Sample clock pulse generator for digital data systems

Stable, self-contained clock source that can be applied to longer lines and multiple pieces of equipment

Electronics Sensors

A scientist at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center–Newport Division has recently invented a clock generator for digital data systems that is capable of driving multiple loads and long cables without becoming unstable. The patented technology is available via patent license agreement to companies that would make, use, or sell it commercially.

Twenty-four hours of sounds from Olympic National Park. (NPS photo)

In digital acoustic sensing and recording applications, there is a need for a sample clock source to drive large banks of digital to analog (D/A) converters and analog to digital (A/D) converters. A sample clock is a signal that controls the point in time at which samples are acquired. They are critical for accurately correlating the time in which data is acquired from different channels. There are many solutions to this issue with regard to electronics but when applied to acoustics and longer transmission lines, these approaches fail. Existing clock sources provided a noisy, distorted waveform when driving a long cable combined with complex digital signal processing equipment. For such an application, coaxial cables longer than about 10 feet are considered long cables because the inherent capacitance of coaxial cable introduces signal distortion.

To address this gap in the market a Navy researcher James Hagerty has developed a sample clock source including an oscillator providing a square wave at a predetermined frequency. A counter and at least one flip-flop (simple binary data storage element with two stable states) are joined to receive the master oscillator square wave and produce several different output square waves having reduced frequencies. A tuner is provided to allow user selection of the different square waves. The selected square wave is provided to a pulse generator which produces a pulse having a known duration at the selected reduced frequency. The pulse generator output can be buffered and provided as the sample clock source.

Do you have questions or need more information on a specific technology? Let's talk.

Contact Us