Contact an Expert

Schematic Design and Simulation using the ADS Integrated Design Environment

Agilent's Advanced Design System (ADS) offers the most complete set of simulation technologies available today, from enhanced frequency-domain simulation for conventional RF PC Board design, to time-domain and advanced electromagnetic (EM) simulations. ADS simulation technology enables you to plot, optimize, and visualize circuit performance results. Integrated sensitivity analysis and Design of Experiments (DOE) capabilities enable you not only to flag a yield problem, but to quickly identify and optimize it.

ADS Simulation Technology

Designing circuits for different functional blocks often requires an array of simulation techniques. At the end, you want to analyze your complete design including results of different functional blocks or circuit elements. Take a typical low-noise amplifier (LNA) board as an example. The complete multilayer PC Board can be simulated with Agilent's EM simulator, Momentum. In this way, all magnetic coupling between traces, vias and ground planes are modeled as well as other high frequency effects like conductor and substrate losses. The non-linear behavior like third-order intercept point (IP3) of the LNA circuit can be simulated with Agilent's Harmonic Balance (HB) simulator. Finally, you will want to simulate and optimize the complete circuit including the board EM effects. This can be done by setting up an EM and circuit co-simulation.

Agilent EEsof EDA pioneered the co-simulation design concept years ago. It is recognized by many users as an inevitable part of their design flow, enabling them to design faster and achieve more accurate simulation results. ADS allows co-simulation by virtually every one of its simulators.

RF Board Design in ADS

In this example, a layout look-a-like component was created and placed in a schematic. The test bench in schematic simulated the complete board including the EM effect of the board together with the discrete packaged parts. The simulation setup was similar to a network analyzer and it identified a resonance in the input circuit of the board.

Tuning of the discrete components identified that the resonance was not caused by the packaged parts, but rather due to a misplaced via hole.

For more information on the Agilent products mentioned above, refer to:

Return to RF & Microwave Board Design

Learn more about Agilent EEsof EDA Software