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Rohde & Schwarz extends frequency range of its SMA100B RF and microwave signal generator

Rohde & Schwarz have extended the frequency range of the SMA100B signal generator which now covers frequency ranges of up to 31.8 GHz, 40 GHz, 50 GHz and 67 GHz.

The analogue microwave signal generator supports all relevant application fields in the aerospace and defence, wireless communications and semiconductor industries. According to the company, the SMA100B should be viewed as a future proof investment and is a suitable instrument for the characterisation of microwave components, devices and systems.

The 40 GHz instrument covers all major radar bands, and with the 67 GHz instrument engineers have a signal source that covers the emerging Q/V band used for very high throughput satellite feeder links. With the introduction of the 5G mobile network standard, first commercial deployments will use frequencies up to 39 GHz or even higher, while the use of frequencies beyond 40 GHz is under investigation. The 67 GHz instrument supports component testing in the 60 GHz frequency range also for non-cellular standards such as IEEE 802.11ad and in over-range operation for standards such as IEEE 802.11ay.

Due to its ultra low phase noise option, the R&S SMA100B can output very pure RF signals with a single sideband phase noise of -120 dBc/Hz (40 GHz, 20 kHz offset; measured). The signal generator can act as a local oscillator (LO) during radar system integration or in radar test systems. With the increase in sample rates of analogue to digital converters (ADC) and digital to analogue converters (DAC), clean RF carriers with lowest phase noise and low wideband noise are required. Low wideband noise of -150 dBc/Hz (e.g. at 30 GHz, 40 MHz offset; measured) helps to measure the true performance of a device

At microwave frequencies, attenuation from cables and test fixtures can be a concern, so the SMA100B offers different output power stages to compensate for these losses.

Users can upgrade their 31.8 GHz, 40 GHz, 50 GHz and 67 GHz instrument to ultra high power performance via a keycode without having to send the instrument back to service. With the ultra high output power option, the instruments provide sufficient output power with extremely low harmonics, eliminating the need for external amplifiers and filters and simplifying setups at the same time.

Equipped with the ultra high output power option, a 40 GHz instrument delivers up to 27 dBm at 25 GHz, while a 67 GHz instrument provides up to 23 dBm at 40 GHz and up to 17 dBm at 67 GHz.

The SMA100B provides more than 70 dB of uninterrupted RF level sweep without glitches or signal blanks during the level sweep. With an ultra high output power option installed, it's suitable for measuring the gain transfer curve or output saturation point of high power devices such as amplifiers based on GaN technology or traveling wave tube amplifiers (TWTAs) used in modern satellites.

When equipped with the Scan AM software option, the SMA100B can simulate amplitude variation coming from scanning radar antennas in order to perform receiver tests with modulation depths of more than 70 dB.

The R&S SMA100B is included in the company's LegacyPro program and can replace obsolete signal generators from Rohde & Schwarz and other manufacturers in automated test environments without the need to modify the test software.

Author
Neil Tyler

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