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MSc Dissertation: Monica Wai-Man Wu


Wu, Monica Wai-Man. Characterisation of a Dual Frequency Conversion Superheterodyne Receiver. MSc Dissertation. Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Cape Town, 2008.


The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) is an international effort to build an advanced and highly sensitive radio telescope. The South African Karoo Array Telescope (KAT) project is initiated to show the international committee of SKA that South Africa has sufficient technological background and resources to make a contribution to them. Therefore this research investigates and evaluates the performance of the Australian built 3×4 receiver module and then to verify that this prototype is suitable to be integrated into the 24-channel RF rack for KAT.

This dissertation starts off with a brief introduction of the SKA project, and explain how it relates to the KAT project. Then certain receiver design techniques and parameters will be discussed together with receiver design trade-offs will be presented. This dissertation will then focus on the actual simulations of the 3×4 receiver module using the time-domain RF simulator, SystemView. An overview of the design for the 24-channel RF rack integrated locally by Tellumat (Pty) Ltd is presented and acceptance tests will be conducted and the test results will be presented. Results obtained from both simulations and measurements are analysed and compared.

This dissertation is concluded by discussing the conclusions and recommendations are presented for how to improve the accuracy when simulating the 3×4 receiver module.