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Broadband vector network analyser shrunk to 'pack of cigarettes'

Anritsu's ME7838A broadband vector network analyser

In a move described as 'groundbreaking', Anritsu has developed the semiconductor technology and design capability needed to create a broadband vector network analyser (VNA) that is similar in size to a pack of cigarettes.

Jonathan Borrill, director of marketing, said: "We have taken a benchful of equipment, including millimetre wave heads, and integrated it into a custom device. It's new technology and it's been designed and manufactured in house."
While a broadband network analyser is not new in itself, the integration has brought higher performance and more flexibility. Borrill said: "It's targeted mainly at those performing wafer characterisation, but it will find use in other applications, where users will be able to make measurements where they couldn't previously."
Packaged as the ME7838A system – and pictured in the foreground – the device provides single sweep coverage the frequency range from 70kHz to 110GHz and can operate from 40kHz to 125GHz.
The device is said to allow accurate and efficient broadband device characterisation of active and passive microwave and millimetre wave components. Included are those targeted at 60GHz wireless personal area networks, 40Gbit/s and faster optical networks, and automotive radar operating at 77 and 94GHz.
By mounting the VNA close to, or on, the wafer probe, the device offers a dynamic range of 107dB at 110GHz and 92dB at 125GHz. The part can also measure 201 points at the 10kHz intermediate frequency bandwidth in 55ms.

Graham Pitcher

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