Design and prototyping of the Italian Tile Processing Module 1.6 (ITPM) for the low-frequency aperture array deployment
A novel version of digital hardware Italian Tile Processing Module (ITPM) 1.6 has been released for the Low-Frequency Aperture Array (LFAA) component of the Square Kilometre Array (SKA). This back-end includes two plugged-in main blocks, as an analog device , the Pre-ADU board, and an Analog to Digital Unit (ADU), a 6U board containing sixteen dual-inputs Analog to Digital Converters and two Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) devices, capable of digitizing and processing 32 RF input signals (50-650 MHz). We present the main features of the upgrade of the board compared to previous versions: there are new and high performance components improving processing capability, mechanical changes matching the design of the housing sub-rack and finally a general reduction of the overall power consumption. The ITPM ADU 1.6 version, now in engineering phase together with its sub-rack system, is currently the last prototype before the design of the industrial line for mass production, necessary for the LFAA deployment. Results of system performances will be presented.