Author Topic: Repurposing old RF power amplifiers  (Read 911 times)

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Offline veedub565

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Repurposing old RF power amplifiers
« on: October 05, 2021, 04:24:07 pm »
I recently rescued a couple of old RF power amplifiers from the dumpster (permission was obtained) one works perfectly and the others are faulty.

Microwave Amplifiers Ltd (working)
50W, 1.78-1.81GHz

Generic RF power amp
100w, 930-960MHz
(Faulty PSU, just a generic open frame 18v job)

Varian TWT amplifier
35dB gain, 4-8GHz
(Faulty, high helix current)

Before I strip these for parts, and project cases. Is there any possible use for them as they are. Or could they somehow be repurposed for other frequencies.

The TWT amp may be useful for amateur microwave communications. Although I don't fancy cooking myself messing about with it. And its no dead cert that the tube is at fault.

The other two only appear useful for cellular comms (UK). I can't see any amateur uses at those frequencies. And I suspect they  can't be retuned to a wider bandwidth or different freq without  substantial redesign.

I thought I'd ask here tho, before I strip them down. See if there is anything useful or interesting I might be able to do with them. They are decent amps, they would sit there all day at 50w/100w continuous power. The heatsinks are massive !
 

Offline veedub565

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Re: Repurposing old RF power amplifiers
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2021, 09:13:03 pm »
I've been having a read about this. The design of the 930MHz and 1.8GHz amplifiers is very modular. And I've discovered there's such a thing as a pallet amplifier module. So I can ditch the RF modules, and replace them with something more usable. The rest of the hardware can be carried over, or easily altered to suit.

May be a nice project.
 

Offline geggi1

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Re: Repurposing old RF power amplifiers
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2021, 05:05:56 am »
The 930-960 might be able to be tuned to the HAM 23cm band depending on the transistors. It might also be possible to tune it for the 70cm band.
The 1.78-1.81 Ghz might be tunable to the ham 23cm or 13cm bands depending on the output transistor.
Open the units and find the type of transistor, google and se what comes up.

The TWT is covering several ham bands un modified and can probably also be tuned to the 3cm ham band.
Google the tube and se what you got.
 


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