NCO Intel® FPGA IP Core

Figure 1. Simple Modulator


A numerically controlled oscillator (NCO) is a digital signal generator, which synthesizes a discrete-time, discrete-valued representation of a sinusoidal waveform. You can typically use NCOs in communication systems. In such systems, they are used as quadrature carrier generators in I-Q mixers, in which baseband data is modulated onto the orthogonal carriers in one of a variety of ways (see Figure 1).

You can also use NCOs in all-digital phase-locked loops (PLLs) for carrier synchronization in communications receivers, or as standalone frequency shift keying (FSK) or phase shift keying (PSK) modulators. In these applications, the phase or the frequency of the output waveform varies directly according to an input data stream.

  • 32-bit precision for angle and magnitude
  • Source interface compatible with the Avalon® Interface Specification
  • Multiple NCO architectures:
    • Multiplier-based implementation using digital signal processing (DSP) blocks or logic elements (LEs), (single cycle and multicycle)
    • Parallel or serial CORDIC-based implementation
    • ROM-based implementation using embedded array blocks (EABs), embedded system blocks (ESBs), or external ROM
  • Single or dual outputs (sine/cosine)
  • Variable width frequency modulation input
  • Variable width phase modulation input
  • User-defined frequency resolution, angular precision, and magnitude precision
  • Frequency hopping
  • Multichannel capability
  • Simulation files and architecture-specific testbenches for VHDL and Verilog HDL
  • Dual-output oscillator and quaternary frequency shift keying (QFSK) modulator example designs

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