Band 6 SIS Mixer
The largest millimeter array in the world relies on the tiniest electronic parts. These are mixers for the receivers used in all ALMA antennas. Their job is to convert the cosmic radio source into an electrical current and then combine, as quietly as possible, the signals from the array’s metronome, called the local oscillator, with the signals the antenna receives from space. This eletronic mixing slows the data rate to a pace that the supercomputer can handle.
These tiny mixers were designed by our Central Development Laboratory then built and tested at the University of Virginia’s Microfabrication Laboratory.