Attachment #1 shows the results of my measurements tonight (SR785 data in Attachment #2). Both loops have a UGF of ~10kHz, with ~55 degrees of phase margin.
Excitation was injected via SR560 at the PDH error point, amplitude was 35mV. According to the LED indicators on these boxes, the low frequency boost stages were ON. Gain knob of the X end PDH box was at 6.5, that of the Y end PDH box was at 4.9. I need to check the schematics to interpret these numbers. GV Edit: According to this elog, these numbers mean that the overall gain of the X end PDH box is approx. 25dB, while that of the Y end PDH box is approx. 15dB. I believe the Y end Lightwave NPRO has an actuator discriminant ~5MHz/V, while the X end Innolight is more like 1MHz/V.
Not sure what to make of the X PDH loop measurement being so much noisier than the Y end, I need to think about this.
More detailed analysis to follow.
I am now going to measure the OLTFs of both green PDH loops to check that the overall loop gain is okay, and also check the measurement against EricQ's LISO model of the (modified) AUX green PDH servos. Results to follow.
Didn't someone look at what the OLG req. should be for these servos at some point? I wonder if we can make a parallel digital path that we switch on after green lock. Then we could make this a simple 1/f box and just add in the digital path (take analog control signal into ADC, filter, and then sum into the control point further down the path to the laser) for the low frequency boost.
I completed the revamp of the box, and re-installed the box on the PSL table today. I think it would be ideal to install this on one of the electronic racks, perhaps 1X2 would be best. We would have to re-route the fibers from the PSL table to 1X2, but I think they have sufficient length, and this way, the whole arrangement is much cleaner.
Did a quick check to make sure I could see beat notes for both arms. I will now attempt to measure the ALS noise with this revamped box, to see if the improved power supply and grounding arrangement, as well as fiber cleaning, has had any effect.
Photos + power budget + plan of action for using this box to characterize the green PDH locking to follow.
For quick reference: here is the AM/PM measurement done when we re-installed the repaired Innolight NPRO on the new X endtable.
Attachment #1 - Photo of the revamped beat setup. The top panel has to be installed. New features include:
Attachment #2 - Power budget inside the box. Some of these FC/APC connectors seem to not offer good coupling between the two fibers. Specifically, the one on the front panel meant to accept the PSL light input fiber seems particularly bad. Right now, the PSL light is entering the box through one of the front panel connectors marked "PSL + X out". I've also indicated the beat amplitude measured with an RF analyzer. Need to do the math now to confirm if these match the expected amplitudes based on the power levels measured.
Attachment #3 - We repeated the measurement detailed here. The X arm (locked to IR) was used for this test. The "X" delay line electronics were connected to the X green beat PD, while the "Y" delay line electronics were connected to the X IR beat PD. I divided the phase tracker Hz calibration factor by 2 to get IR Hz for the Y arm channels. IR beat was at ~38MHz, green beat was at ~76MHz. The broadband excess noise seen in the previous test is no longer present. Indeed, below ~20Hz, the IR beat seems less noisy. So seems like the cleaning / electronics revamp did some good.
Further characterization needs to be done, but the results of this test are encouraging. If we are able to get this kind of out of loop ALS noise with the IR beat, perhaps we can avoid having to frequently fine-tune the green beat alignment on the PSL table. It would also be ideal to mount this whole 1U setup in an electronics rack instead of leaving it on the PSL table.
GV Edit: I've added better photos to the 40m Google Photos page. I've also started a wiki page for this box / the proposed IR ALS system. For the moment, all that is there is the datasheet to the Fiber Couplers used, I will populate this more as I further characterize the setup.
Is it better to mount the box in the PSL under the existing shelf, or in a nearby PSL rack?
Further characterization needs to be done, but the results of this test are encouraging. If we are able to get this kind of out of loop ALS noise with the IR beat, perhaps we can avoid having to frequently fine-tune the green beat alignment on the PSL table. It would also be ideal to mount this whole 1U setup in an electronics rack instead of leaving it on the PSL table
It seems like the main contribution to the RMS comes from the high frequency bump. When using the ALS loop to lock the arm to the beat, only the stuff below ~100 Hz will matter. Interesting to see what that noise budget will show. Perhaps the discrepancy between inloop and out of loop will go down.
I was having a chat with EricQ about this today, just noting some points from our discussion down here so that I remember to look into this tomorrow.
Can we make use of the Jetstor raid array for some kind of consolidated 40m CDS backup system? Once we've gotten everything of interest out of it...
I did some work today to see if I could use the IR beat for ALS control. Initial tests were encouraging.
I will now embark on the noise budgeting.
I am leaving the green beat electronics on the PSL table in the switched state for further testing...
We set up a measurement of the AUX X laser AM today. Some notes:
Attachment #1 shows a preliminary scan from tonight - we looked at the region 10kHz-10MHz, with an IF bandwidth of 100Hz, 16 averages, and 801 log-spaced frequencies. The idea was to get an idea of where some promising notches in the AM lie, and do more fine-bandwidth scans around those points. Data + code used to generate this plot in Attachment #2.
