Agilent Technologies has introduced Option 028 to its PNA-X Series of microwave network analyzers.
The new option allows highly accurate, source-corrected noise figure measurements of amplifiers, frequency converters and mixers up to 50 GHz.
The PNA-X network analyzers when configured with Option 028 are able to correct the effects of imperfect system source match. This is accomplished by using vector error correction to remove mismatch errors and an ECal module as an impedance tuner to remove noise-parameter-induced errors.
Such advanced calibration methods enable the PNA-X network analyzers to offer the high noise figure measurement accuracy, especially in on-wafer, in-fixture and automated test environments.
Measurement accuracy is critical to engineers designing and testing amplifiers, converters and especially low-noise amplifiers.
In R&D, measurement accuracy enables better optimised transmit/receive systems and correlation between circuit simulations and measurements.
In manufacturing, it means smaller guard bands yielding better component specifications and more competitive products.
Agilent’s Option 028 uses the PNA-X standard S-parameter receivers and Agilent’s unique source-correction technique to make noise figure measurements up to 50 GHz.
For devices with less than 30 dB of excess noise, an external preamplifier and filter are required.
For noise figure measurements up to 26.5 GHz, an additional option (Option H29) is available that offers an internal low-noise receiver for 50 GHz PNA-X instruments.
Option H29 eliminates the need for an external preamplifier and filters, while making the setup as easy as that required for measuring S-parameters.
The PNA-X provides a wide range of measurement applications spanning from RF to millimetre wave. The PNA-X network analyzers give engineers the flexibility to make measurements such as S-parameter, gain compression, intermodulation distortion and noise figure measurements with a single connection to the device-under-test.
The PNA-X offers noise figure measurements that are typically 4 to 10 times faster than that of a noise figure analyzer.
When performing a broader suite of measurements, it offers 100X improvement in overall test throughput as compared to legacy, multi-instrument systems.