion Loss (dB), P1dB (dBm) point, Input IP3 (dBm) specification, Control Type (TTL, CMOS, -5V, etc.) and device Package Type.
Richardson RFPD stocks a large assortment of Digitally Controlled MMIC Attenuators from industry-leading manufacturers M/A-COM Technology Solutions, pSemi, and United Monolithic Semiconductors