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Key Features & Specifications

The Ptolemy and VTB Engine contains the following capabilities:

  • Dataflow and time-domain simulation of mixed-signal DSP, RF and analog communication systems
  • Extensive DSP, RF, communications, baseband analog model libraries and user-defined C++ models to architect reference system quickly to provide accurate specs and verification environment for DSP, RF and baseband block designers
  • Co-simulation with RF (Circuit Envelope Element) and analog (Transient Convolution Element) circuit simulators to enable transistor level blocks, such as amplifiers, mixers and oscillators, to be designed, optimized and verified against system level specs
  • Co-simulation with the Circuit Envelope Element enables accurate non-linear X-parameter* behavioral models from measurement or simulation to be used in system simulation
  • Co-simulation with HDL digital simulators (Cadence NC-SIM, Verilog XL and Mentor Modelsim) enables HDL development and verification against system specs for error-free ASIC/FPGA implementation
  • Co-simulation with Matlab enables Matlab scripts IP reuse for sophisticated DSP algorithm development
  • Fixed point implementation analysis and optimization enables fixed point math, bit-width and quantization effects to be accounted for and optimized to the original ideal floating point design with 13 powerful optimizers
  • Connected Solutions with Keysight instruments enables progressive system integration between virtual and available real hardware by synthesizing and using real signals for one pass final system implementation success
  • Provides the simulation foundation for wireless standards verification with Keysight Wireless Libraries for the latest 3G, 4G cellular and data networking standards such as LTE, WiMax and VWAN


The Ptolemy and VTB Engine provides communication system simulation comprising Digital Signal Processing (DSP), RF-mixed signal and baseband system design capabilities to the Advanced Design System (ADS), the flagship product from Keysight EEsof EDA, the technology and innovation leader in high-frequency mixed-signal electronic design automation (EDA). ADS is the only design simulation platform that enables the co-design of IC, package and board in high-frequency and hi-speed applications. It seamlessly integrates system, circuit, full 3D electromagnetic simulation with Keysight’s test instrumentation for you to do single pass successful electronic designs repeatedly.

The Ptolemy and VTB Engine is uniquely architected to enable the thorough simulation of modern communication systems, such as wireless and wireline transceivers and spread-spectrum radars, which include DSP, RF and baseband mixed-signal components. It co-simulates with RF (Circuit Envelope Element), analog (Transient Convolution Element) and digital HDL (Cadence NC-Sim and Mentor Modelsim) simulators to enable comprehensive RF mixed signal system design and optimization with both the behavioral and transistor level blocks.

The Ptolemy and VTB Engine provides the system simulation foundation for wireless standards verification with the latest Keysight’s wireless libraries such as LTE, WiMAX™ and VWAN. In addition, it also forms connected solutions with the full range of Keysight signal sources and analyzers to generate real signals or use measured signals in simulations to perform progressive system integration with real hardware as they become available. This avoids delays and costly surprises from traditional system integration where all hardware must be completed before they can be verified together.

Unlike other system-level simulators which can only use system behavioral models and simulate only the envelope of the RF carriers without taking into account impedance mismatches, Keysight Ptolemy has none of these restrictions. Through its true circuit-system-DSP co-simulation capabilities, it allows any combination of circuit, system, DSP and measured non-linear X-parameter blocks to be accurately simulated with true modulated RF signals and accounts for signal reflections and frequency mixing throughout the system.

Functionality Included in this Element

See also Ptolemy Element for the GoldenGate RFIC Simulator.

Learn more about Advanced Design System (ADS) Simulation Elements

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