Communication Circuit Lab (CCL) Facilities

Test and Measurement Equipment

EquipmentKSU's CCL offers a collection of test and measurement equipment that rivals facilities found in many major corporations. Test and measurement capabilities include: Additional equipment ranging from 200 MHz oscilloscopes, to accessories such as power dividers and attenuators are also available for compression / intermodulation measurements, noise figure measurements, etc.

RF probe stationWhile the main application of this equipment is classroom and research use at the PC board and module levels, the CCL also has capabilities for wafer/chip level stimulus and measurement. A set of micropositioners with resolutions approaching 1um (donated by Cascade Microtech), together with 40 GHz coplanar RF probes allow on-chip 2-port S-parameter measurements to be made. 

Electronic Design Automation

EDA ToolsRF Electronic Design Automation (EDA) tools are available in the CCL for use in circuit and system verification, optimization, and layout. Like the test equipment described above, the capabilities of this software meets or exceeds that found in many industry settings.

Through a generous $1.1M donation from Hewlett Packard's EEsof division, KSU offers students access to the complete Series IV and ADS software suites. This software is hosted on the department's UNIX network composed of Sun Sparc 2, Sparc 5, and Sparc Ultra machines and provides system-level, circuit-level, and electromagnetic simulation as well as microstrip layout tools. 

Fabrication Capabilities

PC BoardRF circuits can be fabricated through several methods, depending on frequency of operation and other requirements. In the undergraduate EECE662 course (design of communication circuits) students build circuits operating to 100 MHz and above using Ivan Boards. These boards are available in the Electronics Shop in 2x2 and 2x3 inch formats, and provide a backside ground plane and a front-side grid on 0.1" centers for SMD component placement / soldering.

For higher frequencies (to 3 GHz and above), PC boards can be constructed, either in-house through the department's photo lab in Ward Hall, or via third-party vendors.

For special applications, the department also has wire-bonding equipment and probe-station equipment that can be used for testing unpackaged discrete components and ICs. 

RFIC Design and Fabrication

RFICRF circuit design is rapidly moving from PC board level development using standard components, to embedding RF functions into larger systems using custom Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs). Students at K-State can develop such ICs by taking courses in both the Communications and Solid-State Circuits option areas. K-State, like most schools within the country, uses the MOSIS service for fabrication. MOSIS provides access to state-of-the-art CMOS technologies ranging from 2 um to 0.25 um feature sizes, as well as the new Peregrine Semiconductor Silicon-on-Sapphire 0.5um technology which is optimized for RF and mixed-signal applications.

Check out the IC Gallery for more photos of student/faculty designs.