Rana points out that some of the AM could also be coming from beam jitter - so to put this hypothesis to test, we will put a lens to focus the spot more tightly onto the PD, repeat the measurement, and see if we get different results.
There were a whole bunch of little illegal things Rana spotted on the EX table which he will make a separate post about.
I am running 40 more scans with the same params for some statistics - should be done by the morning.
I borrowed the HP impedance test kit from Rich Abbott today. The purpose is to profile the impedance of the NPRO PZTs, as part of the AUX PDH servo investigations. It is presently at the X-end. I will do the test in the coming days.
Update 12:00 21 Sep: Attachment #3 shows schematically the arrangement we use for the AM measurement. A similar sketch for the proposed PM measurement strategy to follow. After lunch, Steve and I will lay out a longish BNC cable from the LSC rack to the IOO rack, from where there is already a long cable running to the X end. This is to facilitate the PM measurement.
Update 18:30 21 Sep: Attachment #4 was generated using Craig's nice plotting utility. The TF magnitude plot was converted to RIN/V by dividing by the DC voltage of the PDA 55 of ~2.3V (assumption is that there isn't significant difference between the DC gain and RF transimpedance gain of the PDA 55 in the measurement band) The right-hand columns are generated by calculating the deviation of individual measurements from the mean value. We're working on improving this utility and aesthetics - specifically use these statistics to compute coherence, this is a work in progress. Git repo details to follow.
There are only 23 measurements (I was aiming for 40) because of some network connectivity issue due to which the script stalled - this is also something to look into. But this sample already suggests that these measurement parameters give consistent results on repeated measurements above 100kHz.
TO CHECK: PDA 55 is in 0dB gain setting, at which it has a BW of 10MHz (claimed in datasheet).
Some math about relation between coherence and standard deviation of transfer function measurements:
--- relation to variance in TF magnitude. We estimate the variance using the usual variance estimator, and can then back out the coherence using this relation.
--- relation to variance in TF phase. Should give a coherence profile that is consistent with that obtained using the preceeding equation.
It remains to code all of this up into Craig's plotting utility.
Image #1: No - we do not use magnetic mounts for beam dumps. Use a real clamp. It has to be rigid. "its not going anywhere" is a nonsense statement; this is about vibration amplitude of nanometers.
Image #2: No - we do not use sticky tape to put black glass beam dumps in place ever, anywhere. Rigid dumps only.
Image #3: Please do not ruin our nice black glass with double sticky tape. We want to keep the surfaces clean. This one and a few of the other Mickey Mouse black glass dumps on this table were dirty with fingerprints and so very useless.
Image #4: This one was worst of all: a piece of black glass was sticky taped to the wall. Shameful.
Please do not do any work on this table without elogging. Please never again do any of these type of beam dumping - they are all illegal. Better to not dump beams than to do this kind of thing.
All dumps have to be rigidly mounted. There is no finger contacting black glass or razor dumps - if you do, you might as well throw it in the garbage.
We laid out a 45m long BNC cable from the LSC rack to the IOO rack via overhead cable trays. There is ~5m excess length on either side, which have been coiled up and cable-tied for now. The ends are labelled "TO LSC RACK" and "TO IOO RACK" on the appropriate ends. This is to facilitate hooking up the output of the DFD for making a PM measurement of the AUX X laser. There is already a long cable that runs from the IOO rack to the X end.
The Fiber ALS box has been installed on the existing shelf on the PSL table. We had to re-arrange some existing cabling to make this possible, but the end result seems okay (to me). The box lid was also re-installed.
Some stuff that still needs to be fixed:
Beat spectrum post changes to follow.
Attachment #1: Result of AM sweeps with EX laser crystal at nominal operating temperature ~ 31.75 C.
Attachment #2: Tarball of data for Attachment #1.
Attachment #3: Result of AM sweeps with EX laser crystal at higher operating temperature ~ 40.95 C.
Attachment #4: Tarball of data for Attachment #2.
Attachment #1 is a sketch of the proposed setup to measure the PM response of the EX NPRO. Previously, this measurement was done via PLL. In this approach, we will need to calibrate the DFD output into units of phase, in order to calibrate the transfer function measurement into rad/V. The idea is to repeat the same measurement technique used for the AM - take ~50 1 average measurements with the AG4395, and look at the statistics.
Some more notes:
The first Faraday isolater rejected beam path from the NPRO is fixed.
There are no more double sided tape on this table.
Attachment #1 is the updated diagram of the Fiber ALS setup. I've indicated part numbers, power levels (optical and electrical). For the light power levels, numbers in green are for the AUX lasers, numbers in red are for the PSL.
I confirmed that the output of the power splitter is going to the "RF input" and the output of the delay line is going to the "LO input" of the demodulator box. Shouldn't this be the other way around? Unless the labels are misleading and the actual signal routing inside the 1U chassis is correctly done :/
Still facing some CDS troubles, will start ALS recovery once I address them.
