Welcome to tools.rfdude.com
Where you can find some flexible and free RF/Microwave Engineering tools, created mostly by Lance Lascari. You can find other tools and resources that we use in our business on the services page.
Note: please click on the tool name in the table to jump to that portion of the page
|Tool / Use||Platform||Current Version||Updated||What has been done for the most recent updates||Future plans|
(HP8753, HP8720, possibly others...)
|see GPIB page||0.2||7/1/2008 -- added HP8720 compatibility (at least the one I have)||just posted to the web for a couple people to try||make more robust -- I've seen it lock up and crash. Error handling is poor. I wrote this primarily to test a GPIB driver I wrote for my VNA and I use the utility quite a bit.... but it has quirks.|
|Linearity test program (national instruments GPIB interface)||see GPIB page||0.41||November 20th, 2004||Added P1dB, support of other spectrum analyzers, other frills (version 0.41 just minor changes to try and remove some on-screen errors seen in certain setups)||Possibly adding a mode where it takes a "snapshot" of harmonics at P1dB in the P1dB mode. Improving the speed of the P1dB measurement and/or making the "detailed" plotting optional.|
|HP856x/HP859x series spectrum analyzer "trace sucker" (national instruments GPIB interface)||see GPIB page||2.0b (older versions still available)||April 9th, 2007 - The version of today should fix a problem with the version of yesterday on win2k. I'm doing more testing now....||Added basic plots (can copy to clipboard, save to bitmap file, or print directly)||
perhaps sequential bitmap save
Get feedback on whether this works on people's systems. I only have one spectrum analyzer to test this on easily.
|RF signal generator sweeper (national instruments GPIB interface)||see GPIB page||0.1||March 16th, 2003||revised initial release||Add support for other generators maybe.|
|Smith Chart program with crude matching network & filter synthesis||win 95 or later||0.810||6/2007||ML/VSWR calcs are different, that's about all.||nothing planned other than fixing bugs people might report
Note -- I decided to try and install this under wine (Ubuntu 14.04) and it works fine from what I can tell (using the setup.exe even!). Hadn't ever tried... (April 22, 2014)
basic coupled line and some lumped filter design. This is best for one-off topologies and developing custom filters -- it won't replace a commercial synthesis program.
|MS Excel & MathCad||1.1||11/25/2001||update:
added response graphs for ideal filter responses... changed some notes around.
added "how I use this as a tool" to the documentation
slight formatting improvements on the excel-based microstrip coupler design spreadsheet
more advanced coupled line bandpass
design from M, Y, J
more lumped filter stuff.
|RFdude PLL worksheets & phase noise article/PLL design and analysis with extensive Phase noise work||MathCad||3.8||3/13/2002||
--fixed an error that was reported
with the op-amp-included transfer function
--fixed a units quirk that may only have been present with MathCad 2001i
|no solid plans other than fixing errors that folks report|
RF system Cascade analysis (standard, basic)
|MS Excel||4.0h||8/16/2004||Mostly cosmetic fixes, improved documentation slightly (in spreadsheet)||who knows...|
used to find the source of spurs
(UNIX, DOS or windows)
|n/a||11/1999||initial public release||
improve sorting, or just rewrite the thing!
Redundant data should be removed.
used to convert data from HP8753D network analyzers to "touchstone" s2p format
|Perl (UNIX, DOS or windows)||n/a||10/1998||initial public release||no plans unless bugs are found|
"spur-o-matic" (perl script)
This is a very crude and dirty program I wrote to facilitate the discovery and identification of spurs created in an RF system due to a number of input signals. Perl is a free scripting language that is pretty useful for little widgets like this. Perl was originally only available on Unix systems to my knowledge, but I've been using it on the windows platform for years.
This tool does the following:
- Takes a text input file with some setup parameters and each input frequency in the system, with an identifier (example of this file is provided in the zip file below).
- With the "order" specified by you, it computes all possible combinations of output frequency (you specify the range of frequencies you're interested in looking at).
- Then it sorts the frequencies (very slowly I might add), and spits them out into a couple different output files, a ".csv" to start, which is easy to read in with excel and other applications.
- In the "input" file, you give each frequency a name and a bandwidth, so, the spurs in the output files can be more easily identified.
Example:?frequency, 3 * IF_LO + 2*TCXO BW = 0
- For some spurs, if they're spurs of "modulated" signals, such as a TX or TXIF frequency, the bandwidth will expand as the order (harmonic) number increases. This is VERY useful since there may be times that you have multiple ways of creating the same spur... if you know the bandwidth, then you have a better shot at positively identifying the mechanism.
NOTE: If you want something more or different, I suggest looking at the tools available at www.rfcafe.com
nwa2s2p (Perl script)
This tool was something I wrote in desperation a few years ago. I use it to convert the data files from HP "CITI?" format into s2p files. I've only used it with HP (Agilent) 8753D analyzers, but I imagine it should work for others too. At the time I couldn't find any other method. HP does have a DOS program to do this, but I sort of like this one better since it prompts you to enter a description of the file you're converting... making it easier to be disciplined in managing the data. The file also contains a converter to change s2p files into a format that can be easily pasted into the "ARRL radio designer" cad program offered by the ARRL (it's a netlist based subset of compact).