Broadcom and Agilent are perhaps not household words in every household, but among those who work with RF, they are common enough names. An Agilent developer wrote AppCAD to help with common RF design computations and now works for Avago who bought Broadcom. But whoever’s branding is on it, you can download the tool from Broadcom or check out the latest beta version. Then watch [IMASI Guy’s] video below on how to use part of it.
What can it do? According to the website:
- S-Parameter Analysis and Plotting
- Active Circuit Bias Design
- Cascade Noise and IP3 Analysis
- Transmission Line Analysis
- Signals and Systems
- Complex Math Engineering Calculator
Even if you aren’t doing radio design per se, high-speed design often means you need to consider strip lines or transmission through coax or parallel lines. The program makes it easy to work on things like that as long as you are using Microsoft Windows.
When we think of CAD, we think of a program that lets us do some kind of physical design. That’s not really what it means in this case. But it is a powerful set of tools that can handle many RF calculations and it is worth checking out.