Attachment #2 is the svg file of Attachment #1, which we can update as we improve things. I'll put it on the DCC 40m tree eventually.
Next, I will work on commissioning the BEAT MOUTH for ALS beat generation.
Note: In the ~40mins that I've been typing out these elogs, the IR lock has been stable for both the X and Y arms. But the X green has dropped lock twice, and the Y green has been fluctuating rather more, but has mangaged to stay locked. I think the low frequency Y-arm GTRY fluctuations are correlated with the arm cavity alignment drifting around. But the frequent X arm green lock dropouts - not sure what's up with that. Need to look at IR arm control signals and ALS signals at lock drop times to see if there is some info there.
I did a cursory check of the ALS signal chain in preparation for commissioning the IR ALS system. The main elements of this system are shown in my diagram in the previous elog in this thread.
Questions I have:
After labeling cables I would disconnect, I pulled the box out of the LSC rack. Attachment #1 is a picture of the insides of the box - looks like it is indeed just two lengths of cabling. There was also some foam haphazardly stuck around inside - presumably an attempt at insulation/isolation.
Since I have the box out, I plan to measure the delay in each path, and also the signal attenuation. I'll also try and neaten the foam padding arrangement - Steve was showing me some foam we have, I'll use that. If anyone has comments on other changes that should be made / additional tests that should be done, please let me know.
20180111_2200: I'm running some TF measurements on the delay line box with the Agilent in the control room area (script running in tmux sesh on pianosa). Results will be uploaded later.
For completeness, I'd like to temporarily pull the box out of the rack, open it up, take photos, and make a diagram unless there are any objections.
With Johannes' help, I re-installed the box in the LSC electronics rack. In the end, I couldn't find a good solution to thermally insulate the inside of the box with foam - the 2U box is already pretty crowded with ~100m of cabling inside of it. So I just removed all the haphazardly placed foam and closed the box up for now. We can evaluate if thermal stability of the delay line is limiting us anywhere we care about and then think about what to do in this respect. This box is actually rather heavy with ~100m of cabling inside, and is right now mounted just by using the ears on the front - probably should try and implement a more robust mounting solution for the box with some rails for it to sit on.
I then restored all the cabling - but now, the delayed part of the split RF beat signal goes to the "RF in" input of the demod board, and the non-delayed part goes to the back-panel "LO" input. I also re-did the cabling at the PSL table, to connect the two ZHL3-A amplifier inputs to the IR beat PDs in the BeatMouth instead of the green BBPDs.
I didn't measure any power levels today, my plan was to try and get a quick ALS error signal spectrum - but looks like there is too much beat signal power available at the moment, the ADC inputs for both arm beat signals are overflowing often. The flat gain on the AS165 (=ALS X) and POP55 (=ALS Y) channels have been set to 0dB, but still the input signals seem way too large. The signals on the control room spectrum analyzer come from the "RF mon" ports on the demod board, and are marked as -23dBm. I looked at these peak heights with the end green beams locked to the arm cavities, as per the proposed new ALS scheme. Not sure how much cable loss we have from the LSC rack to the network analyzer, but assuming 3dB (which is the Google value for 100ft of RG58), and reading off the peak heights from the control room analyzer, I figure that we have ~0dBm of RF signal in the X arm. => I would expect ~3dBm of signal to the LO input. Both these numbers seem well within range of what the demod board is designed to handle so I'm not sure why we are saturating.
Note that the nominal (differential) I and Q demodulated outputs from the demod board come out of a backplane connector - but we seem to be using the front panel (single-ended) "MON" channels to acquire these signals. I also need to update my Fiber ALS diagram to indicate the power loss in cabling from the PSL table to the LSC electronics rack, expect it to be a couple of dB.
I am facing two problems:
I swapped the inputs to the ZHL-3A at the PSL table - so now the X beat RF signals from the beat mouth are going through what was previously the Y arm ALS electronics. From Attachment #1, you can see that the Y arm beat is now noisier than the X. The ~5kHz peak has also vanished.
So I will pursue this strategy of switching to try and isolate where the problem lies...
Somebody had forgotten to turn the HEPA variac on the PSL table down. It was set at 70. I set it at 20, and there is already a huge difference in the ALS spectra
[rana, kevin, udit, gautam]
quick notes of some discussions we had today:
RXA: 0805 size SMD thin film resistors have been ordered from Mouser, to be shipped on Monday. **note that these thin film resistors are black; i.e. it is NOT true that all black SMD resistors are thick film**
I did some work on the PSL table today. Main motivations were to get a pickoff for the BeatMouth PSL beam before any RF modulations are imposed on it, and to improve the mode-matching into the fiber. Currently, we use the IR light reflected by the post doubling oven harmonic separator. This has the PMC modulation sideband on it, and also some green leakage.
