Updated on May 22, 2019 by Henrik Andersson

Preparing for first article tests

The first article of the Antenna Unit (AU) will arrive at the Production Engineering and Test (PET) test site, located at EISCAT in Kiruna, in July. After installation by the vendor, ECRIEE, the initial AU tests will verify dimensions, cabling, electrical installations and the environmental control system (cooling, heat, etc). For the RF tests, the AU will be equipped with Solid State Power Amplifiers (SSPA) – from Japan which are controlled by the in-house developed Pulse and Steering Control Unit (PSCU) system.

Preparing for first article tests. Equipment rack: At top: the white rabbit system. Below the instruments: first the tailor-made interface boards that interfaces the Japanese provided amplifiers (six installed in the lower part of the rack) with the in-house designed PSCUs. The amplifiers are fed by the 50V power supply located in the bottom and by a 5V system located just above the amplifiers. Shown on the laptop – the control software. For the full first article tests, totally 40 SSPAs will be used (500w each – totally 20 kW). Photo: Henrik Andersson

In preparation for those tests, the project staff, here represented by Robert Juhlin and Assar Westman, have setup parts of the transmitter system at our offices for pre-tests. For synchronisation of the individual channels, a white-rabbit system has been deployed.  The control system is GUI based.

The PSCU logic and amplifiers used here will not be the ones used in the final system. Both the PSCU and the transmitter system are sourced via external contracts.