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Entry  Sun Jan 30 19:26:03 2011, Koji, Summary, Green Locking, Prototype freq divider freq_divider.pdfIMG_3813.jpgIMG_3814.jpg
    Reply  Wed Feb 2 03:27:20 2011, Koji, Summary, Green Locking, 85MHz Freq divider freq_divider.pdfIMG_3816.JPGIMG_3818.JPG
       Reply  Wed Feb 2 09:56:55 2011, Koji, Summary, Green Locking, Installed the freq divider and Rana's PFD freq_divider_installation.pdf110201_freq_divider_output.pdf
          Reply  Wed Feb 2 10:44:26 2011, Koji, Summary, Green Locking, Freq fluctuation measured by the freq divider and Rana's analog PFD 110201_green_freq_fluctuation.pdf
             Reply  Wed Feb 2 12:55:34 2011, Koji, Summary, Green Locking, Freq fluctuation measured by the freq divider and Rana's analog PFD 
             Reply  Sat Feb 5 23:03:04 2011, rana, koji, Summary, Electronics, Analog Frequency Discriminator: splitter + mixer + long cable mixer.pdfUntitled.pngfsm.png
                Reply  Sun Feb 6 02:29:28 2011, rana, Update, Electronics, Analog MFD: longer cable mfd18.png
Message ID: 4254     Entry time: Sat Feb 5 23:03:04 2011     In reply to: 4239     Reply to this: 4255
Author: rana, koji 
Type: Summary 
Category: Electronics 
Subject: Analog Frequency Discriminator: splitter + mixer + long cable 

This diagram shows the setup of the analog Mixer-Frequency Discriminator (MFD).

The idea is similar to the one of the Schnupp Asymmetry for our Michelson interferometers. The signal from the PD (or any signal source for which you want to know the frequency) is split into two legs; one leg is much longer than the other. The two legs are recombined at a mixer/demodulator. The demodulator output varies sinusoidally with the phase difference of two legs, the same as when we try to measure the phase noise of an oscillator, for example. This is the same concept as the digital frequency discriminator that Aidan and Joe put into the GFD FE system recently.

With a ~1m cable length asymmetry, we get 180 deg of phase shift for a ~100 MHz signal (recall that the speed of light in most of our cables is ~2 x 10^8 m/s). The mixer gives a linear output at 50 MHz (and 150 MHz, 250 MHz, etc.).

This single mixer based setup is fine for most everything we do. In order to get even more resolution, one can just use 2 mixers by splitting the signal with a 4-way instead of 2-way mixer. One setup can have a 0.5-1 m asymmetry to have a large range. The other can have a ~10-30m asymmetry to get a comb of linear readouts.

Typically, we will have some kind of weak signal at the photodiode and will use a 20 or 40 dB gain RF amp to get the signal into the mixer. In this case, the mixer output noise will be at the level of tens of nV/rHz. Any usual low noise audio amplifier (SR560 variety) will be enough to read out the signal.

Why the 50 Ohm terminator? If you look at the specs of the BLP-1.9 filter from Mini-Circuits (its the same for almost all of their LP filters) you see that there's ~90 dB of attenuation above ~30 MHz (where our signals 2*f product will show up). If we use an RF input signal of ~0 dBm, this means that we get a high frequency product of -95 dBm (~10 uVrms) which is OK. But the return loss is 0 dB above 5 MHz - this means that all of the high frequency content is reflected back into the mixer! The 50 Ohm terminator is there to absorb the RF signals coming out of the mixer so as to prevent them from going back into the mixer and mixing with the RF/LO signals. The 50 Ohm terminator does attenuate the DC/audio frequency signals we get out of the mixer by a factor of two, but that's OK since we are not limited by the mixer's thermal noise.


Noise Measurement:

To checkout the noise, we used a 6m RG-58 cable in one leg. We used the DS345 signal generator for the source. We adjusted the frequency to (~21 MHz) give a ~zero mean signal at the demod output. The 6m cable makes the demod output's peak-peak swing correspond to ~16 MHz. We then used an SR560, DC coupled, G=1000, low-noise, 2pole low pass at 1 kHz, to get the signal into the ADC.

 fsm.png

The attached plot shows the noise. We have caibrated the digital gain in the channel to make the output into units of Hz. The high frequency noise floor is ~0.3 Hz/rHz and the 1/f knee is at 10 Hz. This setup is already good enough for all of the green locking work at the 40m. In order to make this useful for the reference cavity work or the gyro, we will have to use a longer cable and a lower noise audio amplifier.

As can be seen from the plot, the ADC noise is below the measured noise. The noise of the SR560 with the input terminated is shown in grey - the measured noise of the MFD is very close to this. In order to improve the performance, the next step should be to use a longer cable. There's clearly going to be some trade-off between the temperature dependent effects which come with long cables (dphi/dT gets bigger) and trying to use a high gain ~1 nV/rHz amplfier at the mixer output.


Temperature Drift of the long cable:

Untitled.png

This 24-hour minute-trend shows the frequency wander as well as the room temperature. This is not proof of a temperature dependence, but if it is then we get ~3 kHz/deg for the sensitivity. If this is actually the cable and not the amplifier, then we'll have to hunt for a lower tempco cable and put it in a box to isolate it.

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