So I picked off ~8.5mW of PSL light from the first PBS (pre Faraday rotator), out of the ~40 mW available here, using a BS-80-1064-S. I dumped the 80% reflected light into the large beam dump that was previously being used to dump this PBS reflection. Initially, I used a R=10% BS for S-pol that I found on the SP table, but Koji tipped me off on the fact that these produce multiple reflected beams, so I changed strategy to use the R=80% BS instead.
The transmitted 20% is routed to the West edge of the PSL table via 2 1" Y1-1037-45S optics, towards the rough vicinity of the fiber coupler. For now it is just dumped, tomorrow I will work on the mode matching. We may want to cut the power further - ideally, we want ~2.5mW of power in the fiber - this is then divided by 4 inside the beat mouth before reaching the beat PD, and with other losses, I expect ~500mW of PSL power and comparable AUX light, we will have a strong >0dBm beat.
Attachment #1 is a picture of my modifications. For this work, I
On Friday, while Udit and I were doing some characterization of the EX+PSL IR beat at the LSC rack, I noticed that there were sidebands around the main beat peak at 20dBm lower level. These were offset from the main peak by ~200kHz - I didn't do a careful characterization but because of the symmetric nature of these sidebands and the fact that they appeared with the same offset from the main peak for various values of the central beat frequency, I hypothesize that these are from the modulation sidebands we use for PDH locking the EX laser to the arm cavity. So we can estimate the modulation depth from the relative powers of the main beat peak and the ~200kHz offset sidebands.
Since the IR light is used for the beat and we directly couple it to the fiber to make the beat, there is no green or IR cavity pole involved here. 20dBm in power means . And so the modulation depth, . I will do a more careful meaurement of this, but this method of measuring the modulation depth can give us a precise estimate - for what it's worth, this number is in the same ballpark as the measurement I quote in elog12105.
What is the implication of having these sidebands on our ALS noise? I need to think about this, effectively the phase noise of the SR function generators we use to do the phase modulation of the EX laser is getting imprinted on the ALS noise? Is this hurting us in any frequency range that matters?
I was looking into the physics of polarization maintaining fibers, and then I was trying to remember whether the fibers we use are actually polarization maintaining. Looking up the photos I put in the elog of the fibers when I cleaned them some months ago, at least the short length of fiber attached to the PD doesn't show any stress elements that I did see in the Thorlabs fibers. I'm pretty sure the fiber beam splitters also don't have any stress elements (see Attached photo). So at least ~1m of fiber length before the PD sensing element is probably not PM - just something to keep in mind when thinking about mode overlap and how much beat we actually get.
I was looking at this a little more closely. As I understand it, the purpose of the audio differential IF amplifier is:
Attachment #1 shows, the changes to the TF of this stage as a result of changing R19->50ohm, R17->500ohm. For the ALS application, we expect the beat signal to be in the range 20-100MHz, so the 2f frequency component of the mixer output will be between 40-200MHz, where the proposed change preserves >50dB attenuation. The Q of the ~500kHz resonance because of the series LCR at the input is increased as a result of reducing R17, so we have slightly more gain there.
At the meeting yesterday, Koji suggested incorporating some whitening in the preamp itself, but I don't see a non-hacky way to use the existing PCB footprint and just replace components to get whitening at audio frequencies. I'm going to try and measure the spectrum of the I and Q demodulated outputs with the actual beat signal to see if the lack of whitening is going to limit the ALS noise in some frequency band of interest.
Does this look okay?
The demod circuit board is configured to have gain of x100 post demod (conversion loss of the mixer is ~-8dB). This works well for the PDH cavity locking type of demod scheme, where the loop squishes the error signal in lock, so most of the time, the RF signal is tiny, and so a gain of x100 is good. For ALS, the application needs are rather different. So we lowered the gain of the "Audio IF amplifier" stage of the circuit from x100 to x10, by effecting the resistor swaps 10ohms->50ohms, 1kohm->500ohms (more details about this later).
I tried to couple the PSL pickoff into the fiber today for several hours, but got nowhere really, achieved a maximum coupling efficiency of ~10%. TBC tomorrow... Work done yesterday and today:
I think part of the problem was that the rejected beam from the PBS was not really very Gaussian - looking at the spot on the beam profiler, I saw at least 3 local maxima in the intensity profile. So I'm now switching strategies to use a leakage beam from one of the PMC input steering optics- this isn't ideal as it already has the PMC modulation sideband on it, and this field won't be attenuated by the PMC transmission - but at least we can use a pre-doubler pickoff. This beam looks beautifully Gaussian with the beam profiler. Pics to follow shortly...
I tried to couple the PSL pickoff into the fiber today for several hours, but got nowhere really, achieved a maximum coupling efficiency of ~10%. TBC tomorrow... Work done yesterday and today
Attachment #1 shows the current situation of the PSL table IR pickoff. It isn't the greatest photo but it's hard to get a good one of this setup. Now there is no need to open the Green PSL shutter for there to be an IR beat note.
