Airbus Defence and Space


SAW high frequency resonators & oscillators

The Frequency Control Products Group has a powerful capability for the design and manufacture of space-qualified SAW resonators, which are used in SAW notch filters and SAW oscillators.

SAW oscillators can be implemented at substantially higher frequencies than quartz crystal oscillators, whilst retaining quartz’s intrinsic frequency/temperature stability. The devices offer excellent phase noise and frequency stability. A SAW voltage-controlled oscillator can be readily phase-locked to a crystal reference, giving a composite UHF source with the frequency stability of the reference and optimum close-in and far-out phase noise.

SAW resonator technology also allows passive UHF notch filters for suppression of unwanted signals to be implemented.

Features / technical details

Notch Filters

  • Flexible frequency range in the UHF band
  • Quartz temperature stability
  • Simple construction, compact, robust
  • Typically used for LO rejection in up-converters

SAW Oscillators

  • Quartz temperature stability
  • Low noise analogue RF and precision DC control circuitry in surface-mount format
  • Can be phase-locked, eg to a quartz reference oscillator, for an optimum phase noise UHF source
  • Very light and compact
  • Radiation tolerant
  • Mechanically robust – to withstand launch vibration and solar panel deployment etc


Frequency range 100MHz – 1GHz
Stability (all-causes) <±100ppm
Frequency/temperature stability Parabolic, Δf/f = -0.03 (T-T0)2 ppm
Ageing <±5x10-9/day
Phase noise -165 dBc/Hz @ 100 kHz
Power consupmtion 300 mW
Output power 10 dBm
Harmonics <-30 dBc
Size 38 x 32 x 8mm
Mass 20 grams


  • Radiation tolerant – total dose and prompt radiation
  • Mechanically robust – to withstand launch vibration and solar panel deployment


  • SAWO EFC suitable for telecommand
  • SAWO can be phase-locked, e.g. to a quartz master oscillator
  • Custom packaging e.g. surface-mount using Airbus Defence and Space proprietary MMHT hybrid format, or as a boxed unit with RF connectors


  • G-sensitivity: <1x10-9/g
  • Operating temperature: -30°C to +85°C
  • Radiation tolerance: >100 krad


  • Low noise UHF VCOs
  • Notch fliters, e.g. for LO rejection

Reference customers