A digital-receiver for the MurchisonWidefield Array

Thiagaraj Prabu, K. S. Srivani, D. Anish Roshi, P. A. Kamini, S. Madhavi, David Emrich, Brian Crosse, Andrew J. Williams, Mark Waterson, Avinash A. Deshpande, N. Udaya Shankar, Ravi Subrahmanyan, Frank H. Briggs, Robert F. Goeke, Steven J. Tingay, Melanie Johnston-Hollitt, Gopalakrishna M. R, Edward H. Morgan, Joseph Pathikulangara, John D. BuntonGrant Hampson, Christopher Williams, Stephen M. Ord, Randall B. Wayth, Deepak Kumar, Miguel F. Morales, Ludi deSouza, Eric Kratzenberg, D. Pallot, Russell McWhirter, Bryna J. Hazelton, Wayne Arcus, David G. Barnes, Gianni Bernardi, T. Booler, Judd Bowman, Roger J. Cappallo, Brian E. Corey, Lincoln J. Greenhill, David Herne, Jacqueline N. Hewitt, David L. Kaplan, Justin C. Kasper, Barton B. Kincaid, Ronald Koenig, Colin J. Lonsdale, Mervyn J. Lynch, Daniel A. Mitchell, Divya Oberoi, Ronald A. Remillard, Alan E. Rogers, Joseph E. Salah, Robert J. Sault, Jamie B. Stevens, S. Tremblay, Rachel L. Webster, Alan R. Whitney, Stuart B. Wyithe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


An FPGA-based digital-receiver has been developed for a low-frequency imaging radio interferometer, the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA). The MWA, located at the Murchison Radio-astronomy Observatory (MRO) in Western Australia, consists of 128 dual-polarized aperture-array elements (tiles) operating between 80 and 300 MHz, with a total processed bandwidth of 30.72 MHz for each polarization. Radio-frequency signals from the tiles are amplified and band limited using analog signal conditioning units; sampled and channelized by digital-receivers. The signals from eight tiles are processed by a single digital-receiver, thus requiring 16 digital-receivers for the MWA. The main function of the digital-receivers is to digitize the broad-band signals from each tile, channelize them to form the sky-band, and transport it through optical fibers to a centrally located correlator for further processing. The digital-receiver firmware also implements functions to measure the signal power, perform power equalization across the band, detect interference-like events, and invoke diagnostic modes. The digital-receiver is controlled by high-level programs running on a single-board-computer. This paper presents the digital-receiver design, implementation, current status, and plans for future enhancements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-93
Number of pages21
JournalExperimental Astronomy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015


  • ADC
  • Channelizer
  • Digital-receiver
  • FPGA
  • MRO
  • MWA
  • PFB
  • Radio astronomy instrumentation
  • Radio telescope
  • SKA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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