All this lead me to conclude that I have reached at least some sort of local maximum. The AR coating of the lens has ~0.5% reflection at 8 degrees AOI according to spec, and EricG mentioned today that the fiber itself probably has ~4% reflection at the interface due to there not being any special AR coating. There is also the fact that the mode of the collimator isn't exactly Gaussian. Anyways I think this is a big improvement from what was the situation before, and I am moving on to debugging the ALS electronics.
There is 3.65mW of power coupled into the fiber - our fiber coupled PDs have a damage threshold of 2mW, and this 3.65mW does get split by 4 before reaching the PDs, but good to keep this number in mind. For a quick measurement of the PMC and X end PDH modulation depth measurements, I used an ND=0.5 filter in the beam path.
I used the Beat Mouth to make a quick measurement of the PMC and EX modulation depths. They are, respectively, 60mrad and 90mrad. See Attachments #1 and #2 for spectra from the beat photodiode outputs, monitored using the Agilent analyzer, 16 averages, IF bandwidth set to resolve peaks offset from the main beat frequency peak by 33.5MHz for the PMC and by ~230kHz for the EX green PDH.
For this work, I had to re-align the IFO so as to lock the arms to IR. c1susaux was unresponsive and had to be power-cycled. As mentioned in the earlier elog, to avoid saturating the Fiber Coupled beat PDs, I placed a ND=0.5 filter in the fiber collimator path, such that the coupled power was ~1mW, which is well inside the safe regime.
For the EX modulation depth, I could have gotten multiple estimates of the modulation depth using the higher order products that are visible in the spectrum, but I didn't.
We installed some rails to mount the 2U chassis containing ~100m of delay line cabling, and the 1U chassis containing the FET demodulators for the ALS signals in the LSC rack. This has made it MUCH easier for a single person to work there and remove/reinstall these chassis. The delay line box has 100m of cable inside it, and so was rather heavy (~8kg) - previously, it was being supported only by a pair of brackets on the front, so the new arrangement is much more robust. Steve is looking into acquiring plastic spacers of the appropriate width, so that we can secure the units to the rack using usual rack mount screws (but the material of the newly installed rails and the screw heads holding them in place necessitate this plastic spacer).
Delay line box has been re-installed, demodulator chassis has been removed by me for characterization. Steve will put up photos once the units are re-installed.
For this work, I had to disconnect a bunch of cabling, but only those connected to ALS. All cables were labelled, and I will re-connect them once I am done with the demod chassis.
Anyways I think this is a big improvement from what was the situation before, and I am moving on to debugging the ALS electronics.
The plan is to lower the gain of the IF amplifier stage on the FET demodulator board from 100 to 10. As per Attachment #1, this will make the overall gain from RF beatnote from the Beat Mouth to the signal input to the D990694 whitening board +19dB, assuming "typical" values for the conversion loss of the mixer, and the various other passive components on the FET demod board. I've used numbers I measured a couple of weeks ago for the delay line loss and the cabling loss from the PSL table to the LSC rack. This in turn will set a limit on how much RF beat power we can handle, from the Beat Mouth. According to this power budget, if we have -5dBm of beat, we will have an input to the whitening board of ~6Vpp, which is about half its full range. The trouble is, I don't know what the transimpedance gain of the Fiber Beat PDs are. The datasheet suggests a "maximum gain" of 5e4 V/W, which presumably takes into account the InGaAs responsivity and the actual transimpedance gain. However, according to the last power budget I did inside the Beat Mouth, I had -8dBm of beat for a combined 400uW of PSL+EX light, which definitely does not add up. I've emailed the company to ask about the spec, haven't gotten anything useful yet...
The problem is further complicated by the fact that the fiber inside the Beat Mouth is NOT polarization maintaining, and so the actual relative polarizations of the arm IR light and the PSL IR light is unpredictable, and also uncontrolled. I suppose we could simply place a HWP before the fiber collimator at either end, and rotate the polarization until we get a desired amount of beat, but this still does not solve the problem of the polarization being uncontrolled.
I am going to characterize the demod board using E1100114. I am unsure as to the conversion loss of the mixer - the datasheet suggested a number of 8dB, but T1000044 suggests that the conversion loss is actually only 4dB. I figure it's best to just measure it. Would also be good to verify that the overall transfer function and noise of the IF amplifier stage match my expectation from the LISO model.
Option #1: Rana ordered 50ohm and 500ohm SMD resistors of the 0805 package size, I asked Steve to get a few more values just in case we want to twiddle with the gain of this stage further (specifically, I asked for values such that we can set it to x5, x3 and x1). But changing the feedback resistors modifies the overall TF shape - see e.g. Attachment #2. Need to also look at how the noise performance varies.
Another possibility is to turn down the gain of the IF amplifier stage to x10, retire the ZHL-3A, and use a lower gain amplifier in its place. We do have the recently acquired Teledyne amplifiers, but we would have to package it in such a way that it can be integrated into the existing Fiber ALS signal chain. This would allow us to handle significantly larger RF beatnote powers, which I expect we will have if we improve the mode matching into the fibers (provided the aforementioned polarization drift possibility doesn't hurt us too much).
