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Ultra-low-noise regenerative frequency divider

By: Howe, D.A.; Desalvo, J.A.; Lirette, D.; Barnes, C.; Nelson, C.W.; Hati, A.;

2012 / IEEE


This item was taken from the IEEE Periodical ' Ultra-low-noise regenerative frequency divider ' We designed ultra-low-noise regenerative divideby-2 circuits that operate at input frequencies of 10, 20, and 40 MHz. We achieved output-referred single-sideband residual phase noise equal to -164 dBc/Hz at 10 Hz offset and estimated residual Allan deviation, �sub>y(� less than 3 �10-15�sup>-1 for a single divider, which is, to our knowledge, the lowest noise of any divider ever reported at these frequencies. To measure such a low noise, we also built a cross-spectrum measurement system that has a noise floor of -175 dBc/Hz at 10 Hz offset from the carrier frequency. The low noise of the divider and the measurement system are achieved by using custom-built mixers/phase detectors that use 2N2222A bipolar junction transistors (BJTs) in a conventional double-balanced diode ring.