A third possibility is to attenuate the power coupled into the fibers to lower the RF beatnote amplitude. I don't like this option so much because placing an ND filter or a PBS+HWP combo in the beam path is likely to screw up the mode-matching into the fiber collimator, which I have already spent so many hours trying to improve, but if it must be done, it must be done.
The correct option is of course the one that gives us the lowest ALS noise. It is not clear to me which one that is at this point.
I effected the change to the Audio IF preamp stage on channels 3 and 4 (Xarm and Yarm respectively) using the resistors Steve ordered (the ones Rana ordered don't have any labeling on them, and I couldn't tell the 50ohm and 500ohm ones apart except by looking at the label on the ziplock bag they came in, so I decided against using them). I've started a DCC page to collect photos, characterization data, and marked up schematic etc for this part. Characterization is ongoing, more to follow soon. Note that for the photo-taking, I disconnected all the on-board SMA connectors so that the cabling wouldn't block components. I have since restored them for testing purposes, and was careful to use the torque-limited SMA tightening tool when restoring the connections.
In order to test various things like conversion loss etc, I figured it would be useful to have two RF signal sources, so I scavenged the Fluke RF generator that Johannes was using from under the PSL table. In the process, I accidentally bumped the PSL interlock on the southeast corner of the PSL table. I immediately turned the NPRO back on, and relocked PMC/IMC. Everything looks normal now. Acromag may even have caught my transgression.
Stuff is beginning to look clearer now that I've done some initial characterization of the demod boards. I will upload a more detailed report of the characterization on the DCC page, but important findings are:
The delay line has a loss of ~3dB. The power splitter has a loss of 3dB. So putting everything together, 17dBm at the input of the power splitter gives us just the right amount of RF power to have the LO input driven at 14dBm, and the IF output be ~5Vpp into a High-Z load, which is about half the ADC full range.
I saw some interesting behaviour of the Audio IF amplifier stage on the demod board today, by accident. I was testing the board for I/Q orthogonality and gain balance, when I noticed a large gain imbalance between the I and Q channels for both Board #3 and #4, which are the ones we use for the IR ALS demodulation. This puzzled me for some time, but then I realized that I had only reduced the gain of this stage from x100 to x10 for the I channel, and not for the Q channel! The surprising thing though was that the output waveform still looked like a clean sinusoid on the o'scope, and there was no evidence of the voltage clipping that is characteristic of an op-amp being driven beyond its voltage rails. The conversion factor with a preamp gain on x10 was measured today to be 2V IF / 1V RF. But this means that for a preamp stage gain of x100, we expect 20V IF / 1V RF, which is well in the saturation regime of the AD829, since the Vcc is only +/-15V. I'm guessing the diodes D2 and D3 are for overvoltage protection, but given that the pre-amp gain is x100, the input signal at the inverting input of the AD829 is only 0.2V at DC, which isn't above the forward bias voltage for the switching diode BAV99. Perhaps there is some interaction between the pre-amp and the FET demodulator that I dont understand, or I am missing something about the differential to single-ended topology that would explain this behaviour.
I found it puzzling why the large preamp stage gain didn't hurt us with the green beat - even though the green optical beat signal was smaller than the current IR beat, a back-of-the-envelope calculation suggested that it would still have saturated the ADC with a x100 gain on the preamp. Perhaps this observation is part of the story, and there is also the unpredictable behaviour of the D990694 board for an input signal with large DC levels...
I did the following tests on this board today:
I didn't really measure the transfer function of the preamp stage after the modification because there wasn't a convenient test point and I couldn't find the high impedance FET probe for the Agilent - I wonder if somebody in WB has it? Anyways, all the tests suggested the board is operating as expected, and I now have calibrations for the back panel DSUB for LO/RF power levels, and also the conversion gain from RF to IF. I will put together a python notebook with all my measurements and upload it to the DCC page for this part. I need to double check expected noise levels from LISO to match up to the measurement.
I will now proceed to the next piece (#3?) of this puzzle, which is to understand how the D990694 which receives the signals from this unit reacts to the expected DC voltage level of ~4Vpp.
After discussion with Koji, I have also decided to look into putting together a daughter board for an alternative Audio IF preamp stage. The motivation is that for the ALS application, we expect a high DC signal level all the time (because the loop does not suppress the beat note amplitude). So we would like for the preamp stage to have the usual shape of some zero around 4Hz, a pole around 40Hz, and then the LowPass profile of the existing preamp stage (to cut out the 2f frequency product, but also to minimize the possibility of the fast AD829 going into some unpredictable regime where it oscillates). So, the desired features are:
While setting up for this measurement, I noticed something odd with the whitening switching for the ALS channels. For the usual LSC channels, the whitening is set up such that switching FM1 on the MEDM screen changes a BIO bit which then enables/disables the analog whitening stage. But this feature doesn't seem to be working for the ALS channels - I terminated all 4 channels at the LSC rack, and measured the spectrum of the IN1 signals with DTT in the two settings, such that I expect to see a difference in the spectra if the whitening is enabled or disabled - FM1 enabled (expected analog whitening to be engaged) and FM1 disabled (expected analog whitening to be bypassed). But I see no difference in the spectra. I confirmed that the BIO bit switching is happening at least on the software level (i.e. the bit indicator MEDM screens indicate state toggling when FM1 is ON/OFF). But I don't know if something is amiss in the signal chain, especially since we are using Hardware channels that were previously used for AS_165 and POP_55 signals.
Is the whitening shape such that we expect the terminated noise level to be below ADC Noise even when the whitening is engaged? I just checked the shape of the de-whitening filter, and it has -40dB gain above 150Hz, so the inverse shape should have +40dB gain.
I will now proceed to the next piece (#3?) of this puzzle, which is to understand how the D990694 which receives the signals from this unit reacts to the expected DC voltage level of ~4Vpp
gautam 2.15pm: This was a FALSE ALARM, with the inputs terminated, the electronics noise really is that low such that it is buried under ADC noise even with +40dB gain. I cranked up the flat whitening gain from 0dB to 45dB for the X channels (but left the Y channels at 0dB). Attachment #2 is the comparison. Looks like the switching works just fine.
I've been trying to setup for the THD measuremetn at the LSC rack for a couple of days now, but am plagued by a problem summarized in Attachment #1: there are huge harmonics present in the channel when I hook up the input to the whitening board D990694 to the output of a spare DAC channel at the LSC rack. Attachment #2 summarizes my setup. I've done the following checks in trying to debug this problem, but am no closer to solving it:
Am I missing something obvious here? I think it is impossible to do a THD measurement with the spectrum in this condition...
Did some quick additional checks to figure out what's going on here.
So either something is busted on this board (power regulating capacitor perhaps?), or we have some kind of ground loop between electronics in the same chassis (despite the D990694 being differential input receiving). Seems like further investigation is needed. Note that the D000316 just two boards over in the same Eurocrate chassis is responsible for driving our input steering mirror Tip-Tilt suspensions. I wonder if that board too is suffering from a similarly noisy ground?
I think I've narrowed down the source of this ground loop. It originates from the fact that the DAC from which the signals for this board are derived sits in an expansion chassis in 1Y3, whereas the LSC electronics are all in 1Y2.
Looking at Jamie's old elog from the time when this infrastructure was installed, there is a remark that the signal didn't look too noisy - so either this is a new problem, or the characterization back then wasn't done in detail. The main reason why I think this is non-ideal is because the tip-tilt steering mirrors sending the beam into the IFO is controlled by analogous infrastructure - I confirmed using the LEMO monitor points on the D000316 that routes signals to TT1 and TT2 that they look similarly noisy (see e.g. Attachment #1). So we are injecting some amount (about 10% of the DC level) of beam jitter into the IFO because of this noisy signal - seems non-ideal. If I understand correctly, there is no damping loops on these suspensions which would suppress this injection.
How should we go about eliminating this ground loop?
We discussed possible solutions to this ground loop problem. Here's what we came up with:
Why do we care about this so much anyways? Koji pointed out that the tip tilt suspensions do have passive eddy current damping, but that presumably isn't very effective at frequencies in the 10Hz-1kHz range, which is where I observed the noise injection.
Note that all our SOS suspensions are also possibly being plagued by this problem - the AI board that receives signals is D000186, but not revision D I think. But perhaps for the SOS optics this isn't really a problem, as the expansion chassis and the coil driver electronics may share a common power source?
gautam 1530 7 Feb: Judging by the footprint of the front panel connectors, I would say that the AI boards that receive signals from the DACs for our SOS suspended optics are of the Rev B variety, and so receive the DAC voltages single ended. Of course, the real test would be to look inside these boards. But they certainly look distinct from the black front panelled RevD variant linked above, which has differential inputs. Rev D uses OP27s, although rana mentioned that the LT1125 isn't the right choice and from what I remember, LT1125 is just Quad OP27...
After emailing the technical team at Menlo, I have uploaded the more detailed information they have given me on our wiki.
The trouble is, I don't know what the transimpedance gain of the Fiber Beat PDs are. The datasheet suggests a "maximum gain" of 5e4 V/W, which presumably takes into account the InGaAs responsivity and the actual transimpedance gain.
Summary of my tests of the demod boards, post gain modification:
Everything looks within the typical performance specs outlined in E1100114, except that the measured noise levels don't quite line up with the LISO model predictions. The measurement was made with the scheme shown in Attachment #1. I didn't do a point-by-point debugging of this on the board. I have uploaded the data + notebook summarizing my characterization to the DCC page for this part. I recommend looking at the HTML version for the plots.
*I'd put up the wrong attachment, corrected it now...
I will put together a python notebook with all my measurements and upload it to the DCC page for this part. I need to double check expected noise levels from LISO to match up to the measurement.
gautam 9 Feb 2018 9pm: Adding a useful quote here from the LISO manual (pg28). I think if I add the Johnson noise from the output impedance of the mixer (assumed as 50ohms, I get better agreement between the measured and observed noises (although the variance between the 4 channels is still puzzling). The other possible explanation is small variations in the voltage noise at the various mixer output ports. Could we also be seeing the cyclostationary shot noise difference between the I and Q channels?
In any case, I am happy with this level of agreement, so I am going to stick this 1U chassis back in its rack with the primary aim of measuring a spectrum of the beatnote, so that I have some idea of what kind of whitening filter shape is useful for the ALS signals. May need to pull it out again for actually implementing the daughter board idea though... I have updated DCC page with LISO source, and also the updated python notebooks.
I decided to try doing the THD measurement with a function generator. Did some quick trials tonight to verify that the measurement plan works. Note that for the test, I turned off the z=15,p=150 whitening filter - I'm driving a signal at ~100Hz and should have plenty of oomph to be seen above ADC noise.
I'm going to work on putting together some code that gives me a quick readback on the measured THD, and then do the test for real with different amplitude input signal and whitening gain settings.
**Matlab has a thd function, but to the best of my googling, can't find a scipy.signal analog.
To remind myself of the problem, summarize some of the discussion Koji and I had on the actual problem via email, and in case I've totally misunderstood the problem:
So my question is - should we just cut the PCB trace and add this series resistance for the 4 ALS signal channels, and THEN measure the THD? Since the DC voltage level of the ALS signal is expected to be of the order of a few volts, we know we are going to be in the problematic regime where #11 and #12 become issues.
> So my question is - should we just cut the PCB trace and add this series resistance for the 4 ALS signal channels, and THEN measure the THD?
Correcting a mistake in my earlier elog: the D990694 is NOT differential receiving, it is single ended receiving via the front panel SMA connectors. The aLIGO version of the whitening board, D1001530 has an additional differential-to-single-ended input stage, though it uses the LT1125 to implement this stage. So the possibility of ground loops on all channels using this board will exist even after the planned change to install series resistance to avoid current overloading the preceeding stage.
After labeling all cables, I pulled out one of the D990694s in the LSC rack (the one used for the ALS X signals, it is Rev-B1, S/N 118 according to the sticker on it).
Took some photos before cutting anything. Attachments #1-3 are my cutting plans (shown for 1 channel, plan is to do it for both ALS channels coming into this board). #1 & #2 are meant to show the physical locations of the cuts, and #3 is the corresponding location on the schematic. These are the most convenient locations I could identify on the board for this operation.
I don't know what the purpose of resistors R196, R197, R198 are. I'm assuming it has something to do with the way the ADG333ABR switches. The aLIGO board uses a different switch (MAX4659EUA+), and doesn't have an analogous resistor (though from what I can tell, it too is a CMOS SPDT switch just like the ADG333ABR, just has a lower ON resistance of 25ohm vs 45ohm for the ADG333ABR).
As for the actual resistance to be used: Let's say we don't have signals > 5V coming into this board. Then using 301ohms (as in the aLIGO boards) in series means the peak current draw will be <20mA, which sounds like a reasonable number to me. Larger series resistance is better, but I guess then the contribution of the current noise of the OpAmp keeps increasing.
This is proving much more challenging than I thought - while Cut #1 was easy to identify and execute, my initial plan for Cut #2 seems to not have isolated the input of the second opamp (as judged by DMM continuity). Koji pointed out that this is actually not a robust test, as the switches are in an undefined state while I am doing these tests with the board unpowered. It seems rather complicated to do a test with the board powered out here in the office area though - and I'd rather not desolder the 16 and 20 pin ICs to get a better look at the tracks. This PCB seems to be multilayered, and I don't have a good idea for what the hidden tracks may be. Does anyone know of a secret place where there is a schematic for the PCB layout of this board? The DCC page only has the electrical schematic drawings, and I can't find anything useful on the elog/wiki/old ilog on a keyword search for this DCC document number. The track layout also is not identical for all channels. So I'm holding off on exploratory cuts.
*I've asked Ben Abbott/Mike Pedraza about this and they are having a look in Dale Ouimette's old drives to see if they can dig up the Altium/Protel files.
I quickly put together some code that calculates the THD from CDS data and generates a plot (see e.g. Attachment #1).
I conducted a trial on the Y arm ALS channel whitening board (while the X arm counterpart is still undergoing surgery). With the whitening gain set to 0dB, and a 1Vpp input signal (so nothing should be saturated), I measure a THD of ~0.08% according to the above formula. Seems rather high - the LT1125 datasheet tells us to expect <0.001% THD+N at ~100Hz for a closed loop gain of ~10. I can only assume that the digitization process somehow introduces more THD? Of course the FoM we care about is what happens to this number as we increase the gain.